GRRL010: sexual assault & feminist organization Af3irm featuring Miah Spring

The first time I met Miah Spring, she came up to me after a show and asked me to be on my podcast. Ah-wahh? Usually finding interviewees is like herding cats! But this is one cat that fell right into my lap purring.

Okay, enough cat analogies. In this episode, you’ll get to hear two songs performed by Miah live at a recent Flim Flam Revue show in San Diego in addition to a song she did in collaboration with Irate Productions. The song, “Sandy Still Speaks,” is about Sandra Bland, who was arrested in 2015 and died a few days later in jail. We’ll also talk about a feminist organization called Af3irm that Miah is involved in, creating music with and without friends, and supporting others when it comes to talking about sexual assault and rape.

I will be issuing a content warning midway through the interview for sexual assault. Please, please, PLEASE feel free to skip past that portion if you need to.

If you liked this episode, rate us on iTunes so more people can find the podcast. And as always, feel free to leave a comment, email me, follow me on Twitter, or like Grrl on Grrl on Facebook.

Listen Here

Download here. [~42 mins, 39MB]

Shownotes

  • [2:00] Miah Spring with Irate Productions – Sandy Still Speaks
  • [6:45] Explanation on Af3irm, self-described as “militant feminist organization”
    • “Sex-negative” feminism (also known as “anti-porn” feminism, although it is not all about pornography)
    • Women’s experience in the global context
    • “Prostitution as the oldest form of oppression and legalized rape.”
    • Note: I will be writing a blog post about the differences between sex-positive and anti-porn feminism soon.
  • [10:00] Is all prostitution legalized rape?
    • Using Amsterdam as an example
    • “It’s not as glamorous as it sounds.”
    • Harm reduction; criminalizing johns and pimps, not the women
  • [11:45] Sex worker co-op or unionization?
  • [12:45] Miah Spring – Lovely (live)
  • [17:30] Different types of musicianship and songwriting
    • Writing lyrics/having a story vs. technically good musicians
  • [19:45] TRIGGER/CONTENT WARNING FOR SEXUAL ASSAULT
    • Writing and performing songs about my (June’s) sexual assault
      • June: “Why am I playing this for people? Do people care? And if they care, do they really want to get that close to me? It’s not something that comes up in a conversation.”
      • Jung quote: “Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.”
    • [23:00] “Why are being such a downer?” – Anxiety over rejection when talking about sexual assault
      • Why aren’t there more voices speaking out about their experiences with sexual assault and rape?
      • Examples of songs referencing these issues, including “Gratitude” by Ani DiFranco
      • “There are women who can tell those stories… I don’t want to make you feel silenced.”
  • [27:00] PODCAST UPDATES!
    • Gloomsday’s new album “Worst Coast Scenario”
    • Upcoming blog posts about feminist issues
    • Call for submissions: I’m looking for bloggers, artists, poets, writers, and other creative peeps to submit to the upcoming Grrl on Grrl collaborative zine. For now, the plan is to have interview transcripts, poetry, how-to’s, and articles targeting feminist women and non-binary folks. Please email me at grrlongrrlpodcast@gmail.com for more details.
  • [28:00] Learning music through collaboration rather than teaching yourself
    • “Oh, that’s how it works!”
    • Working on music in a bubble vs. working with other musicians
    • “Getting better [in music] is not a destination.”
  • [31:00] Do you need classical training to be a good musician or songwriting?
    • Simplicity versus technicality
    • Connections between songwriter and audience
  • [34:00] “The process of writing for me is kind of like a grab bag.”
  • [35:45] Miah Spring – “Anomie” aka “Sweet Preserves” (live)
  • [40:00] Miah Spring’s Soundcloud

Other Notes & Thanks!

Thank you again to Miah Spring for interviewing with me and talking about some tough topics.

Special thanks to: Sullen Ray who graciously allows me to use their song “Get Up Got It” as the Grrl on Grrl podcast intro and outro–listen to and buy their album Blue Minor on Bandcamp and look out for the upcoming new album Outside the Color Wheel; Greg Guiliano for his financial support; and Gary Hankins for making the episode sound good.

And to all my friends who have been so supportive of this project, I love you!

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GRRL009: music accessibility to all ages, queer/trans folks in San Diego and Portland, featuring Emma Grrrl of She/Her/Hers

Aaaaannnnddd I’m back from our holiday hiatus–it was a little longer than I had anticipated, but, you know, LIFE just has to get in the way. But I’m very excited to share with you an interview that had been in the works since July. In fact, I even mentioned Emma in episode #5.

Emma Grrrl is a trans musician who I contacted when she was still living in Portland. To make things more complicated for the interview process, she decided to pack up her car to play shows across the country. Now she’s back in San Diego, ready to settle down… maybe.

In this episode, we talk about her project She/Her/Hers and the importance of making music accessible to all ages (not just the 21+ crowd). Plus you’ll get to hear some great artists from around the country.

Emma encourages folks to friend her on her personal Facebook.

And please, if you liked this episode, rate us on iTunes. And as always, feel free to leave a comment, email me, follow me on Twitter, or like us on Facebook.

Listen Here

Download the episode. [~31 mins, 36MB]

Shownotes

  • [1:30] Writing songs about gender and growing from that
  • [3:00] Pros and cons of touring
  • [5:00] She/Her/Hers – Sweaters in Summer
  • [7:30] Discussion of a Screaming Females interview and creating a community of musicians that help each other
    • Do we have a foundation for this kind of community in San Diego and around the country?
    • Financial concerns
    • From the interview: “But I think an artists and musicians run network would be a powerful thing, where it was more focused on a collaborative industry where you don’t have promoters and booking agents competing against each other, but rather have people who are also musicians running shows, owning clubs, running collective ventures like music stores and record stores.”
  • [12:15] Ludlow – “Nacho Job”
  • [14:30] Why is creating a musical environment for an all ages audience important?
    • Lack of accessibility for minors who want to play music and go on tour
    • “I’m saying a lot of the things that I wish someone had said to me when I was that age.”
  • [18:30] Marissa. – Set in Stone
  • [20:30] Creating a safe space and inclusive scene at the Che Cafe
  • [22:00] Playing an intimate show and creating a conversation with the audience
    • Paying attention and being respectful
  • [23:00] Portland music scene
    • “Portland is really queer.”
    • Can we create a trans and queer space in the San Diego music scene?
  • [25:00] Porchcat – “Bedroom Artist”
    • Writing about “invisible” issues like ableism and mental health
  • [28:30] Add Emma Grrrl on her personal Facebook
  • [30:00] Is your music scene inclusive? How can we, as musicians, create a supportive scene? Shoot me an email or post a comment with your thoughts!

Other Notes & Thanks!

Thank you to all the artists who gave me permission to play their songs and to Emma for taking the time to speak with me in my cramped bedroom “studio.”

Special thanks to: Sullen Ray who graciously allows me to use their song “Get Up Got It” as the Grrl on Grrl podcast intro and outro–listen to and buy their album Blue Minor on Bandcamp and look out for the upcoming new album Outside the Color Wheel; Greg Guiliano for his financial support; and Gary Hankins for making the episode sound good.

And to all my friends who have been so supportive of this project, I love you!

A journal entry from June 26, 2015

I went on a messaging spree for Grrl on Grrl today. Crossing fingers! I traded numbers with Emma of She/Her/Hers who apparently grew up in Escondido [my hometown, kinda]! She’s in Portland now though. Hopefully we can get an interview going.

I love her demo!

Episode #9 will feature Emma Grrrl of She/Her/Hers. Yup, it really has taken us 6 months to get together and interview… but, you know what? good things happen when you wait.