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Riot Grrrl

Riot Grrrl was an underground feminist Punk movement that started in the early 1990s. Riot grrrl bands often address issues such as rape, domestic abuse, sexuality, and female empowerment. As well as being a sub-genre of Punk, Riot Grrrl is also a subculture which includes zines, DIY ethic, art, and political activism. Many Queercore bands were involved in the Riot Grrrl movement such as Fifth Column, Excuse 17, and Team Dresch. Chicano Punk band Spitboy is sometimes associated with Riot Grrrl because of their DIY ethic and feminist ideologies, though they did not identify themselves as Riot Grrrl.

By the mid-1990s, the Riot Grrrl movement had suffered from mainstream media misrepresentations. Riot Grrrls felt that their politically radical aspects had been subverted. However, there are still bands today that believe in the Riot Grrrl philosophy.

Some Riot Grrrl bands:

Heavens to Betsy - Punk band formed in 1991 in Olympia, WA. The band consisted of Corin Tucker on guitar and vocals and Tracy Sawyer on drums. Below is their song Nothing Can Stop Me.
        Wikipedia
        MySpace
        Last.fm
        iLike
   


Sleater-Kinney - Punk band that formed in Olympia, WA. They existed from 1994 to 2006. The band was formed as a side project by Heavens to Betsy's Corin Tucker and Excuse 17's Carrie Brownstein. The two dated each other for a while, and when their respective bands disbanded, Sleater-Kinney became their primary focus. Sleater-Kinney played a vital role in the Riot Grrrl movement with its feminist message. The band's politics concentrated on the LGBT community, anti-war, and opposition to American conservatism. Songs below: The Last Song, Dig Me Out, Turn It On, and Stay Where You Are.
        Wikipedia
        Official Site
        Last.fm
        iLike


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Bratmobile - Bratmobile was a first generation Riot Grrrl band that formed in Olympia, WA in 1991. The band was created by Allison Wolfe and Molly Neuman who collaborated on an influential feminist fanzine called Girl Germs. Below are their songs Don't Ask Don't Tell, Juswanna, and Girlfriends Don't Keep.
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        Last.fm
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Partyline - A Washington D.C. punk band formed in 2004. Not necessarily labeled as Riot Grrrl, but the singer/songwriter is Allison Wolfe from Bratmobile. They are political however, and they sing about being female. Below are their songs Zombie Terrorist and No Romantic.
        Wikipedia
        Official Site
        MySpace
        Last.fm
        iLike


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Bikini Kill - Considered the pioneers of the Riot Grrrl movement. They formed in Olympia, WA in October 1990. The band consisted of Kathleen Hanna, Kathi Wilcox, Tobi Vail, and Billy Karren. Bikini Kill was known for their radical feminist lyrics and fiery performances. Bikini Kill would invite the audience to share their personal experiences of sensitive issues like sexual abuse. They would also pass out lyric sheets to everyone in the audience and almost always demanded that the mosh boys move to the back to allow space in front for the girls. Below are their songs Rebel Girl, I Double Dare Ya, Rah Rah Replica, and Tell Me So.
        Wikipedia
        Bikini Kill Archive
        Last.fm
        iLike



Le Tigre - Le Tigre was formed in 1998 by Kathleen Hanna from Bikini Kill. The band is known for its political lyrics, which deal with issues of feminism and the LGBT community. Member JD Samson is a gay rights activist, and Hanna is a public speaker against sexual abuse. Below are their songs Hot Topic, TKO, and Punker Plus.
       
Wikipedia
        Official Site
        MySpace
        Last.fm
        Facebook
        iLike
        Kathleen Hanna's Blog
       



L7 - Not necessarily considered a Riot Grrrl band. However, in 1991 they formed Rock For Choice, which was a series of concerts and compilation albums designed to raise money and awareness of abortion rights. Rock For Choice was considered part of the Riot Grrrl Movement. Below is L7's song Pretend We're Dead.
        Wikipedia
        Official Site
        MySpace


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7 Year Bitch
- Punk band from Seattle, WA. They did not identify as a Riot Grrrl group, however, they were an all female band and they shared similar ideas with Riot Grrrl, such as a DIY ethnic and feminist ideologies. Songs below: It's Too Late and Kiss My Ass Goodbye.
       
Wikipedia
        MySpace


Jack Off Jill - Formed in Ft. Lauderdale, FL in 1992. The band consisted of all women. Below are their songs Devil with the Black Dress On and Fear of Dying.
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        Official Site
        MySpace
        Last.fm
        iLike



Lunachicks - All women Punk band that formed in 1987 in NYC. They have been on hiatus since 2000. Below is their song 2 Bad For U.
        Wikipedia
        MySpace
        Last.fm
        iLike



For more information on the Riot Grrrl movement and bands, check out the Riot Grrrl Wikipedia.

The Fales Library & Special Collections, part of NYU's Bobst Library is developing a Riot Grrrl Collection. Check out the collections progress by clicking here.

There is a record label that claims to be the largest LGBTQ record label in the world. It is called Riot Grrrl, Ink. Click here to go to their website.

Also, there is a Riot Grrrl Online Community. Check it out here.


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