Music / Juliana Hatfield
American singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist, born 27 July 1967 in Wiscasset, Maine, but raised in Massachusetts. Originally a member of the Blake Babies
, going solo in 1992. Subsequently formed the supergroup Some Girls with Heidi Gluck and her sometime Blake Babies colleague Freda Love.
Her songwriting is often brilliant musically and/or lyrically (though not always both at the same time), much of it with a gloomy edge (she's been compared to a female Morrissey
). Despite her long career, she's only had two major hits, "My Sister" and "Spin The Bottle", both from the same album (Become What You Are
). Also noted for her friendship (or whatever) with Evan Dando of The Lemonheads
Published a memoir, When I Grow Up
, in 2008.Discography:
- Hey Babe (1992)
- Become What You Are (1993, recording as The Juliana Hatfield Three)
- Only Everything (1995)
- God's Foot (recorded in 1996 but never released)
- Please Do Not Disturb EP (1997)
- Bed (1998)
- Beautiful Creature (2000)
- Juliana's Pony: Total System Failure (2000)
- In Exile Deo (2004)
- Made In China (2005)
- How To Walk Away (2008)
- Peace and Love (2010)
- Juliana Hatfield (2012)
Ms. Hatfield and her work feature examples of:
- Anti-Love Song: "Let's Get Married".
- Black Comedy: "Swan Song" (see below under Driven to Suicide) falls into this category. Also, the fact that when asked by Rolling Stone, in 1992 or thereabouts, to recommend a book, she recommended Bret Easton Ellis' American Psycho, calling it "hilariously funny".
- Cover Version: Her Self-Titled Album, ironically, is an album of covers. She's done them occasionally earlier in her career as well, mostly in concert but occasionally on albums.
- Distinct Double Album: Beautiful Creature and Juliana's Pony: Total System Failure, two albums in different styles released at the same time: Beautiful Creature was a largely acoustic-guitar-based album where Juliana was backed by various studio musicians, while Total System Failure was an electric Alternative Rock album where she was backed by the same two musicians (on bass and drums) throughout note
- Driven to Suicide: "The Edge Of Nowhere" (the serious version), "Swan Song" (played for laughs).
- Drugs Are Bad: "Addicted", "Dying Proof", "Total System Failure".
- Gratuitous French: "Fleur de Lys".
- Grief Song: "Trying Not To Think About It" was written about the tragic and untimely death of her friend Jeff Buckley.
- Humans Are Bastards: From "For the Birds":
Humans only wreck the world
They'd kill your whole family for a string of pearls.
- I Am Not Pretty: "Ugly".
- Intercourse with You: "You Are The Camera".
- Keep Circulating the Tapes: When "God's Foot" was recorded, the A&R person at Atlantic Records decided he "didn't hear a single" in the album, and therefore it wasn't released. While she was able to get out of her recording contract, she couldn't afford to buy back the rights to the album, and it has remained unreleased, but bootlegs slipped out and still circulate on the Net.
- Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Variable. Peace And Love is a 1, while Made in China and Total System Failure are closer to 4 or 5.
- The '90s: While she continues to record and tour to this day, she's usually associated with this decade.
- No Sparks: "Everybody Loves Me But You".
- Obfuscating Insanity: When Atlantic decided not to release God's Foot, she wanted out of her record contract. She figured her best chance of getting out would be to convince the record company executives that she was crazy, so she scheduled a meeting with the company's new president. Next, as she describes in her memoir:
I stopped bathing about a week before the scheduled meeting. And stopped brushing my hair. I stayed out of the sun and put a halt to my normal everyday exercise routine in order to eliminate any traces of a healthful facial glow, and replace it with a sickly pallor.
- It worked; she was dropped and has been indie ever since.
- Sanity Slippage Song: "So Alone".
- Screwed By The Record Company: The fate of "God's Foot".
- Sell-Out: "Sellout" is actually a subversion:
It's not a sellout if nobody buys it.
- Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll: Largely averted in her case (though she had other sorts of problems for a while).
- Shout-Out: Several:
- Sibling Rivalry: The first verse of "My Sister".
- Uncommon Time: "Spin The Bottle" is in 5/4 time.
- Weight Woe: She struggled with anorexia for a number of years.
- Weirdness Magnet: In her memoir she reports that her tourmates have sometimes commented that she has weird fans.