The Waitresses started life in Akron, Ohio possibly as a joke by Chris Butler who had previously (or possibly concurrently) been in the band Tin Huey. When most of the band moved to New York, they were joined by ex Television drummer Billy Ficca and signed to New York label Ze (probably most famous for it's nurturing of Kid Creole and the Coconuts) in 1981. Probably the most unusual aspect of the songs on the first LP, "Wasn't Tomorrow Wonderful?" was that despite being written by Butler, were all seen from the womans perspective.
The Waitresses were largely ignored by their home audience but and the single from "Wasn't Tomorrow Wonderful?" - "I Know What Boys Like" was a top ten hit in Australia as well as being a minor hit in the UK.
The bands closest shave with the success they deserved in their home country was when they recorded the eponymous theme tune for the short-lived sit-com "Sqaure Pegs" which ironically was the only released song that was not written by a member of the band.
After briefly touring in the UK they recorded their second, and last, album - "Bruiseology" in England with the respected British producer Hugh Padgham. Unfortunately the strains were already beginning to show during the recording of this album and Patty Donahue left shortly afterwards to be replaced by Holly Beth Vincent (formerly of Holly and the Italians) although this arrangement was temporary as Patty Donahue rejoined shortly afterwards.
The Waitresses most famous song however must surely be "Christmas Wrapping" which is played annually on the radio and appears on numerous seasonal compilations, indeed it started out on Ze's excellent "A Christmas Record" in 1981.
The liner notes (written by Chris Butler) of the Best of CD provide another history of the band.
There are some other places to find out about the Waitresses, notably Sandee Owen's pages and of course Wikipedia.
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