Hello, suckers. I’m David Gasten, webmaster of Betsybitch.com. I’m a freelance writer, music/old movie fan, sometime entertainer, amateur dancer, and part-time student working on a degree in communications. I’m also a proud Anti-Gen Xer, which means that I hate Nirvana, Radiohead, Coldplay, grunge, indie rock, bedhead haircuts, snobby revisionist history about punk, and all manner of university pretentiousness.
I love heavy metal and have ever since I was a kid. My main areas of interest are:
● Traditional Metal,
● The “Street Glam” groups that descend from The New York Dolls and Hanoi Rocks (e.g. Star Star, The Hangmen, The Zeros, Easy Action, and Princess Pang),
● “Glam Revival” groups like The Darkness, The Ark, and Endeverafter,
● 1970’s Metal and Hard Rock,
● Stoner/Doom Metal,
● New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM),
● Progressive Metal,
● some Power Metal, and
● some Speed/Thrash Metal.
I’m more into “heavy” than “fast”, but I can handle some speed too as long as the songwriting is solid. I don’t care for Funk Metal like White Trash or Slammin’ Gladys, most of the metal fusion sounds of the early 1990’s, most Cookie Monster groups, or a lot of the commercial pop metal (although I can appreciate or at least tolerate some of the latter). And I absolutely hate Nu-Metal (which I call “Burger Rock” because that’s what the fat boys in those groups look like they subsist on), every subgenre that ends in “core”, and all slop/sludge rock groups.
I first heard of Bitch through the Enigma Records mail order catalogs in the late 1980’s, but didn’t actually get into them until relatively recently. I heard the name again through my interest in both Lizzy Borden and The Tubes (yep, Lizzy’s “Don’t Touch Me There” cover), and decided to research Bitch out of curiosity, as is my habit with any artist that I stumble across that looks/sounds interesting. I got the A Rose by Any Other Name EP as part of a set of Metal Blade closeout CD’s, and instantly fell in love with it. As I listened and researched, I became increasingly aware that there was more to Bitch than initially meets the eye. I realized that Bitch is part of a surprisingly broad musical context, and that very few people are aware of this “bigger picture”. I was also fascinated with Betsy’s personality and her accomplishments as a pioneer for ladies in hard rock (I love ladies, what can I say). And besides, Bitch's music is great! So what started pretty innocently got out of control and turned into, well, this website.
I hope that you enjoy the information presented in Betsybitch.com and that it sheds more light on what a great musician, entertainer, and woman Betsy is. I also hope that it will give you a chance to check out Bitch’s music and some of the great music that surrounds the band.
you have questions or comments, feel free to email me at
davidgasten ??? yahoo !! com.
Other stuff from David Gasten:
Be an Anti-Gen Xer, Part 1 and Part 2: A personal music manifesto where I essentially slaughter a bunch of musical sacred cows held dear by the Gen X and indie rock crowds. Talking points include: “The Velvet Underground Are Old Hat”, “Nick Drake and Elliot Smith—Founders of Wuss Pop”, “The Late Eighties and Early Nineties Weren’t So Bad After All”, and “Yes, ELP, and Queen Kick Tail! (And They’re Less Pretentious Than You Are)”. I defend metal in Part 1.
Brian Slagel and Metal Blade Records—Why They Are Cool: This tribute page to Brian Slagel and Metal Blade Records draws attention to Brian’s and Metal Blade’s long-running pattern of honest business practices and concern for their artists, past and present. Includes brief stories on Brian’s involvement with Bitch, as well as with Flotsam & Jetsam, The Galactic Cowboys, and Voivod. Enhanced with MP3 samples and YouTube videos throughout.
Metal Blade Records 20th Anniversary Box Set online browsing companion: With 9 CD’s, 1 DVD, and a half a day’s worth of music, Metal Blade’s 20th Anniversary Box Set is one of the most amazing vanity releases ever. However, because of its size, it can be a little bit intimidating for the uninitiated. For that reason I built an online browsing companion for this box set, which features a complete track listing, MP3 samples of many of the songs, and YouTube videos that cover about two thirds of the DVD. The track listing features a running commentary from Brian Slagel himself.
Ten Christian Albums Every Satanist Should Hear, Part IV—Daniel Amos: What one musical artist can you say permanently changed your life? For some it’s Chuck Berry, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, or The Velvet Underground. For Betsy, it’s Alice Cooper. For me, it’s a group called Daniel Amos. This is the most famous of all the articles I wrote when I worked as staff writer for the local online music weekly Dallasmusic.com in its heyday. The entire four-part series burnt up message boards when it came out, and I got responses from all over the world about it. From what I can tell, this article series marks a tipping point in the “Alternative Christian” music subgenre receiving acceptance and respect on a wider scale.
The Pola Negri Appreciation Site: A fan site I run about the Polish/German silent movie star Pola Negri.
Olga Baclanova—the Ultimate Cinemantrap (website): A site I put together for a good friend of mine about Olga Baclanova, a Russian silent/early talkie actress who appeared in the cult movie Freaks (1932).
Ladies of the German Cinema 1921 (DVD): I assisted in the production of this DVD and wrote the liner notes. It set a record for highest initial sales of any DVD released by that company, with one fifth of the entire first pressing selling out in the first two weeks of its release.
How to Make a Coopered Wooden Bucket (book): I co-wrote this book with my father, who makes wooden buckets, barrels, butter churns, etc. for museums, prop companies, and movie sets all over the world. On a metal-related note, one of the movies my dad provided props for was Master and Commander: The Far Side of The World (2003), which featured Tony “Demolition Man” Dolan of Venom as a character actor. How to Make a Coopered Wooden Bucket is currently the only how-to book about making wooden buckets on the market, and has received a number of really great reviews.