PLAYLIST: LGBTQ+ History Month 2022

To acknowledge & celebrate our amazing LGBTQIA friends and allies this LGBTQ+ History Month, we’ve spotlighted the work and efforts of GIHE Co-Founder Tash Walker, who works tirelessly to support and champion queer communities. Co-Chair of the Switchboard LGBT+ charity, Co-Founder of the groundbreaking The Log Books podcast and general all-round superhero and solid gold friend, Tash was invited on to Lauren Laverne’s Desert Island Disco on BBC 6 Music at the end of 2021 to talk about the work that they do.

Below is the playlist Tash put together for the occasion and their words about why music is so important to the LGBTQ+ community. Fellow GIHE Co-Founders Mari Lane & Kate Crudgington have also added a few tracks from some of their favourite LGBTQI+ artists to the playlist too…

Tash Walker

“At the end of 2021, I had the absolute pleasure of being on Lauren Laverne’s Desert Island Disco on BBC 6 Music talking about the work I do sharing Britain’s LGBTQI+ history. I spent several years looking through the log books, which are written records of the calls made to the charity Switchboard LGBT+ Helpline since 1974, from which I produced the  podcast called The Log Books. The Log Books foregrounds the marginalised voices and stories not usually featured in the media, or even in LGBTQI+ histories which often focus on activists. Over three seasons, the podcast has featured around 100 voices from across the UK, covering the years from 1974 to 2003.

Throughout this track listing I’ve tried to mirror the years of LGBTQI+ history that we explore with songs of empowerment and strength, from LGTBQI+ people and allies. Music has always been a core strength in the queer community, often the dance floor was the only safe place for many, moments before the clubs were raided, the sense of community from the people I have spoken to stands strong. Switchboard the charity was there to support people from the police raids and custody battles of the 70s and early 80s, to the horrors of the HIV/AIDS crisis, and the homophobic legislation of Section 28. Our most recent season moves into the 90s, as the internet began to change how LGBTQI+ people found each other, how more people created queer families, how a nail bomb ripped through the community in 1999, and how changing attitudes and a government focus on human rights led to significant improvements in the lives of many queer people.

Music is so important to me, and I think to so many people throughout the LGBTQI+ communities today. I found my queer family on the dancefloor – music is community, it’s love, it’s pain, it’s power, it’s pride – it’s the foundation of so many memories, the backdrop to so many stories and so much strength that keeps us pushing forward and surviving!

Here is my Desert Island Disco in full, which I would like to dedicate to all the LGBTQI+ people we have loved and lost, but especially to our trans siblings past and present – you make this world more beautiful, every single day.”

Tash’s Desert Island Disco Playlist

Jackie Shane – Comin’ Down 
Donna Summer – I feel Love 
Queen – Don’t Stop Me Now 
Sylvester – You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real) 
Gloria Gaynor – I Will Survive 
Diana Ross – I’m Coming Out
Bronski Beat – Smalltown Boy
George Michael – Faith
Erasure – A Little Respect 
Madonna – Vogue
Ultra Naté – Free 
Hercules & Love Affair – Blind
Robyn – Dancing On My Own
SOPHIE – BIPP Autechre MX 
Planningtorock – Gay Dreams Do Come True

Mari & Kate’s Playlist Additions

Mari Lane: This LGBTQ+ History Month, I wanted to celebrate some classic queer anthems as well as shine a light on a couple of newer favourite LGBTQIA+ artists. Electro-punk artist Bitch’s cover with Logan Lynn of Gossip’s empowering anthem ‘Standing In The Way Of Control’ fits both these categories perfectly, and I couldn’t not include pioneers of queer culture and ultimate faves Le Tigre. If you don’t know Margate queer punk duo pink suits yet, you really need to get their riotous anthems of inclusivity and politically-charged rage into your ears, whilst another duo with a more subtle, but equally powerful, message against homophobia and society’s constraints is Naz & Ella. Ezra Furman, who beautifully came out as a Trans woman last year, is also an essential for this month, and every month of the year.

Kate Crudgington: As many of our regular readers & listeners will know, at GIHE we aim to support and highlight LGBTQIA+ artists all year round via our website, radio show and our live music nights. Being an ally to such a welcoming community makes running this platform a total joy, and it’s wonderful to be able to share just some of that joy with you via our LGBTQIA+ History Month Playlist. So tuck in to my choices below: there’s the delightful electro-pop of Catherine Moan, the exquisite avant garde sounds of BISHI, an alt-pop banger from Halsey, a majestic hip hip fusion from Witch Prophet and a post-punk ode to love from Grandmas House.

Le Tigre – TKO (ML)
Pink Suits – Pink Suits Everyone (ML)
Bitch/Logan Lynn – Standing In The Way Of Control (ML)
Naz & Ella – Internalised (ML)
Ezra Furman – I Wanna Be Your Girlfriend (ML)

Catherine Moan – Fools (Depeche Mode Cover) (KC)
BISHI – Dia Ti Maria (KC)
Halsey – I Am Not A Woman, I’m A God (KC)
Grandmas House – Girl (KC)
Witch Prophet – Makda (KC)

If you need support during LGBT History Month or at anytime, you can always reach out to Switchboard LGBT+ via their website or by calling 0330 330 0630

Track Of The Day: Lande Hekt – ‘Whiskey’

A humble, emotive guitar tune about self acceptance and coming to terms with your sexuality, Lande Hekt has shared her latest single ‘Whiskey’. Lifted from her debut album Going To Hell, which is set for release in January 2021 via queer-run independent label Get Better Records, the track is Hekt’s most personal offering to date.

“I’m no stranger to queer punk and queer politics,” Hekt explains. “I’ve always taken a special interest for obvious reasons, but this record is important to me because it’s the first time I’m releasing anything as an outwardly gay person.” This decision has given Hekt the confidence to speak candidly about the anxieties and expectations that coming out can bring on her new record, and on single ‘Whiskey’

“This song is essentially about how there were so many things that didn’t feel right in my life,” says Hekt. “It’s about learning how to come to terms with being gay or, more accurately, realising that pretending you’re not gay can’t go on forever.” Between her raw lyricism and her stripped back guitar sounds, Hekt shows that there’s no need to hide who you are from other people, but gently acknowledges the fear or indecisiveness that can underscore these important realisations.

“I internalised a lot of that [homophobia and heteronormative] culture for a long time,” Heky continues. “It wasn’t until I found myself surrounded by queer and trans people and friends, that I realised I could live happily in a way that felt right. I know I’m not alone in feeling like this and it was other people sharing their experiences with me that helped me out.”

Listen to ‘Whiskey’ below and follow Lande Hekt on bandcamp, Facebook & Spotify for more updates.

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

PLAYLIST: Galentine’s Day 2020

Grrrls, it’s the best day of the year: GALENTINE’S DAY! Coined by Parks and Recreation character Leslie Knope (played by Amy Poehler) back in 2010, Galentine’s has since been recognised by girls across the globe, and used as a light-hearted platform to celebrate the girls and women who enrich our lives.

We’ve selected tracks from some of our favourite female artists and put them all together in one big celebratory playlist. We’re all about self-love & sisterly support today; so scroll down, press play, and share the Galentines love.

 

Robyn – ‘Dancing On My Own’
‘Dancing On My Own’, and what’s wrong with that!? Often I prefer to dance on my own. More space. Robyn is also an outspoken ally for LGBTQ+ rights, and we all know romance isn’t just for the heterosexuals out there! So whether you honour Galentine’s, Valentine’s, or even Palentine’s Day; make sure you have a good old dance. (Tash Walker)

Le Tigre – ‘Hot Topic’
Pioneers of queer culture and ultimate faves, Le Tigre’s ‘Hot Topic’ is a celebratory ode to those who’ve inspired us. Paying homage to some queer feminist champions of the ‘90s and earlier, it’s an empowering and joy-filled protest in the face of adversity. This one’s dedicated to my GIHE gals this Galentine’s; Tash and Kate – you’re two of the most fantastic women I’ve ever met, and continue to inspire me every day! (Mari Lane)

Gold Baby – ‘What Party?’
We’re all big fans of Gold Baby here at GIHE and I have to admit I’m a big fan of their vocalist & guitarist, Sian. Not only is she a great songwriter, she’s as enthusiastic as we are about new music and supporting other women in the industry. Keep your eyes peeled for Gold Baby’s new single ‘Japanese Racehorse’, set for release on 17th Feb. (Kate Crudgington)

ARXX – ‘Moments At A Time’
Is it even a GIHE playlist if I don’t include an ARXX track? The Brighton duo have truly taken off since Mari introduced me to them a few years ago and us GIHE girls couldn’t be happier for them. Hannah & Clara also happen to be two of the loveliest people we’ve met in the DIY music scene. Absolute babes. (KC)

Alanis Morissette – ‘You Oughta Know’
Even when I’m not in the midst of angry heartbreak, listening to this song makes me feel truly empowered. Taken from her iconic album Jagged Little Pill, which turns 25 this year, I am desperate to get my hands on a pair of tickets to Alanis’ anniversary gig at Shepherd’s Bush Empire on 4th March. I’ll be singing this at the top of my lungs if I do. (KC)

Personal Best – ‘This Is What We Look Like’
Headliners at our last Finsbury gig, Personal Best perfectly brand themselves as “classic rock for tragic lesbians”, and their frenetic riffs and pure-pop harmonies fill me with joy every time. Closing their set for us last month, front person Katie dedicated this track to the queer community. As a sea of buoyant voices joined in with “I wanna kiss you in the street / where everyone can see /’cause this is what we look like”, the poignancy of the lyrics in these uncertain times was overwhelming, and an empowering sense of unity took hold as the crowd danced and sang in solidarity. A perfect anthem for love between anyone and everyone. (ML)

Chastity Belt – ‘Joke’
This was one of the bands I discovered at the start of GIHE, all those years ago, and it just reminds me so much of what it was like at the start of it all. All these years on here’s to my two GIHE gals Mari & Kate, and all of the jokes we’ve had along the way. (TW)

Taylor Swift – ‘Out Of The Woods’
Did anyone else cry multiple times watching Taylor Swift’s Netflix documentary Miss Americana? Just me? Cool. Even if you’re not a big fan of Swift, I recommend watching the film. It impressively highlights how badly the media treats young women in the spotlight and how empowering it is when they decide to take back their own narratives. (KC)

Lizzo – ‘Like A Girl’
Turning the common derogatory phrase ‘Like A Girl’ on its head to create something wonderfully empowering, this is another ferociously fun offering from GIHE fave, Lizzo. With references to other powerful women of colour, including Lauryn Hill and Serena Williams, it’s the perfect ode to the power of being female and the power felt when women unite. So, this Galentine’s Day, I’ll leave you with the Lizzo’s words of wisdom: “If you fight like a girl, cry like a girl, do your thing, run the whole damn world”. An ultimate feel-good anthem for women everywhere. (ML)

God Colony (feat. Samirah Raheem) – ‘Girls’
You might recognise Samira Raheem from her 2 minute interview at Amber Rose’s Slutwalk in 2018. This video caught the attention of UK Producers God Colony, who approached Raheem to collaborate. The result is ‘Girls’ – an encouraging call-to-arms laced with defiant lyrics and industrial-tinged beats. I never get sick of listening to this. Shout out to my fellow girls Mari & Tash. I’d be lost without you. (KC)

TLC – ‘Unpretty’
Having had my love of TLC revived through watching Netflix’s brilliant Hip Hop Evolution documentary lately, I feel this ‘90s classic is the perfect Galentine’s anthem. Although it’s primarily about a guy making you feel shit, the message of getting past this and looking inside yourself to see your inner beauty is a perfect sentiment for any of your loved ones. And, set to that oh-so-catchy groove, it never fails to uplift and leave me feeling ready to face the world. (ML)

Ji Nilsson & Marlene – ‘Love You Anyway’
Released back in 2014 this was the first song that jumped to mind for this Galentine’s Day playlist, as ‘Love You Anyway’ is all about female friendship. The lyrics speak of solidarity, but with a slight note of sadness, combined with the enchanting quality to the music the whole thing intertwined together is mesmerising. (TW)

Chromatics – ‘Girls Just Wanna Have Fun’
A great cover of a great track. ‘Girls Just Wanna Have Fun’ always reminds me of a story about this 60 year old Italian woman who walked into her local fire station as she was having trouble with her lock. When the firemen asked the woman where she lived, thinking she’d locked herself out of her house, she lifted her sweater and showed them her chastity belt. (TW)

Wolf Alice – ‘White Leather’
Despite being a huge Wolf Alice fan, I only heard this track for the first time last year when my sister Holly sent it to me when I was having a tough time. She told me to listen carefully to the lyrics, because they reminded her of me. I had to bite back tears after hearing it. It’s a sweet track about moving on when someone’s not appreciating you. Also, shout out to my other sister Sarah who always holds my hand during ‘Bros’ when we see Wolf Alice live. Bloody love you two. x (KC)

Kate Bush – ‘This Woman’s Work’
I recently found out Kate Bush wrote this song specifically for John Hughes’ 1988 film She’s Having A Baby from the lead male character’s perspective, but I think her lyrics transcend the film’s premise. When I hear this track, I think of my Mum and how hard she works to keep everyone in my family safe, healthy, and happy. Then I think about how mad it makes me that men and boys aren’t expected to perform the same kind of emotional labour. Then I worry that patriarchy dictates that men aren’t allowed to show emotion, so that must be a burden in itself. Basically, I spend a lot of time thinking about ‘women’s work’ and what that means to me, and this song helps relieve some of the tensions surrounding those thoughts. Love you Mum. You too Dad. x (KC)

Bikini Kill – ‘Double Dare Ya’
This is the first Bikini Kill track I ever heard and it still fills me with hope and defiance every time I listen to it. My cousin Rebecca – an original 90s Riot Grrrl! – introduced me to the band and along with the GIHE crew, we both went to see Bikini Kill live at Brixton Academy when they reunited last year. Words escape me when I try to sum up how much that night meant to me. Women are the fucking best. (KC)

LibraLibra – Skin And Bone 
Having recently blown me away at our December Finsbury gig, Brighton’s LibraLibra are one of my ‘Ones To Watch’ for this year. Listening to the incredible brutal power of Beth Cannon’s immense vocal delivery motivates me with each listen, the empowering force of this inspirationally strong and charismatic front woman makes me feel like we can conquer the world. But I’ve added this one to our Galentine’s list not only for LibraLibra’s mind-blowing sound, but because since they played for us, I’ve been speaking to Beth quite a lot, and feel that we’ve both been able to provide a bit of a virtual sounding board for each other when we’ve needed picking up, or just to have a good old rant about society’s inherent sexism! Just one example of the wonderful gals I’ve been lucky enough to meet putting on our Get In Her Ears events. (ML)

Chorusgirl – ‘Stuck’
You probably all know by now how much this song means to me. It will never fail to bring me cathartic comfort. Its poignant emotive power, and the way it builds alongside the shimmering hooks, gets me every time. Listening to its heartfelt sentiment, and knowing that there’s other ‘gals’ in the world feeling similar anxieties as I do, helps me feel a little less alone. Chorusgirl’s Silvi is not only a heartbreakingly magnificent songwriter, she’s a wonderful person, and I’m so grateful our paths crossed. (ML)

Kate Tempest – ‘People’s Faces’
There is so much that is so perfectly poignant in this song; the glaringly honest and completely relevant social commentary showcases Tempest’s unique poetic skill at creating relevant and hugely emotive social narratives. But a subtle glimmer of hope also shines through; the comfort we gain from those we love, and the comfort we can offer them just by being there. So, even when it feels like the world is ending, we can still find happiness in each other: “… then we smile at all our friends… Even when I’m weak and I’m breaking… I can see your faces. There is so much peace to be found in people’s faces.”
Also, as a belated Galentine’s treat, I’ll be seeing Kate Tempest live at the 6Music Festival on 8th March, as part of an incredible International Women’s Day line-up of her, Kim Gordon, Jehnny Beth and Nadine Shah at The Roundhouse. I cannot wait to catch some of the most incredible gals all in one place! (ML)

Shirley Ellis – ‘Soul Time’
I love this song, it’s just so much fun and completely infectious. Shirley Ellis often unfairly categorised as a novelty act by many music historians has a well earned place in the history of American soul. Funky, sophisticated and sassy. All the sisterly love for her! (TW)

Jackie Shane – ‘Any Other Way’
I include this song on lots of our GIHE playlists, but that’s because it makes for such a smooth, upbeat listen. Canadian soul singer Jackie Shane was not only a talented vocalist, she was also a pioneer for trans rights in the 60s. Any chance I get to play her music, I’ll happily take. (KC)

Get In Her Ears w/ Dear Pariah 06.02.20

Kate was back on air this week with some of the Get In Her Ears grrrls favourite new music. She played tracks from AyOwA, Ghum, AGAMA, Sink Ya Teeth, Lido Pimienta & Jackie Shane.

Songwriter Dear Pariah also came in to the studio for a chat about her new tracks, ‘Not Ready’ & ‘Felt Your Love’

Listen back here:

Tracklist
Bronski Beat – Smalltown Boy
Lido Pimienta – No Pude
HANYA – I’ll Do It Tomorrow
Dunebug – Uninvited
ALA.NI – Papa
AyOwA – First Frost
Wilsen – Feeling Fancy
May Rosa – Before I Knew
Pet Crow – What We Doin
Ghum – California
Eden Huntur – Weightlessness
Half Waif – Ordinary Talk
AGAMA – Safe In Noise
The Golden Age Of TV – Me, You and a Dog
Jackie Shane – Any Other Way
Dear Pariah – Not Ready
Dear Pariah – Felt Your Love
Genevieve Dawson – Mountain
Deathhags – Be Who You Are
Otta – Near Enough A Woman
Sink Ya Teeth – Somewhere Else
Piney Gir – Puppy Love
Roxy Jackson – Father’s Regrets
Kat Five – Butterfly Wings
Bugeye – Don’t Stop
Pretty Happy – Schmuck
Planningtorock – Beulah Loves Dancing