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Joan Jett :: Blog

Joan Jett's First Ride

Tuesday, November 29: 12 p.m.
Joan Jett's first car: 1983 Jaguar XJ-S H.E. now on display at the Rock Hall

All I could think when we got a call from Joan Jett’s management offering the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum Jett’s first car was “Where are we going to put it?” 

Finding room for the various vehicles in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s collection – from Johnny Cash’s tour bus to Janis Joplin’s 1965 Porsche 356C Cabriolet – can be a challenge. With a bit of elbow grease and the help of sturdy car dollies, we were able to make room for the big black cat: Joan Jett’s 1983 Jaguar XJ-S H.E. It’s perfect that this was Jett’s first vehicle, as it's long, lean and mean, and – according to Jaguar literature of the day – the fastest production automatic car with a top speed of 155 mph.

Jett purchased the Jaguar before she had a driver’s license and drove it off the lot with only a learner’s permit. She was recording at Kingdom Sound Studio in Syosset, New York, where I Love Rock N' Roll (1981) and Album (1983) were recorded, the day she took possession of the car. Between recording sessions, she took her new ...

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The Late, Great Les Paul

Friday, August 21: 5:40 p.m.
Posted by Jim Henke

Terry Stewart, the president and CEO of the Rock Hall, and I just returned from New York City, where we attended a funeral service and memorial reception for the late, great Les Paul. The service, which was held at the Frank E. Campbell Funeral Chapel on Madison Avenue, was very moving. Various family members reminisced about Les, as did Lou Pallo, Les’ longtime guitar sidekick and friend; Ron Sturm, who runs the Iridium Jazz Club, where Les played two shows every Monday night; and Henry Juszkiewicz, the CEO of Gibson Guitar. There were several common themes: how sweet and loving  Les was and how quick-witted he was, always ready to take a jab at someone. Les’ trio – Pallo, bass player Nicki Parrott and piano player John Colianni – performed between the reminiscences, closing the funeral with the very apt “Vaya Con Dios (May God Be With You).” As Les’s son Russ told me, “Les had a very big plate and through his life he filled it with many great things. It’s our job to make sure we continue to share that plate with everyone.” Tony Bennett, Slash, Richie Sambora, Jose Feliciano, Neal Schon, Brad Whitford and Jeff “Skunk” Baxter ...

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