News Segment


July 15, 2007

It is with extreme sadness to tell you that Kelly Johnson, original member of Girlschool, passed away on Sunday the 15th of July after fighting a 6 year battle with cancer of the spine.

Back in 1978 Kelly Johnson (Lead Guitar/Vocals) and Denise Dufort (Drums) joined a South London all girl covers band called PAINTED LADY and in April 78 along with Enid Williams (Bass/Vocals) and Kim McAuliffe (Rhythm Guitar/Vocals) they changed the name to GIRLSCHOOL.

In December 78 Girlschool Released their first single ‘Take it All Away’ on the independent ‘City Records’ label.

After touring with Motorhead on their OVERKILL tour in the spring of 79 Girlschool later that year signed with Motorhead’s label ‘Bronze’.

The following years saw Kelly and Girlschool release 4 albums and numerous singles.

In February 81 Girlschool and Motorhead as HEADGIRL released the Classic ‘St Valentine’s Day Massacre EP’ which went silver and reached Number 5 in the UK charts. The Album ‘Hit & Run’ also released in 81 reached Number 5 in the UK album charts and went Gold in Canada.

Girlschool also had a sell out UK tour and headlined the Friday night of the Reading Festival in 1981.

During this time Girlschool played gigs and toured with Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Rush, Motorhead, Iron Maiden and the Scorpions amongst others and played all over Europe, Canada, the USA and Japan. After the tour of Japan in 1982 Enid left and Gil Weston joined the band.

In 1984 after recording the bands 4th album ‘Play Dirty’ Kelly decided to leave Girlschool to pursue other ventures and to move to LA and lived in the USA for the next 10 years and in 1993 she rejoined Girlschool and moved back to the UK. From 1993 until 2000 Kelly, Kim, Denise and Tracey Lamb toured the UK, Europe and the USA and recorded a live album in March 1995.

Kelly decided to Quit the music business for good in 2000 after recording her final album with Girlschool 21st Anniversary Not That Innocent.

And the rest as they say is history.

Courtesy of