The Runaway Runaways, Ep. 2: Yesterday's Kids

Micki Steele, Sandy West, and Joan Jett in the original lineup of the Runaways

Micki Steele, Sandy West, and Joan Jett in the original lineup of the Runaways

At their inception, the Runaways were a trio of raw sound and teenage ambition. But Micki Steele, their original bassist and lead singer, was quickly pushed out of the band. Almost 10 years later, she found a home in the Bangles, a band that gave her more commercial success and creative satisfaction than the Runaways ever could. But what happened between leaving the Runaways and joining the Bangles?


This season of Bad Reputation would not be possible without the work of journalist Evelyn McDonnell and her book Queens of Noise. If you are looking to learn more about the Runaways, this is a must.

Other sources for this episode include:

Living Like a Runaway by Lita Ford

We Got the Neutron Bomb: The Untold Story of L.A. Punk by Marc Spitz and Brendan Mullen

Lexicon Devil: The Fast Times and Short Life of Darby Crash by Brendan Mullen, Don Bolles, and Adam Parfrey

VH1’s Behind the Music - The Bangles

I also relied on a variety of articles, some of which I accessed through paid databases. Here are a few of the publicly available ones:

“Sweetheart of the Sun & Modern Art: Chatting with the Bangles’ Susanna Hoffs and and Matthew Sweet” - Mike Ragogna

“With a Little Help From Friend Prince, The Bangles Have Become Queens of Post-Psychedelic Pop” - Michelle Green

“Origins of the Bangles” - Kelly McCartney

“It’s Time to Recognize the Ronettes as Rock and Roll Pioneers” - Hilarie Asheton

Various interviews on

Rodney Bingenheimer, Sandy West, and Michael Steele

Rodney Bingenheimer, Sandy West, and Michael Steele

In this episode, I used two clips from audio interviews with the real Michael Steele. The first came from an interview on the BBC6 in 2003 and the second came from the VH1 Behind the Music Bangles episode.

I read, watched, and conducted as many interviews as possible to make this podcast. Only a fraction of the interviews I find or conduct appear in episodes, but all voice-acted parts are dramatizations of real quotes or interactions described in written interviews.

If you have a question about where a specific piece of information came from or would like to provide a source for correcting something, please reach out!

Susanna Hoff’s flyer for attracting soon-to-be Bangles members

Susanna Hoff’s flyer for attracting soon-to-be Bangles members


Culture doesn't exist in a vacuum, and my voice actors are among the people whose ideas, influence, and encouragement shape my work. If you like this podcast, you will probably like many of their projects, too.

Clementine Wink (Susanna Hoffs) plays in the band Civic Center.

Eli Harvey (Sandy West) is a writer and comedian.

Josh Watkins (Phast Phreddie Patterson) is a writer.

J.R. Nelson (heckler) is a music critic.

Scott Plant (Kim Fowley) plays in the band Droids Blood.

KT Hawbaker (Michael Steele) is a culture writer. They also worked as developmental editor on this episode.

Bad Reputation's logo photo is by photographer Martin Sorrondeguy aka Martin Crudo.


All music that appeared in this episode is from a royalty-free music library or the creative commons, with the exception of the outro, which is “Wavelengths” by Death Valley. (Seriously, pre-order their upcoming record. You won’t regret it.)

If you’d like to hear licensed music in future episodes — me too! I’d also like to research much rarer history. You can become a Patreon patron to help me work towards both goals here, but you’re always welcome to make a one-time Venmo donation to @MiccoSlays, too.

Apart from money, the biggest thing you can do to support the show is to tell anyone you can. Every listener helps, and I truly appreciate it.