NEM#84: Laura Davis Was “The Girl in the Back” (of the Student Teachers)

Laura DavisLaura Davis-Chanin, now a lawyer whom you may know from the Phi Fic podcast, drummed in the late ’70s with an NYC punk band called The Student Teachers and has written about that experience, in which she became friends with David Bowie and dated Jimmy Destri (keyboardist for Blondie), in The Girl in the Back: A Female Drummer’s Life with Bowie, Blondie, and the ’70s Rock Scene (2018).

We discuss the book and listen to some songs now released on Invitation to The Student Teachers (2013): “Looks,” “Christmas Weather,” plus as an intro, “Channel 13.” Laura also co-wrote lyrics to two Blondie songs, and we hear a bit of “Angels on the Balcony” from Autoamerican (1980) and conclude by listening to “Slow Motion” from Eat To The Beat (1979). For more info, follow Laura on Twitter @laurakdc18.

More interviews with Laura: Please Kill Me, Penny Black Music.

Here are the Student Teachers live (after Laura’s departure). Here’s a video someone put together for “Christmas Weather.” Laura started doing video work for The Mumps: here they are. Here’s the video for Blondie’s “Slow Motion,” and here’s all of their “Angels on the Balcony.”

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  1. This is really great! I can’t wait to read your book, Laura. Such an honest and soulful discussion. Thanks for sharing.

  2. good timing just saw Lisa Jane Persky and Richard Hell reading and in a discussion moderated by the author of ​Blondie’s Parallel Lines, wondering if Laura has seen Adam Curtis’ new doc where he criticizes Patti Smith and all for focusing more on self-expression than on the politics/economics of the times that were gutting NYC and leading to the rise of Trump and all?

    • No I haven’t seen that doc though I’ll look into it and I hesitate to agree with that thesis–I think the rise of Trump was caused by other factors and there were other far more powerful elements gutting NYC at that time. But I’ll check it and I’m glad you enjoyed our talk!


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