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Ladies Love Bass Pt. 1

October 2, 2010

Santos Summer of '09

wadatah, my main damies.

it has been a real long time since i last posted here.  i have two main (typical) excuses as to why i haven’t posted:

  • i had to handle my business.  when this blog first started out, i was unemployed and i divided my time between halfheartedly looking for jobs and internetting.  i ended up finding a few jobs in the restaurant industry that left me exhausted and made it even harder for me to jump-start my career in historic preservation/urban planning–the foremost interests in life.  at some point, i just had to cut music and the internet out and focus my grind on escaping underemployment and its subsequent depression.
  • general apathy about music blogging.  the ongaku club project originally arose out of the rich email communications between andres, jenny and i after our trip to japan in january ’09.  the sounds were all new, the mp3s juicy, the djs stellar.  ongaku club pushed me to check out all of these scenes, labels and people that were all new to me and that i wanted to share to the world.  looking back on the posts, many seem pretty innocent because we weren’t actually any intense fieldwork–all of these networks were already established and buzzing.  i can’t remember a time before i knew about kingdom or uproot andy and yet many of those posts serve as happy evidence of a time of self-discovery for me.  i am now friends with a lot of the (mostly goofy) people i only heard about last year and it feels a little redundant for me to post about something that is probably already on major outlets like xlr8r, the fader, or fact magazine or even on smaller, but well-established blogs like dave quam‘s or bootlegumachine. additionally, if i feel like sharing, i could just tweet about music i like and call it a day.

that being said, i’ve felt a need for a soapbox to express my intense frustration about the lack of female representation particularly amongst bloggers and djs who function as the arbiters of the waves of global sounds that have typified the 00’s for me. wayne’s recent thoughtful and heartfelt post on the responsibility and creativity that goes into selecting/curating/distilling/cultivating sounds from the streets to potential fans left me a little sad to see so few women in the world that i very much feel a part of.  i admit to having aspirations myself to dj/produce/get involved in the industry but on each occassion, i didn’t see the path going in a gratifying direction.  each time that i dipped my toes in the pool, i was left cold by how much male ego drove everyone’s work and tastes. and a lot of it is bros looking out for bros, which is sweet, but makes it extremely difficult for a woman to edge herself in without also having to perpetuate the bro down.  “i think its subtly about dudes who were too shook to ask girls to dance and started djing instead” is a typical response by people when i try discuss this frustration with them.

so yeah, what about us? what about the visible cadre of booty shakers who show up on cue to every half-baked weekly in town?  who surprise djs with requests that reveal their hidden knowledge of floor-pounders? who actually participate in the underpaid freelance writing economy but rarely get shoutouts?

this is the first of hopefully several roundup of ladies who share their love of music with the world.  i am going to focus on writers right now, but more is forthcoming.  this is a personal one too because i feel extra blessed to also having these women as frequent dance partners:

  • puja patel has the most basscentric nightlife column for the village voice and is not afraid to give a bad party a bad review (and alienate diplo for dissing his basketball skills).
  • lillian wohl is on her grind getting her doctorate in ethnomusicology and has far more secret knowledge about this stuff than i could hope to learn this lifetime.
  • my life partner claire frisbie founded the most successful cosmopolatino website in the country and jokes that she and nuria started remezcla as a way to interview dudes in bands that they had crushes on and that is awesome and gully.
  • speaking of nuria net costas, she chronicles latin music culture for the ny daily news (amongst so many other things that is hard for me even to keep track).
  • i met talya cooper from the ole wbar days and her eloquent reviews in dusted force me to check out indie stuff i really don’t know much about.
  • and the most obvious hero that i have an embarrassingly large lady nerd crush, so much so that the few times we’ve chatted, i’ve devolved into blathering, julianne escobedo shephard.

so much love and admiration.  i am still not quite over my bloggers apathy. and i admit that my tastes have veered either more weird, mainstream or retro so i will probably need to exise some listening habits in order to sustain my posts.  but i am already working on ladies love bass pt. 2 which will focus on djs and hopefully ladies love bass pt. 3 will focus on artists.  if anyone has any ideas on ladies love bass: producers edition let me know, because that is actually where i feel we are most needed/alientated.


2 Comments leave one →
  1. planetaclaire permalink
    October 5, 2010 10:52 am

    hehehe for the record, that was a joke (and at times, a definite perk). not WHY we started it.

  2. October 17, 2010 10:57 pm

    we were taken aback by the access and invitations we got to hang and interview such dudes, hence we did

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