All girl pop rock band, The Bangles, were formed in 1980 in Los Angeles, California. Originally called The Bangs, the group had to alter their name when a band from northern New Jersey who were using that name, began to make some noise and threatened to sue.
The core line-up of the band from the start has been Susanna Hoffs on guitar and vocals, Vicki Peterson on lead guitar and vocals, and Debbi Peterson on drums and vocals.Their first official recordings in 1982 were as a four piece band with bassist/vocalist Annette Zilinskas also onboard. The next year they put out an EP that included the single "The Real World."
The Bangles' major label debut came in 1984 with the album All Over The Place on Columbia records. The guitar jangle-pop feel and '60s retro vibe with chiming harmonies was immediately their signature sound. Standout tracks included the singles "Hero Takes a Fall" and "Going Down to Liverpool." The band of attractive rockers was also tailor-made for the video ages' emphasis on the visual. They soon were out on the road opening for Cyndi Lauper.
Their next album, 1986's Different Light brought The Bangles to a next level of success. The collection included the single "Manic Monday" written by Prince, who at the time was the golden (purple?) boy of pop/rock/r&b; and anything he touched turned to platinum. Also from that release was the single "Walk Like an Egyptian" which went all the way to number one. By this time bass player Zilinskas had departed the group and been replaced by Michael Steele, who had also served a stint in another all girl band, The Runaways.
Although all of the band members contributed vocals, Hoffs tended to be singled out as the front person in the group and received added attention in the press and more screen time in the videos.
Other '80s hits by The Bangles included their cover of Simon & Garfunkel's "A Hazy Shade of Winter," featured in the Brat Pack film "Less Than Zero" and their smash hit ballad "Eternal Flame."
By the end of the decade, the band had parted ways, but came back together 10 years later to resume touring. In 2011, The Bangles released a new studio album called Sweetheart of the Sun.
With the key players of the original group (Hoffs and the Peterson sisters), they reunited, The Bangles' live shows capture all the elements of their hit sound and image. Songs like "Manic Monday," "Walk Like an Egyptian" and "Eternal Flame" still connect with old and new fans alike.