At the Rainbow Bar & Grill, you could find yourself sharing a pizza with Iggy Pop or listening to the members of Kiss hold court upstairs. when they knocked on the door to Kim Fowley’s apartment, known as the Dog Palace.

At the Hyatt House (aka The Riot House), you could still pick up the lobby phone and call David Bowie’s room. Immediately, Jackie saw that this was not some gilded pad of a record mogul. He took one look at Jackie and went straight into a stream-of-consciousness pitch about his vision for her in the band.

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It was the only time she could be on the water and not have to deal with the catcalls and the teasing, the good-natured gibes that gradually shaded into something harder and meaner.

Before sunrise, she was just another surfer, her back to the sand, waiting for the right wave. Tall and slender with bright blue eyes and brown hair down to her shoulders, Jackie could have passed for Mary Tyler Moore’s daughter. ” She could never tell how seriously to take the attention. ” When Jackie heard that only male surfers were being paid to attend the national championships that year in North Carolina, she organized two benefit screenings of surf films to cover the travel expenses for female competitors.

But like a lot of overachievers, Jackie found high school dull and confining.

“The Runaways represented this freedom,” Jackie says now.

“I hated being in the box—‘be here at this time, do this at this time, do it this way.’ I just thought it would be better to speak my mind, sleep a little later, hang out and meet rock stars.” After rejecting Jackie as lead guitarist, Fowley asked if she could play bass. system that never worked well enough to let anyone actually hear the vocals.

She never had, but told him she would give it a try. She took three buses to get to the mobile home that served as the Runaways’ rehearsal space. Jackie plugged in and awkwardly started to pluck at her borrowed bass.He’d been going around the room asking every girl whether she played an instrument. “Why would anybody be interested in a 15-year-old musician? When she finally fessed up, Bingenheimer squealed, “Oh, you’re perfect! No one listening to Fowley at that moment could have predicted that the band he was describing, the Runaways, would have a lasting influence on pop culture and on feminism–that it would launch the careers of metal icon Lita Ford and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Joan Jett, or that it would inspire the riot grrrl movement of the early ’90s, or that Kristen Stewart would later star in a biopic about the band.” He told her there was this producer she had to meet—right now, in an apartment a short drive away—who was putting together an all-girl rock band. All Jackie knew on her first night at the Dog Palace was that she wanted in.The other girls sensed she was a novice and didn’t like that she played with a pick.But Fowley told them that if they didn’t hire her, they’d have to cancel shows he had lined up. One by one, the other band members—singer Cherie Currie, lead guitarist Lita Ford, rhythm guitarist and singer Joan Jett, and drummer Sandy West—voted her in.To get ahead in the music business of the mid-’70s, to get your own Kiss Army and a chunk of that arena money, meant convincing a man you were worth it.