Friday, September 29, 2006

Sister Solidarity

Lady Fest Ottawa

I was thrilled to have been invited to not only play, but to open the 5 th Lady Fest ottawa festival. I first played this event in 2003. I was a heartbroken little Annie Lennox emo/ fashion/ passion type with a schreechy voice and a keytar. I am proud to say I am still sharign all this camp with audiences.

I met and interviewed Lesbians On Extasy the night of the show. They were approachable, down to earth and ready to chat. In other words, they are my type of gals! I also interviewed Nicky Click and her dolls. What a moment to meet another true "orininal" on Rideau St. Let's just say Nicky did not have a bag from "the Gap" or "Jacob" under her arm. she had on a white lepard pattenred dress that clung to her like a second skin. She let m know she was going to return it to the store. The tags were still attached. I was delighted.

The concert also marked the first time the mainstream arts and entertainent paper, "The Ottawa Express" mentioned me. Hopefully it won't be the last. There's a lot of barriers though. One never knows. I'm enjoying this bit of recognition. I have walked through the valleys of apathy and sailed into the winds of indifference for years. Be vigilient. I encourage "sister solidarity."

Or read it here:

Ottawa Xpress/ Sept 21, 2006

Hey, hey ladies... Andrea Simms-Karp
Montreal's own Le Tigre of sorts : Lesbians on Ecstasy Ladyfest kicks off with lesbians, click, a librarian's touch and a bride...Wednesday nights are not usually the time to buckle down and dance your little heart out, but this week will have to be a particularly wild exception.
As Ladyfest Ottawa rolls into town, the city is getting hit with an electro-extravaganza unlike anything that usually graces the middle of the week. Montreal's Lesbians On Ecstasy, Olympia, Washington's Nicky Click (who's opened for Lady Sovereign), Toronto's Librarian's Touch (Lindsay Gillard is a former member of Ottawa's the Sick Lipstick) and East Coast's Mackenzie MacBride are all descending upon Maverick's for a night of well-deserved booty shaking. And although the lineup is proudly queer positive and lady friendly, all are welcome to get their freak on.

Fruity Frankie of Lesbians On Ecstasy says that anyone can enjoy the band's high-energy sets - as long as they don't mind watching a group of women strutting around the stage in chaps (nobody has a problem with that, right folks?). Same goes with Nicky Click, whose video art and music is deliciously quirky. She says she often tours with a doll, Petunia Pie, to make things interesting. How this lineup could ever be dull escapes me, but so it goes.
These women have a whole lot more in common than their dance-driven sounds and keen party sense. All of them have made strides in an industry that isn't particularly geared towards women. Electronic art, from multimedia to DJing, is often a dude-dominated realm. For many young women, the thought of going into an audio store to buy gear is daunting. Well-known artists like Le Tigre and Peaches have helped encourage girls to experiment with electronic media, but there is always room for more support.

Nicky Click got into video art with a cheap camcorder and some know-how, but she says she would have gotten into it much earlier if she felt encouraged. "I was lucky to find women who were willing to share their techniques," she says. "Now I'm seeing women creating and saying what they need to say."

Fruity Frankie says she is happy to have seen the genre grow and diversify, even in the relatively short time her band has been wooing crowds. "Our project grew out of Montreal, which has a huge dance scene, but very few women involved. There were a whole lot of guys twiddling knobs," she says, laughing. "But in the past three years, we've seen women really making it for themselves. And we've gotten a lot of props from places we thought would hate us."

Considering that Lesbians On Ecstasy charged the international scene after coming together as a bit of an experiment, it's no wonder they've been getting props. They were asked to tour with Le Tigre, veritable giants of the genre, early on in their career, and are now getting ready to record their follow-up to their buzz worthy self-titled debut - the album's sexy covers of queer anthems could win over even the most skeptical listener. Heck, with names like Fruity Frankie, Bernie Bankrupt, Veronique Mystique and Jackie "The JackHammer," you could go for the camp and stay for the beats.

If you think Wednesday's lineup looks fun, stay tuned for an endless string of stellar shows as the week winds down. The doors to Ladyfest are about to be kicked open.
Ladyfest Presents:Lesbians on EcstasyNicky Click
Librarian's Touch
Mackenzie MacBride
Wednesday, September 27 (19+)Maverick's

Thursday, September 28, 2006

" Mackenzie MacBride - Not A Grab and Gripper"

"What's Hot With Me" - Marcus McCann / Capital Xtra/ Sept 5, 2006

Marcus McCann publishes his Top 5 favourites. Right below Kinnee Star he listed me for the Sept. 6 to October 1, 2006 edition of Capital Xtra. It was just one line. But it meant so much to me. I am not a scenester. I am not a poser. I don't try promote myself under the guises of charity and community activism. I am not a "grab and gripper." Nor do I want to be around people exhibiting this type of fakery and narcissism.

My "be for real" philosophy means I have often found myself on the "out"side of queer "in crowd". This is ironic considering I was the personification of queerness in rural Canada for most of my life. But I am not bitter. I am simply pointing it out as a fact. I am comfortable with my outsider status.

Back in high school there were ridiculous "90's era" cliques. The doctor's son and the suburb construction developer's daugther were the King and Queen of Winter Carnival and thought themselves to better than everyone else. They wore Sun Ice winbter jackets in bright yellow and Nike sneakers with space age thick soles. They had a whole lot hangers on. Jock guys and little trotter girls with lots of hair spray. They would all hang around in the front entry of the school or in the adjoining gym.

I can remember being petrified to walk past them in my pink Ocean Pacific tee shirt and "Potato sack" shorts. 10 points for anyone who remembers potato sack shorts. But all these years later where are all these cool kids and posers. Well the doctor's son is an "ears, nose and throat "Mc' doc". And that only barely a "McDoc" because his gradfes were so poor that he had to get is medical licence from Guademala! (Can't you just barely wait for your next trip to get medical care in Canada?) And the the daughter of the suburb developer and her Sun Ice jacket? She sells pharmicutials in Edmonton and worships at the "Church Of the Lamb" along with her hsband - from our same high school. (Hey, if was comfy for her, why change it? Evolution? How passe!)

So take it from me it's better to be one of the nerds in the band room in the basement than a total fake.

So having said all this, to get to the point, I was so happily surprised when I read in Marcus McCann's Top 5 for Ottawa list for September.

"Mackenzie MacBride. Note to Ottawa: Fuck You for not noticing her sooner."

It is a real honour to have caught the attention of an ally. Someone who really "gets it". I have yet to meet him. I hope I do someday. No, I was not noticied. I was in the basement band room. Bring some of your favourite Cher sheet music and let's jam sometime.