lifeblood: listlogs: 2001v04n044-news


ig-news-digest         monday, march 12 2001         volume 04 : number 044

today's subjects:
-----------------
  [ig-news] as promised...                                [lisalisaa@aol.com]
  [ig-news] really annoying ap review of stag             [lisalisaa@aol.com]
  [ig-news] new compilation     [sarah pinsker <reinventing1@mindspring.com>]
  [ig-news] re: 7" vinyl cover art        [ehren mitzlaff <hskrfn68@aol.com>]
  [ig-news] amy interview (at www.virginmega.com)          [btfenton@aol.com]
  [ig-news] amy review in rolling stone!                   [btfenton@aol.com]
  [ig-news] rolling stone gives stag 3 1/2 stars! heres the review...  [ryan]
  [ig-news] 7" single      ["kovacs, mirinda" <mirinda.kovacs@westgroup.com>]

----------------------------------------------------------------------

date: fri, 9 mar 2001 07:24:21 est
from: lisalisaa@aol.com
subject: [ig-news] as promised...

[sherlyn's note: this message was originally sent to the indigo
girls mailing list at netspace.org.]

as promised, as a thank you for your help me come up with questions, here's
some stuff from my interview with amy ray that didnt make it into my sonicnet
stag article; most of it is answers to a number of questions asked by list
members...

thanks again.


- -- on measure of me. i said it seemed to be a song about finding yourself
attracted to someone who is not in the usual package you prefer.

"yeah, that's exactly what it is about.  it's about the struggle of thinking
that you are one thing and then feeling that you might be somebody else. it's
about the fluidity of it. ''

- --i said that when i first heard the version of the song on napster, which is
different than the album cut, i thought that it was a risky song politically
because some lesbians might be pissed or offended at the suggestion of a
cross over, as it were. i said it didnt offend me but i think because i came
out really late, in my early 30s, that i appreciate what she's saying about
fluidity.

"i think they could be pissed but they are misreading it if they are. i am
commenting on the notion out there that if i am a woman and i cant understand
how to be with a man than i am worthless...i think we are made stronger by
expressing these things. but if it pisses anyone off, they are reading it too
literally. i am not saying if you are gay that you should try to be straight.
obviously i live my personal life as a lesbian and politically i am a
lesbian. but i think we are fluid. and we should realize that and get over
it..."

- --on lucystoners.

"i think coverage is very sexist. i sense that during lilith everybody was
excited. even tho it was a media heyday for women rockers, their was an
unwillingness to give it its due and some coverage was snide or sarcastic.

that was a great tour and it helped women. people argue constantly about
whether it ghettoized women musicians. that's a lot to think about and i
think we wont know all the til later.
that was a very corporate tour tho, more corporate than i like to get. but so
much money was
given away to grass roots organizations, a lot of money went to battered
women's groups. and people had a great time. but the backlash now is
frustrating. there are no women on the playlist in rock radio anymore. the
thing that im saying in lucy stoner is that when the system fails you you
have to create your own system and make it so good that it is undeniable. you
do that by forming coalitions, and doing grass roots things. doing whatever
you can to make things less corporate. for every amazon.com event you do, do
a woman's book store also. if you are an upper ladder rock star, lower your
prices.

do whatever you can do".


- --on whether it is difficult to switch gears between the indigo sensibility
and the punk sensibility. i said this punk persona on stag fit her well and
seemed really organic and it left me wondering if this is the beginning of
the end for the indigo girls.

"no it's not. we're stronger than ever. for me it's easy. it's no problem for
me to shift gears. i have the folk seed inside of me and it is just as big as
everything else.  i talk to emily about three times a weeek. and we're going
to start working on a new record this summer. and we're thinking it will be
out about a year from now.

--i asked her if some of the stuff floating around on napster will ever make
its way onto a record, specifically chiapas bound, nueva senoritias, moment
of forgiveness, point of hope and emily's winthrop.

"yeah some of those things might end up on an indigo girls record. i hope
people will still like it if we put it on an album. sometimes people get
stuff on napster and it's cool and fun because they got it on napster. and i
wonder how they'd react if it then shows up on a record. the next record for
us is going  to be more of an acoustic folk record so--"

- --i interruppted and said "you guys have said that the past three times ive
interviewed you over the past four years. is this for real"

- --"yeah. this is really for real this time. it's going to be acoustic.
this is for real."

- --on whether she's particularly worried about how stag sells or whether she
just put it out for her, to get that stuff out.

"im only worried about it to the degree that it is a project that is meant to
support daemon and help us with a flow of money to beef up our community
support and artists grants and things like that. i reaaly want it to sell
well for daemon's sake. in a way this was a benefit for the label. so to the
extent i am promoting this, it's to help it sell for daemon, but i am
limiting myself as to how much i am going to do.

i think it is going to do ok but you never know how something is going to
sell."


- --re whether she thinks hardcore fans will accept this new more electric
stuff. i said that come on now social was their best cd in my estimation --
and i am a long-time fan who loves the early stuff -- but social was a very
accomplished record that got a lot of critical acclaim. but it didnt sell
very well. shaming debuted at 7 on the billboard 200. social debuted at 34
and has been a slow seller. i asked if she thought that was because the
hardcore acoustic fans didnt buy it or didnt like it.

"i think that was our best album too. sometimes  people are sentimental about
stuff. ....sometimes when i go see a band i think 'oh i really want them to
play their older stuff' and then when they do, i realize their older stuff is
not necessarily their best stuff. but yeah it did sell a little slower, and i
dont think it was our hardcore fans not supporting us becasue they always do.
i think some of the other records we used to sell were generated when people
used to hear our stuff on the radio. we just dont get played on the radio
very much anymore. that's what hurt us.


- --on whether there will be another suffragettes tour

"we're going to do another one at some point. its just a matter of finding
the time. its hard to do our tour, the honor the earth tour, and the
suffragettes tour. but we will."

- --on how it is she juggles indigos, daemon, the activism, the solo stuff now
and still appears to even have a personal life...

"(laughing) yeah it appears i have a personal life. it's an illusion.
   im trying to slow down a little bit and depend on my daemon staff more. i
think there's a way to do all that stuff. i dont want to slow down on the
activism. it's hard to do it all but it is so much fun to do it all. "

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------------------------------

date: fri, 9 mar 2001 09:19:17 est
from: lisalisaa@aol.com
subject: [ig-news] really annoying ap review of stag

[sherlyn's note: this message was originally sent to the indigo
girls mailing list at netspace.org.]

.c the associated press


eds: includes cds by amy ray, olu dara, clarence 'tom' ashley, 'before night
falls' soundtrack, mirwais. in 'before night falls' review, beny is cq.

selected new releases:

''stag'' (daemon records) - amy ray

fans of the indigo girls who expect southern-accented folk from amy ray's
first solo release, ''stag,'' will be disappointed. this is not the
guitar-strumming, sweet harmonizing girl we know.

calling it a tribute to her punk-rock roots, ray says the collection of songs
didn't fit on an indigo girls album. she's right. but fans of her scratchy
voice and catchy lyrics may enjoy ''stag'' anyway.

the butchies, now on tour with ray, play on half of the album's songs, giving
it a clangy, garage-band sound.

sometimes it works perfectly. ''laramie'' is a haunting tribute to gay
college student matthew shepard, who was beaten to death in 1998. her lyrics
are chilling: ''those rednecks just doing what the classy folks are thinking.
and tolerance ain't acceptance. i know you want it to be when you're out in
laramie. ... hunting season's over.''

but other times it's just too noisy and ray's voice gets lost in the clutter.

kim curtis, ap writer

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------------------------------

date: fri, 9 mar 2001 11:21:51 -0500
from: sarah pinsker <reinventing1@mindspring.com>
subject: [ig-news] new compilation

[sherlyn's note: this message was originally sent to the indigo
girls mailing list at netspace.org.]

there's a new compilation cd out called octaves beyond silence.

http://www.octavesbeyondsilence.com
"octaves beyond silence was founded and incorporated in the state of
california in 1998 by three artists who are also social justice activists.
octaves seeks to use music and the arts as tools to end violence and
discrimination against women and girls throughout the world."

track listing:

hope by women from rwanda
ugly by rachel z
her by nicki walker
this passage (for the woman who has awoken) by rawa/feng shui
willing to fight by ani difranco
wait for you by earthwurm
girl with the weight of the world in her hands by the indigo girls
candle for claire by alisa fineman
peace by women from rwanda
my vagina was my village by eve ensler *
waltz for nk by sheryl bailey
new little girl by liza figueroa
one r.s. (everyone has the right to live without violence) by allison miller
and feng shui
here i am by viki ford, with kathy lemay
hi-ya, mama! by virginia mayhew
it girl by betty
beautiful by meshell ndegeocello
love by women from rwanda

sarah
reinventing1@mindspring.com
http://www.sarahpinsker.com
http://www.mp3.com/sarahpinsker
http://www.cdbaby.com/pinsker

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------------------------------

date: fri, 9 mar 2001 19:23:19 est
from: ehren mitzlaff <hskrfn68@aol.com>
subject: [ig-news] re: 7" vinyl cover art

[sherlyn's note: this message was originally sent to the indigo
girls mailing list at netspace.org.]

if anyone would like to see the cover art, i have scanned it and put it
on 2
separate webpages.  copy and paste these links exactly as they are:

http://members.aol.com/hskrfn68/ar1.jpg
http://members.aol.com/hskrfn68/ar2.jpg

ehren

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------------------------------

date: fri, 9 mar 2001 19:25:41 est
from: btfenton@aol.com
subject: [ig-news] amy interview (at www.virginmega.com)

[sherlyn's note: this message was originally sent to the indigo
girls mailing list at netspace.org.]

amy ray shines on

as one half of the indigo girls and owner of her own non-profit record label,
it would seem like amy ray's time would be consumed between the two. but this
is not the case for the singer-guitarist, who made time to record her debut
solo record, stag, over this last year. like the title hints at, ray stands
alone on this album without her other musical half emily saliers. unlike
other artists, her solo record does not insinuate the end of the indigo
girls, but rather gives a place for the less expressed side of the singer to
reign.

as years of writing songs slowly ticked by it became clearer and clearer to
the songwriter that she had music piling up with a different style from the
indigo girls. the stacks continued to grow and she knew it was time for her
own record. ray explained the development of her solo project in a recent
interview, b^@^\i felt like i was really ready to do it. i had the confidence. i
had the songs b^@& the bands (ray worked with several different ones on her solo
project) were accessible and in a good place. it felt like a vibrant time,
like let's do it now.b^@^]

over the last year, in between indigo tours the musician jumped in her car
and drove to north carolina where she practiced and recorded with southern
punkers the butchies for a few days in their cold brick basement. b^@^\it was a
completely different world from what i was doing with the indigo girls, it
felt like an escape to another dimension,b^@^] the punk rocker at heart explains.
b^@^\it was good for me because i needed that breath of different air.b^@^]

even though the alt-country punk record was a side project for ray, it stands
on its own with 12-tracks packed full of expressive vocals, energized music
and thought provoking lyrics. for those who aren't fans of the country twang,
don't discard the album because of its first track b^@^\johnny rottentail,b^@^] the
only one of its sort. press skip on song one to discover the fresh organic
music that play-on after the country tune. on b^@^\measure of meb^@^] danielle
howe's powerful emotive vocals add a beautiful melody to the song - a delight
to the ear. ray was excited to work with howe and other artists who have
inspired her. b^@^\most of the people i really am influenced by are indie bands
and a lot of them are on this record. i'm very influenced by the writing of
danielle howe who sang back up on this record.b^@^]

along with howe, ray teamed up with several other of her favorite musicians -
joan jett, kate schellenbach (luscious jackson) and josephine wiggs (the
breeders) b^@^s as well as a couple more hand picked punk acts - the rock*a*teens
and 1945.

in her recent solo work, ray shifted focus from an acoustic guitar to an
electric one, which gives the album a harsher sound driven by the southern
punk rock scene. although she still plays acoustic on one song in addition to
the mandolin on b^@^\johnny rottentailb^@^] and b^@^\lazyboy.b^@^] honest lyrics confessing
ray's own imperfections, frustrations with the music industry, and society's
imposed gender principles show her strength as a songwriter in a new light.

so, how did she discern if a song fit the indigo girls style or not? she just
knew. b^@^\when i'm writing a song, it feels thematically and musically more like
a solo song for some reason. maybe the melody line is really singular and it
doesn't feel like it should have a strong sort of vocal presence. maybe the
theme is more intimate in some ways,b^@^] ray recounts her thought process.
b^@^\having this other project allowed me to have somewhere to put all those
songs as i was writing.b^@^]

ray first became intrigued by the guitar at ten years old. it was then her
motivation to learn the instrument began when she sat down with a neil young
b^@^\learn to playb^@^] guitar book and began to pluck away. after a year, she moved
on to lessons at the ymca, this took her to the next step towards her future
career. as she narrates the beginning of her journey with the guitar, b^@^\it was
an instrument that i attached to because it could be mobile and i wanted to
sing.b^@^]

little did she know at the time that the guitar would lead her down a path to
a successful musical career with the indigo girls and now with a pleasurable
solo-side project, which she appropriately released on her 11-year-old record
label, daemon records. b^@^\emily and i like to take time off between tours. in
our time off we always go back and do our little things that we do. i run my
label, she has a restaurant. it's a good change of pace for me. it also
brings to our attention what we are about.b^@^]

before the indigo girls head back into the studio in july, ray and the
butchies will tour the states in support of stag. they'll begin the trek in
georgia then make their way up to massachusetts and over to california.
thankfully for the do-it-yourself gal, she has a number of people supporting
her efforts.

b^@^\it gets overwhelming. there will be a month where i just feel crazed. i have
a staff of three people working for the label. the indigo girls have a staff,
so we have lots of people helping us out,b^@^] she reveals clearly relieved and
thankful. b^@^\i think it's a lot, but i don't know what else i would do.b^@^]


- - sarah emerson
  march 6, 2001

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------------------------------

date: fri, 9 mar 2001 19:24:57 est
from: btfenton@aol.com
subject: [ig-news] amy review in rolling stone!

[sherlyn's note: this is an edited version of a message which
was originally sent to the indigo girls mailing list at
netspace.org.]

http://www.rollingstone.com/news/newsarticle.asp?nid=13445&cf=1442295

included in the amy review are two video segments!


- --
amy ray goes stag

indigo girl goes solo with a little help from her friends

following her keynote address at the rockrgrl music conference last november
in seattle, indigo girl amy ray gave the eager crowd a preview of her debut
solo album, stag, performing "lucystoners," its name taken from a
turn-of-the-century feminist lucy stone. what caught the media's attention
was the chorus: "janny wenner, janny wenner/rolling stone's most fearless
leader/gave the boys what they deserve/but with the girls he lost his nerve."
but a closer look at the song's lyrics reveals that wenner's merely a
symbolic figure in ray's scathing critique about sexism in the music biz.
ray's just as impassioned on stag's other tracks (released on her own daemon
records label), which address matthew shepard's murder, a tribute to activist
friends in "on your honor," romantic turbulance, and confronting one's own
dark side. ray also gets a little help from the butchies, the rock*a*teens,
1945, joan jett, kate schellenbach (ex-luscious jackson) and josephine wiggs
(ex-breeders).

why did it take so long to release a solo album?

well, i was busy! that was the main problem, the indigo girls and all the
politics and activism has been really time consuming. but i just got of tired
of having all these songs and being like, "i'll do something with them one
day." but once i'd made a commitment, i was like, "well, i gotta do it, even
if it takes all the time off i have."

what kind of statement were you looking to make with the album?

i think i just needed to get it out of my system. i was like, i want to
challenge myself, i want to get out of the roles i normally play in the
indigo girls. i had a lot of things to say lyrically, but it wasn't like some
statement i was trying to make. and the bands i recorded with are bands that
have very strong personalities and i didn't want to mold them in any way.

how did you choose the musicians?
they're people that are big influences on me or my songwriting. "blackheart
today" is almost derivative of the rock*a*teens, and i wanted them to play on
it because it's what i heard in my head when i was writing it. and "late
bloom" felt very natural for 1945 to do. the butchies surprised me, because i
thought i had them pegged. i thought they'd do really good on "mtns of glory"
and "measure of me" -- those are the two extremes they do really well, the
punk sort of ballad and the fast song. i didn't peg them as a "laramie" kind
of band, so that was a great surprise. i knew danielle howle could sing
anything, so i wanted her voice on the record. and joan jett and kate and jo,
i knew what their strong points were.

what does the title refer to?

it's supposed to imply being single, being alone. and there's a lot of gender
stuff intermingled in there; you know, stag party.

it's also an animal.

i think it's a neutered male deer. ha ha. i didn't know that when i thought
of that title.

did you think the message of "lucystoners" might get lost because of using
jann wenner's name?

i think people will focus on that: "you're really brave to one-up jann
wenner! he's never gonna review your record!" but as soon as people start
listening to the lyrics, it's obvious what i'm talking about -- the
consolidation of radio and the media, and the advertisers place in it, and
sexism. and how the old bastion of rock stations and magazines that we
thought were developing and nuturing artists -- maybe they weren't, maybe we
just thought they were. jann wenner is a symbol for feminists of sexism in
the rock industry. it's a man's industry. it's all about girls, guitars, and
sex, but from a heterosexual male perspective, and there's no room for
anything else. and i think we all look at rolling stone as the epitome of it
- -- only because they're the biggest. it doesn't mean it's not going on at
every level, in the mainstream anyway. but i couldn't fit in "bob guccione"!
i probably could've actually, that'll be my next one.

what changes have you seen in the music industry?

you can make a record and you don't have a producer telling you they won't
allow you to play your own instruments 'cause you're a woman. i think the
labels themselves are actually more open to the idea of women in rock. but
radio goes through fluctuations. it's never really been a woman's game, [but]
there'll be a time when it's like, "we're playing ten women in the top
twenty-five instead of none." and right now it's kind of like none. so i've
seen radio change a lot. but i've seen it get worse instead of better.

"johnny rottentail" brought to mind kids who get teased and then go on
shooting rampages.

i was thinking about that a little bit. i wrote it when i was angry at
somebody, and then i was imagining my own contributions to their nature. i
was like "i'm really mad," but by the end of the song i'm like, "but i
probably contributed to the fact that you have such a nasty disposition. and
so i should be mindful of that." and i was thinking about the columbine
shootings, and those bad kids that probably just got tortured their whole
lives and then they can't deal with it anymore.

what about "hey castrator?"

there's a side of me, probably everybody has this, that is kind of negative.
i was thinking of the violent femmes, that high school male adolescent
tendency to objectify every woman that walks by. and i was thinking,
sometimes that part of myself, i just want to cut it out, you know? it's from
my perspective, but i was trying to be general too -- it could be from a
guy's perspective.

"mtns of glory?"

it's just a punk song. it's a breakup song. pretty simple! it was one of the
first ones i wrote for the record. and the butchies and me played the song a
lot live before we recorded it, just for fun.

what is it you'd like people to take away from the album?

i just want people to rock and have a good time. i have no expectations,
honestly. i want people to feel a certain amount of righteous anger. the
album's based in community, it's based on rebellion, and strength. and so i
want people to feel those things. and i want people to check out the other
bands that i played with. that's part of the purpose; for these other bands
to get some recognition.

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------------------------------

date: fri, 9 mar 2001 21:04:16 est
from: ryan simantel <rtsimantel@aol.com>
subject: [ig-news] rolling stone gives stag 3 1/2 stars! heres the review...

[sherlyn's note: this message was originally sent to the indigo
girls mailing list at netspace.org.]

heres the url

http://www.rollingstone.com/recordings/review.asp?aid=2041985&cf=1442295

stag 3 1/2 stars
most solo outings just reinforce what we already know about an artist, but
stag, the coming-out party for amy ray, takes any acoustic-pop expectations
folks might have of the longtime indigo girl and dropkicks them a half-mile
down the road. angry, bold, pointed and eclectic as hell, stag suggests that
nirvana and sleater-kinney are just as important to ray as simon and
garfunkel. she covers familiar ideological turf here, but her assaults on
sexism, prejudice and general hate-mongering take on a distinctly personal
spin, whether packed in brooding, atmospheric pop ("measure of me") or
guitar-blazing missives that recall neil young ("on your honor"). the
embittered punk diatribe "lucystoners," which decries rock's "boys club"
mentality by pinning the tail on the editor/publisher of a certain
long-running music magazine is the sure attention-getter here, but raucous
appalachian folk ("johnny rottentail") and a surprising, tender elliott
smith-style heartbreaker ("lazyboy") help stag strike a balance that makes it
more than just an eye-popper. (david peisner)

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------------------------------

date: sat, 10 mar 2001 09:51:08 -0600
from: "kovacs, mirinda" <mirinda.kovacs@westgroup.com>
subject: [ig-news] 7" single

[sherlyn's note: this message was originally sent to the indigo
girls mailing list at netspace.org.]

just an fyi:
i saw a 7" on sale at ebay today.  here is the link

http://cgi.ebay.com/aw-cgi/ebayisapi.dll?viewitem&item=1415278555

good luck y'all!

mi rinda

"got to learn to respect what we don't understand." -ar

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end of ig-news-digest v4 #44
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