Bettie After Midnight
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Bettie After Midnight

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The best kept secret in music


""Incredibly addictive, even after it's been played enough times to get you in trouble with your neighbors""

“Back to second best, that’s what happens when you rest,” sings vocalist/guitarist Michele of Bettie After Midnight on the opening track of their debut album, Exploits of a Girl Gang. Michele, bassist Odette and drummer Lauren more than exemplify that hard work and restless ambition pay off generously. Working nonstop since their trial rehearsal as a band, they managed to write and record an album and play their first gig at CBGB’s in the impressive period of a little over a month.

The fruit of their labor, fittingly titled Exploits of a Girl Gang, sounds like the sonic chronicles of the deeds and misdeeds of a real-live ‘gang’ of gutsy, take-charge girls with instruments for weapons. The album’s confident, unmerciful tone is seasoned with Bettie After Midnight’s interesting blend of influences, which range from industrial to punk to ‘60’s surf. If the Ronettes were actually a spunky rock group raised on riot grrrl and fed a strict diet of metal and rockabilly, they would sound something like Bettie After Midnight.

Taking control is a well-worn topic, so the fact that a few songs on "Exploits" sound a bit repetitive don’t take away from the overall freshness of the album. The gems of "Exploits" are very easily “Step Aside”, “Graceful and Hateful”, and “Secrets.” Laden with heavy riffs and stinging vocals, the songs are the perfect mixture of catchiness and grit. ”Step Aside,” which was created during the Bettie After Midnight’s trial rehearsal as a band, does not cease to astonish. Its simple-yet-powerful riff is incredibly addictive, even after it’s been played enough times to get you in trouble with your neighbors. A very metal-sounding riff coils around “Graceful and Hateful,” while “Secrets” has an industrial vibe to it and displays drummer Lauren’s talent on the skins.
Honorable mentions include the cute “Lorax”, the tale of a lover’s deranged jealous cat that’s sung impressively by bassist Odette, and “The Last Time”, also featuring vocals by Odette, whose high-pitched singing is reminiscent of Kathleen Hanna.

Overall, "Exploits of a Girl Gang" is a kickass debut that intimates what looks like an even more promising future for the band. Ambitious and fiercely talented, Bettie After Midnight are in no danger of ending up “second best.” - Void - Spring 2006 by Leah

""A pretty heavy outfit...I could totally see these NYC-based ladies supporting Rob Zombie on a states tour, so if Gene Simmons is thinking of swooping in on them, he needs to clear that shit up with Mr. Zombie first.""

For a power trio, Bettie After Midnight is a pretty heavy outfit. Think L7 and a select few of the punk/metal bands that were ruling the early 90's. Choice cuts here: "Step Aside," "The Last Time," and "Lorax" (this isn't Dr. Seuss' "Lorax," is it? You have Razorcake's own Gary H. as a fan if it is.) I could totally see these NYC-based ladies supporting Rob Zombie on a states tour, so if Gene Simmons is thinking of swooping in on them, he needs to clear that shit up with Mr. Zombie first (Rob's a better choice anyway). If they keep more of the upbeat tunes coming without going poppy and switch off on vocal duties a bit more, Bettie After Midnight just may give all the half-assed punkers with instruments a serious run for their money. - Razorcake - Issue #29 by Designated Dale

"Interview - Lauren Speaks to The Cover Zone"

TCZ: When did you first become interested in music? Was there a significant event that pushed you toward pursuing a career in music?

Lauren: I became interested in music at a very young age. My babysitter was obsessed with early 80s hair metal (mostly Bon Jovi & Motley Crue) and as a result I would watch MTV for hours on end. I wanted to be in a rock band before I was even in first grade

TCZ: Can you tell us about your first instrument and any musical training you had?

Lauren: In fourth grade we had to try out in order to be in the school band. I was one of the first people who got to pick their instrument, and drums were by far the coolest of course. I had grand visions of myself playing the intro to Van Halen's "Hot for Teacher" or something. In reality, I was hitting the wood block on Hava Nagila or thumping the bass drum for the theme to Beverly Hills 90210.

So I realized that I needed outside lessons in order to learn real songs on an actual drum set. I studied mostly rock, but did a year of jazz and a couple of months of xylophone. Yeah that's right xylophone.

TCZ: Many drummers have commented how difficult it is to play drums and contribute to vocals. Did you find it difficult to incorporate both?

Lauren: For me, I tend to sing along to whatever I am playing in my head to keep count so lending my voice to a track has never been that difficult. However, it is much easier to sing in a cozy air-conditioned practice space than it is to sing on a sweaty, humid stage.

TCZ: Did anyone ever try to discourage you from pursuing a musical career as a female drummer?

Lauren: Not really. Actually, my parents let me play my drum set in my room, and my neighbors didn't live that close so it worked out really well for me.

TCZ: Tell us a little bit about your band, Bettie After Midnight.

Lauren: Well, we usually sum up Bettie After Midnight as being heavy, catchy, sexy and punky all-girl rock from NYC. Michele sings and plays guitar, Odette plays bass and also sings, and I play drums and do backing vocals. All kinds of info about the band can be found at our website

TCZ: There is quite a story behind the composing of the debut album "Exploits of a Girl Gang." Can you tell us a little bit about that?

Lauren: All three of us had lots of ideas for this CD. What I like about my band is that we all have an equal share in the writing each of us comes to the table with song blueprints, and then we workshop them as a unit, giving all of our tracks a common thread. I had written lyrics before, but this was my first time writing music for a song (Graceful and Hateful) and its something I'm beginning to do more and more of and get better at.

TCZ: Considering the staggering speed in which "Exploits of a Girl Gang", was composed and produced, do you feel it fully encompasses the band's capabilities?

Lauren: Those songs were written in the course of two month and then we just jumped right into the studio. I think it gives our CD a certain freshness it is dark, loud, and fun, and was recorded in mostly one or two takes. Its raw and pure, yet it isn't too low-fi.

Over the past few months, Michele, Odette and I have really connected as friends and band mates, and so naturally our playing has gotten tighter. I think most people in a band would agree that by the time they've finished recording and printing their CDs, they're already better at playing the material on them. It doesn't make the CDs any less enjoyable though.

TCZ: What was it like debuting at CBGB's with Bettie After Midnight?

Lauren: When we played our first show, we had only been a band for one month. I hadn't been on stage since the demise of my previous band so it was nice to be back with fresh material.

The three of us were a little stiff towards the beginning, but by the end of the set we were jumping all around. Plus, anyone who has been to a show at CBGB's can tell you that the sound system is excellent. People kept saying they couldn't believe it was only our first show, which was nice to hear.

TCZ: What is the most difficult aspects you have faced in the music industry as an all female band and especially as a female drummer?

Lauren: Most people are extremely cool and really interested in what were doing live. However, there are definitely people who are rude to us before even hearing us play. One time a sound guy pointed to our gear bags while we were setting up and said, "Hey girls, is that where you keep your tampons?" Also, there is at least one idiot a month who sees us walking into our rehearsal space and asks, "Hey, are you girls here to see your boyfriends?" Luckily, the three of us are always quick with an equally rude comeback.

Another thing that sort of bothers me is that I almost never meet other female drummers. I only know of a handful in NYC (and they're all awesome!) We've been asked to play female rock shows, and I'll get there and see a bunch of guys setting up and only one girl in the band, the singer. I'm not knocking them I just wish female rock shows were actually that.

TCZ: Do you still practice or do you feel you have mastered your drum skill at this point in time?

Lauren: I think that any musician will always have to practice. I stopped playing all through college and never really lost my coordination, but really had to work on getting my speed and precision back on track. I'll always be trying to better myself.

TCZ: What advice would you give an upcoming female drummer today?

Lauren: Invest in a really nice hardware bag with sturdy wheels and a good handle. Once full, a gear bag seriously weighs over 100 lbs. It will be the best investment you will ever make.

TCZ: What are your greatest influences in music today?

Lauren: I listen to all sorts of music. Even music I hate influences me in an Ooh, I'll make sure not to do that sort of way. My favorite drummers are Abe Cunningham, Martin Atkins, John Dolmayan, Tommy Lee and Sheila E. I also listen to a lot of hip-hop there's a lot of crap to weed through just like any genre, but there are also amazingly creative beats out there.

TCZ: What can we expect from Bettie After Midnight this year?

Lauren: Hmm...lots! We are already in talks to shoot a music video and are working on a bunch of new songs. We will be featured in a two-page spread in "Scrap City," coming in March 2006.

TCZ: Any plans of touring this year?

Lauren:Yes! We will be playing selected dates all along the east coast starting this November through to 2006. We will also be playing at this years ROCKRGRL Conference in Seattle, WA, November 10th - 12th.

TCZ: Is there anything we haven't hit on that you would like to share?

Lauren: I would just like to say thanks for this interview *hug*. - The Cover Zone - October 2005

"Interview - Odette speaks to"

A native of the New York City area, Odette has tried many different careers and even got a Masters degree in film production at New York University. But all she ever really wanted to be is a rock star. Relatively new to the bass guitar, she's already part of an up-and-coming New York City all-girl rock band, Bettie After Midnight.

Where are you based Odette? New York City, USA

When did you first take a bass in your hands? I got my first bass just three years ago!

What attracted you to playing bass? It pretty much came down to one song really influencing me to want to play bass - "Run" by Cult of the Psychic Fetus. It was the coolest bass line I'd ever heard! I thought the bass was the driving force in that song, and on most of the album, really. Then I started paying more attention to the bass in other bands I really liked and decided that playing bass is exactly what I wanted to do in a band.

Did you play any other instrument before you started playing bass? Yes, I've been playing piano ever since I can remember. I started out working songs out on my own, then began taking lessons when I was six years old. I studied all the way through until I finished high school. I've been playing piano almost 25 years.

Can you remember the first song you ever learned on bass? Yes, it was that Cult of the Psychic Fetus song, "Run." The first thing I did when I got home from buying my bass was learn to play that song.

What was your very first public performance? My first public music performance was a piano recital when I was six. I played about 8 songs.

What's your current band? I play bass in Bettie After Midnight, an all-girl rock band based in New York City.

What's your main bass? I play a Rickenbacker 4003 4-string bass.

Body colour/wood? The body is made of maple with a shiny Jetglo black lacquer and a white pickguard.

Neck/fingerboard? The neck is also black lacquered maple. The fingerboard is varnished rosewood (though it's a lighter colour than most rosewood fingerboards) with pearly triangular inlays.

What is your backline bass amp setup? I play with an Ampeg B100-R bass combo. I tried a few different amps but I
thought this one worked best with the twangy, surfy sound I wanted to accomplish. It doesn't hurt that it has a cool vintage look to it!

Fingers, plectrum or both? I play with a pick.

Which ones? I prefer Fender's "Heavy" picks. They're 1.0 mm.

What type of music do you play? In Bettie after Midnight, I play heavy rock music, though I try to bring a surfy influence to my lines. On my own, I like playing rockabilly, psychobilly and surf music. I like fun and challenging lines.

Who do you listen to when you're not playing? I mostly listen to what I like to play ~ rockabilly, psychobilly and surf, though I also like punk, swing, jazz, lounge and old country/blues music.

Have you recorded/released any CDs? My band Bettie After Midnight has one CD out, "Exploits of a Girl Gang." It's available on our website, on and in lots of independent record stores. We're getting close to having enough material for a second album.

What was your best gig/venue ever? We haven't yet had one single show that's really stood out over the others, but every show where we've had a large, enthusiastic crowd has been a thrill!

What was your worst moment onstage? Unfortunately, I have the bad habit of accidentally cutting my own signal during shows. And there are so many different ways it's happened! I've stepped on my tuning pedal, stepped on my cable and pulled it out of my guitar, or just somehow knocked the cable out of somewhere important. It's happened a few times and it's so embarrassing! At first I notice that I can't hear my bass anymore, then I have to quickly figure out what's wrong while continuing to play and sing. I recently got a much longer cable. I'm hoping that will help!

What's your favourite album/CD? Besides the one I've already mentioned (Cult of the Psychic Fetus' album "Orgy of the Dead"), the one I probably listen to most is The Cramps' "Stay Sick."

Do you own any other instruments? I have an Ibanez P-J combo bass in cherry red. That was my first bass and the one that I learned on. I also own a little Fender Squire Bullet guitar, an awesome shiny black upright bass that I'm trying to master, and a couple of keyboards. I'd have a real piano if I lived in a bigger place.

Do you sing much? I sing lead on about 30% of our set, and I sing backup vocals on all the other songs.

Did you ever perform onstage without your bass? I've played piano onstage dozens of times, and I've also done a lot of musical theatre and film acting over the years.

What's your opinion on basses with more than 4 strings? I really want to like 5 string basses because at times I think it would be useful to have even just a couple of whole steps lower than E available, but I can't bring myself to get one because I can't help but thinking of them as a little self-indulgent. I associate them with corny, old metal dudes who go to guitar stores just to show off in front of the other customers. Sorry!

What do you feel is the bass player's function in a band? When I first started playing, I thought of the bass as the harmony to the guitar's melody. Then I read somewhere that the bass is actually more of a percussion instrument and that I should be playing along with the drummer. That helped me think of the bass in a different way and helped a lot with my timing, but in the end I'm doing a bit of both. I play pretty complicated and distinct basslines.

What are your ambitions? What I want most is for the musicians I admire to like my music too! If I can gain the respect and admiration of my peers and heroes, I will have accomplished much.

""Rebel Rouser - Mixed Events Draw a Crowd" Bettie After Midnight at Heavy Rebel Weekender"

...Abigail Fields of Forsyth County was inside the Millenium Center swaying to the music of Bettie After Midnight, an all-girl rock band from New York.

"These girls are pretty cool," Fields said. She has come to the festival several times.

Michele Lombardo, Odette Dillon and Lauren O'Reilly are the women behind Bettie After Midnight. The band has been together for about one and a half years. The name of the band came from Bettie Page, a 1950's pin-up girl.

"We wanted to do something that had to do with pinups," Dillon said, "And a sinister Bettie Page..." - Winston-Salem Journal - July 2, 2006

"Interview - SONYC Speaks to Bettie After Midnight"

Tell me about "Scrap City."

Odette: I'll take this one—it's this
coffee-table book, which is being published by SoHo Books and should
be in stores in March 2006. It's a large format art book about
scrapbooking, but with an urban edge to it. They asked me to contribute
artwork to the book, so I did a 2-page spread about Bettie After
Midnight, which is a huge part of my life. I included lots of pictures
of all three of us, a flyer from our CD release party, and little
notes about my experience as a member of the band. It's personal, but
it's also a great way to introduce our band to a lot of new people!

What is your favorite B.A.M. lyric?
Michele: I really like the phrase "thin veil" for some reason. It's
very mysterious. "A thin veil covers what you just said" is probably
my favorite line because I hate when people say something under the
guise of friendliness or concern and are really taking a jab at you
and think you either are too stupid to notice or are too timid to
throw it back at them.

Lauren: Hmm...I like the words to one of our new songs that was
written after we recorded "Exploits of a Girl Gang" because I wrote it
about a recent experience...but I think I'll keep you guessing.

Odette: I love the line "you're gonna get dead" in "Lorax." It sounds
like something Jimmy Cagney would say.

What song to you love to perform live the most?
Lauren: "Thin Veil" because it varies in speed, it's heavy and it is
dramatic. Although, we do a mean Golden Girls cover.

Michele: "Thin Veil" because it's the most metal song we have. It's
just fun to play and swing your hair around and be a drama queen. I
like "Secrets" a lot too, because people get really into it. It's a
powerful song.

Odette: It's too hard to pick just one! I love our big dramatic
endings on "Secrets" and "Thin Veil," and I also really enjoy playing
the basslines on "The Last Time," "Over the Edge" and "Lorax." I enjoy
playing them all, honestly.

Where is your favorite place to write?

Michele: Paper? I have a little Tinkerbell notebook my friend gave me
that I write in. I write lyrics best laying on the floor for some
reason. Music, I usually write sitting on my bed with my four-track.
Odette: I write music at home on my bass, and then I'll bring it to
rehearsal where we'll all work on it together. I always have the music
done before the lyrics, which usually come to me in the shower.
Lauren: I write little notes on my hand a lot...but I came up with
most of the lyrics I wrote on my couch in my living room and wrote any
music on my keyboard in my bedroom.

Do you have any advice for up and coming bands?

Michele: Make sure you genuinely like the people you are playing with.
I cannot understand when people are like, "I hate my drummer." How
does that work? "Well, he's a really good drummer!" To me it's not
worth it. It's like any relationship. I don't want people who I feel
are negative or drag me down mentally in my life. So why would I want
them in my band? Also, if you really believe in what you are doing
(which you should or else why would you do it?), don't get
discouraged. Somewhere, someone (or hopefully many someones) will
believe in what you are doing, too. NYC especially is so hard because
there are so many bands. Just keep on trucking and make sure you are
having fun, above all. Even if you are only playing to 2 people, make
sure it's fun.

Odette: Don't settle for playing with people you don't "click" with.
Playing music and being in a band should be fun and if you don't
really like the music you're playing, or you don't like your
bandmates, it's just uncomfortable and feels like a chore. We're very
lucky to have a genuine friendship outside of the band, but even if I
liked Michele and Lauren only half as much as I do, I think we'd still
be a good match.

Also, don't sell yourself short. It costs you a lot of time and money
to promote your spot and to cab your gear to the show, and you're
there performing and providing customers who pay the cover and buy
drinks—you deserve your fair share of the door money. If you're
mistreated at a certain venue (for example, not getting paid what you
were promised for bringing in a large crowd, who came and paid the $10
cover to see your show after you worked hard to promote it), don't
play there again, and tell other bands so that the venue and promoter
can't continue to take advantage of other musicians.
Lauren: Form a band with people you genuinely get along with. Being in
a band requires an equal effort on everyone's part. Traveling,
writing, and critiquing each other's work can cause strain that is
much harder to deal with if you don't care about the people you are
working with. Oh, and don't play Don Hill's if you ever come to NYC.
They will not give you the amount of money you earn at the door.

Where is the coolest place to buy clothes in NYC?

Michele: When I buy clothes I tend to bargain shop. There is this
store by my house in Astoria that sells name brands insanely cheap.
I've gotten skirts there for $5. But it's hit or miss. Other than
that, I just buy stuff wherever I happen to find it.
Odette: I'm choosy and cheap when it comes to buying clothes. It takes
patience, but walk around Herald Square and you'll find lots of places
selling a lot of horrible clothes with a few really cool things tucked
in between. One time we got cute matching nighties for a show and they
cost something like $6 each. They even came with panties!

Lauren: NYC can be a bit overwhelming because there's a ton of stuff
scattered all over the place and you really have to hunt down the good
deals. I tend to do a lot of online shopping.

What is happening in the current NYC music scene and where do you
think it is heading?

Michele: Not much is happening. As I said, it's so hard in NYC because
there are sooo many bands. To get noticed you really have to have
something special--which we do, I feel. And then there are the bands
who you wonder why they are noticed at all. And so many of the venues
are just so shady--cheating you out of money, making rude comments
because (in our case) we are girls.

Lauren: Sadly, there isn't a lot going on in NYC. I think there are
many fun, talented bands in this city but there aren't so many great
venues to play. Also, with so many options as to how to spend a night
out in Manhattan, most people are jaded or just don't have the time to
check out many new bands.

Odette: I feel that the NYC music scene is what you make of it. I
regularly see bands that I love, but I admit that it's hard to keep up
with who's in town and when and where. I really like that if you're
into a certain kind of music (I love rockabilly, psychobilly, surf and
punk, for example), I see a lot of the same people at shows. Over the
years, I've made a lot of friends with bands and other fans. I like
that I can go to a show by myself and always see people I know there.
Sometimes I hear people say that there aren't any good shows going on,
or that it's hard to find good live music and I just can't believe
they think that! Great live music is all over and I'm constantly
finding out about new bands that I like and plan to follow. As a
musician, though, I would like to see more venues and promoters be
fair to the bands that play there. Without us, there wouldn't be a
show and they'd just be another lame bar.

What is your favorite aspect of playing out in NYC?
Lauren: I think NYC's music scene has an amazing history and a ton of
diversity. Knowing that Debbie Harry and I have performed at the same
venue is an awesome feeling.

Odette: I feel so lucky to have been born just one train stop out of
NYC. It's hard not to take for granted how exciting and important our
city is when I've never looked at it as an out-of-towner, but still I
know that us getting to play at CBGB's or the Knitting Factory is
something that out-of-town bands would think is a really big deal.

Michele: I just love NYC. As much as I can complain about the people
and the tourists and whatever else, there is no place like NYC. True
New Yorkers are the best and there is just so much history and culture
everywhere, not just in the music scene. I can't imagine living or
hailing from anywhere else as a band.

Platforms or stilettos?

Odette: Platforms. No contest.
Michele: Platforms, of course. I don't think I can walk in stilettos.
Lauren: Platforms...definitely platforms.

Victoria's Secret or Fredericks of Hollywood?
Michele: Frederick's, give us an endorsement!
Lauren: Frederick 's!

Odette: For "fancier" stuff, I'm going to say Frederick's, though I'll
admit that I'm a regular at Victoria 's Secret. Almost everything in
my "bras & panties" drawer is from there.
- SONYC (Sounds of New York City) by Amy Chace

"Featured in the book "Scrap City""

Bettie After Midnight appears in a full-page layout. Book is geared towards 'urban divas and small-town rebels.' - SoHo Books - March 2006


Album: "Exploits of a Girl Gang" - June 2005

Radio Airplay:
"Night Calls" is the the theme song to the popular program of the same name which can be heard by over 4 million Sirius Satellite Radio subscribers

"Step Aside" and "Over the Edge" were top rated "Hot Trax" Pulse Rated Radio. (

"Step Aside" has received airplay on:
WHRW 90.5 FM in Binghamton, NY
WBNY 91.3 FM in Buffalo, NY
WFNP 88.7 FM in New Paltz, NY
WNYU 89.1 FM in New York, NY
WUSB 90.1 FM in Stonybrook, NY
WNHU 88.7 FM in Milford CT
WEXP 530AM in Philadelphia, PA (online at


Feeling a bit camera shy


Tough, sexy, and sophisticated, Bettie After Midnight is comprised of three fiery chicks from NYC. Lifelong musicians, Michele (vocals, guitar), Odette (bass, vocals) and Lauren (drums, vocals), create heavy, catchy, punky rock that maintains a no-nonsense edge while showcasing their talent.

In February 2005, Bettie After Midnight started out like a lot of relationships - with an online ad. After hitting it off at a trashy midtown bar, (and getting kicked out before long) the girls scheduled a trial rehearsal. There, they exceeded their own expectations. Within hours, the threesome had written their first song, the gripping ode to self-possession, “Step Aside.”

The ladies of Bettie After Midnight continued to make progress with break-neck speed. In just one month, they had composed seven more original songs and proved their mettle with a debut at the legendary rock club CBGB’s. Soon after, they recorded their very first album, “Exploits of a Girl Gang,” in only one weekend.

With the release of their CD, Bettie After Midnight began garnering impressive live credits. In addition to frequent bookings at well-known tri-state area venues, the band took on unconventional shows. The trio hit the stage in front of fire-breathers and performance artists as part of the popular local series BadAss Burlesque and headlined the 2005 Mondo Porno Party, which was named ‘Best of New York’ by the Village Voice. Having conquered NYC, Bettie After Midnight brought their energetic live show to the ROCKRGRL music conference in Seattle, sharing the bill with iconic artists Patti Smith and Ann Wilson of Heart. Recently, the Betties rocked North Carolina as part of the three-day Heavy Rebel Weekender, an event that drew thousands in attendance each day from all over the country.

This group’s reach goes well beyond the stage. Playboy Radio approached Bettie After Midnight to compose and record the theme song to the popular program, "Night Calls," which can be heard by over 4 million Sirius Satellite Radio subscribers. They are featured in “Scrap City,” a coffee-table book ‘for urban divas and small-town rebels’ published by SoHo Books. Their debut album is now available in record stores from Montreal to Hawaii and can be purchased on iTunes, CDBaby, Tower Records and other popular sites.

The women of Bettie After Midnight have over a year of experience under their belt and show no signs of slowing. With a string of East Coast tour dates in the works and a growing arsenal of new tracks, this band is ready to attack a whole new set of sonic challenges!