Interview by Tony Cannella
For over 30-years Girlschool has been one of the more iconic and influential bands to emerge from the legendary New Wave of British Heavy Metal (or NWOBHM, as it is affectionately known) movement that began in England in the late 70s and early 80s, but pretty soon engulfed the world and helped revitalize Heavy Metal worldwide. Throughout the past 30-years Girlschool has had their share of ups-and-downs but have continued persevere and continue to record some truly solid material to this day (just check out 2008’s “Legacy”. Now, on the 30th anniversary of “Hit and Run”, which is quite possibly their most legendary work the band has decided to re-record this classic for a new generation of fans. Recently, bassist Enid Williams was kind enough to answer our questions in an interview conducted via email.
First question, why did you decide to re-record the classic “Hit and Run” album in 2011 and are you happy with the results?
It’s the 30th anniversary of our most popular album. We wanted to capture the spirit of the old album and we feel we achieved that.
Thank you! We’ve had a very positive response from everyone. How do you feel it differs from the original version? Well, I sang most of the original album and of course we’re without Kelly, so I’m doing the vocals on “Hit and Run” and Kim’s singing her other songs. Our voices have changed over the years as well. I’m now playing a 5 string and although the bass parts have the same feel, the runs are different and some lines are in a different octave. The solos are similar but with variations. Any chance of playing “Hit and Run” live in its entirety? Only if enough people ask the band! We keep getting requests for “Watch Your Step” but we’ll have to see! You included a bonus version of the song “Hit and Run” featuring Doro Pesch. How did this collaboration come about, and what was it like working with her? We’ve known Doro for a while now and she asked us to sing on one of her tracks, so it was great to be able to return the compliment. You had the opportunity to work with Ronnie James Dio on the “Legacy” album. What was that experience like? Ronnie was one of our heroes and such a great man as well. It’s a real honour when someone you admire respects your work.
Actually, the “Legacy” album featured a number of guests. What was that whole experience like?Brilliant! We were recording in Wales and the guests recorded their parts in LA and New York and then sent them over. It was incredibly exciting hearing their contributions for the first time.
Are you currently working on new material and can you give us a preview of what the next Girlschool album will sound like?No! We’re touring this album next year and working on a DVD. What inspires the band when writing new material?
Hearing great tracks and wanting to come up with something as good.What is your opinion of the current crop of female singers and bands?
There are many good ones, but very few greats!
Do you feel like you helped pave the way for women in rock and metal?
For many years we had a male following but since music on the internet took off we’ve had lots of women say we’ve been an influence. The world still has a long way to go though before women have the same opportunities as men. Over 30 years and Girlschool is still going strong. What do you attribute the bands longevity to?
Passion and stubbornness.
Girlschool has released so many albums. Do you have any particular favorites?
What are your immediate plans for the future? Sorting through DVD footage. Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions. Is there anything you would like to add? The final words are yours.
Thank you to all our friends and fans for their support over the years. As long as you’re there for us, we’ll be there for you!