Note that although the Slits were recognised as a predominantly female band, male members also featured in the line-up.
- Ari Up (nee Ariane Daniele Forster) (1962-2010), vocals. The daughter of a wealthy German newspaper proprietor and Nora Forster. The latter was also known in the music industry for dating Jimi Hendrix and Chris Spedding, and would go on to marry Sex Pistols singer John Lydon (aka Johnny Rotten). She died after a protracted battle with cancer.
- Palmolive (nee Paloma Romero) (1962- ), drums. Born in Spain, and left the Slits to join the Raincoats. Peel related that the first time he met her in the Vortex Club, she banged his head against that of another man he had just been talking to.  She was replaced by Budgie, who would achieve greater fame in Siouxsie & The Banshees.
- Viv Albertine (nee Viviane) (1955- ), guitar. Australian-born. Replaced founding member Kate Korus (who went on to the Modettes) in 1977. Close friends of Mick Jones and Joe Strummer of the Clash.
- Tessa Pollitt (1959- ), bass. Replaced original member Suzy Gutsy, who had left after only a few weeks.
The Slits contained former members of bands The Flowers Of Romance (which also included Sid Vicious and Keith Levene) and The Castrators. Since they were followers and friends of the Clash, they supported them on their 1977 White Riot tour. Their live act was notable for its energy and Ari Up's flamboyant show(wo)manship, and it was this which impressed Peel and Walters when they saw them at the above-mentioned Vortex gig on 15 August  Walters said:
"They were the very essence of punk: banging and shouting, unhindered by any discernible musical ability. We thought the BBC should record them for posterity."
The subsequent first session in September 1977 was seen differently by the participants. Viv Albertine said, "It was absolutely raw, more raw than any boys' band. I almost can't believe we had that much energy," whereas engineer Nick Gomm mainly remembered having to retune their guitars several times because the band had no idea how to do so.  Moreover, the other engineer on that date, Bill Aitken, calls it "a classic if you are into shit," says that "it probably put the cause of women in rock back a century or so," and remembers that Peel and Walters (who actually secretly attended the recording) "were pissing themselves laughing at the difficulties that Tony Wilson (producer) and I were having in getting anything coherent out of the circus act thrashing around in the studio."  Peel would go on to praise this session and their second, recorded in March 1978 as among his favourites: " The two sessions the Slits did during the punk era were just magical, I thought, were just terrific." It would appear that their sessions were the band's most enduring legacy, since the LP Cut was not released until 1979, the band's sound had been smoothed out, and Palmolive left due to the group's plans for the sleeve design, which featured the girls semi-naked and covered in mud. Peel was still playing this ten years later, commenting, "It all seemed so innocent back then."  (This album was re-released in 2009 as part of a deluxe edition containing the first two sessions.) Ari's interest in reggae led to the band increasingly experimenting with dub and releasing a collaboration with the Pop Group, 'In The Beginning There Was Rhythm': this song also featured on the third Peel session in 1981, which revealed the sound of a very different group. Shortly after this, the band split up, only to reform in 2006. tour and release a final album, Trapped Animal.
Festive Fifty Entries
- Peelenium 1977: 'Shoplifting' (Peel Session)
All three sessions were released on The Peel Sessions (Strange Fruit, 1992).
- Love & Romance / Vindictive / New Town / Shoplifting
- So Tough / Instant Hit / FM
- Difficult Fun / In The Beginning / Earthbeat/Wedding Song
Other Shows Played(The list below is incomplete and compiled only from the database of this site and Phil's Mighty Database. Please add more information if known.)
- 20 August 1979: Typical Girls (LP – Cut) Island
- 20 August 1979: Newtown (LP – Cut) Island
- 20 August 1979: Spend, Spend, Spend (LP – Cut) Island
- 21 August 1979: Newtown (LP – Cut) Island
- 03 September 1979: Instant Hit (LP - Cut) Island
- 03 September 1979: Ping Pong Affair (LP - Cut) Island
- 03 September 1979: Love And Romance (LP - Cut) Island
- 03 September 1979: Adventures Close To Home (LP - Cut) Island
- 10 September 1979: Spend, Spend, Spend
- 11 September 1979: Love & Romance
- 12 September 1979: Ping Pong Affair
- 17 September 1979: I Heard It Through The Grapevine (single)
- 19 September 1979: Typical Girls (7") Island
- 24 September 1979: Instant Hit (LP – Cut) Island
- 25 September 1979: Spend, Spend, Spend (LP - Cut) Island
- 26 September 1979: I Heard It Through The Grapevine (single – Typical Girls b-side)
- 27 September 1979: New Town (LP – Cut) Island
- 03 October 1979: Ping Pong Affair (LP – Cut) Island
- 04 October 1979: I Heard It Through The Grapevine (single)
- 08 October 1979: Typical Girls
- 09 October 1979: Typical Girls (single) Island
- 10 March 1980: In The Beginning There Was Rhythm (split single with The Pop Group) Rough Trade
- 11 March 1980: In The Beginning There Was Rhythm (split 7” with Pop Group) Y
- 13 March 1980: In The Beginning There Was Rhythm (single) Rough Trade
- 18 March 1980: In The Beginning There Was Rhythm (Single) Rough Trade/Y
- 20 March 1980: In The Beginning There Was Rhythm (12" single) Rough Trade
- 25 March 1980: In The Beginning There Was Rhythm (Single) Rough Trade
- 13 May 1980: In the Beginning There Was Rhythm (Single) Rough Trade
- 10 June 1980: new single to be played (announced 09 June 1980)
- 12 June 1980: Man Next Door (7") Y Y4 / Rough Trade RT 044
- 17 June 1980: Man Next Door (7”) Y / Rough Trade
- 13 October 1980: Animal Space (7") Human HUM 4
- 03 November 1980: Animal Space (7") Human HUM 4
- Other 1980s
- 16 February 1981: I Heard It Through The Grapevine (single)
- 27 April 1981: Animal Crazy (12”) Human
- 29 April 1981: Man Next Door (12") Human YUS 1
- 11 August 1981: Earthbeat (7") CBS CBS A1498
- 17 August 1981: Earthbeat (7” single) CBS
- 15 October 1981: Improperly Dressed (album - Return Of The Giant Slits) CBS CBS 85269
- 30 May 1983: Typical Girls
- 10 June 1987: Walk About (LP - Return Of The Giant Slits) CBS
- 23 May 1989: FM (album - Cut) Island
- Peel 105 (BFBS) (02 June 1989): 'Ping Pong Affair (LP-Cut)' (Island)
- Peel 125 (BFBS) (02 December 1989): 'Instant Hit (12"-Double Peel Sessions)' (Strange Fruit)
- 06 July 1991: I Heard It Through The Grapevine
- 04 March 1997: Typical Girls
- 01 October 1997: Love & Romance (session version) Peel's 30th anniversary special
- 25 November 1997: Shoplifting (EP - Peel Sessions) Strange Fruit
- 07 July 1998: Vindictive (LP - The Peel Sessions)
- 25 November 1999: Shoplifting Peelenium 1977
- 27 June 2001: Love & Romance (CD - Peel Sessions) Strange Fruit
- 20 March 2003: In The Beginning There Was Rhythm (7") (Rough Trade)
- 25 June 2003: Shoplifting (LP - Rough Trade Shops Post Punk 01) (Mute)
- 24 July 2003: Shoplifting (LP - Rough Trade Shops Post Punk 01) (Mute)
- Peeling Back The Years (#4): Love And Romance (session)
- Peel Out In The States (#4): Love And Romance
- Partners In Dispute: Love And Romance
- Punk Fiction: 'Instant Hit'