Belinda Carlisle’s advice to ageing singers

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Remember Belinda Carlisle? She was a 1980s pop star, lead singer of all-girl band The Go-Go’s and a successful solo artist.

The Go-Go’s entered the pop charts back in 1981 with “Our Lips are Sealed,” and were hailed as the first female group to write songs and play their own instruments. I mean, who knew that girls could do those things, right?

Carlisle’s solo career took off in the mid-80s. By then she’d transformed from a chubby singer into a svelte siren, much like Madonna.

Yet, the similarities between the singers didn’t end with weight loss. Born in the same year and one day apart, Carlisle and Madonna epitomised the two sides of pop. While one of them toned up and became a gym junky (Madonna’s workouts famously last up to five hours daily), Belinda snorted coke – lots of it – for 30 years.

Ironically, after studying the ageing faces of both women, it is impossible to distinguish the junkie from the exercise freak. Plastic surgeons have trimmed, tucked and pulled these ladies’ skin to perfection. That is if you consider the shiny, taut features of mannequins a suitable visage for 80s pop princesses.

Carlisle has re-joined the Go-Go’s for their final reunion tour. She insists on retiring after these concerts. She believes that ageing women (and men) look foolish prancing around on stage singing pop songs in their twilight years.

Carlisle acknowledges she has entertained us all long enough. I doubt Madonna will heed her advice.

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About the author

Sue Bell is an entertainment writer and author of Backpacked: A mostly true story, Beat Street and When Dreamworks came to Stanley.


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