The First Rule of Punk: Be Yourself
Our Second Rule of Punk: Reframe
When we reframe, we perceive others such that they too can be themselves.
What is punk?
- Making friends and having fun.
- Eating cookies.
- Doing it yourself.
- Supporting your scene.
What does punk mean to you?
The Linda Lindas – “Why” – YouTube
- Going for it without being perfect.
- Describing about how you feel, and describing your emotions.
- It means persisting to me.
- I think punk means being free.
Keith Morris: The word “punk” has all of its connotations. We didn’t care about any of that. We were just doing it.
Alice Bag: It was not just a musical genre. It was really a way to question your way of living.
Gary Lachman: It’s a spirit of DIY. If you’re creative and take the risks involved, you can do it yourself.
Louis Jacinto: It’s the philosophy that we just get to do this, period.
Penelope Spheeris: Punk rock was anti-establishment, and the
minute we stop questioning the norm, then we’re stuck.
John Doe: Punk rock is just freedom.Chinatown Punk Wars | Artbound | Season 14, Episode 1 | KCET – YouTube
The most important message I got from punk, was the DIY ethos. The DIY ethic. It’s inherently part of surviving.Don Letts, SHOWstudio: Stussy – Talking Punk with Don Letts and John Ingham
Survival is not an academic skill. It is learning how to stand alone, unpopular and sometimes reviled, and how to make common cause with those others identified as outside the structures in order to define and seek a world in which we can all flourish. It is learning how to take our differences and make them strengths.Audre Lorde, The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House
- Punk Origins and the Punk Umbrella
- Punk Rock and the Dream of the Accepting Community
- The Island of Misfit Toys
- DIY or DIE: Punk Rock Is a Living Thing
- That Could Be Me: Inspiring Constructionism
- Appropriate Space
- 🎶🌈 It Take a Joyful Sound: New Wave, New Phrase, Neurodiversity
- ❤️🫀 Translate Your Love Into Action
- ☀️ Standing Up for the Rights, Like the True Light!
- 🏗 We Rebuild What You Destroy
This is a call to open arms
Lay down your guard, lay down your guard
A call to arms is what you needCall to Arms, The Attack
I’m calling on you to sing along with me
Punk Origins and the Punk Umbrella
Punk was created by women, people of color, and queers. And without all of us, it would be nothing.Alice Bag
Maybe that is the punkness of being a woman.Marina Muhlfriedel
There have always been, like, women in it, and queer people, and people of color.
That community is also something really cool about punk.Eloise Wong of The Linda Lindas
When you’re black, you’re punk rock all the time, you’re a target all the time.Sacha Jenkins
We have been pushed to the margins, but we create in those margins. It doesn’t get more punk than that.Shawna Shawnté
In the early aughts of punk, queerness was actually inherently tied to the movement.The Story of Trans Punk Pioneer Jayne County – YouTube
But before all of them, was a man who inhabited punk in all its definitions. A queer, Black man, who played his music loud and fast and with a defiantly masterful un-polish. Little Richard set the stage for everything that punk would become while inhabiting every sense of the word with pride. John Waters once declared Little Richard “was the first punk.”QUEER PUNK HISTORY: 1575 – PRESENT
“I went through a lot when I was a boy. They called me sissy, punk, freak…”Little Richard
Punk has never not been queer.QUEER PUNK HISTORY: 1575 – PRESENT
Punk Rock and the Dream of the Accepting Community
The lyrics referred to the way many people viewed fans of punk rock (who often endured stares, slurs and assaults at the time), but they could just have easily been about people diagnosed with mental illnesses, who are frequently looked down upon as crazy, violent and unintelligent.Punk Rock and the Dream of the Accepting Community | Psychology Today
This subculture has to be inclusive—and not just in the superficial sense associated with the liberal politics of representation. Rather than just preaching to the converted, it should draw in people from a wide range of backgrounds and politics. We want to reach the same young folks who are going to be targeted by military recruiters, and we want to reach them first. Sure, that will mean rubbing shoulders with a lot of people who are not anarchists—it will mean a big messy stew of different politics and conflicts and contradictions—but the goal is to spread anarchism, not to hide out in it. Get everyone together in a space premised on horizontality, decentralization, self-determination, reproducible models, being ungovernable, and so on and let them discover the advantages for themselves.
The most important thing is the participation of those who are poor, volatile, and angry. Not out of any misguided notion of charity, but rather because the so-called dangerous classes are usually the motor force of change from below. The self-satisfied and well-behaved lack the risk tolerance essential for making history and reinventing culture.
Picture a self-education society without instructors, ranks, or lesson plans. Teenagers will teach themselves to play drums by watching other teenagers play drums. They won’t learn about politics in dusty tomes, but by publishing zines about their own experiences and corresponding with people on the other side of the planet. Every time well-known musicians perform, musicians who are just getting started will perform, too. Learning won’t be a distinct sphere of activity, but an organic component of every aspect of the community.CrimethInc. : Punk—Dangerous Utopia : Revisiting the Relationship between Punk and Anarchism
As soon as I said, “Hello, this is exactly who I am”, I found the most beautiful community of people.yungblud
But, do you know what?
I found you!
I love you.
I love all of you out there.
And this is why I’m so proud to belong here.
Because this family is about spreading love.yungblud
You are with us.
Look at the people around you.
You finally belong somewhere.yungblud
The Island of Misfit Toys
DIY or DIE: Punk Rock Is a Living Thing
The most important message I got from punk, was the DIY ethos. The DIY ethic. It’s inherently part of surviving.Don Letts, SHOWstudio: Stussy – Talking Punk with Don Letts and John Ingham
Jane Wiedlin of the Go-Go’s described the early Masque scene: “Everyone was kind of into the whole homemade thing, ‘cause … you couldn’t buy real punk clothes like they could in London.”“We Accept You, One of Us?”: Punk Rock, Community, and Individualism in an Uncertain Era, 1974-1985
Next in a punk sensibility was its love affair with pastiche. As the true postmoderns they were, punks drew freely from highbrow culture, lowbrow culture, and places in between, picking and choosing as they went, bound by no formal ideology.
In practice, however, punks consciously or unconsciously drew on previous youth cultures, with methodologies and ideologies marked by pastiche and bricolage. In other words, punks borrowed freely from previous youth cultures and dominant society, melding these elements into a new form of expression.“We Accept You, One of Us?”: Punk Rock, Community, and Individualism in an Uncertain Era, 1974-1985
…punks viewed the pedestrian actions of everyday life as potential expressions of art and ideology.
The vast majority of the time, however, female punks took a pastiche approach, drawing inspiration from many areas of popular culture. According to journalist Kristine McKenna, “punks rejected the Academy and drew instead from ‘low’ sources: graffiti, underground comics, advertising, car culture, the tarot, blaxpoitation, bondage and pornography, surf culture, fifties industrial films, Mad magazine, and the universe of American detritus that winds up in thrift stores. It all got tossed in the blender.” As this quote suggests, there was no single, agreed-upon guise in early punk. Jane Wiedlin of the Go-Go’s described the early Masque scene: “Everyone was kind of into the whole homemade thing, ‘cause … you couldn’t buy real punk clothes like they could in London.”“We Accept You, One of Us?”: Punk Rock, Community, and Individualism in an Uncertain Era, 1974-1985
In punk and metal tradition, Stimpunk Diego made their own battle vest in celebration of their influences.
Oh bondage, up yours Oh bondage, no more Oh bondage, up yours Oh bondage, no more
The punks wore clothes which were the sartorial equivalent of swear words, and they swore as they dressed–with calculated effect, lacing obscenities into record notes and publicity releases, interviews and love songs. Clothed in chaos, they produced Noise in the calmly orchestrated Crisis of everyday life in the late 1970s–a noise which made (no) sense in exactly the same way and to exactly the same extent as a piece of avant-garde music. If we were to write an epitaph for the punk subculture, we could do no better than repeat Poly Styrene’s famous dictum: ‘Oh Bondage, Up Yours!’, or somewhat more concisely: the forbidden is permitted, but by the same token, nothing, not even these forbidden signifiers (bondage, safety pins, chains, hair-dye, etc.) is sacred and fixed.Subculture: The Meaning of Style
That Could Be Me: Inspiring Constructionism
For her 19th Birthday, she took a chance on seeing a London band with a provocative name.
That band was the Sex Pistols.
At the time, The Pistols were merely support for obscure Welsh metal outfit Budgie, they were mostly playing ramshackle rock’n’roll covers and there was barely anyone there.
They were just a bunch of kids playing music with no pretensions of professionalism.
But that was key: Like many others after first seeing the Sex Pistols, Elliot was hooked and realised that she could do this too. “That’s why I formed X-Ray Spex.”Before Riot Grrrl: X-Ray Spex & “Oh Bondage Up Yours!” | New British Canon – YouTube
Pretty much immediately Poly Styrene and X-Ray Spex’s influence was felt. Just like seeing the Sex Pistols had convinced Styrene that getting onstage without much musical grounding was possible, a generation of punk and new wave women saw X-Ray Spex and thought “That could be me.” Her left of centre look also helped in that, not being the traditional male fantasy of many other women that had appeared on Top of the Pops. “The idea that just anyone could (start a band) was really big to me. That people in your neighbourhood could start a cassette label or a record label, that you could see people who were making records walking down the street. And they didn’t necessarily have to be in a glossy magazine, and they didn’t have to weigh 90 pounds and have blonde hair down to their ankles or whatever was the fashion of the day.”Before Riot Grrrl: X-Ray Spex & “Oh Bondage Up Yours!” | New British Canon – YouTube
I would argue that the ability young women and girls now have to embrace the DIY approach to music would not be as prevalent as it is now had Riot Grrrl not busted down the door back in the 90s.
The 90s DIY feminist art punk scene in the Pacific Northwest gave us Kurt Cobain, Ian MacKaye, and Sleater Kinney. And the list of bands in the Riot Grrrl legacy goes on.Riot Grrrl: The Story of Feminist DIY Punk
I can fix my bike up (Do it yourself) I can grow a salad (Do it yourself) I can start a punk band (Do it yourself) Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it yourself I can make peanut butter (Do it yourself) I can walk myself home (Do it yourself) I can make the rain come (Do it yourself) Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it yourself Do it do it yeah x3
I can make the first move (Do it yourself) I can fight my own corner (Do it yourself) I can put it back together (Do it yourself) Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it yourself I can put shelves up (Do it yourself) I can give a hair cut (Do it yourself) I can heal a broken heart (Do it yourself) Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it yourself Do it do it yeah x6 You are good enough (Do it yourself) You are strong enough (Do it yourself) You are smart enough (Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it, Do it yourself) x3 You are good enough (Do it, do it, do it) You are strong enough (Do it, do it, do it) You are smart enough (Do it, do it, do it) x2 Do it yourself
Two of the most important developments that began in the 1990s, and continue to thrive today, are the staging of house shows and the establishment of volunteer-run community spaces. Both materialize DIY in important ways, but each has a unique historical trajectory.
In the face of such struggles, the creation of house spaces, volunteer-run spaces, and other punk- specific locations truly materialize DIY in powerful ways that also model what it means and feels like to do DIY together.
The emergence of the house as a DIY venue explicitly and implicitly challenges conceptions of the home as cut off from public life. Houses are transformed from somewhat isolated private spheres to pseudo-public spaces when punks decide to host shows in their homes. House show spaces are now standard locations for punk shows and are considered important options for DIY punk bands touring the U.S.; however, this contemporary awareness among punks that houses can function as venues did not develop uniformly. The contemporary DIY touring network is very much a product of efforts made in the 1980s but shifted and changed throughout the 1990s because of some limitations with the more common spaces used for shows during the ‘80s. Punk bands have played at houses since the music began.Underground: The Subterranean Culture of DIY Punk Shows | Microcosm Publishing
There is, however, a major difference between these other uses of the home for collective music experiences and punk house shows. The people who live in the house and book the shows are enacting a DIY philosophy and politics, as are the bands that play and many of the people in attendance. The home space has in effect been appropriated to shift from a container for standard domestic practices to a pseudo-public place that offers an alternative venue option for many DIY punk bands that are often excluded from more official (or legitimate) live music venues.Underground: The Subterranean Culture of DIY Punk Shows | Microcosm Publishing
Do you ever feel unsafe? Do you wanna take up space? Do you (Take up space) Wanna? (Take up space) Do you Oh, do you wanna? Ooh, ooh Ooh, ooh Sha-la-la-la-la --Take Up Space by Dream Nails
🎶🌈 It Take a Joyful Sound: New Wave, New Phrase, Neurodiversity
It take a joyful sound To make a world go around Come with your heart and soul Come on come and rock your boat
New wave, new phrase New wave, new craze It take a joyful sound To make a world go around Come with your heart and soul Come on come and rock your boat Because it's a punky reggae party And it's tonight It's a punky reggae party And it's alright Rejected by society (do re mi fa) Treated with impunity (so la te do) Protected by my dignity (do re mi fa) I search for reality (So La te Do) --Punky Reggae Party by Bob Marley & The Wailers
New wave, new phrase
New wave, new craze
What Neurodiversity Means to Me
Neurodiversity, to me, means both a fabulous celebration of all kinds of individual minds, and a serious, holistic acknowledgment of the necessity of diversity in order for society to survive, thrive, and innovate. It means identity, belonging, and community. It means I am not broken, not alone, and neither are my siblings standing with me beneath that huge, multi-colored neurodiversity umbrella: we the autistic, the mad, the weirdly-wired, the queer, the crippled, and the labeled with neurodivergent diagnoses like flowers that glorify our beautiful bodies and minds.Autistic Community and the Neurodiversity Movement: Stories from the Frontline
Neurodiversity is one of the most powerful ideas of our generation.
It take a joyful sound. Reframe.
❤️🫀 Translate Your Love Into Action
I wasted my twenties in submission I thought I was outside the system I was rolling over for wealth and power As if they really cared about me The kids are just getting started They only just learned how to howl And most of them throw in the towel Bout the time that they turn twenty three You've got the taste for transcendence That translates your love into action And participate in the fight now For a creed you can truly believe
Furman penned the second new single “Evening Prayer” as a “rallying cry” for her fan base. “We music fans go to shows for transcendence; it’s like being called to prayer,” she says. “But as Abraham Heschel said, ‘Prayer is meaningless unless it is subversive, unless it seeks to overthrow and to ruin the pyramids of callousness, hatred, opportunism and falsehood.’ I want all our fans to become activists. We punk fans have so much energy to give to the fight against injustice, i.e. the abuse of the poor by the rich, i.e. climate change. So this is one to get you in the mood.”Ezra Furman’s Summer of Pride Mix: Listen | Billboard
It is time for the evening prayer Time to do justice for the poor It is time for the evening prayer Time to do justice for the poor Tonight you've got fire in your bloodstream Your frail human heart is still pumping And make this one night you'll remember A note you'll deliver by hand And when you get up in the morning Let no man return it to sender Pour gasoline on the embers Give yourself a physical record Deliver that fire in the real world And tell them that E Furman sent ya
☀️ Standing Up for the Rights, Like the True Light!
Reggae music is still here As the voice of the people everywhere Whenever there is injustice and tyranny Reggae music is there Standing up for the rights, like the true light! Reggae music gonna make me feel good Reggae music gonna make me feel alright now Reggae music gonna make me feel good Reggae music gonna make me feel alright now (Reggae, reggae, reggae gonna make me feel good!) Reggae music gonna make me feel alright now Reggae music gonna make me feel good Reggae music gonna make me feel alright now --Reggae Music by Jimmy Cliff
New wave, new phrase New wave, new craze --Punky Reggae Party by Bob Marley & The Wailers
Song recorded by Lee Perry. The alliance of punk rockers and Jamaican immigrants including Rastaman during the rock against racism festival (where punks and reggae bands played together against the British National Front) the Brixton riot’s soundtrack. This is an alternative version alternating dub and vocals.punky reggae party perry sessions 1977-BOB MARLEY & LEE PERRY
🏗 We Rebuild What You Destroy
What is Riot Grrrl?
BECAUSE us girls crave records and books and fanzines that speak to US that WE feel included in and can understand in our own ways.
BECAUSE we wanna make it easier for girls to see/hear each other’s work so that we can share strategies and criticize-applaud each other.
BECAUSE we must take over the means of production in order to create our own meanings.
BECAUSE viewing our work as being connected to our girlfriends-politics-real lives is essential if we are gonna figure out how we are doing impacts, reflects, perpetuates, or DISRUPTS the status quo.
BECAUSE we recognize fantasies of Instant Macho Gun Revolution as impractical lies meant to keep us simply dreaming instead of becoming our dreams AND THUS seek to create revolution in our own lives every single day by envisioning and creating alternatives to the bullshit christian capitalist way of doing things.
BECAUSE we want and need to encourage and be encouraged in the face of all our own insecurities, in the face of beergutboyrock that tells us we can’t play our instruments, in the face of “authorities” who say our bands/zines/etc are the worst in the US and
BECAUSE we don’t wanna assimilate to someone else’s (boy) standards of what is or isn’t.
BECAUSE we are unwilling to falter under claims that we are reactionary “reverse sexists” AND NOT THE TRUEPUNKROCKSOULCRUSADERS THAT WE KNOW we really are.
BECAUSE we know that life is much more than physical survival and are patently aware that the punk rock “you can do anything” idea is crucial to the coming angry grrrl rock revolution which seeks to save the psychic and cultural lives of girls and women everywhere, according to their own terms, not ours.
BECAUSE we are interested in creating non-heirarchical ways of being AND making music, friends, and scenes based on communication + understanding, instead of competition + good/bad categorizations.
BECAUSE doing/reading/seeing/hearing cool things that validate and challenge us can help us gain the strength and sense of community that we need in order to figure out how bullshit like racism, able-bodieism, ageism, speciesism, classism, thinism, sexism, anti-semitism and heterosexism figures in our own lives.
BECAUSE we see fostering and supporting girl scenes and girl artists of all kinds as integral to this process.
BECAUSE we hate capitalism in all its forms and see our main goal as sharing information and staying alive, instead of making profits of being cool according to traditional standards.
BECAUSE we are angry at a society that tells us Girl = Dumb, Girl = Bad, Girl = Weak.
BECAUSE we are unwilling to let our real and valid anger be diffused and/or turned against us via the internalization of sexism as witnessed in girl/girl jealousism and self defeating girltype behaviors.
BECAUSE I believe with my wholeheartmindbody that girls constitute a revolutionary soul force that can, and will change the world for real.
We can take turns taking the reins Lean on each other when we need some extra strength We’ll never cave or we’ll never waver And we’ll always become braver and braver We’ll dance like nobody’s there Wе’ll dance without any cares We’ll talk 'bout problеms we share We’ll talk 'bout things that ain’t fair We’ll sing 'bout things we don’t know We’ll sing to people and show What it means to be young and growing up --Growing Up by The Linda Lindas