Saturday, 18 December 2010

Snowy ornithology craft afternoon

Little birds find it hard to forage for nibbles when it's snowing (which it is). They also need food and water every 24 hours to stay alive when temperatures drop (which they have), so if you're lucky enough to own a patch of garden, it's always kind to leave something out for the little feathered cuties. We bought a bucket load of seed/fat balls, but they came naked, without the little fluorescent netting needed to attach them to branches/hooks. Turns out old fishnet tights and a little twine do just as well. Win! 

Friday, 17 December 2010

Everything She Said zine

I curated my first ever zine! Everything She Said is a collection of pieces written by various folk, on their personal connections to female musicians/bands and the music they have made. It was a collaborative project to celebrate Wears The Trousers' 5th birthday and Ladyfest's 10th, and it debuted at London Ladyfest last month. Those who would like to purchase a hard copy to treasure and adore can now do so via the wonders of snail mail and PayPal. Pick a cover (Top - Sue Denim, middle - Daphne Avenue D, bottom - Jessica Grace) and holla at me here with yr pennies: charlotte@wearsthetrousers.com

UK - 60p
Europe - £1
Rest of world - £2

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Assange, sexual decoys, scapegoats, objective press.

Pertinent article on Julian Assange via Kate Harding on the dangers of uninformed reporting by fanboys and how rape as an act and allegation has been reduced/sidelined in the Wikileaks maelstrom.

Monday, 6 December 2010

"Here they fall into her love and never have to hide"

Watching the two alpha males sitting in front of us at the Janelle Monae gig clap wildly and holla proudly for every song until 'Mushrooms & Roses's super homoerotic art theatre and then sit in offended silence for the rest of the show, stiff-backed, glowering with embarrassment and trying to work out how they could have missed *all* those queer-friendly strains in her lyrics = PRICELESS.

Full goose bumps and almost a tear at her cover of Nat King Cole's 'Smile (Though Your Heart Is Breaking)'. Only the smallest snippet to be found so here's an earlier version from 2009:

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Dr Syntax interview

I interviewed Dr Syntax last month for Tour Dates. Always got time for rappers who dig graphic novels. We talked about zombies, incest, 19th Century poetic folly, rural Banbury, drinking session fails with Stig Of The Dump, and his new LP Benny Huge. London launch party is on the 9th.

Check it  aaaaaut.

http://www.tourdates.co.uk/londontourdates/issue-067/2010/11/19/2524-dr-syntax-thinking-big

Friday, 3 December 2010

"The music industry was the record industry"

It turns out that Steve Albini was in the Big Smoke yesterday to give a lecture at the London College of Music AND I ONLY FOUND OUT TODAY. Sigh.

My friend George was there and has kindly posted the audio for all of us who missed it.

http://www.damnably.com/2010/12/03/steve-albini-lecture-on-december-2nd-at-the-london-college-of-music-tvu/

Friday, 26 November 2010

the Lil Kim vs Nicki Minaj situation and rap beef dynamics

'Black Friday' is depressing. There is a vicious, voyeuristic pleasure to be had in the diss track modes of hip hop, but the issues operating underneath these spats - which have ended up being fatal in a number of tragic, well-known cases - are way serious if you value rap as more then just a capitalist-appropriated form of entertainment.
So Nicki took "subliminal shots" at Lil Kim? Nah, she just dipped into the usual hip hop braggadocio posturing, a card any newcomer earning their spurs is bound to pull. She drew on a convention that Kim has both participated in and profited from. Sad times when someone with such a golden CV has to attack a younger artist - one who has consistently paid homage - for some borrowed shine. I  agree wholeheartedly with all the points Minaj makes in this radio interview. Kim would have served herself better by taking an MC Lyte approach: accepting the dues paid with the good grace of a veteran confident in her legacy, and propelling any new projects on love and support from her hip hop sistren, not shunning them and insisting on an unnecessarily aggressive oppositional stance.
I think Kim is a victim of a tradition that traps both male and female rappers - a tradition that hip hop did not create. I believe she is acting on a number of damaging motives rooted in issues of race, gender and class. I think engaging in this as a spectator, and turning it into a form of titillating, ringside fun perpetuates a whole lotta nasty ish.

Pass the baton on ma. There is room for everyone. Unity is the one

Monday, 15 November 2010

"Wise is he who enjoys the show offered by the world"

Pictures from my trip to Lisbon last week.

"Could it think, the heart would stop beating". Fernando Pessoa's typewriter.

Street art. Lady looks a lot like Sierra from Coco Rosie I think. 

Mariza portrait hanging behind the bar in Tasca do Chico, Bairro Alto. Real Fado.

My favourite.

We left the Fado bar with sea songs in our heart and fell promptly into a small rock bar where this beauty was hanging proudly on the wall. 


Mad good art. Wish I could remember the dude's name. Anyone recognize it? Its one of three big building pieces. Think he's Brazilian.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

"How we narrate the interventions of women of colour is crucial"

"Nguyen “brought wreck” in yet another way, by commenting on the tendency of feminist history to characterize women of color feminisms as “interruptions” to a narrative, as brief moments of crisis to be criticized, learned from, and left behind. One of her major points is that “how we narrate the interventions of women of color is crucial to how we remember feminisms and imagine our futures.” I nodded along with my classmate, and could feel the room around me brimming with interest, questions, and an overwhelming sense of urgency: Nguyen’s argument speaks to our sense of history and feminist frameworks."


Kate Wadkins quoting Mimi Nguyen in her review of  The Message is in the Music: Hip Hop Feminism, Riot Grrrl, Latina Music & More. Dayum. Wish I could have attended this.  

Friday, 5 November 2010

Grrrl talk

This Winter = rad coalescing of femalecentric community magic. Helping out at Ladyfest 10 (go get yr tix!), curating Wears The Trousers's first zine (not to be confused with our propa print editions, but cut-n-paste grrreat nonetheless. Links to follow!), working on proposals for 'women in hip hop' book chapter, helping to plan major cool, international  woman-celebrating events for next Spring - it all feels very fun and promising and important, and especially needed in this crazy Coalition era of economic doom and anxiety about the future.

So, here's my critique of Sara Marcus's book on riot grrrl (Be sure to peep the link to Alison Woolfe's piece of mind) and a review of The Dogbones debut for fans of growly grrrl vox and Queen Adreena-styled UK grunge revival.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Fuck you music

Had a chin wag with the sexiest fat man in showbiz aka Stig Of The Dump back in Oct for my monthly Tour Dates feature. Fresh off the press. Ch-check it :

http://www.tourdates.co.uk/londontourdates/issue-066/2010/10/15/2512-stig-of-the-dump-xl-swingersclub

Dude just released his debut LP, Mood Swings. Download the whole mag (s'free like) to peep my review. 'Fuck You' music for the winz.

Saturday, 30 October 2010

I talk to women/I just can't talk for women

Biggup to Shad for one of the most positively femalecentric hip hop tracks I've heard this year (with the exception of this by Lowkey) in 'Keep Shining'. Funny, sweet, on-point regarding women (lack of) in rap, and reverential without being patronising/grandiose. The rest of the LP is pretty rad too.


Saturday, 23 October 2010

I follow love

I dug out my pictures from Ladyfest Machester 2008 and this is my favourite.

I like it that she's whipping her lox so hard her face gets lost, just a flash of smile underneath so she turns into pure force, almost superhuman, just a thicket of wild snake hair. The whole picture tips down to the right, like she lashed the mic lead and swung her body so hard the whole world shook.

Thursday, 21 October 2010

RIP Ari Up

http://www.wearsthetrousers.com/2010/10/rip-ari-up

What sad news to wake up to today. Strange for me that Ari should pass away so close to this year's Ladyfest 10 celebrations since the first and last time I saw her performing was at Ladyfest Manchester back in 2008. In my head, LF culture will forever be soundtracked with Ari's feisty Germaican drawl and The Slit's 70's Ladbroke Grove skank anthems; their whole career and ethos epitomizes Ladyfest for me.


I'd gone down to Leeds by myself to cover the sunday night programme for Wears The Trousers. It was about this time of year, real chilly. I got drunk on cheap beer, took loads of pictures, interviewed some bands, met a bunch of super cool grrrls and stayed in budget hotel near the Zion Arts Centre. Ari headlined with the current, younger Slits line up. She wore super tight, camel-toe inducing silver leggings and kept lifting up her skirt, whipping her dreadlox around and grinding at the audience, shouting "Ladyfest! We here to worship di ladydeez! Worship di punanni!". She was lewd and wicked and brilliant.

Monday, 18 October 2010

Antoine Dodson and how I don't get the joke.

Antoine Dodson was quoted on camera by local reporters back in July after confronting a potential rapist who broke into the home he shared with his sister in Lincoln Park projects. The rapist had attempted to assault his sister, but Dodson managed to scare the attacker away.



His on-camera response went viral, became the stuff of endless ridicule, and eventually earned Dodson infamy and wealth after a remix of his comments by The Gregory Brothers sold over 100,000 copies on iTunes. Dodson is openly homosexual and has recently told the press that he himself has been a victim of rape in the past. He performed ' The Bed Intruder' song at the BET Awards last week.



Picking this episode apart is a headfuck. Watching Dodson parody himself to applause that borders on mockery is a headfuck. The fact that he's poor, black and camp seems to be the core punchline. Maybe it's because he's all those things and daring to challenge the preserve of man-as-defender-of-women-and-hearth heteros. A crime, in which his home was violated and his sister victimized, has turned an impoverished ghetto resident into a celebrity and spurned a lucrative comedy-pop song. Is Dodson astute for using invasive, derogatory media as a tool for economic leverage? The money from 'The Bed Intruder' song, merchandise, and a donation fund that he set up himself have made it possible for his family to move to a 'safer' neighbourhood, but Dodson remains an uncomfortable media entity, part hero part clown. I just can't see where the funny is at.

Anti-immigrant rhetoric dropping trousers on the podium

Monday, 4 October 2010

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Lowkey - 'Terrorist?'

Lowkey is relentless. So much respect for this dude. The first time I saw him live he joined Drew McConnell from Babyshambles and I remember wishing Drew would just exit the stage and let Lowkey finish off the set (I wasn't there to see Mr McConnell in the first place, he was the support act). His speech at the Hip Hop History panel for the Octavia Foundation a few weeks back was mad inspiring and if his ridiculous Facebook stats are indicative of his potential for visibility and success, he'll get the bigger platform he deserves.

Friday, 17 September 2010

"The Lesbian Russ Meyer"


I'm on a diet of Vit C and Potter's cough remedy but I fully intend to make it down to The Horse Hospital this Saturday to attend this: http://www.thehorsehospital.com/now/the-gang-girl-film-trilogy/


BBC World Have Your Say @ Southbank

Wears The Trousers HQ were invited down to take part in the interactive radio show World Have Your Say yesterday. The debate was geared around the failing Millennium Development Goals and whether women should take responsibility for ongoing inequality. It was held at Southbank and curated by Jude Kelly OBE, who was all kinds of inspiring. I didn't actually get any mic time - partly out of shyness and partly because the peeps of London Feminist Network were saying most of what I was thinking - but you should totes check it out anyway: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p009nmcx

Shere Hite was there. I had no idea who she was until today, but I liked her white gloves and the way she said what she thought and felt on air with no apology. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shere_Hite

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Who controls the sound?


Last week a friend of mine told me that she'd started a part time course on sound engineering. She's in a band and she's promoted gigs, so it shouldn't have been such a surprise, but it was. I was a weird blur of happy-proud confusion. I pondered on that initial sense of "huh?"  a little later and realized I'd been so dazzled because it's such a boy-dominated profession and I'd never met a girl who said this was something she was interested in learning/doing.

Sadly, I was right in guessing that she's the only girl on the course.

I like it that she'd sidestepped any sense of permission in training for a role that's become (always has been?) so gender specific. I hear "sound guy" or "sound man" way more then I ever hear the gender neutral version of  "sound person".  I've been attending gigs, putting on gigs and promoting gigs for donkey years, and in all that time I've met just two female sound engineers. It's possible that I've forgotten some in a haze of beer fogged amnesia, but "hengineers" (eww) are so scarce in London that they tend to be memorable when you do meet/spot one; they have rare species status.

What has become apparent throughout my extensive emails/phone convos/face-to-face chats with lady artists is that it's not just that big ole rekkid label boss/macho magazine CEO/boys club networkers that keep women back - it's the fucking sound guy too. I've been interviewing women in music for over three years, and nearly every female artist I've talked to (yup, even the few who claim they've never been subject to second rate treatment) has a "super-patronizing sound man" story - that self-important dude who has assumed that these lil gals don't know how to tune their own guitar, or rolls his eyes when they dare to ask for a little more bass in the monitor.

I told my trainee engineer friend about this and she paled in disgust. She said that one of the first things her (male) tutor had impressed on the class was how instrumental the sound peeps' power is in the whole live show dynamic, that it's the sound engineer's job to support the artist in both a technical and emotional capacity and that musicians should be stepping out in front of their audience with confidence, knowing that they have a friendly, co-operative engineer backing them all the way through their set.

It's a shame then that female artists have to wade through so much ingrained opposition just to pick up a mic/guitar/etc and be heard in the first place, only to have some failed muso beat them down before they've even made it through the sound check.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Domestic Fight Club - September 13th

"During an average week in the UK 2 women are killed by abusive partners and 9 more will kill themselves."

Wanna do something about it? Take it to the streets like Tyler Durden? Then peep the link: http://domesticfightclub.wordpress.com/

Pretty rad that they're appropriating a film/book that many critics believe to be an implicit attack on the 'feminisation' of the modern man.

Monday, 6 September 2010

Update on the Wears The Trousers/Ladyfest zine

In case you missed this, I'm curating a special one-off zine as Wears The Trouser's celebrates it's 5th bday this year and Ladyfest is throwing its 10th bday bash in November. With our mutual  DIY ethos and love for women in music, we thought a collaborative zine was in order. And YOU get to be a part of it! So scoot over to your CD/cassette/vinyl racks/ticket stub collections, and pick a song, album, female artist, female fronted band or even a live show that has had a major impact on you, and relive it in up to 400 words. And don't worry about writing skills, you don't have to be a music journalist to share yr story!

Everyone remembers the first time they heard one of PJ Harvey’s dark little ditties, or shrieked along to a Babes In Toyland number. Maybe you had your first mosh to L7’s ‘Shove’; maybe you heard Bikini Kill on a mixtape and it changed your life; maybe Kim Deal or Brody Dalle inspired you to pick up a guitar; maybe Tori Amos shocked awake the poet in you; maybe Ani DiFranco, Donna Dresch or Peaches helped you come out; and maybe Patti Smith or Kim Gordon taught you that being different can be way more fulfilling than fitting in. Maybe Mia Zapata helped you snarl a way out of the blues, or maybe you've got a poignant connection with a crackly Bessy Smith record.

This is about reconnecting people with the powerful experiences they've had through music, celebrating the impact music can have, and inspiring the folk who'll be reading them once they're all stapled together in a free, zine shaped bundle, so don't be afraid to get personal and bare yr bones. We're also welcoming photographic submissions, handwritten text and hand drawn illustrations. These should be A6 postcard size, and the font/handwriting on written pieces should as be a bold as possible! We've had some super duper submissions so far from some really rad people so why not jump on board with yr own tuppence worth?
Holla at me: charlotte@wearsthetrousers.com 
 Deadline is Ocotber 15th and here are some pretty wicked ladies to get you inspired: Skin, Mia Zapata, Ari Up, Beth Ditto, Mary J Blige, Babes In Toyland, Nina Simone, The Shaggs, Edith Piaf, Kat Bjelland, Frankie Rose, MC Lyte, Corin Tucker, Tracey Chapman, Diamanda Galas, PJ Harvey, Dessa, Ms Dynamite, Huggy Bear, Courtney Love, Joan Jett, SWV, Lauryn Hill, Gwen Steffani, Justine Frischman, Queen Latifah, Kathleen Hannah, Missy Elliot, Tracey O, Hope Sandoval, The Runaways, Hole, Tracey Chapman, Tairrie B, Siouxsie Sioux, Viv Albertine, Grace Jones, Donna Dresch, Salt & Pepa, Peaches, Amanda Palmer, Yo Majesty!, Patti Smith, Judy Garland, Sarah Vaughan, The Ronnettes, Brody Dalle.....

Friday, 3 September 2010

Thursday, 2 September 2010

"And this also," said Marlow suddenly, "has been one of the dark places of the earth."

So whilst Blair is hawking his tome of self-congratulation and nauseating coitus overshare, US and UK media are painting a golden hue around the supposed US pull out of military invasion in Iraq. I say supposed because according to New Statesmen:

"They have not left. At least 50,000 troops will continue to operate from 94 bases. American air assaults are unchanged, as are special forces' assassinations. The number of "military contractors" is 100,000 and rising. Most Iraqi oil is now under direct foreign control"
Rest of the need-to-read article here.

Al Lover - 'Baby Please'

I'd like this joint even without the video. But yeah. Ain't complaining.



Dude says on his blog: "I threw this together myself today thanks to piracy, and technology spliced up footage from a Russ Meyers flick, early 60's R&B sample, and conga drum".
LP Creative Controlled to follow shortly. 

Kick Ass 2

Mark Millar has announced that a sequel is happening. Sweeeeet.

Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Trans rights

"Ireland is not the only country where transgender persons have faced obstacles in obtaining legal recognition of their preferred gender. Some Council of Europe member states still have no provision at all for official recognition, leaving transgender people in a legal limbo. Most member states still use medical classifications which impose the diagnosis of mental disorder on transgender persons.

Even more common are provisions which demand impossible choices, such as the “forced divorce” and the “forced sterilisation” requirements. This means that only unmarried or divorced transgender persons who have undergone surgery and become irreversibly infertile have the right to change their entry in the birth register. In reality, this means that the state prescribes medical treatment for legal purposes, a requirement which clearly runs against the principles of human rights and human dignity.

All countries need to develop expeditious and transparent procedures for changing the name and gender of a transgender person on official documents, in accordance with the case-law of the European Court of Human Rights".

Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe, Thomas Hammarberg, speaking up for trans rights.

http://www.thefword.org.uk/blog/2010/08/forced_divorce

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Oh hai Megan


Frothing at the mouth in anticipation for this one. I have a feeling that Malkovitch is ill cast, a hunch that the trailer seems to confirm, but Brolin was made to play Hex, and really, Megan + corsets, garters, bad attitude  and gunz could make the most cardboard flick a plum good'un. Peow! Peow!

Friday, 27 August 2010

Fat free TV and and anti-curves media

Jeez. So whilst dyke vamp Pam is starving herself to fit into her True Blood wardrobe, my hot ginger goddess Christina Hendricks is getting her wicked curves Photoshopped into oblivion by London Fog. I was gonna post about Pam last week but  I was too busy gorging on lemon drizzle cake to get to my keyboard.

I'll be thinking about both of these women every time I tuck into a butter cream loaded cupcake. Because nothing tastes as good as not starving yourself feels. (Shouts out to Cupcake Parlour for the pic. NOMZ!)

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Free Redlight mix

Cherry bakewells, a large cuppa, and this free Redlight mix. Today is big.

Check the video for his Ms Dynamite collab here and then cop yr own copy of aforementioned mix here. Track list, which includes numbers from the rather wicked Maluca and Mz Bratt, belowww.


1. Donaeo - I'm Fly - Redlight Special
2. Redlight - Kid Soldier
3. Bingoplayers - Get Up - Diplo Remix (gianni marino mix) - Edit
4. Redlight - Source 16
5. Wiley - Electric Bogaloo (Roller Express Remix) - Edit
6. Loca feat. Diplo & Maluca
7. Katy B - Katy On A Mission
8. Redlight - Stupid
9. Mz Bratt - Selector (redlight Special)
10. Zinc - Nexx
11. Breakage Ft Newham Generals - Hard (redlight Special)
12. Buruka Som Sistema - Bruk Out
13. Seiji - Bass Lips
14. Magnetic Man - Air - Redlight Remix (special Mix)

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Andreya Triana - Lost Where I Belong

Ridiculously stunning album from UK soul talent Andreya Triana. Wears The Trousers review here. Also catch the Voice On The Verge interview we did with her back in June here. She is SMOKIN'.

RIP Aaliyah

I'm gonna watch Queen Of The Damned tonight, as awful as it is, because if there's one day of the year you can watch this film and not feel guilty, its today.

Wish I could organise a swap with Death and give someone totally unnecessary to the Gods/Goddesses of the afterlife (oh, I don't know, David Cameron maybe?) and get babygirl back fully restored in return. Sux.

Monday, 23 August 2010

Lisa Fancher interview

I run a pretty neat column at Wears The Trousers on women in the music industry, the ladies you won't necessarily find on stage. WTT is all about the music, and this means giving props to DJs, radio hosts, journalists, music historians, festival organisers, CEOs, authors, and all the other super roles that weave this many-layered industry together.

This month I chatted to Lisa Fancher, the all-round punk legend behind LA label Frontier Records, which celebrates a mammoth three decades in the business this year. With Frontier hitting 30, Ladyfest hitting 10, and Wears The Trousers marking out our cake with a mighty 5 candles, this years is one, big, birthday bonanza.

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Trey Songz ft Nicki Minaj - 'Bottoms Up'

There's really no point listening to this song until the 2.44 mark, when Minaj proceeds to make the rest of the track look like dry cracker to her thick slab o full fat cheese. You could put Nicki on the dustiest, driest rhythms and she'd still make it calorie-loaded appetizing.

Same problem on her mix tapes; the only thing wrong with them is all the snorefest ppl you gotta tolerate cluttering up her own verses. Other singers/rappers = the vegetables yr mum makes you eat before you can have pudding.

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Wears The Trouser / Ladyfest 10 zine supreme!

So whilst we're waiting out the 57 years for the gender pay divide to maybe close, girls get busy with independent cultural production! 2010 marks the 10th anniversary of  Ladyfest the international, volunteer-run grrl-franchise that puts women firmly centre stage under a constantly evolving festival banner. To celebrate both this double-digit coming of age and Wears The Trousers own 5th birthday milestone, we think a reader-generated zine is in order.

Though our next official print edition is definitely sailing on the horizon, we’re getting our cut-’n'-paste on in the interim for this one-off project. As a non-profit, independent magazine Wears The Trousers has been blazing our own trail for five years now, and we’d like to extend that DIY spirit to our readers for this super-special zine project. What we’re looking for is anything from 50–200 words about your favourite female-centric band, singer, song or album and why they mean so much to you. Who makes yr heart thump? What were you listening to when you decided to come out to your parent? Which album brings back the rush of first love? Whose poster did you gaze up at during yr teen years? Maybe a particular artist inspired you to pick up your own guitar or microphone, maybe you've got a special anthem that never fails to set you on the right path when it blasts out yr stereo.

Feel free to be as personal as you like!

Whatever your anecdote or story (photographic submissions are also welcome) we wanna hear about it.  We’ll collate everything into a one-off, free-for-all zine that will be distributed at this year’s Ladyfest Ten events in London in November. We’ll also make it available to download. 

Deadline is October 15, so prime yr biro! Email the results to charlotte@wearsthetrousers.com.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Feature shizzle - Sage Francis and Spin Doctor.

Feast yr eyes on these yo!My features for this month's Tour Dates edition include chin wags with both US rapper Sage Francis, and UK DJ/promoter extraordinaire, Spin Doctor.

Chances are you've danced yourself silly at one of Spin Doctor's nights. Get to know the man behind the decks right herrr:


 If you're after intelligent, opinionated rhetoric and songs about outlaws, Sage Francis is yr man.

You are, of course, encouraged to read both. Cos why limit yrself right?

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Evidence - 'To Be Continued'

Hot diggity dayum. Evidence from Dilated Peoples is set to release a solo LP Cats & Dogs real soon via Rhymesayers. 'To Be Continued' (which you can purchase right now via iTunes) precedes it.

Not gonna lie, this video made me feel rillly sick. Listen without the visuals if yr not into roller coasters and vomit.

Monday, 16 August 2010

Its so clear and I know just what I want to do

Wears The Trousers HQ - myself and editor Alan Pedder - were interviewed a little while back for Issue 2 of The Worlds A Mess And Yr My Only Cure, a rather rad zine by Em Ledger. Its available here and you should totes order a copy. DIY fo life!

Friday, 13 August 2010

Where the weirdos are

Weirdos on the bus to work this morning included a woman with a gigantic, planet-sized peroxide bouffant mullet - like, super huge; she could have had a small flock of starlings up in there - and a crazed Christian clutching rosary beads and muttering feverishly like the Devil himself was sitting next to her. (Maybe she sensed my innate queerness and was acting accordingly. I did have to hold back from clawing my fingers and hissing at her)


Of course, what none of them realized was that I could out-weirdo them all. So I just sat there, smiling serenely like a totally normal human bean, and no one there could prove otherwise.


Morticia: "And what are you meant to be dressed as darling?"

Wednesday: "I'm a homicidal maniac. They look just like everyone else."

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Save Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani

Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, who is at risk of execution in Iran, has appeared on television “confessing” complicity in the murder of her husband.  The Guardian reports:

Speaking shakily in her native Azeri language, which could be heard through a voiceover, Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani told an interviewer that she was an accomplice to the murder of her husband and that she had an extramarital relationship with her husband’s cousin. Her lawyer told the Guardian last night that his client, a 43-year-old mother of two, was tortured for two days before the interview was recorded in Tabriz prison, where she has been held for the past four years.

“She was severely beaten up and tortured until she accepted to appear in front of camera. Her 22-year-old son, Sajad and her 17-year-old daughter Saeedeh are completely traumatised by watching this programme,” said Houtan Kian.

He added that there were now fears that the Iranian authorities would act quickly to carry out the death sentence, which was reportedly commuted to hanging after an international outcry last month. The sentence was initially for “having an illicit relationship outside marriage” but some Iranian officials have claimed she was also found guilty of murdering her husband and should still face death by stoning.


Info, resources and petition here: http://freesakineh.org/

(Heads up to the F Word)

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Katy Perry got TOLD.

Faux lesbian gimmicks, getting all holier-then-thou and righteous on Gaga (bitch, please) for sexing up religious imagery with queerness, blatant transphobia - there is no end to Katy Perry's shtupidness. I wonder if she makes Russell Brand recite prayer before he porks her.


KrisWombat is a legend.

Monday, 9 August 2010

Soundgarden - 'Black Rain'

Aww mayn. New Soundgraden track leaked http://stereogum.com/465221/soundgarden-black-rain/mp3s/

I heart Cornell/Soundgarden, but got dayum, I'll never get over the soul cringes the below gave me. Just putting it on my blog feels like I need to reach for the Vanish stain remover.

Get your learn on

I didn't have a big enough word count to cover it in the final draft of my recent interview with the man, but Sage Francis is one of the heads behind this rather rad site http://www.knowmore.org/ 

"We are a grassroots, web-based community dedicated to chronicling and resisting corporate attacks on democracy, worker's and human rights, fair trade, business ethics and the environment. Our shared goal of a more informed and conscious consumer is being accomplished via this website: a vast database of easily searchable corporate and political info designed to aid responsible citizens, progressive thinkers and activists. We are not affiliated with any political party, candidate, or PAC in any way. Our primary objective is to provide an independent, objective source of information to our readers about some of the most crucial, contested topics of our time". 

You can search for brands and get hard info on how these corporations exploit both environment and workforce.  How did those kicks your wearing get made? Who suffered slave labour conditions to make those toys you throw away after a Happy Meal?

Bookmark it nuh? 

Friday, 6 August 2010

Row row row yr boat


Queen Latifah, snapped today on the Alicia Keys/Swizz Beats yacht in France with her (girlfriend)personal assitant/trainer/etc. So does this mean she is officially out as on the team now?

And just because its relevant:

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Suheir Hammad

"Sky where once was steel, smoke where once was flesh"

When the gods get on to perform

I'm awaiting proud bruises today after holding my own down at the front of Brixton Academy last night for most of Wu's set. Belted all the lyrics, threw up W s like a good 'un and was generally happy vibing, despite one or two dick head gig-goers. Hold tight the girl with the 'fro who knew about solidarity, and all the other peeps that weren't there to bask in the on-stage greatness and swagger that they wish they had.

Gza, if your reading this, lets be best friends yeah? We can play chess and talk about how rubbish Curtis is.

Monday, 2 August 2010

This is happening

Kapow! Today Wears The Trousers launched an alternative Mercury Prize list today - the Venus/No-Penis
Music Prize.  Props to some of my personal faves Wet Dog, Ikonika, Invasion and Peggy Sue.
Click through and exert your influence, grrrrrrrl style ♥

http://www.wearsthetrousers.com/2010/08/introducing-the-venusno-penis-music-prize/

 

YES

Friday, 30 July 2010

What a picture doesnt say

I posted this Rolling Stone cover pic of Gaga a few weeks back. I wouldn't say I was a "fan" of her in that very definite sense of the word, but I liked the image's ferocity and the way it made 'Bikini Girls with Machine Guns' by The Cramps start up in my head like a charm.



I found out today that the shot was taken by major industry snapper Terry Richardson. This article, by Kate Harding, made me reassess the image in a number of ways. As with most products in the Western world, there was a journey behind the item way before it reached our eyes/ears/mouth/hands/body. I wonder whether Mr Richardson made Gaga feel the way he made Rie Rasmussen or Jennifer Peck feel? I wonder what she would have said if he'd asked her to drink tea made from her own used tampon, or give him a hand job during the shoot?

Anne Rice comes out. Not in that way.

The infamous Vampire-lit author joined the Christian church some years back, but announced this week that she's officially vacated.

"For those who care, and I understand if you don't: Today I quit being a Christian. I'm out. I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being "Christian" or to being part of Christianity. It's simply impossible for me to 'belong' to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group. For ten …years, I've tried. I've failed. I'm an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else. As I said below, I quit being a Christian. I'm out. In the name of Christ, I refuse to be anti-gay. I refuse to be anti-feminist. I refuse to be anti-artificial birth control. I refuse to be anti-Democrat. I refuse to be anti-secular humanism. I refuse to be anti-science. I refuse to be anti-life. In the name of …Christ, I quit Christianity and being Christian. Amen."

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Uncanny.

In yr face same-sex adoption haterz

This study has added some serious weight to the existing evidence that supports gay couples as healthy adoptive parents equal to their hetero counterparts. It's a pretty small study population, but then the fact that gay adoption is still illegal in (far too many) places means this was bound to be the case.

Thanks to Salon for the heads up.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Best Coast - Crazy For You

"If you’re after some popsicle-sweet, beach-blanket anthems, you couldn’t do better than this"

Here kitty kitty to check out my review of Best Coast's Crazy For You:

Hip Hop 4 Revolution

Neat and informative article by film maker/activist Iara Lee on the power of HH as a medium for revolution. Good reading for anyone who thinks hip hop is all about gunz n hoes, and also worth a quick glance for brief introductions to Middle East MCs that may not have blipped on yr radars yet. Lee's upcoming documentary Cultures Of Resistance sounds like one to watch out for too.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/iara-lee/hip-hop-as-global-resista_b_660608.html?ref=twitter

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Jon-absolute legend-Snow VS Zac Goldsmith

Watch Zac Goldsmith bitch, squirm and long out his answers to avoid explaining why he rinsed funds via loophole shiz. What a dickhead.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Going bersurqa

(Amazing puns aside), what the F.

French MPs have voted 335 - 1 to ban the burqa. Women who are "caught" wearing them could be fined 150 euros whilst men forcing women to wear them could be jailed. Closer to home, the Tory party have obviously been inspired: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/10612670

My own thoughts on the burqa as a feminist issue are equivocal, but I think we should be talking about the fact that mostly white, mostly upper class, mostly heterosexual, mostly privileged men are aggressively attempting to use the law to dictate what Muslim women can or cannot wear.

I think we should be talking about the anti-Muslim agenda  inherent in this legislation, and the wider implications this has for everyone, everywhere. I don't think this is about safety (though there is a case for it), and the idea of  privileged Western man "liberating" veiled Muslim women by using state control to demonise their religion is so farcical it makes me wanna vom.

This is a big deal, whether your a Muslim, a female, both, or neither.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Paper Tiger - Made Like Us

Behind those white rimmed shades is a man who makes fine, fine music. This is when he's not crafting up fine, fine art for his Doomtree crew members or taking care of that ole deck/mixer/deck biz.

On 27.07, Paper Tiger releases his LP Made Like Us. Ive heard it, it rocks, and you need it in your life. Not least because it features the lady behind one of this year's best releases (Dessa, A Badly Broken Code).

Pre-order right herrrrr -
http://www.doomtree.net/papertiger/
And for a taster, checkout 'The Bully Plank' here:
http://www.myspace.com/doomtree
It makes sense.

Monday, 12 July 2010

Skream - 'Listening To The Records On My Wall'

Adam and Eve style ting, 'cept Eve is born from a sun-like ball that Adam's gives birth to rather then his  spare rib. Purdy.


Friday, 9 July 2010

Oh. And this.

Cutting funding to protect rape victims whilst changing legislation to protect potential rapists and discourage other victims from coming forward huh? Anyone would think this government is actively trying to make it easier to rape people.

Rape victims lose out so Croydon's Tory councillor Mike Fisher can give himself a pay rise

Apparently, Mike Fisher thinks it's ok to cut funding for victims at the Croydon Rape Crisis centre so that he can give himself and his Tory colleagues a big ole pay rise.

I emailed Mr Fisher earlier today (mike.fisher@croydon.gov.uk) and asked him to explain his waste-man actions. Feel free to do the same. I'll update if/when I get a reply.

( via http://www.thefword.org.uk/blog/2010/07/croydon_council )

Croydon’s Rape and Sexual Abuse Support Centre is having its funding cut by £27,000 a year - while the top Tories in the council are giving themselves pay rises.
This is the currently the only rape crisis centre in London one of only two rape crisis centres in London (the new Ealing centre is already open), and it may have to close its waiting list if the funding cut goes ahead. Via gorilerof3b, RASASC is asking people to write direct to council leader Mike Fisher:
We need your help - urgently. A decision was made to cut the Corporate Funding Budget of Croydon Council two weeks ago and there was pressure on the Council Lead, Mike Fisher, to do some cost saving, pretty quick. Fisher chose the easiest option as the corporate funding applications were due for ratification. So instead of cutting jobs, pensions, council staff or even not giving the third sector an inflationary rise across the board - he gave himself a rise in pay and slashed one department’s budget of £1 million!
The cuts for RASASC of £27,000 per year is the equivalent of supporting 2,700 survivors of sexual violence on our helpline, seeing 23 survivors face to face for one year specialist counselling or supporting 108 survivors through our Advocacy department from reporting their rape to the end of their trial. We need your help to save our services! Please email mike.fisher@croydon.gov.uk to voice your disgust at these cuts and speak for the thousands of London women this will affect. It will only take 5 minutes of your time but may stop the only Rape Crisis Centre in London from having to close our waiting list.


More girls with guns

Oh hai Michelle.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

"Trying to do what is right - in tights"

Shock G's open letter to Fox News and Murdoch's plans for BSkyB takeover

Seems its open letter season for US rappers right now. Immortal Technique said his piece for Haiti last week, this week sees Shock G calling out Fox News for their inherent racism and right wing politics. Pretty pertinent for us Brits since Murdoch is pushing for a 100% ownership takeover of  BSkyB right now (petition here http://www.38degrees.org.uk/murdoch)

Shock G's letter to Fox:

Racism is a form of mental illness. Imagine a mother cat refusing to nurse her black, brown, or orange kittens, and only nursing the white ones. Crazy right? Well mother America sometimes suffers from this same illness and FOX TV helps it spread. Even a common housecat is smart enuff to know that the entire litter are all equally her babies.
Now imagine if people born on odd numbered days felt they deserved more than those born on even ones. Crazy right? We all know we haven’t actively earned our skin color anymore than we actively chose our birthdate; any person seeking extra credit for this non-achievement is actually insane, and lives in an eschewed reality. Help us fight FOX! The letter below takes only 90 seconds to read, and the e-petition takes 2 mins tops to sign. Thanx!!
Shock-G

Dear friends & Family,

On Wednesday, Rand Paul, the GOP’s US Senate candidate for Kentucky repeated his claim that a central piece of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was wrong, and that businesses should be free to discriminate against whomever they please.1 Paul and his supporters don’t seem to care that without federal intervention, Black people might still be second-class citizens in most aspects of American life: where we eat, where we work, even where we live.
Then, on Thursday, FOX contributor and business anchor John Stossel went even further than Paul and called for the section of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 that applies to business to be repealed.2 And he’s refused to back down.
It’s time to hold FOX accountable:
http://www.colorofchange.org/stossel/?id=1966-705465
While Rand Paul may have started this outrage, he can be taken care of at the ballot box — FOX News can’t.
Stossel’s position is an affront to Black America and everyone in this country who believes in racial progress. It’s one thing to be a candidate with backwards views. It’s another to be employed by a supposed news network and to use that platform to push hateful ideas that our nation repudiated decades ago.
It’s time that FOX drop Stossel. It’s why I’ve joined ColorOfChange.org in demanding Fox do so immediately. If after hearing from thousands of people like you and I, FOX refuses to act, it will make clear that FOX stands with Stossel and his values, and ColorOfChange has pledged to go directly after the network with a major public campaign.
Can you take a moment to add your voice to the call to fire Stossel? After you do, please ask your friends and family to do the same:
http://www.colorofchange.org/stossel/?id=1966-705465
FOX has a history of providing a platform for bigoted views and race-baiting. Most recently more than 300,000 people helped us hold FOX accountable by stripping Glenn Beck of more than 100 of his advertisers, after Beck called President Obama a “racist” with a “deep-seated hatred for white people.”3
But Stossel has arguably gone beyond Beck, echoing segregationist arguments from the Jim Crow era:
“It’s time now to repeal that part of the law because private businesses ought to get to discriminate. And I won’t ever go to a place that’s racist and I will tell everybody else not to and I’ll speak against them. But it should be their right to be racist.”
Stossel went on to argue something that history has disproved time and again — that private business will do the right thing, without being compelled by laws, because no one would patronize a business that discriminates. It’s a blind belief in market fundamentalism that just isn’t in sync with reality. In the ’60s, white-owned businesses that allowed Blacks as customers lost business. Market forces actually perpetuated discrimination; they didn’t combat it. Simply put: segregation would still be active in parts of this country if government hadn’t stepped in.
And recent history has shown that the public accommodations section of the Civil Rights Act is still needed. In 1994, it was used to hold Denny’s Restaurants accountable, after the chain repeatedly refused to seat Black customers.4 Just last year, it was used to go after a Philadelphia pool that prevented Black children from swimming there.5
It’s time for Fox News to make a choice. Are they willing to continue to give a platform to racially-divisive rhetoric and revive dangerously outdated perspectives? Or will they move with the rest of the nation into into the 21st century? Please join me in calling on Fox News to fire John Stossel. And once you do, please ask your friends and family to do the same:
http://www.colorofchange.org/stossel/?id=1966-705465
Thank you.



(Source: HHC Digital )

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Monday, 5 July 2010

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Future Sex panel @ the BFI 02.06.10

I had my mind blown like a neon coiffure sprayed with stardust-infused Elnett at the BFI's Future Sex panel this week. Thoughts on gender, queerness, science, cinema, sex, sci fi and possibilities for the future all rolled into one brain-expanding presentation led by some seriously intelligent, wonderfully engaging thinkers/writers/creators.

Dr Patricia MacCormack's academic theories on cinesexuality and gender were intriguing, Sophie Mayer and Katy Price both read awesome sci-fi-ish pieces, and we got to see 'The Making Of Dandy Dust', a behind the scenes doc on an obscure 80's film about a "split personality cyborg of fluid gender who zooms through time to collect h-selves in the fight against a genealogically obsessed family".  The highlight for me was Dr Rachel Armstrong's discussion on her work with  protocells. This is her speaking at another event:


And this is the video we were shown:



Rad. Rad. Rad.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Nicki Minaj's no homo

My heart sunk lower then a really flexible chick doing the limbo when I read this. Nicki Minaj, my favourite new supposedly bisexual rapper has backtracked quicker then Perez's Miley Cyrus-in-no-panties-shocker post and told Black Men magazine that she's NOT down with the cooch. WTF. So after all the dykealicious lyrics and public pervings over Amber Rose and Cassie, she's dropping the biggest NO HOMO evah?

"I don’t date women and I don’t have sex with women. That’s, of course, until Cassie comes available."

Whatevs. Make up your got-damn mind already.

http://www.afterellen.com/blog/trishbendix/nicki-minaj-says-shes-not-bisexual

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Bikini girls with machine guns.

Yet another lady musician half naked on the cover of Rolling Stone. I'll give em this one though cos the nekkid attire is just regs for Gaga really. Points for the bob and Tank Girl channelled gun-bra.

Friday, 18 June 2010

FGM

I could try putting my shock, disgust and horror into words, but some of the wonderfully coherent and informed F-Word readers have covered most of what I'm thinking and feeling in the comments section following this article: http://www.thefword.org.uk/blog/2010/06/first_do_no_har 



Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Kiana Firouz gets to stay. And live.

Word around the campfire is that Kiana Firouz, the Iranian LGBTQ film maker whose plight launched a viral support campaign has been granted asylum here. Activism and home office harassing at its darndest best.


http://blog.38degrees.org.uk/2010/06/16/kiana-firouz-granted-leave-to-remain/

Suffrage exhibition


Had a teary, life-affirming trip to this today http://www.museumofrichmond.com/suffrage.htm. An intimate exhibition celebrating the suffragettes at a pokey, sweetly shabby museum on the 3rd floor of the Old Town Hall in Richmond, Surrey. It's free and running til September.

Astounding to remember that less then a century ago, women were throwing themselves under horses and enduring force feeding torture and prison to get the voting rights we have now. Glad to see the likes of Pamela Coleman Smith and Princess Sophia Duleep Singh given some shine too. target="new"http://www.connections-exhibition.org/index.php?xml=histories/asian/prewarcommunity.xml