Work for Pictures 1-6

1.) The Altar. March 10, 2018. MOHAI.

Making Scenes

The Altar photo demonstrates the work of the performers and people who work behind the scenes to make a difference in the world. These powerful women are working for change in their own way. The photos captured change the perspectives of the viewers and make people want to fight in what they believe in.

2.) Ixtlixochitl Salinas-Whitehawk. March 10, 2018. MOHAI.

Building Communities

The photo of Ixtlixochitl Salinas-Whitehawk talking to another individual shows the intimate conversations between one another about the social justices we have discussed in class. Also, she teaches about her culture, struggles, and beliefs on the issues she deals with. She wants to amplify the social justices that are major issues today.

3.) Ana Gabriela Cano (“Black Mama”). March 10, 2018. MOHAI

Reel Rebels, Making Scenes, Write to Rock

The photo of Black Mama falls under a few different categories because of how influential she is. Black Mama is a feminist archivist who is a significant and powerful figure. She fights for justice for women and is the voice of those who cannot speak for themselves. She shows her passion and fight in the music she performs.

4.) Kibibi Monie. March 10, 2018. MOHAI.

Building Communities

This picture of Kibibi Monie and others discussing material from the conference exemplifies “Building Communities” through an inclusivity fostered by shared music and the archive – factors that directly contribute to broadening the scope of the social justice movements we’ve discussed in class.

5.) Ana Gabriela Cano (“Black Mama”), Julie C, Kibibi Monie. March 10, 2018. MOHAI.

Making Scenes, Reel Rebels

This photo includes people who “[make] scenes” and act as “Reel Rebels,” including artists who perform for social justice movements (gender and racial equality movements), people of the Seattle community that work “behind the scenes” to further these movements, and our professors who maintain an archive promoting equality.

 

6.) Ana Gabriela Cano (“Black Mama”), Julie C, Kibibi Monie. March 10, 2018. MOHAI.

Making Scenes, Reel Rebels

Black Mama is a musician that creates a music scene; through her music, she creates a platform for discussion around racial and gender equality. Other women in the picture also serve as feminist archivistas (“Reel Rebels”), including our professors and students who helped contribute to documenting the movement.

Final Class Today – Group Members Look at This.

Hey, I asked the professor what to do if we couldn’t meet up to finish this project, because we are supposed to be discussing stuff in class and figuring it all out. I couldn’t get ahold of you guys, so I asked if she had your emails or something (she ended up sending you all a message on Canvas including my email and phone number). As long as we get this assignment done, we will be fine. However, we are all graded on the same rubric, so if some people don’t complete their part, then we all lose points.

Here’s a link to what we were supposed to work on in class together. Scroll down to see “After the Women Who Rock (Un)Conference” section. Since no one is here, I think I’ll leave the classroom soon. Here is what I think we should do for the steps.

Step 1:

I like the photo of:

1.) the colorful picture stand

2.) The two women talking

3.) Black mama close up

4.) The very last photo of the post (bottom right)

5.) Any one of the big round-table photos

6.) The other photo with Black Mama in it

Why I chose these photos:

These photos perfectly capture the culture of inclusion and learning fostered by the WWR (Un)Conference. Intimate, personal conversations took place here, as depicted in photos 2, 4, 5, 6; cross-cultural emotional support was provided here, as shown in the round-table setup in picture 5; and people learned of different cultures and struggles (both abroad and within the Seattle community), as depicted in pictures 1, 2, 4, 5. Black Mama, a figure depicted in two of the photos selected, serves as an important figure both in our class and in the broader social movement our class addresses. Women like her are leaders in the movement for change. This movement is about equality, not supremacy. This conference focuses on the need to men respect women, for women to recognize their power and utilize it to further the status of other women in their communities, and the need to end the unwanted sexualization and stereotyping of women around the globe.

Step 2:

I worked off of this post:

https://group16afram337.wordpress.com/2018/03/15/photos-from-conference/

1.) the colorful picture stand

Making Scenes

2.) The two women talking

Building Communities

3.) Black mama close up

Reel Rebels, Making Scenes, Write to Rock (professor in the photo)

4.) The very last photo of the post (bottom right)

Building Communities

5.) Any one of the big round-table photos

Making Scenes, Reel Rebels

6.) The other photo with Black Mama in it

Making Scenes, Reel Rebels

“Reel Rebels” include “feminist archivistas,” including our professors and people in the WWR community. Pictures tagged as “Making Scenes” are performers and people who work behind the scenes to make a difference (picture 1 being an example of their work). “Write to Rock” includes those who write about social injustice. “Building Communities” are photos of spreading the social justice movement.

Someone: “explain your group’s categorization of the photos in no more than 50 words per photo.” Follow these guidelines:

Write to Rock features people who write about music, addressing overlapping audiences through the popular and underground press, the academy and the blogosphere. These writers question conventional stories of popular music and cultural production that erase the influence of women and women of color. They ask us to consider how we narrate the past and the present with regard to particular performers, genres, and sounds. They offer feminist histories and accounts, creating new methods, formats, platforms and frameworks for understanding popular music.

Reel Rebels features filmmakers, audio producers, sound designers, visual artists, photographers, and radio hosts–people we call feminist archivistas. They use multiple forms of media to document, create, and distribute stories about popular music, community-making and social activism.

Building Communities features people who have used music and performance to build social justice movements. They work in various local and transnational communities within the Americas and beyond.

Making Scenes features people who make music scenes: from people who perform, produce, and work at record labels to people who run venues, book shows, and manage bands, as well as the fans who make scenes come alive. They work on the stage, at the club, in the studio, on the laptop, behind the bar, at the copy shop, on the air waves, and behind the scenes.

 

Response to Black Mama – Lindsey

Everything she talked about was really prevalent to what we’ve discussed in class regarding sexual assault, the unwanted sexualization of women’s bodies, the misrepresentation and underrepresentation of minority communities in music (women, transgender people, people of color, queer communities, etc.), and the political backlash of producing music that brings such topics to light. I think the kind of topics she discusses in her music are actually pretty rare to come across in lots of the popular music of today, although I mostly listen to rap music (which we’ve discussed is a genre that tends to focus on the derogatory representations of women and asserting the masculinity of the rapper through less inclusive language). We’ve also learned of many artists who discuss similar information in their music, but sadly, this is a very small group of musicians.

 

Without listening to this sort of music (the music produced by Black Mama and similar musicians), many people would remain ignorant of the conditions in Ecuador and other similar locations around the globe. Concurrently, I think many people were surprised to hear of the sex trade and current slavery within the United States. Thus, songs that address these little-known subjects are absolutely necessary to spread, document, and archive. There are probably many, many artists like Black Mama; these artists need to be heard. Building the archive is one way of achieving this feat and broadening the reach of this message.

Blog Post #4 – Lindsey

I read both Mia Zapata’s Biography from thesestreets.org and “The Git’s Mia Zapata Resurrected in Film” on NPR. Due to the extreme similarity of their content, I found the slight discrepancies in storyline between the two articles very interesting. The Mia Zapata Bio pictured Zapata as someone who helped originally form the band, as it specifically said: “she, Steve, Matt and Andy formed the punk rock band the Gits.” However, the NPR podcast (Zapata Resurrected in Film), Zapata was not explicitly depicted as someone who helped to form the band, but as someone who simply helped revolutionize the band by “[adding] her voice to the mix.” I considered this to be a discrete example of accrediting foundational success of the band to the men of the group and not to Mia herself, a phenomenon affecting women musicians that we’ve studied many times over. Similarly, in relation to other articles we’ve read, the NPR podcast described Zapata as having “the ability to command attention without ever seeming to see it,” a quality that the NPR article/podcast considered a defining feature of a “bona fide star.” This is something we’ve seen before as a class when talking about the stereotypes associated with blues musicians. Artists like Alice Bag serve as examples of breaking this norm through showing both a self-recognition and self-appreciation of her stardom; however, throughout history, this self-awareness in musicians from minority backgrounds (black men and women in blues, Latina women in rock, Zapata in an all-male band save for herself, etc.) has been frowned upon.
Mia Zapata herself seemed like she could have become a powerful, game-changing figure in the music industry. Her strength in performance reminded me a lot of other strong women musicians, including Aretha Franklin and the group Sister Sledge. Thus, I included their songs in my DJ selection below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FOUqQt3Kg0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FOUqQt3Kg0

Lindsey – Questions for Ana Cano

Have you ever felt pressured/obligated to discuss certain topics in your music? Have you ever felt that you served as a representative of a people, and by living in this role you were either restricted or obligated to address certain topics in your songs?

Have there been instances in your life where you have been afraid to share your music or speak your mind due to the comparative dominance of men in the musical field?

 

Lindsey – Critical Karaoke

Joe Cocker, “Space Captain” from the Mad Dogs & Englishmen album

This video is 5 minutes and 10 seconds long, but the song lasts from 0:05-4:46 (afterwards it is just crowds cheering).

However cliched, I grew up listening to Joe Cocker’s “Space Captain.” I always loved this song for its imagery and Cocker’s seemingly-omniscient narration. As a kid, I would sit in the backseat of my car, close my eyes, and imagine Earth as this miniscule blue/green dot in the blackness of space. This tiny little planet, just big enough to catch Cocker’s “eye” holds the hopes and dreams of generations; it holds comfort and love and happiness [pause] and famine and pain and war. Listening to Cocker speak of the transient moment – how we are just going to stay here “until we die” and then float on through space, like how he describes coming to this planet, makes the pain we inflict on others seem ludicrous. The image Cocker paints of the insignificance of Earth in the universe makes fighting absurd, and “learning to live together” the only reasonable way to live.

Like Cocker, we’ve all “lost [our] memory” of before our birth, of flying like Cocker describes. This sort of omniscient pre and post-existence always appealed to me; at least being able to witness what life is like for others eases the fear associated with not engaging in life yourself. But someday, we will all die, and like Cocker says, “we’ll return into the sky.” But “until we die,” Cocker asserts, through his song, that we all need to learn “to live together.” This message speaks of rising above, both metaphorically and literally, the issues that divide us. These divisions, when looked upon from above in the sort of pre- and after-life Cocker describes, aren’t even visible. Neither are we. Our planet is barely visible in the expanse of the universe. If time is fleeting, if our planet is just a blip in infinite galaxies, then what ‘matters’ is constructed, and is defined only by what matters to you and me. What matters is finding happiness in the present moment, in “learning to live together,” in treating others with decency and respect, and spreading love “until we die.” Because once we’re gone, the only thing left in our wake is the influence we make in the present moment. In the brevity of the human experience, humanity itself, life on earth, and even planetary existence, our influence on others in this moment is the only tangible influence we can have in history. This is truly all the song says, repeated many times over the expanse of five minutes, but the song’s simplicity does not lessen its impact. In fact, I believe it is more powerful because of its simplicity. It can be understood by almost any audience, and it has a broader range because its topic of accepting and respecting others applies to any and every human interaction.

This song, once I grew older, became more than just a reminder to treat others with kindness. It became a sort of relief from the fear associated with death. Not having a religion to rely upon, I became preoccupied with this fear. Death was something scary; it was taught to me as a sort of empty nothingness. With the concept of death defined by Cocker as something peaceful resulting in a meaningful existence as an omniscient being – a silent observer, so to speak – I no longer worried as intensely about death. Even just listening to the song, with its background singers’ “oh”s and “ah”s and sections of simple but upbeat piano playing, was a calming experience. When listening to these sighs, I always considered them as examples of acceptance; that acceptance being of disagreement. For me at least, this part of the song was meant to exemplify resigning one’s fight to a sigh. By this, I mean coming to a deeper understanding that all people are flawed and all people are learning, but with a sigh and a breath, with a calm approach, with respect, with extending the level of grace to others that you would give yourself, we can learn to live together. Musically, these sections of calm, followed by an increasingly-fast tempo and Cocker’s rising voice, reminded me of taking flight, like Cocker describes. The flight, so to speak, helped calm me through times of intense anxiety in my childhood. Therefore, whether intentional or not, Cocker’s music embodies the concept of transcendence with the feeling of flight it creates. This, coupled with both Cocker’s inclusiveness to those in underrepresented groups like black women background singer Merry Clayton and Cocker’s lyrical depiction of rising above the struggles that limit us, makes “Space Captain” simply an exceptional piece of musical art.

Individual Blog Post Stream B #2 – Lindsey

I chose Daphne Brooks’s “How #BlackLivesMatter started a Musical Revolution” and Gloria Anzaldua’s “To Live in the Borderlands.” Both pieces were striking. Brooks focused on popular artists expressing their political opinions and engaging with the black lives matter movement. She specifically focused on Beyoncé as a figure for the movement and as a feminist. She describes how even when people “watch from afar” they still “feel the heaviness of what it means to experience one’s blackness as . . . eviscerated of its citizenship.” This quote was especially pertinent to her argument, as music serves as that portal for many people. Whether the audience is a part of the movement or not, music spreads its message as a “new sonic fabric of black dissent” meant to assess the emergency of racism in America today. This mixing of the cultural fabric of society, engaging with the voices of those whom you may not agree with, is not new. It is part of what composes all Americans – and what makes “you . . . the battleground” if you are considered “mestizo.”  It has always been a factor of the American consciousness (American society is continually remade by immigrants) – this mixing has been embraced or fought against throughout history. This melting pot is addressed in Anzaldua’s piece as well. The broad reach of popular music brings new attention to these recurrent social issues, while Anzaldua’s piece calls for us to rise above these divisions, live “sin fronteras,” and embrace “[being] at a crossroads.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RvVfgvHucRY

“I Can” by Nas

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X2W3aG8uizA

“Get Up Stand Up” Bob Marley

Individual Blog Post #2 Lindsey

Sean Nelson – “‘Let’s (Not) Get It On’: Or, Fucking to Songs About Fucking and Other Uncomfortable Developments in the Awkward Relationship Between What We’re Going to Have to Just Agree to Call Indie Rock and Sexuality in the 1990s”

Stasia Iron and Catherine Harris-White – “Ladies First: Is Homophobic Hip-Hop So Anti-Woman That It’s Homophilic?”

 

Reflection:

I disagree with Nelson. Rap music generally talks about a violence that I find no connection to; violence that is entirely absent from my life and the lives of many of its listeners. The same can be said about the treatment of women and the references of unwanted sexual and violent acts towards them. Even with these truths, rap music is my favorite genre; however, I have noted a need to distance myself from the lyrics of the music and a need to focus on the instruments or beats behind the lyrics. This “[turning] off lyrics in [one’s] head” is something discussed in Irons and Harris-White’s piece as well, but in their article, they call for a need to change the “homophobic” nature of rap music. They also reflect upon the “conversely homophilic” aspects of rap, which are utterly compelling, as examples such as Boosie’s and YG’s “My Nigga” are examples of rappers telling other men they love them, referring to women as “bitches,” and belittling other men by calling them feminine. This is reflective of the sexuality of music that Nelson discusses, as these tendencies in rap music are ways of reflecting the “manhood” of rappers. There is an interesting solution presented in the comparison of these two articles; Nelson talks about Nirvana as overcoming rock music’s obsession with sexuality by breaking gender and sexual norms (overcoming the continual expression of “sexual primacy”), a potential solution to problems associated with the obsession of rappers with sexual primacy of today.

 

DJ Selections:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NLZRYQMLDW4

Kendrick’s DNA highlights some of the important points made by Irons and Harris-White in their article. With phrases like: “you’s a bitch, your hormones prolly switch inside your DNA, . . . backbone don’t exist,” Kendrick refers to womanhood and feminine-like men as weak and pathetic. He also continually talks of himself as a “soldier” and as a hardened murderer. This show of violence and “manhood,” contrasted with derogatory phrases towards women and “unmanly men,” is a problem of rap addressed by Irons and Harris-White in their article. This homophobia and anti-womanhood is intrinsically tied to a depiction of sexual prowess common in many rap songs, something discussed as a common factor of rock music (and evolving popular music in general) in Nelson’s piece.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LW9UhAgccPI

In Big Sean’s “No Favors,” Eminem is featured rapping: “fuck Ann Coulter with a Klan poster, with a lamp post, . . . hand over the mouth and nose smother, . . . gut her, make an example of her, . . .”. Therein, the lyrics promote both the rape and murder of Ann Coulter, a controversial political figure. This glorification of rape and murder applies to both articles discussed above, as both an expression of “manhood,” violence, and a disdain towards some women.