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Queer Women's Music in the Last 50 Years

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Vanessa Pinto

on 14 April 2015

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Transcript of Queer Women's Music in the Last 50 Years

Independence, Bodily Autonomy, and Sexual Liberation
Lesley Gore
You Don't Own Me (1964)
first feminist anthem
Chicago Women's Liberation Rock Band
Ain't Gonna Marry
Abortion Song
It Won't Take Long (1984)
Joan Jett
Bad Reputation (1980)
Do You Want To Touch? (1982)
Love Between Women/Sex
1920s: The Blues & the Harlem Renaissance
Blues as under-the-radar to mainstream American music
Impact of Harlem Renaissance & being "in the life"
Ma Rainey
Gladys Bentley
Bessie Smith
Billie Holiday
Political and Social Contexts: 1960s to Today
Late 1960s to mid 1980s -- emphasis on 1970s
Second wave of feminism, women's rights, abortion rights & ERA
Nixon: Political conservatism/traditional family
Mid 1980s to 1990s
Third wave feminism -- multiculturalism & postmodernism; younger generation
Sex wars
Reagan, moral & gay panic
2000 to today
Third wave feminism
The Culture of Women's Music
Late 1960s to mid 1980s in the U.S.
A result of the lesbian women's liberation movement
Music for, by, and about women
Political Lesbianism
Need, not choice
Archive of feeling & lesbian history
importance of personal narratives
Queer Women's Music in the Last 50 Years: A Musical Revolution
"Prove It on Me" by Ma Rainey
I went out last night with a crowd of my friends,
It must've been women, 'cause I don't like no men.
Wear my clothes just like a fan
Talk to the gals just like any old man
Themes in Queer Women's Music
Politics, Homophobia, Women's Rights & Empowerment, and Being a/Existing as a Lesbian
Independence, Bodily Autonomy, and Sexual Liberation
Love Between Women and Sex
Violence Against Women
Overall, overt and unapologetic expression of love between women
Cris Williamson
The face of the women's music movement
The Changer and the Changed (1975)

Meg Christian
I Know You Know (1974)
Gwen Avery
Sugar Mama (1977)
Deidre McCalla

Home in My Heart (1981)
Indigo Girls
Closer to Fine (1989)
Tribe 8
Manipulate (1995)
Tegan and Sara
I Know (x3) (2004)
Practice of Inclusion
Second wave vs. third wave
folk vs. punk rock
Women's music as inherently political
Personal as political
Singing/speaking their truths
Olivia Records
music production
Source: LyricWikia
Overt Politics, Homophobia,
Women's Rights & Empowerment,
and Being a/Existing
as a Lesbian
Chicago Women's Liberation Rock Band
First feminist rock band
Alix Dobkin
"unapologetic lesbian"
Every Woman Can Be a Lesbian (1975)
Lesbian Concentrate
Don't Pray for Me - Linda Tillery
Gay and Proud - BWMC
For The Straight Folks Who Don't Mind Gays But Wish They Weren't So Blatant - Pat Parker
Ode to Gym Teacher - Meg Christian
June Millington
Building a Rainbow Bridge (1988)
Tracy Chapman
Fast Car (1988)
Talkin' Bout a Revolution (1988)
Bang Bang Bang (1992)
Maxine Feldman
Angry Atthis (Angry At This) [1969
Indigo Girls
Shame on You (1989)
Team Dresch (Riot grrrl)
Hate the Christian Right (1995)
Tegan and Sara
Hell (2009)
I Was Married (2007)
Laura Jane Grace/Against Me!
Transgender Dysphoria Blues
True Trans Soul Rebel
"Waterfall" by Cris Williamson
"When you open up your life to the living
All things come spilling in on you
And you're flowing like a river
the Changer and the Changed
You've got to spill some over
Spill some over
Spill some over
Over all"
Violence Against Women
Role of violence
Tracy Chapman
Behind the Wall (1988)
Riot grrrl (1990s)
3rd wave feminism
Platform to share experiences
Tribe 8
Frat Pig (1995)
Sex wars/controversy
Conflicts Within the Movement
Women's movement in the 1970s
Mostly white and middle class
Few women of color and even fewer lesbian women of color
Olivia Records
Sweet Honey in the Rock
Erasure/Exclusion of Trans* Women
Role of Music Festivals As Sites of Exclusion
Full transcript