Future of Feminism: Music To Our Ears

Girl Musician

For every little girl who grew up fantasizing of becoming a fairytale princess, there was another who dreamed of being a rock ‘n’ roll queen. Thankfully, there are organizations popping up across the country who help girls explore such musical dreams, the Institute for Musical Arts (IMA) in Western Massachusetts being one of them. Founded […]

Girl in a Coma Rocks to Its Own Beat (And Causes)

Girl in a Coma

The impact of homegrown, San Antonio-based, all-woman band Girl in a Coma stretches far beyond the borders of Texas. Its fourth album Exits and All the Rest, recently named to NPR’s 50 best of 2011, shows the band’s range of talents–from the Morrissey-inspired “Smart” to the rough-edged anthem: Phanie Diaz, Nina Diaz and Jenn Alva bring renewed vitality and political charge […]

10 Great Albums of 2011 That Happen to Have Been Made by Women

Wild Flag

Almost anywhere you looked, 2011 seemed like a banner year for women in music. Remember how exciting it was when the immensely talented Esperanza Spalding pissed off all those Justin Bieber fans and won the Best New Artist Grammy back in February? Remember when Adele went quadruple-platinum and became a pretty badass role model for those […]

Sudanese Women Singers Assert Themselves With “Girls’ Music”

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In one of my favorite songs by Afrobeat progenitor Fela Kuti, he exclaims: If you call am woman African woman no go ‘gree She go say I be Lady o Fela is recounting the age-old resistance by African women to their circumscribed roles in traditional societies. This resistance is an often ignored, but very essential, […]

Feminists, We’re Calling You: Support the New Kathleen Hanna Documentary!

kathleen_hanna_riot_grrrl

Ok, you can find video of Kathleen Hanna singing with her bands all over the web, and she pops up here and there in films, but why hasn’t there actually been a full-length documentary devoted to perhaps the most defining figure of the feminist punk movement? If you’ve been following Kathleen Hanna’s career fervidly over the […]

Loaded Guns, Loaded Metaphors: Rihanna’s “Man Down” Video

Rihanna-Man-Down

Rihanna has a genius for controversy.  As soon as the music video for her latest single, “Man Down,” premiered this week on BET’s 106 & Park, it created an instant backlash from various groups demanding it be banned from television. However, the outcry is not about depictions of S&M fantasies or a same-sex kiss or […]

You Never Heard of Fanny?

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It’s not really possible to talk about women in rock without bringing up my band, Fanny, but people do. Even the newly opened “Women Who Rock: Vision, Passion, Power” exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland barely mentions Fanny–the first all-woman band to record entire albums for a major label […]

Beyonce: Girls Run the World (Cue the Apocalypse!)

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I’ve been an admirer of Beyonce since her Destiny’s Child days and always appreciated that group’s “girl power” anthems (think “Bills, Bills, Bills,” “Independent Women,” or “I’m a Survivor,” ignoring for the moment that they’ve also put out more submissive songs like “Cater 2  U“–which I’ve been guilty of playing on a loop).  I’ve attempted to […]

We Know Women Rock–Tell Us Something New

Rock Guitar

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum has a reputation for being a boys club. Since 1986, when its first annual list of inductees consisted of men only, women have been snubbed three additional times (1992, 2003, 2004). But now that the Cleveland museum has a new exhibit, “Women Who Rock: Vision, Passion, […]

JD Samson Talks about MEN and All-Gendered Bodies

Samson performing with MEN at the Commodore Ballroom

Fresh from the Coachella music festival, where she played songs from her debut album with the trio MEN, Talk About Body, JD Samson is back in New York, and it is her first conversation of the day. Formerly of the fabulous Le Tigre, now part of the electric and eminently danceable MEN (with Michael O’Neill […]