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POP EYE

March 15, 1987|PATRICK GOLDSTEIN

AND NOW HERE'S THE NEWS: How does a record company pay tribute to a band it's dropped from its roster? By releasing a greatest-hits album, of course. Columbia Records, which cut the Boomtown Rats early last year, has given the Bob Geldof-led group the dubious distinction of being one of the few bands to have not one but two hits packages in release. The label has just released a "Boomtown Rats Greatest Hits" collection, which follows a similar compilation, "Ratrospective," which Columbia released in 1983. . . . It comes as no surprise to us that the members of Wang Chung are quite British. But apparently the group's moniker has convinced some concert promoters that the lads are from the Far East. In fact, the band now has a rider in its contract that requires promoters to not serve Chinese food at the group's backstage brunches. According to singer Jack Hues, the request came after promoters continually served won ton soup and egg-rolls at each tour stop. . . . And what about those reports that Bangles members Susanna Hoffs and Vicki Peterson are writing a "trashy rock novel"? Not true--at least, not yet--says the band's management, who said the book reports come from some "half-joking" remarks the bandmates made recently. "Right now, all the group is doing is writing songs for a new album, not a book," said co-manager Mike Gormley. "If the book is ever going to happen, it's still very far away." . . . And ex-Cretones leader Mark Goldenberg is keeping busy. He's written a new song, "Baby Sitting Blues," for the upcoming Chris Columbus film, "Adventures in Baby Sitting," and is also due to produce Aussie hitmakers the Venetians.

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