The Go-Go’s Talk Addiction, New Broadway Musical

By Victoria Kim 07/27/18

“We only had one tool in our box, and that was drugs and alcohol because there was just so much going on,” said guitarist Jane Wiedlin. 

The Go-Go’s

The Go-Go’s are back in action with a new Broadway musical and a fresh take on the band’s hectic heyday.

In a recent interview with People, the LA-based band, known for pop hits like “Vacation” and “Our Lips Are Sealed,” reflected on coping with the onslaught of fame following the release of their debut album Beauty and the Beat, which went double platinum in 1981.

“We only had one tool in our box, and that was drugs and alcohol because there was just so much going on,” said guitarist Jane Wiedlin. “It was so stressful. You were exhausted, so you’d have to pep yourself up and then you’d have to bring yourself down.”

Aside from personal differences among the band members, problematic drug use also influenced the break-up of the band in 1985. Looking back, it was a much-needed break from the fast-paced lifestyle.

“I felt really lost during that time. Now when I look back, I think, ‘Thank God all that happened, because I don’t think I would’ve ever grown up,’” said Wiedlin.

“I felt I had just become consumed with being a Go-Go, and it took me years to find my identity,” said bassist Kathy Valentine. “It was a real gift because when we did start coming back and playing together, I was able to do it with so much more balance.”

The Go-Go’s have reunited several times since their break-up to record new music and tour together. But this time, members like Belinda Carlisle and Charlotte Caffey are doing it sober.

“I got sober. I put myself before all of it,” Caffey told People. “I needed my sanity more than I needed anything else. I was fighting for myself every day, and I’m very happy I did.”

Last year, singer Belinda Carlisle addressed the extent of her cocaine use over the years. “After three decades of cocaine use, I can’t believe I’m not dead. I should actually look like the Phantom of the Opera with just two holes in the front of my face,” she said last August.

Now, the band is gearing up for a revival, with a new Broadway musical Head Over Heels that debuted on Thursday (July 26) in New York City. The musical features hits by the Go-Go’s including “We Got the Beat” and “Cool Jerk.”

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Victoria is interested in anything that has to do with how mind-altering substances impact society. Find Victoria on LinkedIn or Tumblr