Out today (August 26th) is Blondie: Against The Odds 1974-1982. The deluxe eight-CD set is available on multiple formats and features all six of the band’s studio sets — Blondie (1976), Plastic Letters (1977), Parallel Lines (1978), Eat To The Beat (1979), Autoamerican (1980), and The Hunter (1982).
The set features 36 previously unissued tracks, two volumes of liner notes, track-by-track commentary from Debbie Harry, Chris Stein, Clem Burke, Jimmy Destri, Nigel Harrison, Frank Infante, and Gary Valentine, an illustrated discography, and dozens of previously unpublished photos.
Blondie’s co-founder and keyboardist Jimmy Destri credits Debbie Harry’s movie star looks for keeping the band in step with cutting edge fashion — a fact that was especially underlined on the band’s TV appearances: “A major part of that was Debbie. When you’ve got somebody that looks like that in your band, you’re sort of lifted up by the power of your lead person. y’know? You’ve gotta strive to look better and better. So we used to, like, really carefully try and put the persona on. Actually Clem said this a while back, when we had the reunion, he said, ‘Well, look at us. . .’ — there was a picture of us without Debbie, like waiting for her, for her makeup, and we look like Oasis (laughs). Y’know?”
Backstage at Blondie’s 2006 Rock Hall induction, drummer Clem Burke spoke frankly about Debbie Harry’s influence: “One of the reasons why we are in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame is because of Debbie and obviously she opened the door for a lot of other women, and I think that’s probably why it’s a lot easier nowadays, and I think that’s kind of obvious.”