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Customer Review

on 13 September 2000
This 1996 publication remains a classic. Don't be put off by Andrea Juno's introduction where her sometimes valid concerns alternate with obscurantist ramblings. Yes, she talks about e.g. "alternative discourses and economies" but she's not quite a moonbat and proves herself a deft & intelligent interviewer. There's a Women in Rock map of Canada & the USA with the names of female musicians geographically arranged; I was pleased to see Marianne Faithfull located just off the coast of South Carolina, representing the UK with 3 other artists. A discography & list of equipment used by the musician/s appear on the final page of every musician interview.

My favorite artist, Jarboe (ex Swans) is the first interviewee; congrats to both Juno & Jarboe for a constantly engaging discussion & absolute honesty on topics that encompass everything from popular music, the music business, childhood, family & growing up, other prominent artists, the media, relationships, culture & much else besides. Lots of original & some controversial photographs & a few album covers adorn this interview. I found info here that is not available anywhere else.

Some of the artists are beyond what you might call "obscure," like Tribe 8, Valerie Agnew, Lois Maffeo & Naomi Yang. In between, I would say, come Kathleen Hanna, Kendra Smith & Phranc, whilst June Millington (Fanny), Joan Jett & Chrissie Hynde (Pretenders) were celebrities in their day. I was particularly impressed by the last; not only do I share most of Chrissie's opinions but she expresses them with an appealing eloquence. Two of the interviews are with the record label owners Candice Pedersen & Bettina Richards.

It came as a pleasant surprise that none of these lovely women are irrational or particularly furious, or if they are angry, they express their concerns in an intelligible & articulate way. (Sigh ... this was the 1990s, just before the arrival of the ranting Moonbat). And I love the beautifully illustrated front & back cover and rare pictorial material found throughout the book; the format & presentation are quite special. Serious rock fans, sane feminists (like Camille Paglia), fans of the interviewees and devotees of Re/Search Publications will love it. Also check out She Bop II: The Definitive History of Women in Rock, Pop and Soul by Lucy O'Brian.
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