A while back I had made a post that just scratched the surface on the Riot Grrrl Movement. I basically just posted their manifesto and said cool, I want in! Since then I’ve taken the time to read up on what the hell happened in the 90s. But once I got to the 90s I needed to understand what happened before the conception of the Riot Grrl Movement. So it calls for an investigation on the history of Punk. Punk as we all know (hopefully) is completely tied to the Riot Grrl identity.
We all know the story, the myth, of Punk. That it started because everyone was sick of hearing ballads being sung by guys with no balls. That it started in either New York or London. The myth goes on to tell that the people involved in this particular genre of music where classified as outsiders. They didn’t want cookie cutter homes, didn’t want a nine to five prison camp and they did not accept that a human’s destiny was a wife/husband and 2.5 children. That of course lead to the ugly side: the marketing side. This “punk” was a great image to sell and those who had the talent to sell dreams made some bucks out of it. Needless to say, some really great bands came out all of this, including my favorite The X-Ray Spex. The Punk scene also allowed for woman (as showcased by the front woman of the X-Ray Spex) to explore different forms of identity which did not include being docile and prim. Just look at the woman exploring her creativity! (Don’t we all love her?)
As all good things must come to an end, punk and its mixture of men and woman ended. As all things do, it bleed into the mainstream. Some historians have pointed out that it turned into HARDCORE. But regardless of what happened, the important thing to note, is that music for those women that where interested in that DYI (Do it yourself) attitude, screaming, being angry but most importantly venturing to be your own ugly self ended. The scene became aggressive, pogo dancing turned into mosh pits where women where not invited (even now you only see two or three ladies in a mosh pit). Punk morphed into something that did not include women. It went through countless revivals through the 80s and in the 90s the time came for Riot Grrl.
And it is here where that the tale of why Riot Grrrl started that I will end this post. Next time we will get into the nitty gritty of things. I promise!