GRRL020: Staying safe, queer, and slutty with Oakland band Spray Tan

For episode 20, all three members of the self-proclaimed super queer, super slutty Oakland band Spray Tan–Andrea, Dorsey, and Lindsay–joined me online to talk about their experiences touring and staying safe as a queer band. We talk a bit about what came first–the punk or the queer?, how they determine when they play one of their more incendiary songs, and a bit of their songwriting process. (Hint: I wish I could be there.)

Trigger warning for use of queer slurs in reclaimed and un-reclaimed contexts.


Download directly from Libsyn [23 minutes; ~27.4MB]

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  • [1:30] Accidentally forming Spray Tan
    • Wanting to form a “squawky” jazz band
    • The term “slut rock” – “Maybe we should just write songs about being sluts.”
    • Thelma and the Sleaze as an influence – “Shreddy rock and roll people”
  • [3:15] Songwriting process, collaborative and trashy
  • [5:20] Spray Tan – Str8 H8
    • Would you leave the room if you heard this song?
    • Connects into the following discussion…
  • [6:30] Feeling safe (or not) playing songs like “Str8 H8”
    • How do you decide to play the song? Red flags
    • Will people become violent in response to songs like that?
  • [9:50] Trap Girl – Dead Men Don’t Rape
  • [11:15] Spray Tan’s worst tour experience
    • Backing out on a radio show in Utah (TW: use of slurs)
    • and accidentally following Built to Spill on tour
  • [14:00] Great experiences on tour: Identifying with and playing with queer communities, big and small
    • Oakland: “Everybody’s in a queer band.” “…isn’t that a good thing though?”
  • [15:00] Sissyfit – BFF
  • [17:00] Olympia, WA
    • “It’s a town of punks.” “Or queer.”
    • Gay New York – the history of the word “punk” from gay history
  • [17:50] Boner City – Die Young
  • [20:30] The story behind their laser-etched pins
    • Laser-etched dildo pins…… coming soon?!?!?!?!?!


Music Video


Thanks as always to all of you for listening, to Gary Hankins, and to Greg Guiliano of Wait Think Fast Productions.

The intro and outro track is “Drive” by Polish, which you can find on their Bandcamp.


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