Janet Gardner, best known as the lead vocalist of the all-female rock band VIXEN, will release her debut solo album on August 18 via Pavement Entertainment in conjunction with Pavement‘s cohorts Eternal Sound Records for Europe. All songs were written, performed and produced by Gardner and her husband of one year, Justin James, a guitarist, songwriter and producer who has previously worked with STAIND, COLLECTIVE SOUL and TYKETTO.
Check out audio samples in the YouTube clip below.
Gardner, drummer Roxy Petrucci and bassist Share Ross honored their friend and bandmate, guitarist and founder of VIXEN, Jan Kuehnemund, by resurrecting VIXEN in 2013.
The band was committed to reunite in 2012 but Kuehnemund‘s cancer diagnosis caused what was thought of at the time as a delay. Sadly, however, after a fierce battle, Kuehnemund succumbed to her illness, thus the reunion was not meant to be.
After discussing the idea with friends and family as well as lead vocalist from VIXEN‘s pre-reunion lineup, Jenna Sanz-Agero, it was agreed that it was the right decision for the three surviving definitive members to carry on as VIXEN.
Asked in a 2013 interview with Legendary Rock Interviews if she considers VIXEN to be trailblazers for females in rock, Janet said: “I don’t know. Me being the singer there were always lots and lots of female vocalists who had obviously come before me and so many people that I was so inspired by, HEART being one of them. When I got the first HEART record, I was, like, ‘Oh my God!’ And there was always Janis Joplin and even Etta James were rocking, so it goes back a loooong way as far as female vocalists. That’s not to mention Grace Slick or Pat Benatar or any other singers, so, to me, I was never really that trailblazing or unique or personally held back or persecuted. That said, as a band, it was tough because no matter what, people were wanting to find faults in what we were doing at every turn. We were always looked at a little differently as compared to just a band full of guys because they wanted to categorize us or label us as a novelty, they want us to be ‘not real.’ You know how people are — you’re just looked at a little differently and viewed more through a microscope and yeah it was tougher than just being a guy band because we would never be able to get away with the things that guys in bands would get away with. They could get drunk and fall down onstage or miss a note and nobody would say anything, they would be seen as ‘cool.’ If we did that, it would be the living end, it would be, ‘They suck, they’re a joke… blah, blah, blah,’ so that is kind of why we were very conscientious that every time we went onstage we were always going to be in top form because the same rules didn’t apply to us.”