An inconvenient truth: The Fort Worth music scene, the rock scene in particular, is very white and very male. Why is this important? Experiencing a song –– or a painting or a film or a ballet –– by someone completely different from you physically, racially, or even economically can open you up to new ideas and new ways of thinking, which can only add toward the greater civilization of the human race. Enlightenment equals peace. I’m not saying I don’t love lots of very white, very male local music –– Burning Hotels, Son of Stan, and John Price will stay with me long after I’ve moved on to my career as Leo DiCaprio’s vape assistant. I mean that for as much of a dude’s dude that I am –– yes, I like to drink beer, and, no, I don’t avert my gaze from the TV when the Stars’ Ice Girls glide across the screen –– I know that cultural diversity is vital to the health of not only the short time we spend on this puny little planet but to our local economies. Here’s a little Zen kơan for ya: Even if all of our rockers were minorities, would that be enough? Hmm. Good question, brah. Pass the Bud Light.
Assigning blame won’t help us at all. OK, so maybe despite Texas Ballet Theater, the Modern, and Fort Worth Opera, Fort Worth remains a cultural backwater, a place where girls who could grow up to be righteous rockers, or jazz drummers or MMA fighters, are being forced by blinkered parents and/or their social circles into obtaining “Mrs.” degrees at the local university of purpletude. And, OK, maybe the average local power player has been so brainwashed by white male rocker after white male rocker that the sight and sound of a black shoegaze band or a lady hip-hop stylist –– *boom* –– blows his ever-lovin’ mind. Or maybe too many of the minority artists around here just aren’t any good.
Silly, I know, especially when we talk about women. They’re better than us guys at everything. Best rock band? Sleater-Kinney. Best scientist? Youyou Tu. Best writer? Toni Morrison. Best physicist? Vera Rubin. Best actor? Cherry Poppins. Just kidding. We all know it’s Harvey Fierstein. As I was saying, for many of the same reasons that girls’ Facebook posts of a shirtless Ryan Gosling or a pantsless David Beckham are not sexist, rock shows –– or art exhibits or ballets or movies –– specifically for and by women are inoffensive. I would even go as far as to argue that they are necessary. Men, chiefly we white, straight fellas, do not need any help. Access to opportunity has never been a problem for us. But every other demographic on the planet? Including –– especially –– women? Not so much. Any chance we get to even things out should be embraced. And promoted.
Enter: Women for Women Rock Showcase. On Saturday, Feb. 27, at Lola’s Saloon, there will be performances by a dozen “female-powered, female-driven, female-led [local] bands and singer-songwriters,” according to presenters Fort Live. Proceeds from the $8-12 admission charge will go toward Opening Doors for Women in Need, a faith-based Fort Worth nonprofit for abused women. The marquee acts are arguably Sudie, Feletha Black, Hightower Band, and Ginny Mac, but don’t miss Fort Worth soul powerhouse Katie Roberston (Chucho), artfully charismatic Dallas chanteuse Poppy Xander, and Denton’s delightfully funky Southpaw Preachers.
And if you’re a dude and are offended by a ladies-centric event, or even a sexy photo of some famous hunk on your favorite newsfeed, maybe you should lighten up a little. And you should probably hit the gym more. Just don’t wear yoga pants. You might turn on too many people. Slut.
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