Dara Puspita ("Flower Girls" in English) were the first Indonesian group of women to pick up instruments and play rock music on their own, without the assistance of any men. Up through the '60s, many Indonesian women had found musical success singing for bands with only dudes, but Dara Puspita decided to cut to the chase and write, perform, and play their own songs. The four jet-setters played in clubs around the world to critical oohs and ahs, but more importantly, they paved the way in their own country for Indonesian women in rock.
On B-Sides last month, Sara Kantner introduced us to the pioneering female rock star Suzie Quatro. But before Suzie and her sister Patti brought girls that rock to the public's (and Joan Jett's!) attention in the 1970's, Genya Ravan founded Goldie & the Gingerbreads, the first all-girl rock band to be signed to a major label. After the band's breakup in 1967, Ravan went on to become one of the first female producers in the music industry and hosts "Chick & Broads" on Sirius Satelitte Radio. She may not get as much credit as Joan Jett, Cherie Curie and the Quatro sisters, but Genya Ravan is an essential trailblazer for women in rock music.
School's out for summer, and I'm feeling antsy. I want to throw garbage cans at mailboxes, drink warm Budweiser in the back of a pick-up truck, and smoke cigarettes in front of the arcade. I want to drive around the neighborhood with the windows down so everyone can hear the brilliance of Suzi Quatro.