Saturday, October 16, 2004

Ghoulish Garage

Just in time for Halloween is the Pandoras spooky, surf guitar instrumental "Haunted Beach Party" (Voxx). The all-girl Pandoras formed in Hollywood, CA in 1984 and went through many line-up changes. The ensuing fights led to the forming of two bands fighting over and the original name and playing around L.A. as the Pandoras at the same time. When the dust settled a band led by Paula Pierce emerged and continued to record great psychedelic garage rock for Rhino and Restless Records. Sadly Paula Pierce died of an aneurysm while exercising on August 10, 1991. She was 31 years-old.

At the time of this recording The Pandoras were, Paula Pierce - guitar & vocals, Gwynne Kahn - keyboards, Bambi Lee Conway - bass, Casey Gomez - drums. Future members inlcuded Julie Patchouli, Karen Blankfeld, Rita D'Albert, Sheri Kaplan, Melanie Vammen and Kim Shattuck. Vammen and Shattuck went on to form the Muffs.

Read the whole Pandoras story here

Find Pandoras CDs here

Go to the download page to get the Pandoras - "Haunted Beach Party" mp3 here


Blogger Unknown said...

I remember when the Pandoras were the sex symbols of the indie rock scene around 1985 or 1986, yet they seemed to have abruptly disappeared. I'd love to see how they look (and sound) these days though I have no idea how well any of them may have aged.

4:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For me, their best record is the "Stop Pretending" album.
It beats the Go-Gos anyway!

2:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


This is Julie Patchouli, Yep the X- Bassist for the Pandoras.. Nice to see that people still have taste regarding cool old school music. I am still rocking and have my own website:
Drop me a line and sign the guestbook.

And keep the word out...

Julie Patchouli

12:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was thinking this morning about how Paula, the band's writer, guitarist, and gorgeous she looked during 1986--the year of their album Stop Pretending. Girls sometimes don't realize their impact on others, so she missed this effect probably. Paula wasn't a girly girl by any stretch.
She was cute by most standards during her entire life, but for some reason '86 was it. Media used the 1986 photo of Paula to promote a show in tribute of her life in September 1991--the photo taken by her punk friend Dianne Carter.
I still log on everywhere as "billgbg" which stands for "Bill, girlband groupie" She named all the older, loser-guys watching the show from nose-length distance; she gave them this name of "girlband groupies" Drop me a line at "" for confirmation of this.
Paula was a goddess on stage. She was born to write, sing and play that music; her mix of classic garage with an 80's twist. People around her and even Paula thought that her stage persona and sexy moves made guys hard in the audience, but was that was the total effect? Her shows brought out 'Frisco lesbians just as strongly as the trucker guys, wimpy 60's lovers, and the "raincoat crowd" famously named in one article. Watching her made me feel liberated, alive, and electrically charged.
Her last record was so ragged and misdirected--she'd lost her direction, audience, and most bandmates--that she had alienated nearly all her supporters. That's very weird and strange, even for me to say because I am such a strong fan of hers.
I know some details about her last 9 months following the last Pandoras shows; she was struggling and not finding anything basically. For us fans who must put an ending on things, it's safe to say that her best years were behind her at that point. Paula would not be able to compete with the only other person to emerge out of the LA club scene, Courtney Love, and the late nineties decayed overall as a launching pad for her type of rock/metal. Paula was a person who really wanted to "make it" and she had those intense dreams and stamina for accomplishing it; strangely she didn't. Very very interesting. But I'm sure glad I saw about ten Pandoras shows and launched dozens of other collectors on their way.

6:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello All,
This is Julie Patchouli again, x bassist for the second line up of 'Doras'. Recently I have started the Offical Pandoras website in tribute to Paula Pierce.

I will have rare photo's and MP3's on my site as well as any news and tidbits that may arise. Please show your support for Paula by visiting my site dedicated to her.

As always your comments are encouraged and welcome!! Visit the site at:

Your source for the Pandoras....

12:49 PM  

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