Punk News

French punk pioneer Pamela Popo, Gone, But Not Forgotten

The frontwoman of the first all-women punk rock band in France dies.

Pamela Popo, the stage name of Odile Paulhac, was cremated on 30 June at Père-Lachaise cemetery in Paris. Many fans and friends have paid their respect to Pamela at the crematory and via social media.

Punktuation Magazine’s Dutch correspondent, Herman de Tollenaere (one of the vocalists of late ’70s Dutch punks, Cheap ‘n’ Nasty, co-founder of Dutch Rock Against Racism and the Punk Scholars Network, Netherlands), has put together his own personal obituary paying homage to this pioneering woman of European punk.

“Rest in power, Pamela Popo of pioneer French punk women The Lou’s!

“Pamela Popo was the singer and lead guitarist of France’s first all-women band in any rock genre. The Lou’s were one of the first European continent punk bands. The Lou’s were asked by The Clash and Public Image Ltd. to play with them, and they were also the only band that played on both days of the 1977 Mont-de-Marsan punk festival.

“Dutch establishment rock paper Oor slagged off that festival, especially the Lou’s. The review said ‘it was a shame that these ‘slum girls’ had been allowed to be on a stage’. Reading that made me livid with anger. I realised I had to learn more about the Lou’s and punk.

“This journey led me to co-founding Pin fanzine. It also led to forming bands. Pamela’s co-founder of the Lou’s, Raphaelle Devins later became my saxophonist bandmate. The Lou’s drummer, Sacha de Jong, was present in the studio as the only non-band member when we recorded our EP.

“What an inspiration it had been to hear Pamela’s fresh voice and guitar and the other Lou’s after all that b-o-r-i-n-g pre-punk music!

“In 1979, Pamela played in the film La Brune et Moi and she co-founded the band Les Rois Fainéants.

“The last words go to Lou’s bass player, Tollim Toto:

“As Pamela always used to say: “Hey, you won’t forget me, will you!”’

Read The Lou’s Biography Here

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