Injecting F-Words Into Music with Kate Nash

Kate Nash thumb

A proud feminist who views her music as an art form that can change young people’s lives, British singer/songwriter Kate Nash prides herself on redefining sexy. “Real sexiness is about confidence, intelligence, mystery, art and passion,” she recently wrote for The Independent. Nash, who toured with the Lilith Fair this summer, is best-known in the […]

Gaga’s Meaty Protest

Lady Gaga

It didn’t take long for fashion and food columnists alike to churn out their reactions to what may be Lady’s Gaga most infamous fashion choice yet: an outfit made entirely of raw meat. Gaga accepted her Video of the Year award at the recent Video Music Awards dressed head to toe in 50 pounds of […]

Candied Katy Perry Says “Eat Me”


Katy Perry’s California Gurls is, without doubt, the it pop-song of the summer. It’s everything a summer pop song should be–sweet and easy to digest. The accompanying video lays bare, well, both Perry and the candy-like nature of her pop. Directed by Matthew Cullen, the video features Perry in a literal Candyland (called Candyfornia), lying nude on […]

Happy 150th Birthday, Annie Oakley!

Annie Oakley

“She’s obsessed.” That’s what my friends roll their eyes and say after asking me what I’ve been up to lately. The object of my obsession: the great American sharpshooting icon Annie Oakley. I’ve now spent more than two years in research and creative devotion after, by chance, catching a PBS documentary of Oakley’s life. I became engrossed as […]

Women Musicians Tell NPR It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World

Purple Lady

Women in rock have come a long way since Joan Jett was told girls don’t play electric guitar. We have guitars made for women, by women. We have girl rock camps. Surely the music world is a friendlier place in this day and age. Right? Maybe not so much. In March, National Public Radio surveyed […]

Chrissie Hynde at Almost 60: No Pretending

chrissie hynde rules

A 50-something rock n’ roller with a 20-something girlfriend hanging off his arm: You know the scene, it’s as old as Keith Richards. But what if we invert it? How about a 50-something rock n’ roller with a 20-something boyfriend hanging off her arm? Cue Chrissie Hynde. In her first full album without the Pretenders, […]

Is Lilith Fair Feminist? Sarah McLachlan’s Not Sure


After a decade of silence, Sarah McLachlan rallied another troupe to make a nationwide pilgrimage in the name of the goddess Lilith. Not old enough to drive a car the last time Lilith Fair came around, I thought I had missed my opportunity forever back in 1999. Even so, McLachlan’s “Mirrorball” was the soundtrack to my teenage angst and I knew the collaborative Lilith version of the Indigo Girl’s “Closer […]

Laura Nyro Inducted into Songwriters Hall of Fame. Finally.


  The great singer-songwriter Laura Nyro, famed for such songs as “Wedding Bell Blues,””Stoned Soul Picnic,””Eli’s Comin’,””And When I Die,” “Stoney End” and “Save the Country,” was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame last night in New York City. Nyro was an extraordinary singer in her own right, but gained even more attention for the songs she […]

Ode to Aretha, or Reconnecting Women and Singing


When I think of music’s–or specifically singing’s–potential for liberation, one voice immediately springs to mind: the earth-shattering, shiver-inducing, bone-chilling instrument possessed by Aretha Franklin. Aretha’s amazing talent is intimately linked for me with freedom, not only because of her own, very real struggle to express herself as a black woman artist, but also because of […]

Country Star Chely Wright Comes Out


When the story circulated around the Internet  that country music singer-songwriter Chely Wright would announce that she’s gay in People magazine on May 7th, some, like the Washington Post online gossip column “The Reliable Source” and commenters on the SF Gate gossip blog The Daily Dish, viewed this revelation as a possible publicity stunt to […]