Fuck this good girl shit!

“Mostly when people think about female DJays they expect them to, like, show their tits. We’re not like that. We’re all about the music.” — from an interview I just saw on Italian DeeJay TV.

I wish someone would say “We DJ naked because it’s all about the music and not about brand name labels on our clothing or promoting capitalism.”

———–

Presumably these women think they’re presenting a “girl power” vision, but here’s my beef: I’m seeing this all too often in media–that women have been so beaten into the choice between being a sex symbol and being “all about the music,” that they’ve even internalized it for themselves! That they even place the yoke around their necks–or around those “other girls” when it doesn’t need to exist.

I just watched two female DJs give a television interview and I have to write about this theme. I don’t want to mention their name because I don’t want this blog entry to be mis-interpreted as a personal attack on them specifically; I’m sure they’re cool and smart and talented. But I do have to use their interview as a jumping off point for something that’s bothering me a lot.

So in this interview, the journalist asks why there aren’t more girl DJ’s. The two girls look around thinking about it and then say, first, that it’s a hard life and a lot of girls maybe should be at home cooking pasta. (hahaha, they laugh) While that was clearly a joke, they continue to fumble for an explanation and then say that they just try to do their thing and not think about it too much. Im assuming they mean something like, we just try to be “beyond gender” and just be the best we can be.

Fair enough, but I think the issue needs to be complicated and interrogated and a public that sees only this response loses a chance to think more about an important topic.

So then the other woman says, presumably in response to the original question, “well mostly when people think of girl DJays they think the girl is going to take out her tits.” (personally I don’t think of that–but whatever.) “And for us,” she says, “it’s all about the music.” Now, presumably she means, “it’s not about being male or female and it’s not about using sex to our advantage.”

Now even though she didn’t say that, TV interviews can be really nervous-chatter-inducing, so I’m trying to interpret what she means–even though, actually, in this case, the journalist never said anything about sex.

I know these two DJs are actually tying to present an image of strong female power, somehow I feel this from them, but I think this argument buys into an ultimately patriarchic idea–which is that women have to be hyper conscious of their bodies lest someone want to fuck them and forget that they are also smart or talented.

Well, I don’t give a shit! I’m so tired of hearing these kind of statements, not least because I worry how they fall on the ears of young men and women. As a performer I almost always get naked or semi naked onstage and I’ll tell you why. Cause I like it.

I’ve gotten asked by countless journalists as well as members of the audience whether or not its really about the music, whether it’s “more about show or more about music.” Since the question asks me to quantify something that can’t be quantified, it’s faulty on more than one level. I’ve gotten audience members who say, well don’t your audiences just get distracted so they can’t listen to the music? Or they say, “you know, you don’t need to do THAT.” Presumably THAT means overtly using sex as part of my show.

I know I don’t need to show my tits onstage just like I know I don’t need to wear a green cardigan!

For the record, I never do anything onstage cause someone tells me I NEED to, but I’m always open to fresh new suggestions.

No one is asking Iggy Pop why he has his shirt off all the time or any other male rock n roller, famous or not. Believe me, it’s not just because it’s hot up onstage! Men know they look sexy with their shirt off too. You think they aren’t using “sex” to some degree? Of course they are.

Girls have to always be explaining their bodies to interviewers. So much so that they even do it before someone asks, dividing themselves between themselves and the others, making sure to say, we’re not like THEM, those other girls.

“We’re all about the music.”

Well good for you–But so am I and I don’t give a shit what body parts you show or don’t show onstage. A performer knows that what they’ve got onstage is (in no particular order) one, the music, and, two, how they look, and three, how they move, and four, what they say. And every performer has some image onstage–even if it’s a so-called anti-image look …Nevertheless we all have some image.

As a dancer I love the naked body. You can see how the body moves, the muscles, the motion. It’s sexy and it’s beautiful! Way more beautiful than most fashions and most clothing.

I wish someone would say “We DJ naked because it’s all about the music and not about brand name labels on our clothing or capitalism.”

I actually worry about what young girls and guys think when hear their favorite girl DJays say, “people mostly think of girl DJays as showing their tits and we’re not like that.” This actually just puts an idea in their head that needn’t be there.

The truth is, guys aren’t thinking about being more conservative to set a “positive” example to young boys. Most of them are just too shy to do anything sexually racy, and for those who aren’t, the sky is the limit! Think: dicks shit assholes and blood! Think GG Allen! Think about the history of rock n roll!

I worry because I know guys buy into this and when they hear a girl say something they’ve been taught it further legitimizes a sexist orientation. It’s more fodder to believe that girls who do show their tits aren’t worth taking seriously, to increase the number of hoops girls already have to jump in order to be taken seriously in a primarily male world. It further puts up barriers and creates the idea that only men know what it really takes.

Furthermore dialogue such as this continues to subtly propagate our sex negative culture wherein sex workers are stigmatized and disrespected because of their work–work where girls really are showing their tits and cunts to receive cash for sexual titillation. We can never end the negative aspects of the sex industry so long as women and men in the sex industry are scorned. When the day comes that they are valued for the contributions they make to society as teachers and healers we will have an entirely new economy around them.

I want young girls to know: MAKE HONEST MUSIC and ART FROM THE HEART. Be disciplined enough to make good music and art–DJ/electronic/electric/acoustic/dancing–get really good at what you do. Focus on that … But what you do on stage with your body is your business and anything you do, whether it’s conceptual “cool” beautiful sexy punk sweaty bloody pretty whatever it is–its all just icing on the cake and forget about anything anyone says about it. GO FOR IT.

Now to the other important and interesting question: why aren’t there more girl DJays (historically). I think there are lots of great ones up and coming! And there are some that never got big or aren’t heard about? If we were already “beyond gender” in the seventies and eighties, why didn’t more girls get into DJaying? Were we really beyond gender at all? Were they not encouraged to be DJays? Are they not taught enough by other girls? Do we need more of a girls club to match the boys club? We need more girl DJays!

Thoughts?

5 december 2011
In the hotel in Baluno Italy

– www.alfabus.us


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