Johnnie Walker Meets…

Johnnie Walker Meets Blondie

Duration: 57 minutes

First broadcast: Mon 29th May 2017, 13:00 on BBC Radio 2
Repeat broadcast: Thu 21st Jun 2018, 21:00 on BBC Radio 2

When they released their eleventh album Pollinator in 2017, Johnnie spoke to Debbie Harry and Chris Stein about the incredible history of Blondie and their own life stories. Debbie grew up in Paterson, New Jersey (as recently immortalised in the Jim Jarmusch film of the same name) listening to the girl bands of the 50s and 60s on the radio. Chris came from a more artistic liberal background in Brooklyn. They met in New York City, when Chris had just returned from his second visit to the United Kingdom and fallen in love with the growing reggae scene here.

Blondie’s subsequent journey, which they discuss here, took them through punk, new wave, disco, hip-hop and pop and the 1970s to the present day in the company of the Velvet Underground, the owner of CBGBs, producers Giorgio Moroder, Mike Chapman and Nicky Chinn and Richard Gere.

As Debbie says it’s important to sound like yourself and Johnnie goes through their catalogue (which adds up to forty million album sales), including Parallel Lines, which he describes as about as perfect as an album could be. Denis, Dreaming, Maria, Rapture, Call Me and brand new tracks are also featured.

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