The activist ladies in Pussy Riot! staged an anti-Putin protest inside the largest Orthodox Cathedral in Moscow, performing their “punk prayer” song entitled, Mother of God, Send Putin Away. Three women have been arrested and face up to seven years in prison on charges of “hooliganism.” If you want to stay up-to-date, there is now a Free Pussy Riot! webpage. They also have a facebook group.
Riot Grrrl Berlin just released their second compilation of awesome music from female / trans artists. There are SEVENTY ONE freaking bands on this mega-comp, including The Happening and The Shondes. You can download the comp for free here: http://riotgrrrlberlin.tumblr.com/compilation02.
This video uses the kind of art that I really dislike. That Ren & Stimpy / Spongebob Squarepants gross-out aesthetic just really doesn’t do it for me. But I do have to say that I have a seriously short attention span, and I actually watched this whole video. Its kind of sexist and problematic, but it held my attention for more than 3 minutes. So A+ for being totally not boring!
On Vimeo, they describe this as an “Animated music video for energetic musician Alexico, tells the story of Alexico and his dog-friend as they travel through the galaxies, discovering new lifeforms and civilizations in planets far, far away.” I especially like when they travel to the vagina planet.
Although I was kind of weirded out and simultaneously obsessed with the video, I forgot to mention that I actually really do like the music. Alexico has a lot of other videos on his site. So check it out.
There have been a lot of really awesome art projects happening lately.
Firstly, our good friend Nicole Georges did a zine for The Dill Pickle Club’s Oregon History Comics Series. Her piece is about the Vanport Floods, which my grandmother actually survived. She was crotchety and not very affectionate, but I think women were pretty constrained back then and it was very hard for her in that place in time. I’m going to read it and think of her with complex feelings. You can buy it online here. I just bought mine today.
The second really cool project is that Portland’s own Aubrey Bernier-Clark is directing chapter 3 in the live-action version of Michelle Tea’s Valencia. Talented filmmakers all over the country are doing different chapters with different actors, and it is just such a cool concept. Aubrey has a Kickstarter going to help fund this — $25 gets you a DVD of the finished product.
AND FINALLY, Homoground has just 12 days left on their Feminist Playing Cards Kickstarter. These are playing cards of feminist musicians, drawn by feminist artists. What an awesome project!! I don’t really play games with cards (I’m more of a Ticket to Ride / D&D kind of girl), but I want.
Edith Piaf by Marissa Paternoster
This is all kinds of awesome.
SOPA (the “Stop Online Piracy Act”) is a proposed bill that would allow copyright holders to kill websites who are hosting “illegal” content — without any kind of real conversation or trial. They are just SHUT DOWN. End of story. Now this troubles me for many reasons — I could talk forever about how I think copyright law needs a COMPLETE overhaul and how the law is essentially used to keep companies like Disney rolling in the money and how it stifles creativity and how it needs to be adapted to the way online society ACTUALLY functions — but one of my main concerns was how this would affect the fate of the music blogger. We routinely post videos and audio on this blog, as do other bloggers who review music. In this kind of independent DIY model, this is how we work — we don’t depend on giant record labels to just swoop in and put us on the radio. That is the OLD model. In the new model, we depend on one another for music suggestions — word of mouth is where it is at. I read so many music blogs (as do my bandmates): Fuck Yeah! Queer Music, Club Fonograma, Stereogum, Homoground, etc. But music blogs don’t just rely on words, but on the actual music as well. This is not print — it is digital. When we share our love of the newest Adele song, we don’t just want to talk about it. We want everyone else to really understand us, to be able to listen to it WITH us. This is how music gets promoted when you don’t have the power and money to get played on the radio — we create our own communities and ways of promotion.
PLAY/START ON SOUNDCLOUD
We live in a participatory culture, where fans are not just consumers, but creators in their own rights, where people create mashups and remixes to engage and share their fandom with others. AND IT IS AWESOME. Nine years after Buffy went off the air, people are STILL creating Willow / Tara fanvids. And now they are telling us that we can’t even post fucking YouTube videos or Soundcloud songs, when our intent is to PROMOTE rad music, not hinder it? Oh HELL NO.
I LOVE talking about copyright. No joke. I took a class in grad school on it, and it turned out to be one the most helpful classes I took, as I am routinely asked copyright questions from students, staff and faculty members at the college where I work (I’m a librarian). We just formed an intellectual property committee, and I am STOKED to work on that shit. So you can imagine my excitement when the shit hit the fan.
Things moved VERY fast: On January 18th, Wikipedia and other sites “blacked out” and shut down in protest of the proposals. On January 19th, the US Department of Justice and FBI shut down the popular file-sharing sharing site, Megaupload, arresting its executives in the process. Very soon after came the news that a group called “Anonymous” had shut down the websites of the DOJ, FBI, MPAA, RIAA, Universal, and other key stakeholders. Then just as quickly, Megaupload was back up online.
I was freaking out I was so excited. Serious direct action! Are we witnessing a seismic shift in copyright and online piracy? I wish so, but probably not yet. But it was really exciting while it lasted, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.
Can someone PLEASE make a play/start video like this?