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Music / Bow Wow Wow

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The members, minus Lush. From left to right: guitarist Matthew Ashman, drummer Dave Barbarossa, lead singer Annabella Lwin, bassist Leigh Gorman.

Bow Wow Wow was a New Wave/Post-Punk band created by boundary-pushing Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren. The band was formed from the ashes of an proto-Adam and the Ants whose members ditched Adam to go out on their own. After over 200 singers auditioned, Myint Myint Ayenote  (later renamed Annabella Lwin), who was only 13 years old at the time, was chosen. Their first single "C·30 C·60 C·90 Go!", an unabashed glorification of home taping, was released in 1980, and appropriately enough, was the first single released on tape. This lead to a firestorm of controversy, not helped by Annabella singing raunchy songs like "Aphrodisiac" while still being underage. In 1981, the band briefly featured Boy George, then named Lieutenant Lush, as a singer, until he was kicked out from taking attention away from Annabella.


The band released two albums, one in 1981 & in 1983. The first had the mega-hit cover of The Strangeloves "I Want Candy", which got them pegged as a One-Hit Wonder despite having more hits in their native U.K. The band broke up in 1983, with Annabella embarking on a short-lived solo career and the renaming members forming the (also) short-lived group Chiefs Of Relief.


  • See Jungle! See Jungle! Go Join Your Gang Yeah! City All Over, Go Ape Crazy! (1981)
  • When the Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going (1983)


Bow Wow Wow provides examples of:

  • Child Prodigy: Annabella was the lead singer of a successful band at only 13 years old.
  • Digital Piracy Is Okay: Rather famously, "C·30 C·60 C·90 Go!" is a tribute to music piracy.
  • Jailbait Taboo: Annabella performed erotic songs & posed tantalizingly on the cover of the I Want Candy single despite being a teenager. Her mother wasn't pleased, and had Scotland Yard investigate McLaren for exploitation of a minor, though no charges were filled.
  • Long Title: Both of their completed studio albums, especially the debut (20 syllables.)
  • New Wave Music: One of the finest examples.
  • Nobody Loves the Bassist: Averted; Leigh Gorman's bass playing is an integral part of the band's unique sound, blowing people away with how well-performed it is.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Georgenote  was sacked from the band because he overshadowed Annabella. Ironic, since his own band was far different than BWW, being a radio-friendly pop outfit.
  • Word Salad Lyrics: Most of their songs. It's part of the charm.