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The Best of the Waitresses

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Editors’ Notes

Best-known for two radio classics, “I Know What Boys Like” and “Christmas Wrapping,” the Waitresses offered much more than two great songs in their short existence. Conceived by Ohio New Wave pioneer Chris Butler and fronted by the exquisite character singer Patty Donahue, they married wordy evocations of a single woman’s big-city travails and occasional triumphs to impassioned, well-informed musical pastiches. “No Guilt,” a recitation to an ex-boyfriend of personal-growth touchstones, begins as slapstick skank and adds a power-chorded chorus as Donahue refuses to back down. Patches of noise from a guitar-wielding Butler and saxophonist Mars Williams perfectly fit both the pop structures of “Boys” and “Make the Weather” and open the listener’s head for the slightly atonal likes of “The Smartest Person I Know” and “They’re All Out of Liquor, Let’s Find Another Party.” A quarter century later, there’s still never been another group like them.

Customer Reviews

The dawn of new wave

The Waitresses were that other group from Ohio that had a strong female lead;The Waitresses are a very unique group in that they had several albulms but only have a cult like following. Especially at Christmas, Anyone who has heard "Christmas Wrapping" will have to get into the spirit and "raise up cups of Christmas Cheer". I love Patty Donahue's voice in almost all of these songs. If you grew up in the 80's , you might remember a sitcom called "Square Pegs". That of course is where track 9 comes in.This is a good collection for a novice fan to start off with, although their albulms are hard to come by. Sadly, Mrs. Donahue died from cancer in December of 1996. In a tribute to her, play this albulm and play Christmas Wrapping in December and remember a great, jazzy, funky band that was definately ahead of their time.

Groovy Tunes

"The Best of The Waitresses" is a great album for fans of the group who are frustrated by the fact that they will never find the band's original two albums anywhere. Including hits that everyone knows as well as a few more obscure songs, this album is great collection of songs done only the way The Waitresses could. Patty Donahue's deadpan delivery of the ingredients of everyday life make each of these songs relatable to everyone who listens. Musically speaking, no one has been able to copy the unique sound of this band. Buy this album now!

i can't get it outta my head

The songs are unforgetable. They are that good, lets leave it at that.


Formed: 1980 in Akron, OH

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s

To most new wave fans, the Waitresses are a fondly remembered part of the '80s one-hit wonder pantheon, even in spite of the fact that that one hit was a cult phenomenon that didn't even reach the Top 40. Yet "I Know What Boys Like" was the sort of daring, instantly memorable pop nugget that epitomized the era -- all cool detachment, subversive wit, and an irresistibly off-kilter dance groove. Lead singer Patty Donahue's dry, cheeky attitude supplied a not inconsiderable sex appeal, but even if she...
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The Best of the Waitresses, The Waitresses
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Customer Ratings