Jan Kuehnemund (guitar) formed Vixen in the ‘70s. Jan had been playing in a band with some girls from her neighborhood, which was initially called Genesis, but changed its name to Vixen when another band with that name became popular. Later on Janet Gardner joined the band as the singer. In 1984 they appeared in a film called Hardbodies, for which they played six songs, “Be With You”, “Computer Madness”, “Give It A Chance”, “Maria”, “Mr. Cool” and “Runnin’”. At that time the band members were: Jan Kuehnemund (guitar), Janet Gardner (vocals), Pia Maiocco (bass), Laurie Hedlund (drums) and Tamara Ivanov (rhythm guitar).
After a few line-up changes the band members were Jan Kuehnemund, Janet Gardner, Pia Maiocco and ex-Madame X Roxy Petrucci as the drummer. This Vixen line-up recorded a demo in 1986 with the songs “You Oughta Know By Now”, “Leave Me Alone” and “Waiting For You” (which would be modified and included on their first album as “Waiting”). In 1987 they reached the line-up which would record the first two albums with Share Pedersen on bass. Pia left the band to marry Steve Vai.
In 1988 their debut album, Vixen, came out with songs, which would really hit the world, like “Edge of a Broken Heart”, “Cryin’”, “I Want You to Rock Me”, “Love Made Me” and “Cruisin’”. The album was a big success, going gold in the USA and selling more than a million copies around the world. During their ten month tour of Europe and the US, they supported such bands as Scorpions, Bon Jovi, Ozzy Osbourne and Bad Company.
Their second album, Rev It Up, was released in 1990. While it didn’t sell as well as expected, it featured the famous “How Much Love, along with the ballad “Love is a Killer”, “Not A Minute Too Soon” and “Rev It Up”. Again they toured the US and Europe as a supporting band to Kiss, Ratt and Deep Purple, as well as playing some of their own headlining shows and festivals.
Unfortunately the musical scene started to change in those years with the onset of grunge. After the Deep Purple tour in 1991, Vixen split up due to musical differences. Each member followed a different direction. Jan worked in some projects, including one with Roxy called Bombshell. Later in 1991 Roxy started a band with her sister Maxine and Lenita Erickson called Hell’s Belles. Roxy and Maxine played as Madam X again. After the Vixen split Janet and Share worked together, playing some dates under the name Nobody You Know with Aerosmith’s touring keyboardist Thom Gimbel. Before the Vixen split Share also participated in the Contraband project, with Michael Schenker (MSG), Tracii Guns (L.A.Guns), Bobby Blotzer (Ratt) and Richard Black (Shark Island). They recorded an album and made a couple of videos.
Roxy and Janet reformed Vixen in 1997. Guitarist Gina Stile joined the band and they toured with bassist Rana Ross (R.I.P.) before recording a third Vixen album, Tangerine, in 1998. They went on tour in June that year with Maxine on bass instead of Rana Ross. Unfortunately after only a little while the band split up again.
Jan formed a couple of bands during that era: Population 361 and Drawing Down the Moon with a soft rock style. They recently recorded an album, Angel in My Dream.
Share (now Share Ross) and her husband formed Bubble, an alternative rock band in which she sings and plays guitar. They have released three albums so far, along with a few EPs.
In 1999 the Full Throttle compilation album came out. It includes the first two Vixen albums, as well as a previously unreleased track, “Give It Away” and live version of “I Want You to Rock Me”.
In 2001, Jan, Janet and Roxy decided to reform Vixen again. Pat Holloway joined the band as the new bass player. They toured in the USA that summer but in the middle of the tour Janet, Roxy and Pat left the band. Jan continued the tour with three new girls.
Janet, Roxy and Gina worked on a project called V3 in 2003, which consisted of some songs from the Tangerine era. A CD release in Europe was planned but the status of the project is currently unknown.
Roxy recently recorded a demo along with her sister Maxine on vocals, guitar and bass, under the name of Titania. Their debut album features special guest Billy Sheehan on the title song.
In August 2004, Jan, Roxy, Janet and Share reunited to play just one show for the VH-1 Bands Reunited program.
The Vixen line-up on the Live & Learn (2006) album features three new members: Jenna Sanz-Agero (vocals), Lynn Louise Lowrey (bass) and Kat Kraft (drums).