Best Known For
American singer Kate Pierson is famous as the frontwoman for the B-52s, one of the most popular bands of the late 1980s and early '90s.
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That 1979 record sold over half a million copies and the B-52s soon signed a major-label record deal. It wasn't long before the band enjoyed bountiful airtime on the radio and MTV. They began touring worldwide and working on more records, gathering steam as the years went by. Their next studio album (Wild Planet, 1980) delivered hits such as "Private Idaho" and "Strobe Light."
Pierson and her bandmates suffered a tragic blow when guitarist Ricky Wilson died from AIDS. Wilson's death came just after the B-52s finished recording their album Bouncing Off the Satellites, which was released in 1986. After a brief hiatus, the band came back with what critics called their best album, Cosmic Thing, featuring singles like "Channel Z" and "Love Shack." The latter became the band's best-known song, eventually peaking at No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States. In Australia, where the B-52s were perhaps most beloved, "Love Shack" held the top spot on the charts for eight weeks.
In 1990, Pierson collaborated with Iggy Pop on a song called "Candy," landing in the Top 40. The songstress would later collaborate on multiple hit songs with stars ranging from R.E.M. to Fatboy Slim. Rediscovering her love for the Beatles, Pierson also sang on the album From a Window: Lost Songs of Lennon and McCartney.
Between singing and touring, Pierson found the time to open and design Kate's Lazy Meadow Motel in upstate New York. She calls it her "cabin fever fantasy," and while the rustic cabins certainly overlook the Catskill Mountains, the decor is less log-cabin and more '50s cool, complete with wild colors and vintage appliances.
Still a musician first and foremost, Pierson continues to play and tour with the B-52s and shows no sign of slowing down. When a reporter asked her when might be the right time to retire, Pierson replied in true B-52s party-girl fashion: "When it's not fun anymore."
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