Celebrity Then And Now
Debbie Harry
Name: Debbie Harry
Birthdate: July 1, 1945
Famous Years: 1976-Present
Currently Known For: "Fun", "Long Time", "Too Much"
Networth: $20 MillionFamous For: "Call Me", "Heart of Glass", "One Way or Another"
Debbie Harry
Name Debbie Harry
Birthdate July 1, 1945
Famous Years 1976-Present
Currently Known For "Fun", "Long Time", "Too Much"
Networth $20 Million
Famous For "Call Me", "Heart of Glass", "One Way or Another"

There had been rock bands with female lead singers before Blondie, but it wasn’t until they came along that women were seen as the leading ladies of hard rock and even rap. Singers like Debbie Harry and her band Blondie opened the door for a lot of bands such as Garbage, The Pretenders, Hole and many, many more.

Harry was born back on July 1, 1945 in Miami, and was raised in New Jersey where she ha a fairly normal upbringing, graduating from high school and then junior college in the early 1960s. Harry didn’t really have aspirations at a young age to be a famous singer when she was in her late teens and early 20s like most that made it big, instead working several different jobs that include as a secretary and a dancer, as well as even appearing in Playboy.

Toward the end of the 1960s, Harry would start to get into music where she became a backup singer for a band called The Wind in the Willows. After recording an album that didn’t gain much traction on the charts, she would then leave the group and joined another one known as the Stilettoes. The band wouldn’t last for long, however, as she left with a couple of members and formed another band called Angel and the Snake.

It wasn’t until she left that group with Chris Stein and formed Blondie that she would start to find success, performing in some of the more notable clubs in New York City. In 1976, they would release their first album that made some small waves, but was a big hit in clubs as Blondie was considered one of the bigger acts during the Disco era. By the time their third album, “Parallel Lines”, was released, Blondie would become a mainstream success, especially in the United Kingdom.

Despite being a popular band, there were some that saw Blondie as being “too punk” and it turned some people off. According to Stein, “Our whole relationship with radio in America was particularly weird,” he said. “Debbie did a radio tour at one point and people were really afraid of her. Those guys didn’t want to be in the same room with her. The whole image of punk was so severe.”

The United States would take notice when the 1980s came around, as Blondie released the album “Autoamerican”. The album would feature huge hits such as “Call Me”, “Rapture” and “The Tide is High”. Instead of riding the wave of hits, though, Blondie would go on a break, and then split after their album “The Hunter” failed to meet expectations.

Harry would become a solo act, releasing her first album “KooKoo” in 1981 that had a pair of singles that reached the Billboard Hot 100, but neither in the top 40. In fact, Harry wouldn’t reach the top 40 for any of her solo songs, despite releasing three more solo albums in the 1980s and 1990s. In 1997, Blondie would get back together and find moderate success in the United Kingdom, where they’ve released five albums since reforming. The idea to get back together, according to Harry, was all Stein’s idea. “It felt like (Blondie) had had its day, but he felt that if we didn’t put it back together at some point (it would be bad),” she said.

Adding another solo album in 2007 called “Necessary Evil”, Harry had another top 40 album in the United Kingdom but didn’t register outside of the country. That doesn’t mean that Harry hasn’t found success outside of music, though, as she’s appeared in a number of films such as “Videodrome”, “Cop Land” and “Deuces Wild”, as well as TV shows that include “Difficult People”, “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” and “Phantom 2040”.

Still, Harry is best known for her work with Blondie in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and the band continues to tour. At 73 years old, Harry never had children, so music has kept her busy throughout the years. Because of that, it looks like she’ll continue to perform on stage for years to come despite her age. “As far as aging goes, it’s rough,” she said. “I’m trying my best now. I’m healthy and I exercise like a fiend and do all that stuff that recovered drug addicts do.”

As for whether or not she regrets not having children, Harry said “Sometimes. I guess it never struck me as being part of survival and for many people it is, it’s a way of surviving.” Perhaps not having to raise a family has helped her maintain her youthful looks and the ability to run around on stage to this day, as Blondie still has shows booked around the world.

When you listen to their new music, you’ll find that Blondie sounds much different than their early days. “You can hear artists that have tried to replicate one of their hits. It’s never a good idea,” Harry said. “It’s always sounds like a watered down version. I don’t think we’ve ever had that kind of ambition or reputation. We’ve always tried to move out and stretch out.”