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Jamie, Lisa, Sarah and Tasha's glorious brand of anthemic pop has come in the shape of two top 20 singles, "I Quit" and "Bugs", and an acclaimed eponymous album. The name Hepburn comes from star Audrey Hepburn. It was mainly Jamie's idea because she was obsessed with Audrey as a child. The girls spent 1999 rocking the UK with a series of live performances which started in Hepburn-hungry schools, built into a series of summer radio roadshows and ended with stints on the TV Hits Tour and Smash Hits tour. More than just the latest, loudest and rowdiest purveyors of girl power, Hepburn have kicked all other female contenders to the curb and have emerged as the ones to watch in 2000.
"The highlight of our career so far has to be our debut single 'I Quit'," says Jamie, 20, the band's vocalist, "It not only got us noticed here, but in America too. The producers of the teen TV show, Buffy, The Vampire Slayer, liked the song so much that they included it on the soundtrack to the series. It meant going to Los Angeles to re-shoot the video on the set of Buffy in Hollywood and playing ourselves as evil vampire twins! The track's since been going down a storm there!"
"But more than that, it's been fun to overturn people's expectations," adds Lisa, 18, the guitarist. "Four girls in a group together used to mean cutesy vocals and nice dance routines. We've not only changed that, but we all play our own instruments and we perform live too. Not many other pop groups can say that!"
Influenced by guitar bands like the Smashing Pumpkins, the Foo Fighters and Silverchair as well as by strong women like Shirley Manson, Courtney Love and Madonna, Hepburn formed on the spot (hey, this is rock 'n' roll, after all) when Lisa and Jamie met at a party back in 1997.
The one with the 'get up and go' when everyone else has got the night bus home, Jamie's been singing in bands from the age of 11 (some of them with mum Dinky and dad Barry) and has even trodden the boards with everyone from crusty luvvie Dora Bryan to Alf from Home and Away. But as gutsy and gobby as she is, she reckons, "I'm a pussy cat at heart."
Lisa's played the guitar since she was 13, though her first performance didn't come until a little later when she played a Nirvana song to her school and went bright red! The biggest tomboy in the band, she's the quiet but deeply dangerous one who could beat Celine Dion in an arm-wrestle.
The girls found their bass guitarist wearing pink metallic flares in a small unknown band. A music student who'd played bass since she was 11 and been in bands since she was 13, Sarah, now 19, is open-minded though a little bit dappy (her own words) and is also the band's resident flirt: "I can't help it if the bass is a boy magnet!" she says.
Tasha, 22, the trilingual drummer, finally found Hepburn late in '99, but not before she'd travelled around the world (hey, her dad hung with the international jet set), fallen for a footballer or two and learnt professional percussion with the best teacher in the UK. "I picked up my sticks when I was 11 and I knew then and there that I didn't want to do anything else with my life."