Suzi Quatro – “Little Bitch Blue” (1973)
I’ve recently been splitting my music time between newer experimental/drone/noise stuff (thanks largely to the excellent Tabs Out Podcast) and 70’s music. I’ll get to the former eventually, but a big chunk of the latter has been Suzi Quatro related.
Up until this year, I wasn’t really familiar with Suzi’s work. Basically, my knowledge of Suzi Quatro was limited to her role as Leather Tuscadero on Happy Days and as part of a joke on Spaced, which is a failing on my part. I can’t quite say why I had overlooked her back catalogue for some time. Perhaps it is the lack of critical buzz she has received throughout her career compared to other 70’s rockers. There isn’t a lot of Suzi Quatro popping up on “Best Albums of the 1970’s” lists, and maybe that lack of praise colored my opinion by osmosis. Whatever the reason, it’s a damn shame because she’s really good.
I keep coming back to her 1973 self-titled debut album. It isn’t perfect by any stretch, but it has this rugged blue-collar Detroit feel to it. I’m always going to be receptive to Rust Belt charms, and that record is brimming with it. “Little Bitch Blue” was a B-side to her third single off that album, the amazing “48 Crash”, and this song can easily go toe-to-toe with anything on the album proper. It’s a sneering slice of glammy blues rock with some strong “fuck off” vibes that encapsulates Quatro perfectly. Quatro’s voice sounds immensely strained and vicious throughout her early work, and this is no different. She seems just as likely to swing a pool cue at you as she is to pick up her bass. I’m also kind of surprised to hear a song from 1973 with the word “bitch” in the title, but I might just not have the best read on the seventies in that regard. Either way, this rocks and you should listen to it.
For more short music discussions, check out our post on Wanda Jackson’s “Funnel of Love” here.