Bebe Buell

Band members                             Related acts

  line up

- Bebe Buell -- vocals


  supporting musicians:

- Rick Derringer -- guitar

- Elliott Easton -- guitar

- Benjy King -- keyboards

- Donnie Kisselbach -- bass

- Ric Ocasek -- guitar

- Ben Orr -- bass

- David Robinson - syn drums

- James Wilcox -- drums




- The Gargoyles






Genre: pop

Rating: 3 stars ***

Title:  Cover Girl

Company: Rhino

Catalog: RNEP 500

Country/State: Portsmouth, Virginia 

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: 4 track EP

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 279

Price: $35.00


Best time to play:  seldom


In a bizarre way you have to admire Bebe Buell.   She's certainly followed her own path through life which has included stints as a model, a Playboy centerfold, a slew of high profile relationships with rock stars including David Bowie, Barry Cowsill, Elvis Costello, Mick Jagger, Iggy Pop, Todd Rungren, John Taylor, and Steven Tyler (father of her daughter Live Tyler), a talent manager, and a musician.


Hangin' with rock stars seemingly convinced Buell she had what it took to be a musician herself.  Working separately with Rick Derringer and The Cars, she made her recording debut with the 1981 four track EP "Covers Girl".   The two tracks on side 'A' were produced by Rick Derringer, while the flip side found Buell working with Ric Ocasek and the rest of The Cars.  All four tracks reflected a distinctive new wave orientation.  The musical choices were clearly intended to attract the attention of a young crowd, but the four songs also seemingly  minimized the demands made on Buell's limited, little girl voice.


"Cover Girl" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) My Little Red Book   (Burt Bacharach - Hal David) - 2:25   rating: *** stars

Well, her cover of 'My Little Red Book' didn't stray too far from The Love version of the song, though producer Rick Derringer added a suitable dollop of new wave angst to the arrangement.  Actually, the standout feature in the performance came from Benjy King's cheesy organ.  Interestingly, in her early 60s as I write this, Buell still performs live.   Someone actually recorded a clip of her performing this song in September 2012 at a New Jersey club.   The guy who taped it seemed to be more interested in the guitar player than Buell.  Anyhow, I'll let you judge the performance yourself, tough you certainly have to give her kudos for still being out there at a time when most folks would be checking out their AARP benefits.   I'm not sure why, but the British Moonlight label  released the song as a single:





- 1982's 'Little Black Egg' b/w 'Funtime' (Moonlight catalog number MNS 003)






2.) The Wild One, Forever   (Tom Petty) - 3:30   rating: ** stars

No matter what you thought of her voice, you had to give Buell credit for having good taste in her covers ...   Tom Petty !   Unfortunately, her shrill, little girl voice just wasn't up to the task this time around and in spite of plenty of jangle guitar and backing vocals from producer Derringer and the rest of the crew, this one was pretty horrible.  Derringer's guitar solo was the highlight this time around.


(side 2)
1.) The Little Black Egg   (Stone) - 3:02
   rating: **** stars

Her cover of The Music Explosion's 'Little Black Egg' was actually quite good with Ocasek and The Cars providing considerable vocal support, essentially taking the edge off her voice.  The background Pac Man sound effects were kind of cute.

2.) Fun Time   (Iggy Pop - David Bowie) - 2:57   rating: *** stars

So if you've ever heard the Iggy Pop original you're probably going to gag on Buell's cover.   Rather flat and uninspired, this was about as energetic and threatening as a chewing gum commercial.  Even Ocasek and The Cars seemed uninspired.



For anyone interested, Buell has a website at:


SRB 3/2013