The year 2000 is finding '80s pop faves the Go-Go's as busy as they've ever been.
According to singer-guitarist and founding Go-Go Jane Wiedlin, this year the groundbreaking all-female combo (which formed over 20 years ago) will be active on tour, in the studio, on television, and even on the literary scene.
First up on the group's list of endeavors will be a special edition of VH1's "Behind The Music" devoted to the band.
"'Behind The Music' approached us about six months ago," Wiedlin told MTV News. "First they interviewed each of the bandmembers separately. Each of the interviews was an all-day thing, so it was hours and hours of footage. Then they go to all your colleagues and friends, people you worked with in the past, and they interview all of them.
"Now they changed producers, and the new producer wants to shoot more of us, all of us together. I personally have been trying to tell them everything I can, but the main thing is they
want some 'juicy dirt' or whatever," Wiedlin said, laughing.
"It's funny, because there's five of us, and everyone has their own opinion about what should be made public," the guitarist said with regard to the band's "juicy dirt." "I guess I'm kind of an exhibitionist, because I'm like, 'I don't care what they know about me.' The others are more private. We haven't seen the piece, so we have no idea what they will include [in the final show]."
In addition to the usual "juicy dirt," for the first time "Behind The Music" will release a CD in conjunction with the show, with the disc featuring the music that can be heard during the hour-long Go-Go's program.
"Along with all the music, they'll have rare photos and new liner notes and all that kind of stuff about us," Wiedlin added.
As far as Go-Go's music is concerned, there's more than reissues on the way. Late this summer, the band will head to the studio to record its first full album since 1984's "Talk
"We started writing in around September," Wiedlin explained, "kind of taking our time and writing a lot and throwing out a lot, because obviously it's important that it be really good. It's really cool, because right now Belinda (singer Carlisle, who lives in Europe) is in town, and we are teaching her the songs. We'll be recording by August, which means we should have a spring release."
The new Go-Go's record will be released on Beyond Music (home of the recent Blondie album, "No Exit") and is likely to be titled "Vision Of Nowness," a phrase which has a most impressive source.
"It's kind of a classic story," Wiedlin began. "Belinda actually got to meet the late, great Sammy Davis, Jr., and when he met her, he said to her, 'You are a vision of nowness.' We always really loved that. It's like, 'Wow, Sammy!' It doesn't get any better than that."
Between now and the start of recording the new album, the group will be busy with a summer tour
that will take the band to amphitheaters across the U.S. and Canada with the B-52's which, according to Wiedlin, is "always super fun." (Dates for the tour are expected to be released this week.)
Despite the current trend toward live shows being more about choreography and production, the Go-Go's are more about delivering a straight-up rock and roll show.
"It's just us," Wiedlin said of group's live offering. "We've never really been into having extra people or anything. We've never really had choreography, or staging, or extra musicians. This summer we are going to have a few costume changes, because we decided it would be funny. But basically we are a rock band, kind of no-frills. People have a lot of fun when they come see us, and that's really what we are all about."
In addition to all the other activities, the band is also planning to tell its story via a tell-all autobiography and possible film project.
"We've had a lot of interest from both
book publishers and movie producers," Wiedlin said. "The point we are at right now is we have several publishers fighting for the book. We want to write the book first, and it will be a juicy, fun, tell-all-type book, and do the movie after that. We were trying for a while to do the book and movie concurrently, but it's way too confusing.
"It is a really great story," the guitarist offered in reference to the Go-Go's saga. "And what I think makes it interesting is, it hasn't really been repeated. There hasn't been a bunch of successful girl bands.
"I guess [the recently disbanded] Luscious Jackson have done pretty well, and L7, but they haven't done as well as they should," she considered. "We wrote all our own tunes and played our own instruments, and we still do. I guess our story is pretty unique."