Deborah Ann Harry, or better known as Blondie, born Angela Trimble, July 1, 1945, is a true Cult Icon for us unconventional ladies. She was the Punk sound of New York in the 1970’s in what was still very much a man’s world. She was Punk’s first sex symbol and left many a teenage boy in a pool of wetness as they dreamed of her singing to them. Yet she also inspired girls in a different sense, and continues to inspire today’s new Queens of Pop. And now into her 70s, she is still the Queen of Hip and Cool, doing it her way, as she has all along.
Born Angela Trimble on July 1, 1945 in Miami, Florida, she was adopted at 3 months of age by Richard and Catherine Harry and was renamed Deborah Ann Harry. Harry was advised of her adoption at the age of 4 and years later she did try to track down her mother, who refused to have any contact with her. Her adoptive mother Catherine says Debbie was always a beauty and it definitely is the still the case. Now her 70s, Debbie Harry’s wide angular face and pout, with 1/2 pure sex and 1/2 innocent glamour, is amazing to see today.
She lived in Hawthorne, New Jersey, and graduated from Hawthorne High School in 1963. She attended and graduated Centenary College in Hackensack, New Jersey, graduating with a AA in 1965. She moved to New York City in the late 1960’s and was a secretary at BBC’s Radio office for one year. After this, she was a waitress at Max’s Kansas City, a Go-Go Dancer in Union City New Jersey, and even a Play-Boy Bunny!
In the 1970’s Harry was a regular at Studio 54 and with her eye-catching features she was destined to become the Punk Goddess. Her looks and talent also enabled her and her band to embrace the age of the music video bringing her talent to the masses in the new MTV age.
Deborah Harry’s Group, Blondie, released their debut album in 1976. Harry’s persona and chic but streetwise style made many to believe that Blondie was actually her name and the group constantly fought with this throughout time. Harry became very good friends with Andy Warhol and he immortalized her in the early 80’s by producing a number of artworks of her striking image.
In 1981, Harry issued a press release to clarify that her name was not “Debbie Blondie” or “Debbie Harry” but rather Deborah Harry. Since 1976 the group Blondie has released 11 studio albums and 4 live albums. Deborah Harry has released five studio albums solo and continues to perform to this day.
In 1999, Harry was deemed the 12th greatest woman of rock and roll in VH1’s 100 Greatest Women of Rock & Roll list. In a 2011 interview, Harry indicated that philanthropy was her most important priority. She advocates strongly for those living with cancer and also has taken a strong interest in women’s issues and diseases, including endometriosis.
As an older women, Harry continues to inspire young and old. Her fashion sense is exemplary, often seen on the streets of New York in a leopard coat or a fantastic ensemble, she definitely has not succumbed to the image of what “old” should be. On aging Harry does say:
“Regardless of what I say about trying to be better at what I do, I rely on looks a lot. Women’s calling cards, unfortunately, are based on their looks. As far as aging goes, it’s rough.”
She continues to speak out against unpopular opinions and gives her time freely for the arts and important causes. She is truly a great role model for young and old women alike and we salute her.
“How can one be a woman and not be a feminist? That’s my question.”
by Cheryl aka Sassy Morris
Sassy packed up and left the gray gloomy skies of the Pacific Northwest along with her ungratifying, soul-sucking corporate job and moved to the sunshine and desert breezes in beautiful Southern California. Canadian Ex-Patriate, Wife, Mother, Fur-Baby Mother and Entrepreneur, Sassy now sells Vintage for a living after a life-long love and passion for rescuing old things. Sassy, sometimes serious, always honest and usually outrageous, she is embracing the “silver” years with a sense of humor, adventure, and seeking that path to enlightenment along the way. Visit her Etsy shop!