Let’s hear it for the grrrls

With Reading and Leeds festival yet again filling its stages with the same old skull-crushingly dull penis-owners we’ve heard time and time again, I’m once again reminded why we still need to shout a bit louder about women musicians. Female musicians still have to work a hundred* times as hard to get noticed in the music industry, but are still more likely to be judged on their appearance than their guitar chops. Yet boring bands full of boring blokes fill gig and festival line-ups by default.

* estimated figures

So, enough of the blokes – let’s hear it for the grrrls. March is shaping up to be an awesome month for women-led music, which is fitting, as 8 March is International Women’s Day. Stick these marvellous events in your diary in biro right now:

 

16665603_10154614212299145_2648909347533673409_o2 March     Camden Rocks Presents: Lilith Ai, The Monarch, NW1

Lilith Ai is an extraordinary talent – bone-shakingly effortless vocals blended with fierce and hugely relevant songwriting. Keeping my fingers crossed that this hardworking London girl gets the big break she really deserves. Check our her Bandcamp here.

 

Cowtown3 March     Friendship Never Ends Fest, DIY Space for London

A festival from the amazing folk at Constant Flux, an organisation joining the learning disabled in music with the DIY punk scene. Don’t miss Cowtown and Little Fists.

 

 

16796992_1941308936098144_4814681310867470442_o4 March     IDestroy, Hope & Anchor, N1

Bristol rockers IDestroy kick off a UK mini-tour in London, before heading to Swindon (Sun 5), Bristol (Mon 6), Hatfield (Sat 25) and Birmingham (Thurs 30)

 

 

0803178 March     LOUD WOMEN Who Run the World, Fiddler’s Elbow, NW5

A sisterly partnership for International Women’s Day – LOUD WOMEN team up with Who Run the World promotions for a Women’s Aid fundraiser. A line-up such as dreams are made: The Baby Seals (think Bangles with PMT); Charmpit (classic riot grrrl activist duo), The Menstrual Cramps (playing their first ever gig – watch out for these Brighton babes, they are Trouble!); and The Potentials (Buffycore heroes).

 

Nervous Twitch8 March     Nervous Twitch, Wharf Chambers, Leeds

The stunning Nervous Twitch play an International Women’s Day gig in their hometown, as part of a small UK tour. Keep an eye on their Facebook page for event links.

 

The Fnords11 March     Official 13th Note, Glasgow

Scottish girls do it better. Go see! This awesome vegan cafe venue is hosting ‘hard rocking surf punk riot grrrl three piece’ The Fnords, and first giggers Soor Ploom.

 

 

Jesus and his Judgemental Father17 March     Jesus & His Judgemental Father and Bloom at the Montague Arms, S15

What was I telling you about South London being the new musical epicentre? More queer pop punk than you can shake a stick at: the invite openly states “No dickheads”, and the opening band is called Melt Bananarama. Textbook.

 

 

170317_flyer17 March     LOUD WOMEN, Hope & Anchor, N1

A special LOUD WOMEN night curated by Abigail’s Parties (look out for more gigs from her coming up soon). This one features favourites Fightmilk, Charla Fantasma, TOTP and first-gigging supergroup Spencer.

 

 

CDlaunch_smallRGB18 March     LOUD WOMEN: Volume One – album launch, Sound Lounge, SW17

I couldn’t be more excited about this gig! This amazing compilation album features 21 of the UK’s best alternative grrrl bands and female artists – and 14 of them are playing this launch gig! Hosted at the shiny brand new Sound Lounge in Tooting – it’s an all-ages event, so bring the kids (but maybe send them home before the really sweary bands come on after dark!) Enjoy ArgonautBugeyeDeux Furieuses, DOLLS, FightmilkGladiators Are You Ready?, GUTTFULLJanine BoothLittle FistsMadame SoNervous Twitch, The Ethical Debating Society and The Potentials. All for £6. Crikey. Check out the album here.

 

LIINES9 March     LIINES at Dive NQ, Manchester

I quite expect to see LIINES filling large venues from this year onwards, so while you’ve chance to see them in a small venue (free too!) don’t miss this.

 

 

15541386_1363113747066214_1451193743835905868_n19 March     Girls to the Front, Green Note, NW1

Curated by the talented singer songwriter MIRI, who runs the brilliant Blue Monday acoustic nights (second Monday of the month at the Boogaloo, Highgate). This one-off night features Marine, Ruth Theodore, Oh Sister, Bee Bakare, RoseRed and the Butterflies, and of course MIRI.

 

Mac Stock festival24-25 March            Mac Stock, Warsop, Nottinghamshire

A two-day fundraising festival in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, featuring an impressively wide range of artists, including Charlie Leavy, Kate Auburn, Muddy Summers and the Dirty Field Whores, and The Sunflower Thieves. Fist bumps to the festival organisers, who have actively sought to ensure their line-up was at least 50% female.

 

11703445_908551509181632_3919059860217000899_o25 March      Skinny Girl Diet and The Tuts, Shepherd’s Bush Empire

OK, OK, so the headliners are 90s boy-punks Senseless Things, but I’m just so chuffed to see these two all-girl DIY punk bands playing what will be a sell-out show at a major venue. Things’ guitarist Ben Harding told me “we had something of a history of supporting women in bands, playing with the likes of Mambo Taxi and the Voodoo Queens. It’s another way of continuing the ethos we had back then.”

 

15874961_10154390692306443_3216348737302680618_o30 March     Hijilled, The Thirsty Scholar, Manchester

A fab new regular night for female musicians and poets kicks off with Sophie Sparham, Lou Maclean, The Lab RatsJohnnie Squizzercrow Experiment, and Cosmic Slop. And it’s free!

 

13151481_239897496366954_6072376108531081295_n31 March     Kes’ Conscience and Pussyliquor, The Green Door Store, Brighton

There’s a thriving DIY scene in Brighton at the moment, and these two bands are top notch examples of Brighton riot grrrl and, yes, Brighton rock.

 

 

(I also hear that the mighty Petrol Girls are touring 17-25 March – keep an eye on their Facebook page for details.)

~

All words by Cassie Fox. More from Cassie in her Louder Than War archive here

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