Joan Jett: 'I Love Rock 'N Roll's Original Riot Grrrl, Then And Now

By | March 20, 2021

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CIRCA 1980: Photo of Joan Jett (Photo by Anne Fishbein/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

Joan Jett's 1982 hit "I Love Rock 'N Roll" topped the pop chart in several countries, and she also had success with the singles "Crimson And Clover" and "I Hate Myself For Loving You." A former member of The Runaways, Jett became the iconic rock vixen of the '80s, known for a Ramones-inspired look consisting of black leather jacket, jeans and shaggy hair, accented by her signature white Gibson Melody Maker guitar. She has released 12 solo albums to date, and with her band The Blackhearts was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 2015. Jett has been cited as an inspiration by many women who made a name for themselves in punk and hard rock genres, especially those in the Riot Grrrl movement of the '90s.

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 Rock ‘n’ roll is a man’s world? Not to Joan Jett at least. Edgy lyrics, ferocious instrumentals, and the rowdy essence of hard rock tends to make the genre stereotyped as a masculine concept. That’s where Jett stepped in and changed the game of rock ‘n’ roll for women with proof that females could rock just as hard as anyone, if not harder. Jett’s career with the chaotic girl band The Runaways and her solo work showed she was a force to be reckoned with.