lifeblood: listlogs: 2005v08n045-news

ig-news-digest        wednesday, april 13 2005        volume 08 : number 045

today's subjects:
  [ig-news] ny post "prom" review     [sherlyn koo <>]
  [ig-news] athens banner-herald article  [sherlyn koo <sherlyn@pixelopolis.]
  [ig-news] after ellen interview in full  [sherlyn koo <sherlyn@pixelopolis]
  [ig-news] chicago sun-times "prom" review  [sherlyn koo <sherlyn@pixelopol]
  [ig-news] herald-sun article        [sherlyn koo <>]
  [ig-news] amy's tour dates          [sherlyn koo <>]
  [ig-news] help prom reach amazon's top 10!               []


date: tue, 12 apr 2005 19:36:47 +1000
from: sherlyn koo <>
subject: [ig-news] ny post "prom" review

hey folks,

here's a review of "prom" from the new york post.  read it online at:


- ---begin forwarded article---
amy ray - "prom"
- ----------------------------------------------------------------------

april 10, 2005 -- amy ray

3 stars

daemon records

who said, "everything you need to know to get through life you learn
in high school"? actually, that was me, but amy ray, half of the
famous indigo girls, reiterates the notion on her second solo album,

leaving her acoustic guitar in the closet and her folk croon in the
coffeehouse, ray creates rock that lies between the whip-smart lash of
r.e.m. and the country sass of tom petty's heartbreakers.

the music smartly dovetails with the lyrics that fathom hormone howls
and rebel yells.

ancient ray did herself proud in remembering both the whines and roses
of being young.

she does fall off the horse a bit with the song "rodeo," and is
completely flat for "pennies on the track," but fortunately, the
remaining eight tunes range form good to excellent.

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date: tue, 12 apr 2005 19:31:42 +1000
from: sherlyn koo <>
subject: [ig-news] athens banner-herald article

hey folks,

sorry this is a bit late (i'm a few days behind).  this is an article
about amy from the athens banner-herald on april 7; you can read it
online at


- ---begin forwarded article---
all dressed up ...
amy ray revisits high school issues on 'prom'

by julie phillips

on her sophomore solo release "prom," amy ray fearlessly delves into
the formative years of high school. what results is an excellent rock
album that easily manages, like her previous release, "stag" (2001),
to showcase ray as a solo artist outside her better-known identity as
one-half of folk-rock heroes the indigo girls.

"this wasn't as much a therapeutic experience (as writing 'stag'),"
she says. "it was more about things i already knew about myself and
looking at why and how i got there - and it's about how other people
get there, to where they are in their lives (as adults)."

in high school, we find the archetypal roles, she says. "the outsider
who's actually the leader, the loser, the freak, the nerd. ... we have
these images and somewhere in there, we find ourselves. and
eventually, from there, we break out and grow."

but breaking out and growing requires a certain amount of courage -
something that comes out both in the hard-driving rock of songs like
"blender" and throughout much of the album's lyrical content.

in "rural faggot," for instance, she portrays a young man who's gay
but not yet able to come to terms with himself: "and your daddy asks
me/'when is he gonna be a man?'/i know you want to change the truth/we
were made by nature's fools/so you ride all night long/with your boys
in those muscle cars ... and laugh at the faggots/until the girls look
pretty and/until you feel strong ..."

though ray had intended to work with birmingham-based punk rockers the
butchies on this album, as she'd worked with the band on "stag," the
band was on the road, and it just didn't work out. "it was a difficult
decision (to make the album without them) because they were a big part
of what motivated me to make ('stag') and i really missed them. but i
don't like to repeat myself," she says, adding she likes how "prom"
turned out.

musicians on the album include bass player jody bleyle (team dresch),
who ray describes as "one of my favorite musicians," as well as
bleyle's bandmate donna dresch on electric guitar on several songs;
birmingham's nineteen forty-five members katharine mcelroy, hunter
manasco and will lochamy; kate schellenbach (beastie boys, luscious
jackson); atlanta's brandon bush and michelle malone; and danielle
howle. athens musicians andy lemaster (now it's overhead) and david
barbe, who mixed the album at his chase park transduction studios in
athens, also appear on the album.

athens has been familiar territory of late - promoting "prom" brings
ray back to the 40 watt club tuesday - a month after a sold-out indigo
girls show there. playing solo with her band, she says, is a different
experience all around. "it's a pretty much break-even venture," she
says of her do-it-yourself approach. "but it's nice to have a change

amy ray
gretchen phillips and friends, athens boys choir
when: doors open 8:30 p.m. tuesday, april 12
where: 40 watt club, 285 w. washington st.
cost: $12 in advance
call: (706) 549-7871

published in the athens banner-herald on thursday, april 7, 2005

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date: tue, 12 apr 2005 19:59:43 +1000
from: sherlyn koo <>
subject: [ig-news] after ellen interview in full

hey everyone,

here's the text of the after ellen interview with amy - as mentioned
before, you can read it online at

- -sherlyn

- ---begin forwarded article---
interview with amy ray
by gregg shapiro, april 11, 2005

amy rays first solo disc, stag, expanded the harder rocking side that
she exhibited on occasion as one of the indigo girls. her stunning new
album prom (daemon)--available this week--expands on that concept,
with punk rock flair and some of the hardest hitting lyrics shes ever
written. the blistering put it out for good, driver education,
blender and sober girl, put the current passel of punk rock
poseur-boys to shame, while rural faggot is devastating in its bare
bones honesty.

rent a tux, buy a corsage, and attend amy rays prom. what criteria do you use, when you are writing songs,
to determine whether a song is better suited to an amy ray solo disc
or an indigo girls album?

amy ray: its hard to know anymore (laughs). i used to think it was
partly subject matter, in that my solo stuff seems to be a little more
intimate. more graphic, i guess. intimate in an edgy way, and really
singular in that its hard for two people to sing the songs that are
on my solo records. it doesnt make as much sense. musically, i found
that i enjoy writing very specifically acoustic music for indigo girls
and sometimes some electric stuff spills over into there. if im
writing an electric song thats more bombastic or fast and loud, i
automatically put it over in my solo pile these days. some of them
made it onto the last indigo record because we were going in that
direction. i still felt like i missed having a split, really doing a
folk, acoustic, rootsy thing with the indigo girls, rather than trying
to put us into the electric context all the time. i think we can do
it; there are a couple of records where i think weve done it really
well. theres something about the opportunity to do the rootsy music
that i dont want to miss out on. i try to take advantage of the
strong points of what i think the indigo girls are.

ae: as with stag, on which you were joined by the butchies, joan jett,
kelly hogan and josephine wiggs, to name a few, prom has a stellar
line-up of guest musicians, including return appearances by kate
schellenbach (of luscious jackson fame) and danielle howle, as well as
jody bleyle and donna dresch (of team dresch fame) and the band
nineteen forty five. what is involved in your process of choosing
musicians with whom to record?
ar: its usually people that are really inspiring to me musically.
people that ive wanted to play with, that i have some sort of shared
musical context in common. i played with nineteen forty five on the
last (solo) record and i didnt feel like i used them enough. i love
them as a band; theyre definitely one of my favorites. i knew right
after i finished stag, that i wanted to bring them back and have them
do a big chunk of the next record. i even thought about them doing the
whole thing. i didnt feel like i used kate enough on the last record
either. they were these two entities that i felt like i didnt take
advantage of the way i should have the last time around and i promised
myself i would this time. kate was playing with jody out in l.a. and
asked me if i wanted to get together with them and jam, way before i
started this record. it felt really good. in my mind, i thought half
the record would be them and the other half would be nineteen forty
five, which was different from stag because it was a little more
spread out among different bands. i just settled on those two. and
then donna and danielle came into the picture later. i used michelle
malone to do some guitar stuff. i filled in the pieces that i was
missing after i had started tracking with both of those bands.

ae: you make reference to gender in put it out for good and
blender  which is a term that has been coming into popular use in
recent years. what does it mean to you?
ar: i separate gender from sexuality usually. your gender is different
from who you want to sleep with, in other words. when i use the word
gender, i mean it as each person has their own gender and it falls
somewhere in the spectrum between male and female. i think some people
are really far to one end or the other and some people feel that they
are in the middle. i look at it as a self-identification issue and as
something, in the context of queer rights and the queer movement and
queer vernacular as being something that we should have been talking
about for the last hundred years (laughs).

its a really important part of who we are as a queer community and
its one of the things that bridge us with the straight community. i
think there are many straight people, sexuality wise, who probably
feel ambiguous about their gender. its one place where we can connect
and understand that everything is much more fluid than we think it is.
emotionally and mentally and spiritually, we shift more than our
bodies allow us to.

ae: prom also contains a recurring high school theme, as heard on put
it out for good and driver education. are these songs based on your
own experiences in combination with what you are seeing now in high
school kids?
ar: yes, its definitely both. although i wouldnt say that im in
touch with what every high school thinks in every part of the country
(laughs). its so different from one region to the next. its my
little neck of the woods. for some reason this record became thematic
around that time period. a lot of it references things that i went
through and images that i remember from high school and i put it in
the context of some high school experiences of kids i know now or
things that i see on the news or that i read or kids that i talk to at
shows. i probably fell into the trap a couple of times, but i didnt
want it to be too sentimental about back in the good old days when i
was in high school (laughs).

i think high school was a coming of age for me, more than college was.
im more attached to the things i went through in high school and the
teachers that i had. that was when i started singing and playing in
clubs. thats when emily and i started the indigo girls and thats
when i started finding my political self. college was a really great
time for me academically, but i was already playing music and i was
already an activist and i was already gay (laughs). all of those
things happened to me in high school. when i have a touchstone to talk
about activism or politics or rebellion or identity, high school
usually becomes that.

ae: the song on prom that i keep coming back to is rural faggot. you
shine an unyielding light on homophobia, and by the time the song
reaches its dramatic and ironic conclusion, you have rewarded the
listener ten-fold.
ar: im glad that you found that ending to be like that. the song was
pretty dark and i didnt intend it to be a hopeless song. it was meant
to be like this is what youre going to go through and its going to
be all right. but this is the process that is happening right now
that you may not see. i wrote if from the rural area that i live in
and a couple of my neighbors and their kids and these boys that ive
seen grow up over the last twelve years and become teenagers and then
leave the house. some of them are gay and some of them arent. many of
them went through a period of gay bashing and would tell me about it
(laugh of disbelief), as if i would think it was funny. they knew i
was gay and i dont know why they thought i would think it was funny.
they wanted to get approval from me for something that was obviously
not something that i would agree with.

they saw me as different, because im a gay woman, and these were all
guys. they saw a real difference between gay women and gay men. that
is a real hallmark of living in a rural area. in a rural area, you
almost expect the flannel and the almost mannish style of dress. but
if guys walk around with a purse, theres just no place for that in a
rural area (laughs). theres no place for a man who is effeminate or
for a man who isnt effeminate, but is gay. its a really hard road,
and thats why i made it (the song) specifically about guys. its
something i wanted to talk about because its something i see a lot
where i live.

ae: the closing track, let it ring, is the sound of someone trying
to wrestle their god back from the christian right, and it has this
gospel fervor to it.
ar: i started it after a pro-choice march and then merged it into gay
rights issues, too. because (laughs) often when were doing something
that is pro-choice, we also get picketed by people who are anti-gay,
too. they conflate the two for some reason. i have a lot of friends
who really struggle because they want to go to church but they dont
feel like its their place anymore. there is not enough

i have people in my family that are gay and really religious and
struggle with wanting to be a part of a religious community, but also
feel like they need to boycott it if its not going to accept them. i
wrote it thinking about them and wanted to start out with this
caustic, sarcastic thing, because i remember the womens march in d.c.
and one of the most striking images was these young, almost punk kids
with the pro-life signs with pictures of the dead fetuses standing on
the sidewalk that were part of a big church group. it was striking to
me that their parents had passed down all this hate and fervor to them
and they were just taking the torch up. i got the idea for writing the
song being really sarcastic and then letting it move into a place that
was about love.
ae: every one of these songs  blender and driver education to
name a coupl-- rocks as energetically as say, the new green day, yet
because of clear channel stranglehold on the airwaves, they may never
be heard by the mass audience they deserve.
ar: (laughs) they probably wont.

ae: as an artist who operates and records her own independent record
label, how do you get beyond that?
ar: we just say were going to do college radio. were going to try to
get it on a couple of rock stations. it probably wont because im gay
and im female and im forty, which is a big three strikes against me
for rock and roll stations. radio play is icing on the cake for me
when i finish a record. the great part of it is feeling really proud
of the experience of playing with kate and jody and donna and nineteen
forty five, people that i really admire and im even nervous to play
with at first. just having gone through that process is a big deal to
me. and then i get to go out and play the songs live; thats the fun
part, playing in clubs and having a band. the radio and the fact that
it will never be a big record like green day, thats life and thats
my choice.

i choose to go down a certain path. i choose not to try to appear
straight, when im gay, and to make a certain kind of music that is
not as acceptable from women. i just hope that in the spirit of the
distillers or some of these great female-fronted bands, that radio
would recognize some of it. its not just--there are a lot of women
making great rock and punk music. somebodys got to break some ground
and you hope you can help do it.

ae: i recently interviewed lea delaria about her new jazz vocals cd
and we talked about how starbucks, of all places, has become a venue
for people of a certain age to discover music that they wouldnt
otherwise hear on the radio or mtv. do you think there is a place for
prom on the counter at starbucks?
ar: probably not (laughs). i dont want to dis starbucks too much, i
have so many friends who work there and they have great benefits and
stuff. and every time i say something about how we should go to our
local coffee shop instead of starbucks, theyre all like (angrily)
amy! (laughs) i agree that it is a place where you are going to hear
stuff that youre not going to hear on the radio, and thats a good
thing. but at the same time, its this whole world of lifestyle

starbucks markets this certain kind of music that creates this
interesting atmosphere and community within their shops, but its all
in the name of profit. it feels funny to me. indigo girls were asked
to do a couple of things and i said no. there was one thing that we
were included on--i think it was love songs picked by sarah
mclachlan--and that was cool. it was one of emilys songs, so she had
the say-so on that. i still havent figured out that piece yet. i
think that that company (starbucks) is the lesser of evils as far as
companies go, in a big way. but its still wiping out interesting
little community coffee houses in certain areas. i dont necessarily
believe that if youre really good youll survive that. its hard to
survive in hard economic times.

ae: and finally, because of the albums title, did you, in fact,
attend your high school prom?
ar: oh, yeah. i was very involved in high school (laughs). thats
whats so weird. i was a real black, but i was president of my class
and i went to the prom, whether i had a date or not. i had a boyfriend
for a few proms, and then, my senior year i had a girlfriend, but i
didnt take my girlfriend to the prom. it wasnt that far along yet. i
think we went alone and met up there. yeah, i went, i was involved.
i went to the football and basketball and baseball games. i played
sports and was really active. it was still that high school time,
where everythings hard (laughs).

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date: tue, 12 apr 2005 19:38:40 +1000
from: sherlyn koo <>
subject: [ig-news] chicago sun-times "prom" review

hey folks,

another "prom" review, this one from the chicago sun-times (online at

- -sherlyn

- ---begin forwarded article---
**1/2 / amy ray, "prom" (daemon)

wow -- amy goes emo. the solo career of this half of the indigo girls
has tilled her southern rock and indie music roots, and amy ray's
second individual outing continues that trend. the difference is how
nostalgic this disc is -- she's singing a lot about high school, about
the aches and urges of adolescence. after blending so beautifully with
co-indigo girl emily saliers for a few albums, it's no doubt a relief
to crank up "the latest version of the clash" and think about the more
rambunctious and carefree old days -- building homecoming floats,
putting pennies on railroad tracks, "films and drills and safety
illustrations / the crushed cars of drivers' education."

on "prom," ray empathizes with outcasts -- "all the punks and the
queers and the freaks and the smokers" -- and praises the young man
who's "strong enough to be a country boy who's gay" ("rural faggot").
her observations have no distance; she knows these outsiders
intimately, and she alternatingly admires and champions them.

all would make for a textured and rewarding listening experience if
only the production were better. the guitars and backing vocals
sometimes sound like test tracks, waiting for better, more measured
recordings to take their place. or maybe that's just amy being emo and
lo-fi. a double play? well, a nice seventh-inning stretch, anyway.

thomas conner

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date: tue, 12 apr 2005 20:09:21 +1000
from: sherlyn koo <>
subject: [ig-news] herald-sun article

hey folks,

(can you tell i'm working through a backlog of news articles?  almost
there, i think...)

here's an article from the herald-sun, a newspaper from the
durham/chapel hill nc area.  you can read it online

- -sherlyn

- ---begin forwarded article---
indigo girl takes on coming-of-age issues

by rebecca bailey : the herald-sun
apr 10, 2005 : 6:10 pm et

carrboro -- after 20-plus years of touring, both as an indigo girl
and, since 2001, as a solo artist, singer-songwriter amy ray doesn't
get tired of the road.

"we make every show different," said ray, speaking from columbus,
ohio, where, in a few hours, she would perform as the rock-oriented
half of the indigo girls.

"even if we're playing the same set," added ray, "we're with a
different audience every night and different musicians are opening for
us and joining in. that's what makes each show special."

area fans who have waited four years for ray to release a second solo
album on her independent label, daemon records, have two reasons to
celebrate this week: on tuesday, ray releases her new rock/punk cd
"prom," its hard-driving rhythms matched by ray's powerful, "growly"

and at 8 p.m. on wednesday, ray will rock the cat's cradle in carrboro
for a one-night-only stop.

joining her on stage will be bass guitarist jody bleyle and drummer
will lochamy -- who also play on the new album -- and lead guitarist
les nuby. opener gretchen phillips likely will sit in.

"prom," said ray, which was put together "over the period of a year,
in between indigo tours," is very different from her first solo album,
"stag," released in 2001 to critical acclaim.

"thematically it's pretty different," said ray. "the songs come from a
different perspective."

that perspective is from the difficult borderland between youth and
adulthood, when the struggle toward self-discovery and maturity
begins. "at first, i didn't have a theme in mind. the first song
written [for "prom"] was 'put it out for good'--it was geared toward
high school. then i wrote 'pennies on the track,' and i saw this trend
or concept coming on."

the songs on "prom" involve coming of age and "fighting for your
humanity in the company of others," ray said. she emphasized that the
struggle to accept oneself and find community amid racism, homophobia
and sexism, and to stand up for what one believes in "begins in
puberty but continues throughout life."

the ultimate freedom, said ray, "is to be so comfortable in your own
skin that you're never hung up about your body. to be so liberated
from your form that you're pure energy and spirit. if you can be that,
you will have the energy and the resources to achieve, and create

in addition to its theme, "prom" is different, said ray, "because of
the musicians involved. this record is based around two different
rhythm sections"--former team dresch and former beastie boys artists
in los angeles; and the birmingham, ala., garage band nineteen

"i wanted to use particular players in different ways," noted ray. "in
a sense, 'prom' was written for the musicians."

these artists, and others on her independent label, are "the people i
look to for inspiration," she said. "what they're doing is important
to me."

ray founded her not-for-profit label in 1990 to provide diversity in
the white male-dominated punk rock world. "punk rock is still a
pioneering effort for women," she said. "there are lots of women
singing, but few listeners. when a band is fronted by a woman, it's
tough to get air time."

diversity is the key to daemon's success, ray believes. the label's
artists, female and male, provide "all kinds of music for all ages,
from punks to folkies."

about daemon's title, ray said, "i was reading a book about art and
commerce, how to make the two work together without compromising
either. i came across the term 'daemon,' a greek word loosely meaning
'your gifts, your power.' it seemed to fit."

ray's considerable gifts and power will be on display wednesday night
at the cat's cradle.

- ---

what: amy ray performing live
when: wednesday, 8 p.m.
where: cat's cradle, 300 e. main st, carrboro

cost: $12 advance; $14 day of show advance tickets are available by
phone at 967-9053, on the web at: or at cat's
cradle, schoolkids records and cd alley

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date: tue, 12 apr 2005 21:45:18 +1000
from: sherlyn koo <>
subject: [ig-news] amy's tour dates

hey folks,

i don't recall seeing the entire list posted, so here it is - all of amy's "prom"
tour dates, as listed on the daemon site.


- --
04/12 athens, ga - 40 watt - opening act: athens boys choir and gretchen phillips
04/13 carrboro, nc - cat's cradle - opening act: athens boys choir and gretchen phillips
04/15 philadelphia, pa - north star - opening act: cordero
04/16 northampton, ma - pearl street - opening act: cordero
04/18 boston, ma - paradise rock club - opening act: snow machine
04/19 new york, ny - bowery ballroom - opening act: snow machine
04/21 washington, dc - black cat - opening act: abc & snow machine
04/22 charlottesville, va - starr hill music hall - opening act: abc & snow machine
04/23 asheville, nc - grey eagle - opening act: abc & snow machine
04/24 atlanta, ga - variety playhouse - opening act: group sex & snow machine
05/02 boulder, co - fox theatre & cafe - opening act: family outing
05/04 salt lake city ut - lo fi cafe - opening act: family outing
05/06 seattle, wa - neumos crystal ball reading room - opening act: family outing
05/07 vancouver, bc - the red room - opening act: family outing
05/08 portland, or - crystal ballroom - opening act: family outing
05/10 san francisco, ca - slim's - opening act: family outing
05/12 los angeles, ca - el rey theater: la - opening act: family outing
05/13 santa ana, ca - galaxy theatre - opening act: family outing
05/14 tucson, az - plush room - opening act: family outing

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date: tue, 12 apr 2005 10:28:24 edt
subject: [ig-news] help prom reach amazon's top 10!

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

    let's help amy  ray's prom reach amazon's top 10!

we'd love to see this, and you  can help make it happen!

all you need to do is go to:


and download "driver education" and "covered for you" for free!
right now the songs are ranked number 11 and 12, and i know we can
move them into the top 10.


lisa & dee
daemon street team coordinators

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end of ig-news-digest v8 #45

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