Being utterly and hopelessly inspired by the book Girls to the Front by Sara Marcus (which I finished reading yesterday and am highly recommending to all riot grrrls and feminists out there), I decided to explore the parts of riot grrrl I’ve been neglecting or forgot about until I read the book.
The first is playing and writing music. As you may or may not know, my guitar skills are slim to non-existent. And the very few times I tried writing a song, I failed miserably or the song came out too cheezy, or too emo, or just plain boring. So I gave up writing songs and just stuck to covering other artists.
But after reading that book and seeing how so many young girls formed bands and wrote songs just by picking up a guitar and screaming their guts out, I thought “Shit, I can do that, too.” That was what these girls used to say at that time when they saw bands like Bratmobile perform live. And this is what the DIY culture encourages. So I went with it.
Last night, I managed to bang out a song without too much effort. The music and lyrics came all at once. Though it does sound rugged and simple as hell, and sounds like it was written and composed by a five-year-old (with a penchant for profanity), I absolutely love it! The song is also very catchy and was stuck in my head the entire night and today.
Being inspired by Girls to the Front, the song is appropriately titled with the same name.
I loved it so much and it made me so happy, I decided to write three or four more songs and record myself on an audio cassette; design a cassette sleeve with my rediscovered love for pen drawings, my cut & paste zinester style and my typewriter; and make a few copies to send out along with zine trades and orders from Etsy.
I want to write, compose and record these songs with the help of Nelly, my friend from Sweden, who is in a band and who has a great, powerful voice. She is coming to Israel in August, so I’ll propose this as one of the things we can do.
Another thing I started getting into was letter-writing. I had a couple of penpals several years ago but somehow it was discontinued for one reason or another. I think it may be because of the overseas postage cost or the fact that it takes so long for a letter to make it to and from the other end of the world. But whatever the reason, it stopped and I forgot about it.
Girls to the Front inspired me to write letters again and find penpals from around the world. There is a certain charm to writing letters and sharing fun packages with people who share your interests, that you can’t get through email, Facebook or even blogs. Whenever I come back home from a long day at work, and find an envelope with colorful stickers and doodles from Canada or the States, my heart does a little flip of joy and my inner child refuses to let me take a shower, eat or even take a second to rest before opening the package. Sometimes, if the package contains a zine, I collapse on the bed and read it all at once.
I am now open to invitations for penpal friendship. If you love feminism and riot grrrl, if you’re a punk zinester, if you want to share your crafts or words of empowerment with a fellow grrrl, drop me a line. Or better yet, write me a letter! You might just get your very own copy of my soon-to-come demotape!
Peace, love and inspiration abounds