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AMERICAN GIRLS BIOGRAPHY

American Girls were players in the Los Angeles music scene in the mid 80's. Miles Copeland quite possibly viewed them as the ideal band to carry the "All-Girl-Band" torch previously carried by now-defunct label-mates Go-Go's or I.R.S. defectors The Bangles. The quintet's progressive sound was a natural evolution of the sound engendered by both those seminal "Girl Bands" and a precursor of the sounds to come (Alanis Morisette, Melissa Etheridge and yes, even the Spice Girls)...

Teresa James Brie Howard Miiko Watanabe Hilary Shepard D B Tressler
TERESA BRIE MIIKO HILARY D B
Keyboards &
Backing Vocals
Lead Vocals &
Percussion
Bass &
Backing Vocals
Lead Vocals &
Percussion
All
Guitars

The line up of American Girls was: Teresa James, keyboards and backing vocals; Brie Howard, lead vocals, percussion and drum programming; Miiko Watanabe, bass and backing vocals; Hilary Shepard, lead vocals and percussion; and D B Tressler, Guitars... Brie and Hilary rotated their "lead vocal duties" from song to song, though they both sing lead on "Sharkskin Suit." It is also interesting to note that prior to this line up, American Girls at various times included master songstress Louise Goffin and even actress Daryl Hannah!

Despite touring (opening for Lords Of The New Church) the album failed to generate much airplay and the various members found work in related media fields. Brie modeled (and still does) and got some acting work. Hilary (now married to Nick Turner of Lords Of The New Church) also found work as an actress, most notably as Divatox in The Power Rangers... Miiko, Teresa and Brie continue to work in music, as well. Teresa has an almost regular weekly gig bouncing between Encino in LA's San Fernando Valley and Santa Monica's municipal pier, Brie does session work and Miiko, after a stint in Rosie Flores' Ringling Sisters, is a member of Tracy & The Hindenburg Ground Crew (where she plays a tuba as well as bass). D B Tressler is the only member who seems to have dropped out of sight...

Ignore the All-Music Guide's write up -- they lump the girls together with a 90s band from the hinterland with the same name...

Mr Bill would like to thank Teresa James for additional input and information on this page.


AMERICAN GIRLS I.R.S. DISCOGRAPHY

This discography will cover only AMERICAN GIRLS' recordings for I.R.S. Records. Recordings for other labels, other recordings, solo recordings and guest appearances, may be mentioned in the biography or discography, but details can be found by visiting some of the cool links for AMERICAN GIRLS, below...

Albums & EPs

IRS5702 AMERICAN GIRLS
IRS 5702 (Released 1986)

Vinyl & Cassette.
Produced & Engineered by Dennis Herring
Recorded at Dustbowl
Photos by Eric Blum
Design by Carl Grasso
Assistance Ron Scarselli
Personal Management LAPD (Los Angeles Personnel Direction)
Booking FBI (Frontier Booking International)

Musicians:
Brie Howard: percussion and drum programming, lead vocals on *,
Teresa James: keyboards and backing vocals
Hilary Shepard: percussion, lead vocals on ¶
D B Tressler: Guitars
Miiko Watanabe: bass and backing vocals
Additional Musicians:
Davey Faragher: Bass on 1
Anna Tagonism: Backing Vocals on 2
Breta Troyer: Backing Vocals on 6
Dennis Herring: Rhythm Guitar on 4 & Additional synth programming
Mary Harris: Keyboards on 4 and Backing Vocal on 7
Paul Fox, Kevin Bassinson & Tom Faragher: Additional synth & drum programming

Track Listing:

  1. American Girl(Howard/Shapiro/Tressler/Watanabe) 4:31 *
  2. Androgynous(Shapiro/Goffin/Herring) 3:57 *
  3. One Last Prayer (Shapiro/Goffin/Howard/Herring) 4:00 ¶
  4. Stay With Me (Shapiro/Howard) 3:19 ¶
  5. Out On My Own (Tressler/Howard/Shapiro/Watanabe) 3:28 *
  6. Goodbye, Amen (Aimee Mann) 4:00 ¶
  7. Blind Ambition (Shapiro/Tressler/Watanabe) 3:19 ¶
  8. Take The Night (Howard/Tressler) 3:36 *
  9. Sharkskin Suit (Howard/Shapiro/Faragher) 3:29 *¶
  10. Practice What You Preach (Shapiro/Goffin/Howard/Tressler) 3:44 ¶

Review Coming Soon!


Singles

52878 Sleeve "American Girl"/"Sharkskin Suit"
IRS 52878 (Released 1986)

Produced by Dennis Herring
Design by Carl Grasso
Sleeve Photos by Eric Blum


Musicians:
Brie Howard: percussion and drum programming, lead vocals
Teresa James: keyboards and backing vocals
Hilary Shepard: percussion, co-lead vocals on Sharkskin Suit
D B Tressler: Guitars
Miiko Watanabe: bass and backing vocals
Additional Musicians:
Davey Faragher: Bass

Review Coming Soon!


Compilations & Soundtracks

OUT OF BOUNDS SOUNDTRACK (IRS 6180): features an extended mix of "American Girl"
WE'VE GOT CONVENTION FEVER (IRS fvr-86) includes "American Girl", cut 19


AMERICAN GIRLS LINKS AND OTHER COOL STUFF

Most anything found on the 'net pertaining to American Girls refers to a series of books & dolls for young girls from the early parts of the 20th century. But we did manage to find some links pertaining to some of the members of American Girls...
Return To The I.R.S. CORNER HOME PAGE
Return To The I.R.S. CORNER ARTIST ROSTER
Discuss American Girls in the DISCUSSION FORUM
This Page Last Updated 10 October 2002

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