Hey! Did you enjoy this letter to the editor, written by one Liz Gay, re: my column last week about TacocaT?
A few points:
There are hundreds of guy bands in this city playing all different kinds of punk/party music, and you never read shit like, "It's just that I wish the Coconut Coolouts were more like Gang of Four."
When Coconut Coolouts start playing Gang of Four covers, I'll start pointing out how they're no Gang of Four. Actually, I'll do it now: Coconut Coolouts are no Gang of Four—not even close—wise of them, then, not to base their set around covers of "Damaged Goods" or "To Hell With Poverty!"
In Grandy's view, TacocaT cover a Bikini Kill song and are therefore written off as a lame version of a Riot Grrrl band. One of the things I love about TacocaT is that they are what Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney songs didn't allow those bands to be—a really fun punk dance band.
If you're going to play covers of multiple riot grrrl anthems, not only Bikini Kill but also Huggy Bear, then, yes, you are asking to be compared to the original wave of riot grrrl. Also, Sleater Kinney weren't allowed to be a really fun dance band? "Dance Song '97," "Words and Guitar," "I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone" and a bunch of their other songs were fun and dancey as hell. Notably, though, those songs weren't covers. And Heavens to Betsy help you if you can't dance to Bikini Kill.
I do, however, love to dance to a band who has the guts to get up onstage and trash Eric Grandy for being a condescending, sexist prick...
To my knowledge, TacocaT has yet to decry me as a "condescending, sexist prick" from onstage—so far, it's only been one of their members telling me that another of their members "hates me" offstage. Not sure if that makes them any more or less worth dancing to.
Anyway, if that letter's you're cup of tea, perhaps you'll enjoy this one from the vaults, written by one Elizabeth Gay (related? the mind boggles), re: Sleater Kinney, Isaac Brock, rape, Eminem, Kathleen Wilson, and Everett True:
WILSON & FRANZMAN: DUMB WOMEN-HATERS?
EDITORS: "I got this thing that I consider my only art of fucking people over" is an unforgettable, insightful lyric? ["To Hell and Back," June 15.] Bet you wouldn't think so if Sleater-Kinney wrote it. But it's Modest Mouse, everyone's favorite boy band, featuring the abusive Isaac Brock--who was chased out of the "cold, cold world of Seattle" because some people felt he shouldn't be able to force women to sleep with him without a slap on the wrist. [Editor's note: Brock was accused of, but never charged with, date raping a young woman last year. He denies committing the crime.]
Anyway, my point in writing this is not only to say that it was pointless having Kathleen Wilson write the review--why not let Isaac's mom write it?--but to note that since Kathleen and Erin Franzman have become co-editors, the music section has seen a remarkable decrease in female musicians and a sickening amount of young and cute boy bands. It also seems to have taken on a really negative/dismissive attitude toward female musicians and women in general. Take Kathleen's comment about Sleater-Kinney's new album sounding like '70s AM radio girl rock ["All Hands on the (Blank) One," May 4]. While the album isn't great, I could not figure out what '70s bands she could possibly be referring to, and since she didn't name any, I was unconvinced that she knew what she was talking about. Part of what makes the new album so good is that it seemed like Sleater-Kinney had fun, rather than obsessing over every detail the way they had in the past. That's how you want your boy bands to sound. Why expect more from women?
And wasn't anyone else confused and pissed at Erin's praise of Eminem ["The Best White Rapper," June 8] for honestly voicing fantasies such as killing his cheating girlfriend when others only dare to think things like this? Um, have you ever heard of a song called "Hey, Joe?" How 'bout the blues? Or the Beatles? "I'd rather see her dead than be with another man"? In the immortal words of Roseanne Barr, "Great, just what those wife-beaters need--an anthem."
Regardless of what people thought of Everett True, he went out of his way to listen to different types of music, and gave equal attention to female bands.
Elizabeth Gay, Seattle