So I went home to California last week. I spent almost all of my time at my parents house, hanging out with my family. One night my childhood friends Cotton and Sam came and picked me up. W've all been friends for almost exactly ten years now. It's sort of insane. Sam and I were born on the same day and year (we also share a birthday with NYC cuntry singer Jess Paps). Cotton and I are original homegirls. We drove to the beach in Alameda and watched the fog come in under the moonlight. I am not used to seeing that much sky. That was fun. I hung out with my long-lost friend Grey. I didn't get a chance to go visit my new favorite store Nancy Boy, though.
One wonderful thing was that I saw, for a second in SF, this really awesome show of riot grrrl zines, music and videos called YOU ARE HER: RIOT GRRRL AND UNDERGROUND FEMALE ZINES OF THE 1990S at a really cool zine store called GOTEBLUD. The show and the space are both organized by Matt from Outpunk. There're hundreds of really amazing / legendary zines in the show, and a photocopier on-site which you can use (for free) to make copies. If you're in San Francisco in the next few weeks, y'know: walk don't run. Super awe-inspiring and sheepish to meet Matt Outpunk, I gave him a copy of my zine and we watched some of the "Getting Close to Nothing" VHS compilation (Frumpies busting out an early "Safety First" with only Tobi singing and Kathi playing the drums is a real highlight, Matt has graciously put the video up here).
There was a cassette listening station, stocked with legendary riot grrrl demos. I had just been at my parents' attic, fingering my own collection. Thinking, do I really need to keep the Heavens to Betsy cassette in California? I don't listen to it there. And I don't listen to it in NYC (at least not on cassette form, I have it on MP3). I had just dug out my copy of Tracy & the Plastics' "Turn Video", though Matt's copy had different art (I'll scan it later).
I was VERY INTRIGUED, however, to see a blue cassette demo, circa 1995/96, by THE NEED. At the time, THE NEED consisted of Rachel Carns, Radio Sloan / Radio Tragedy, and Miranda July. The tracks for the cassette were: Do You Believe In Vibration?, Margie Ruskie, Margie Ruskie Again, and Another Girl. Okay, where to start? First things first, I was in a hurry and wasn't thinking and I DIDN'T LISTEN TO THE CASSETTE. Next: What are these songs? I am guessing that "...Vibration?" is an early version of "Crush" (my favorite song) from the Kill Rock Stars 7", but that's just a guess. I am assuming that the "Margie Ruskie" pieces are similar to the ones that were released on another 7" by KRS as "Miranda July with the Need". I talked with Matt about this crazy cassette, because many people do not know that Miss Miranda was in the CeBe Barnes Band with Radio, and that the Need was originally just Radio and Miranda. I had no idea they had recorded anything else in the Miranda-incarnation of the band other than the "Margie" 7" and them playing on Miranda's first solo album. I didn't know there was even ever a Need demo cassette. What? My mind is blown: I must have those songs.
old school Miranda July
old school NEED.
Whenever I think of the Need I think about another double-Leo dark-haired sex bandit deep-vibes band, Paps. Everything goes in circles.
Everything goes in circles, I should clarify, when you believe in the power of the Universe.
More, I think, to come. 2009 is almost entirely over.
I am optimistic, and I am debating whether or not to sweat certain minor details. Mercury is retrograde.