Rock's Backpages Library Rock's Backpages
Rock's Backpages

Was (Not Was)

Was (Not Was)


Was Not Was: Born To Laugh At Tornadoes (Geffen)

Review by Richard Cook, New Musical Express, November 1983

AMERICA HAS been dressed by improper minds. Corralling the year's important American records – Swordfishtrombones, Girl At Her Volcano, Burlap And Satin and Born To ...


Was (Not Was) (1987)

Interview by Mat Snow, Rock's Backpages Audio, 1987

Don and David talk about American culture, the Kennedy conspiracies, musical juxtapositions and growing up on Detroit rock 'n' roll.

File format: mp3; in 3 parts, total file sizes: 82.6mb, total interview length: 1h 30' 18" sound quality: ***


Was (Not Was): A Subtle Fabrication Not of the Norm

Interview by Vivien Goldman, New Musical Express, June 1981

Imagine Vivien Goldman’s surprise to discover that the brains behind Ze’s hottest American soul act are not black but two nice middle class Jewish boys. ...

ZE Records

Profile and Interview by Peter Silverton, New Sounds New Styles, July 1981

New York record label ZE is the product of a remarkable partnership between August Darnell and Michael Zilkha. Peter Silverton profiles the Z of ZE... ...

Was (Not Was): Mudd Club, New York NY

Live Review by Richard Grabel, New Musical Express, October 1981


Was Not Was: Born To Laugh At Tornadoes

Review by Roy Trakin, Creem, January 1984

THE WOODWORK SQUEAKS...and out comes Ozzy Osbourne, rapping? Ex-Knackster Doug Fieger making fun of himself? Mitch Ryder barking like a dog with Good Golly Miss ...

Was Not Was: All Over The Road With Two Motor City Outcasts In A Studio Tornado

Interview by David Gans, Musician, February 1984

"WHEN BLACK people hear our music," proclaims Don Fagenson, "they know we're white. Even our funkiest stuff. I think it happens to be a plus. ...

Was Not Was: That Was The Freak That Was

Interview by Ian Penman, New Musical Express, May 1984

O Dialectic, says the philosopher, when he notices that perhaps the true philosophy laughs at philosophy. ...

Was (Not Was): I Love This Band, I Hate This Band

Interview by J. Kordosh, Creem, July 1984

THIRTY MONTHS ago, John Neilson did a story on Was (Not Was) for CREEM. (It's the issue with Pat Benatar on the blue cover — I ...

Was (Not Was): Freakshow

Interview by Ian Gittins, Melody Maker, March 1988

"BOBBY Maggot was a big attorney/Through the courtroom down to hell he'd journey/Baldheaded piece of garbage that he was/He'll defend you if your money's honest/Do ...

Was (Not Was): Disco Infernal

Interview by Mark Sinker, New Musical Express, April 1988


Was (Not Was): Brothers of Invention

Interview by Mat Snow, Sounds, July 1988

WAS (NOT WAS) still people their songs freaks, but compassion now nestles satire. MAT SNOW helps The Was Brothers find the heartbeat of their absurd ...

Was (Not Was): Spies In The House Of Funk

Interview by Dave Zimmer, BAM, December 1988

MASTERS OF funkified musical left turns, that was one way to describe Was (Not Was) after listening to their 1983 LP, Born to Laugh At ...

Was (Not Was): Hitmen

Interview by Andy Gill, Q, June 1990

THERE ARE SEVEN of us round the microphone, and I, for one, am a little nervous. I should be, too: three of the voices present ...

Was (Not Was): Wizards Of Was

Interview by Nick Coleman, Time Out, May 1992

Until 'Walk The Dinosaur', the funky, cosmic pop of Was (Not Was) remained a cult. Now they've reached the giddy heights of supporting Dire Straits, ...

David Was' Top Ten

Interview by Andy Gill, Q, August 1992

David Was of Was (Not Was) invites us into his lovely garage. Much of his collection stems from an earlier career as a jazz writer: ...

Was (Not Was): Islington Academy, London

Live Review by Ian Gittins, Guardian, The, May 2008

IT'S CLOSE ON 20 years since Was (Not Was) last played in the UK, and Don Was is feeling nostalgic. "Is anybody here old enough ...

back to LIBRARY