Arts Desk

The Pragmatist: Three Songs for Hating Hegemony

The struggle began long before James Brown claimed it's a man's (man's man's) world, and the push for equality ain't over yet. For the women who get paid less than their male counterparts and for the girls who feel subjugated to the desires of the other gender, it gets frustrating, damn it. Punk rock made for boys, by boys, doesn't offer much relief. Here are a couple empowered female bandleaders voicing their own concerns without conceding to the male gaze.

One of the original '70s punk outfits, The Slits toured with The Clash and pushed out female-friendly art rock for years. Sadly, founder Ari Up passed away just last month, but her fearless spirit lives on in her curious and adventurous music.

Five badass Brits formed their "boy/girl revolution" in early '90s London, and the short-lived Huggy Bear put out a few awesome tunes before the members parted ways. The feedback-laden fury of "Her Jazz" pulls no punches, and here's a riotous live performance of the track.

Katy Otto has long fought for female justice, be it through social work, the positive messages of her myriad bands, or simply her role in running an awesome independent label. Her band Trophy Wife keeps it simple: two rad women kicking ass on their respective instruments. Come watch them do just that AND learn about the history of Riot Grrrl for free at St. Stephen's on Friday.

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