Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 05/1/2011
Support Women Artists Sunday: Dum Dum Girls
Dum Dum Girls are an indie pop band from California currently signed to Sub Pop Records. Their name is a homage to The Vaselines album ‘Dum Dum’ and the Iggy Pop song “Dum Dum Boys”. The group also cites The Ronettes, The Ramones, Siouxsie and the Banshees, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Patti Smith, Spacemen 3, and Mazzy Star amongst their major influences.
The members of the band each have the words “Dum Dum” tattooed on a finger. Front woman Dee Dee has been likened to a “goth rock Susana Hoffs (lead singer of The Bangles)” and the band as the answer to “What if the Bangles and the Cure had mated in 1982?” by Spinner’s Kenneth Partridge.
Along with the bolstering stage name, Dee Dee has utilised that time-honoured …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Christina L on 09/12/2010
Support Women Artist Sunday: Lights
“It’s easy to misconstrue a young girl singer as a total puppet. I am the opposite of that. This is what I do. I am LIGHTS.”
LIGHTS is a Canadian singer-songwriter who creates what she dubs “intergalactic-electro” music. Valerie Poxleitner, who would go on to legally change her name, was born in Ontario to missionary parents. Because international travel was a big part of her childhood, LIGHTS looked for something she could always rely on. Writing her first song at age eleven, an experience that she describes as having “kicked off the biggest thing of my life, she found that consistency in music.
She began her career 2006 as a writer for Sony/ATV Music Publishing, where she composed music for the television series Instant Star. Early 2008 she released a …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Nia T on 06/27/2010
Support Women Artists Sunday: Janelle Monae
Janelle Monae’s creativity knows no bounds. Her debut studio album The ArchAndroid (Suite II and III) is a 70-minute concept album where her alter-ego, Cindi Mayweather becomes a “messiah-esque figure to the android community of Metropolis”. She’s co-written seventeen out of the eighteen songs and they jump unabashedly from pop to jazz to punk. The video for her single Tightrope shows her shimmying in a tuxedo and bow tie doing the tightrope dance and she just looks effortlessly cool. Her album has received critical acclaim but it seems like there are lots of people who have no idea who she is despite the fact that, to me, everything about her screams superstar. Intelligent and imaginative, there’s a Janelle Monae song for everyone to love.
Janelle Monae on …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 06/20/2010
Support Women Artists Sunday: The Prids
The Prids are a band from Portland, Oregon. The quartet’s music can be categorized as a blend of noise pop and post-punk, influenced by Sonic Youth, Built to Spill, The Smiths, Unrest, My Bloody Valentine and Wire. Founded in Saint Joseph, Missouri in 1995 by David Frederickson and Mistina Keith, they continued to develop in Omaha and Lincoln, Nebraska. In Lincoln they befriended Harry Dingman III, guitarist of 1980s cult legendary post-punk band For Against. But the Prids has seen its share of tumult over the years. Its founding members, David Frederickson and Mistina Keith, married one another, then got divorced but continued their musical collaboration à la Fleetwood Mac. In 2008, everyone in the group was injured in a highway wreck that cost them their van and equipment (although …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 06/13/2010
Support Women Artists Sunday: Esperanza Spalding
Hailed as a prodigy on the acoustic double bass within months of first touching the instrument as a 15-year-old, Esperanza Spalding has emerged as a fine jazz bassist, but has also distinguished herself playing blues, funk, hip-hop, pop fusion, and Brazilian and Afro-Cuban styles as well. Born in Portland, OR in 1984, Spalding was not well served by the public school system and soon dropped out of classes to be home schooled. Returning to the public school system at 15, she encountered her first acoustic bass (she had already been playing violin for several years) and immediately took to the instrument. Dropping out of school again, Spalding enrolled in classes at Portland State University as a 16-year-old, and earned her B.A. in just three years and was immediately hired as …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 04/20/2010
The Runaways (Filmed and Real)
Yesterday, I went to see the movie The Runaways. I am simultaneously a huge fan of Dakota Fanning and Joan Jett herself while not such a huge fan of Kristen Stewart, and wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. And I must say, I was pleasantly surprised.
The movie itself is interesting. It’s not exactly plot driven, but rather a documentation of The Runaways – their success, their sex-drugs-rock and roll lifestyle and predominately both of these factors mixed with their very young ages (lead singer Currie was 15 and Jett was 17). Dakota Fanning, as always, gave a fantastic performance and I have to admit, despite my previous statements against Kristen Stewart’s acting and her inability to be a good role model, she was very good in this movie.…
Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 04/10/2010
Support Women Artists Sunday: Plastiscines
The Plastiscines, a garage rock revival group composed entirely of French females, formed in 2004 around teenage friends Katty Besnard (guitar/vocals), Marine Neuilly (guitar), Louise Basilien (bass guitar), and Zazie Tavitian (drums). Taking their name from a line in the Beatles’ classic “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” (“plasticine porters with looking glass ties”), the girls began carving out a swaggering, guitar-heavy sound while citing the Kinks, the White Stripes, the Strokes, Blondie, and the Libertines as influences. The Plastiscines were signed to EMI/Virgin France in 2006, and their major-label debut, LP1, arrived the following summer. For their next album, About Love, the group decamped to Los Angeles to work with producer Butch Walker. The resulting record was released in 2009 and, several months later, received a promotional boost when …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 03/14/2010
Support Women Artists Sunday: Little Boots
Victoria Hesketh (born 4 May 1984), known professionally as Little Boots, is a British electronic musician. She sings, plays synthesizers, the Yamaha tenori-on and the stylophone. She was the former lead singer/synth player in Dead Disco.
Hesketh was born in Thornton-Cleveleys near Blackpool, Lancashire and now lives in London. She attended Rossall School, Blackpool Sixth Form College and then the University of Leeds, gaining a first-class honours degree in Cultural Studies, with a dissertation on “The concept of originality in the music of Jamie Cullum”.
At the age of 18, Hesketh participated in television talent show Pop Idol, being eliminated after three rounds. She went on to form a Jazz trio, toured Europe with a big band, and later formed the dance-pop band Dead Disco, gradually shifting away …