Long Live The Queen: An Interview With Wanda Jackson

Wanda Jackson

From shaking her hips with The King in her teens to covering Amy Winehouse in her seventies, Wanda Jackson is one of those rare talents whose career has truly spanned the entirety of the glorious rock and roll epoch. She is, after all, The Queen.

Listening to her now, it’s no stretch of the imagination to see that this rockabilly filly is the original Debbie Harry, Chrissy Hynde and Joan Jett—a good girl who wanted to make a big bad racket; simultaneously purring and growling her way through that “music out of Hell.”

I recently spoke to Jackson about her life, legacy, and even Lady GaGa. Read on to check out the interview, and then come see The Queen herself when she shows Madison what a real rock and roll show is all about at The High Noon Saloon later tonight! Get your tickets here.

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Madison Week In Music + Ticket Giveaways (8.25-8.31): SMOKE FREE SOUNDS SERIES featuring CHARLIE PARR and MONSTERS OF MOCK, OZOMATLI, and WANDA JACKSON

Wanda Jackson

Did you hear who’s coming to town this week?  Oh, it’s only THE QUEEN OF ROCK AND ROLL herself, Miss Wanda Jackson!  The world famous “Rockabilly Filly” was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame last year (what took so long!?), but her shows are anything but a nostalgia act.  You don’t want to miss this living legend shake her stuff and growl her way through an incredible night of music, so you better enter to win a pair of tickets below.

Other shows in the coming days include two Smoke Free Sounds Series dates—the first features Charlie Parr in Superior, followed by Monsters Of Mock in Green Bay—and Ozomatli at The Barrymore, right here in Madison.

Read on to get the details and enter to win those Wanda tix.

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Just Announced Madison Concerts: Wanda Jackson

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee


Wanda Jackson

with special guest The Lustre Kings

Sunday, August 29, 8pm

High Noon Saloon

$15 adv and dos, 21+

Tickets available on our Music Calendar soon!

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Jack White + Wanda Jackson + Amy Winehouse = Musical Magic

Wanda Jackson

The Queen of Rockabilly and one of our personal favorites, Wanda Jackson, has a new album in the works, being produced by none other than Mr. Jack White.  The album will be preceeded by a double A-side single featuring a cover of Amy Winehouse’s modern classic, “You Know I’m No Good.”

Read more about Jackson’s soon-to-be-released album here.  We can’t wait to hear it!

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Musical Legacies

How do you know when you’ve “made it” as an artist?  For some musicians, it would be enough to score a headlining slot at a local venue.  Others have their eyes fixed on a hit single or two.  For others, success means worldwide adoration and acclaim.  This seems to be about as far as most artists dare to dream, but for a select group of musicians, their art has permanently affixed their names to entire movements or genres.  Here are a few of the most recognized members of the Musical Family Tree/Royal Lineage.  There are certainly more out there—tell us who you’d include!


The Godfather of Punk:  Iggy Pop


The Queen of Punk:  Patti Smith


The “Modfather”:  Paul Weller


The King of Rock ‘n’Roll:  Elvis Presley


The Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll:  Wanda Jackson


Godfather of Soul:  James Brown


Father of Soul: Ray Charles


The Queen of Soul:  Aretha Franklin


The Queen of Pop:  Madonna


The King of Pop: Michael Jackson


Queen of Folk:  Joan Baez


(To leave a comment, click on the title of the blog entry and scroll down.)

The winner of Queen of Rock is presented to…

Oh Wanda, finally you will get your due!  I mean really, for how long does a girl in rock-n-roll have to wait to receive her props?

We’ve written about this lovely legend before but we will repeat…

If you are one of the few who’ve missed out on Wanda Jackson, now is the time to listen up.  Ms. Jackson, oftentimes referred to as the first female rock-n-roll singer, and celebrated as “The Queen of Rockabilly”, toured with peers Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, and Buddy Holly.  Although she ultimately spurned Elvis’ romantic attempts, we can thank him for encouraging Jackson to shift from her country and gospel roots over to rock-n-roll.

Wanda Jackson has been appropriately nominated for two Grammys and inducted in to countless halls of fame while somehow eluding the folks at the Rock-N-Roll Hall of Fame.  That is, until now (well almost).  Much speculation and frustration has ensued over this peculiar omission, causing such musical heavyweights as Bob Dylan and Elvis Costello to publicly complain.  The status quo will change April 4th 2009 when, as her website announces, “the Queen will take her throne.”

True Endeavors has been blessed multiple times to host this ever touring performer.  Now 71 years of age, and not one to let any cultural institutions (or omissions) get in her way, Wanda still claims she’s nowhere near retirement.  Somehow we’re not surprised.

Hard Headed Woman (then)

Fujiyama Mama (now)

Wanda JacksonMySpace

Wanda Jackson LastFM

Wanda Jackson Facebook

-MJ Hecox

See the “Queen of Rockabilly” on us (and lots of free downloads)!

Don’t miss this rock maven as she rolls the house in Mad-town. If you are a fan of any amplified music from the last 50 years there is no other choice but to pay your respects..


Every Night is Saturday Night- About Wanda Jackson and her roll in the birth of rock-n-roll

Wednesday June 25, 8pm High Noon Saloon 608.268.1122 $15 adv $17 dos – 21+



Also don’t miss crooners

ROSE POLENZANI (born in our own Waukesha WI)

“Evocative stories that one wants to curl up with, like a cherished book…” says Time Out New York

“Somewhere in-between the raw emotion of singer Patty Griffin and the poetry of Anne Sexton, you’ll find Rose Polenzani.”
 -Utne Reader

Lots of free downloads, check ’em out then buy her albums at the show!

Rose Polenzani- Blue Angel, 2004 August

Rose Polenzani- Explain it to me, 2004 August

Rose Polenzani- Merzidotes, 2004 Tabletop People

Rose Polenzani- Fell, 2001 Rose Polenzani

Rose Polenzani- Mary Lee, 2001 Rose Polenzani

Rose Polenzani- Or (featuring the Indigo Girls), 1999 Anybody

Rose Polenzani- Abalin (featuring Andrew Bird), 1999 Anybody

Rose Polenzani- You Dont Know, 1998 Dragersville

Rose Polenzani- In The Middle, 1998 Dragersville



“I’ve heard it said that we become writers not because words come easily to us, but because we are always struggling to find the right words. I know this to be true in my own life. Every day I’m struck by something that leaves me speechless. Usually it’s something very simple, very ordinary..

Of all the possible words, in every possible combination, what are the right ones for that moment? What are the words that have never been used before to describe something we all know? That’s what I’m after.” -Meg Hutchinson

Seeing Stars- Meg Hutchinson

with special guest ROSE COUSINS Friday, June 27, 6:30 pm early start time High Noon Saloon 608.268.1122 $10 –



Fourth person to email MJ@TrueEndeavors.com with the show in the subject line will get through the doors for free with a friend!

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