Really enjoyed this episode which interviews three WoC authors. Give a listen by Clicking Here
“Martine Powers talks with N.K. Jemisin, Jasmine Guillory and Lauren Wilkinson about challenging narrow perceptions of race in literary genres. And Marian Liu on the segregation of American music awards.”
“Science fiction also faces the problem of inequality in the publishing industry. That’s why N.K. Jemisin chose to put black experiences of oppression in a distant, imagined future. She says, “In a lot of science-fiction stories, you know, the way that they choose to engage with [oppression] is by having aliens be oppressed.” Instead, Jemisin chooses to show how the black experience fares in the future with the “Broken Earth” series.”
From the Sachs Program for Arts Innovation website:
“ICA will bring NY-based artist Christina Long to ICA to curate a punk music festival and zine exhibition/fair consisting of women of color that will coincide with the Fierce Pussy exhibition on view at ICA from September 13, 2019 – December 22, 2019. Christina Long’s oeuvre spans printmaking, graphic design and film/video. She is currently the Senior Instructional Designer for Digital Learning at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, however she is probably best known as the founder and creative director of #Blkgrlswurld ZINE which she established in 2013 with her sister Courtney Long. #Blkgrlswurld is a press in Harlem that celebrates and documents women of color who participate in heavy music genres like Metalcore, Hardcore, Punk, and Black Metal. Fierce Pussy is a New York based queer art collective that formed in 1991 through their immersion in AIDS activism during a decade of increasing political mobilization around gay rights. They brought lesbian identity and visibility directly into the streets through low-tech and low-budget methods. Like Fierce Pussy, the zine world has adopted unconventional, readily accessible modalities to produce materials by which they share knowledge about pertinent social issues with others, while empowering women from all backgrounds in the process. This is a fascinating overlap in light of the use of technology today as a tool to mobilize marginalized groups.”
Like Roberta Flack’s song, ‘Killing Me Softly,’ music enthusiasts know that this feeling is a real thing that can happen around live music. Folks can suddenly break out dancing, laughing, cheering or crying.
Somehow, someway I found myself at the Baroness Show blubbering like a little kid. (Stone cold sober too.)
The line up was Zeal & Ardor, Deafheaven and Baroness. Baroness in particular has been a unicorn for me to catch live ever since their album ‘Purple’ was released in 2015. They’ve had shows in NYC plenty, but the timing never seemed right for me to witness their live show.
I didn’t know who Deafheaven was going into this event. As they stepped out on stage before Baroness, I waited patiently at the stage barricade skeptically. Good metal is hard to find.
I. Was. Not. Ready.
Black metal vocals of a traditional Nordic variety hit me along with a very American mix of alternative rock undertones. Even the band members reflected this style range in their attire. One guitarist looked similar to the lead singer of Weezer, while another member looked as if he just strolled out of Dethklok. Contemporary sounds whispering to the positive chord of Coldplay became overrun with the aggressive metal vocals. It was a sweet and salty buffet of dimension.
Average folks often assume that metal has no soul, no warmth- these guys were able to prove that sentiment wrong. As the slow moving crowd began to gently carry people above our heads, towards the stage- I had to wonder, who the hell were these guys?!
Deafheaven succeeded in putting a spell on the whole crowd and left me completely tongue tied. By the time Baroness began their set, it was almost too perfect. I felt like all my traveling this past year to Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and the Royal Open House could not touch what I had just witnessed.
In the new web series Shrill, Annie Easton (played by Aidy Bryant) is on a journey to explore self-acceptance and through that, find her voice. While the show has some key issues and plot holes, I respect that it can be a process that takes committed effort to build up internal self-acceptance; giving oneself the freedom to try new things and discover personal realizations.
Annie is what I would term ‘Baby Phat’ as she begins to dip her toes into body positivity and the womanhood of her 30s and 40s. Grown Ass Women are not born overnight, OK?
Shrill shares a truth that many fat girls discover as they become grown-ass women: Life goes on whether you’re fat or not. This is it, our one life to live. As we approach middle age it becomes more clear for most of us that we will always be overweight in some regard. Maybe we lose 15 pounds on the latest fad diet, maybe we gain it back 6 months later. One thing is for sure, after a certain point being overweight is just part of who we are. It’s part of our identity, it just is. And it won’t stop us from living and enjoying life. We will still swim and hike, strut in fashion shows, start our own businesses or choose to raise a family, etc. I have never believed the stereotypes that fat women are failing in some way, automatically poor or ignorant for ‘not taking care of themselves.’ Most likely because I’ve been fat for most of my life, and getting grown has still been fun, exciting and active for me.
Of course we want to be as healthy as anyone else, but we also recognize using the term ‘healthy’ in conversation can be code for suggesting a woman should want to become more attractive. Only guess what? A fat person can still be stylish, intelligent, and take care of themselves. In a world where people can be overweight for hundreds of reasons that are their own private business, fat-shaming is total bullshit.
My favorite scene in the series occurs during the third episode *SPOILERS* When the main character Annie in all her awkwardness is having trouble navigating whether she has the right of way to cross a street. While going through a range of indecision about when to disrupt car traffic, a stylish plus-size woman in an all red outfit, brushes past her and crosses the street without hesitation. This plus size ‘woman in red’ is confident, feminine and most importantly claiming her personal space. The woman’s energy is magnetic enough that it compels Annie to follow her for a couple blocks. Annie looks on in awe at how this woman carries herself, and as she peers on from a distance we can see she is wondering how she can get to that level of solid womanhood. The series allows us to follow Annie through that exploration, which I found pretty fun to witness. Glowing up is hard work.
I hope every woman gets to this point of realization. Life doesn’t start when you’re suddenly slim. We are all living right now, and deserve every bit of satisfaction and success as anyone else. ##
I first discovered Oceano a few years back when Webster Hall was still open on the lower east side of Manhattan. Webster Hall was hosting the annual Summer Slaughter Tour and metal bands were performing across three floors of the building in the middle of a Saturday afternoon. I strolled into the main stage and could hardly see, fog machines and laser lights had washed out anything worth seeing into dark shadows and odd shapes. But, I could hear the band, and what I heard was as heavy as it gets.
Adam Warren is the lead vocalist of Oceano, providing some of the deepest, growling sounds in the deathcore scene. We got a chance to chat with Adam a bit during this Black History Month as we celebrate the visibility of Black Metalheads in the scene.
Thanks for chatting with us a bit a man, share with us a little about where you are from?
“I’m from the south suburbs of Chicago but currently live in Salt Lake City, UT with my girlfriend and our two cats Gandalf and Parzival. To some extent I did travel growing up, as I lived in Atlanta,GA for a short while as a kid with my mother until we eventually moved back to Illinois before I started middle school.”
How did you first get into music and singing? What were your fav music styles?
“I got into predominantly heavy music right around middle school through friends I made when transferring schools. Before then I wasn’t really exposed or interested in any types of music so it was a new and exciting experience for me. Lately my favorite music to listen to is R&B. I’m sad to say I don’t know how to play any other instruments aside from using my voice. I do feel I’m a bit over due with learning SOMETHING though.”
There’s a lot of different types of metal out there; How did you first learn about Death metal specifically?
“I was fairly aware of it’s existence as a genre but didn’t really gain an interest in delving deeper and discovering until I and my friends began to go to concerts and become exposed to heavier music than what we were currently listening.”
What’s your favorite part about making music with Oceano?
“I really enjoy the collaborative approach of creating music with the other musicians in the band. I like bouncing ideas of each other and working as a team to create something we all enjoy and also feel others will be moved by.”
What have been some great accomplishment moments with Oceano?
“I think existing as a band for about 11-12 years is a great accomplishment for any band. Us having released 5 full length albums is also pretty wild to realize.”
Since you are a gamer, any opinion you’d like to share about Kingdom Hearts 3? My sibs and I have waited years for it to come out- now I’m wondering it was worth the hype?
“Too be honest, I’m not too much of a fan for the series (I’m more of a Super Mario/Nintendo fan) but I do have alot of friends and girlfriend who are very into the series. From what I’ve seen and been told, it seems to be living up the hype though which is nice to hear people excited about.”
A wintry adventure up north provided us a chance to geek out at one of the nations best print shops.
Listen, I don’t have a car. I live in Manhattan. It’s not unusual during the winter months to swear off any travel beyond work and the grocery store.
That’s why when the Women’s Studio Workshop (WSW) invited us to come up, I was excited at the chance to check out a print shop I’d been hearing about for years. It was too good to pass up a peek behind the curtain.
It is a lovely spot to edition work as a printmaker. We were able to spend a day with them selecting artists for next year’s artist book residency. I think the folks we chose will get the chance to make some great work with this team.