I started swing dancing in college as a way to meet people. That quickly led to a swing dancing obsession I still haven't recovered from.
For me, there's something about that nice eight-count beat that really picks me off my feet and cheers me up. So, to counteract the increasingly chilly weather, consistent downpours, and shorter days, I've assembled the cheeriest and most upbeat swing songs I could find. (Swing dancing also led to a significant liking for blues dancing, which may have leaked a bit into this mixtape—I just love Nina Simone too much.) So put on your dancing shoes and give it a listen!
Autumn is a glut of new music and bands on tour, so it's precisely zero surprising that our new music roundup for October is our longest yet. This month, we've got the world premiere of a new video by Julia Weldon, a song by a band called Hand Job Academy, and much, much more.
I started to listen to music a little differently after becoming a parent. It wasn't just about shielding little ears from raunchy talk and grown-up lyrics, although when my four-year-old started asking to listen to "Stacy's Mom," I realized I still had plenty to learn about this editing process. But I also found myself becoming much more attuned to songs about children and parents, and realizing that songs I'd listened to with neutral ears in the past were becoming almost unbearably sad to hear now. Case in point: Iron and Wine's "Upward Over the Mountain," sung from the point of view of a deadbeat son to his stalwart mother, made me tear up from the opening line and had me in full sobs by the end. So from joyous to cautionary, wistful to bittersweet, here's a selection of songs that capture parent-child relationships in all their lovely, messy, and overwhelming humanity.
"Pray to Jesus" is a good song to kick off Brandy Clark's debut solo album, 12 Stories. Like the tracks that follow, it's from distinctly female point of view with touches of levity underlying real issues of family and livelihood. “Don’t want to be buried in debt or in sin/ So we pray to Jesus and we play the lotto/ Cause there ain’t but two ways we can change tomorrow.”
It's a Friday Bitchtape curated by Northwest indie music label Kill Rock Stars! Here are 11 of our favorite tracks from Kill Rock Stars's 21-year history. Check out new tracks from the past year like Corin Tucker Band's new hit and a classic from Sleater-Kinney.
“There’s a coldness even in the name of our band to sort of balance the fact that we are going to pour our hearts into it. The whole thing is protection,” says Emily Haines, the singer and songwriter behind Metric, as we spoke just as she was prepping to leave on the electro-harmony band’s latest tour. “You know we can’t be called, like, The Hugs. Although that might be closer to the actual spirit of the four people that are in the band.”
This Friday's mixtape is curated for Bitch from the folks behind the Feminist Playing Cards deck. "Queens of my Feminist Heart" features songs by the hearts of the project, a deck of cards featuring 56 feminist musicians illustrated by 14 feminist artists. The deck showcases musicians who have made strides towards women's equality, whether through their music, career, personal achievements or activism.
Formed in response to the fact that the world needs more art, music and culture made by and for queers, Not Enough! Queer Music and Arts festival is a celebration of all new and collaborative bands, film, performances and visual art made by queer folk!
This marks the festival's 4th year. During the last three years, artists and musicians have created 47 bands and performances (as well as multiple films and visual art pieces) specifically for the festival. Many of these groups have gone on to continue to perform and record. Inspired by the Portland festival, Not Enough Fests have happened in New Orleans and Winnipeg.
This year's festival will happen on October 19th at SMYRC in Portland, OR. Read more info on dates and times and how to attend at NotEnoughPDX.com.
Many feminists recall a number of moments that served as their political awakening. Those formative experiences stick out in our memory as times when we said, in more or less words, “I’m over it.“ For me, one of those light bulb moments struck while hearing TLC’s “No Scrubs” on a South Florida pop radio station for the first time.
Now, indie label K Records is releasing a double CD (and double LP) retrospective of their work, “Sooner or Later,” which pulls together the band’s rough recordings from 1978-1983. Listening to the album from guitarist Jennifer LoBianco (and, later, Meg Hentges), drummer Pat Baum, and sisters Kim and Kt Kincaid feels like hearing music that’s “from the end of the pen, the stroke of the brush, a hit across the back of the head with a 2x4” that is “joyous to the extreme,” as K Records founder Calvin Johnson puts it.
The 45-track album “Sooner or Later” goes on sale on October 15, but K Records is streaming the album on Bitch for free this week only. UPDATE 10/16: This album stream is now done. But you can listen to two songs for free below.
Nothing to Fear:
The details on The Neo Boys' album release party is below the cut. it sounds great!