When I was living in Buffalo many years ago, I went to a Hole show. Drew Barrymore stood by the stage holding Courtney Love’s daughter, Frances Bean, watching Hole do their thing. The pit became typically “boy-heavy,” and towards the end of the show, Love, I guess, was really feeling it, so she leapt into the raised hands of twenty five or so guys to be passed around.
Now, you’ve seen this phenomena in videos where the lead singer leaps into the crowd, and basically lying on the crowd, is passed around until he is safely returned to the stage. He even sings as the crowd keeps him raised and moving. Think back to Pearl Jam’s videos and Eddie Vedder’s happy face. Okay so, Love leaps into the crowd, only to find that those weren’t hands of support; her performance wasn’t “connecting” with the audience the way a man’s band can. Those hands began ripping and pulling at Love, in an attempt to take her clothes off and get a piece of … what? The straps of her bra stretched, her shirt was tearing … I’ll spare you. After several tormenting minutes, the guards got a severely-disheveled Love back to the stage. She immediately stopped the band, yelled something that I very vaguely recall along the lines of , “And that’s why I can’t do a show with small-minded guys,” and walked off.
That’s when the message became clear to me, thanks to women like Courtney Love and Kim Gordon: masculine arenas will fight “breaches” by belittling women who dare. The mosh pit is not a place for women. An elementary lesson for sure, but a lesson nonetheless: we aren’t supposed to have the same freedoms of expression, the same license to express as our male counterparts, and some groups, made up of men and women alike, will act as one unit against the idea of women daring to celebrate or perform publically with the same gusto as any unhindered guy might. Luckily, there are many people who don’t feel threated by women-who-dare and want to come celebrate right beside them:
Boog City’s Classic Albums Live presents Hole’s “Live Through This”
Next Thursday, Sept. 1, 7:00 p.m., $10
The Bowery Poetry Club
10 NYC musical acts reinterpret this rock classic–in order, track-by-track. The album will be performed by:
preceded by readings from:
We’ll also be celebrating Yoko Kikuchi of the Dream Bitches’ birthday
Hosted by Boog City editor and publisher, David Kirschenbaum
Directions: F train to Second Avenue, or 6 train to Bleecker Street.
Venue is at foot of 1st Street, between Houston and Bleecker streets, across from CBGBs.
Amy King is the recipient of the 2015 Winner of the Women’s National Book Association (WNBA) Award. Her latest collection, The Missing Museum, is a winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize. She serves on the executive board of VIDA: Women in Literary Arts and is co-editing with Heidi Lynn Staples the anthology Big Energy Poets of the Anthropocene: When Ecopoets Think Climate Change. She also co-edited the anthology Bettering American Poetry 2015 and is a professor of creative writing at SUNY Nassau Community College.