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My music consciousness was born in the 1990s, and found its foothold first in punk rock, then in grunge. This week's guest, Patty Schemel, was the drummer for Hole, and was there for all of it, in the center, a driving force behind the entire scene. Patty has since written a memoir of her experiences and the addictions and recoveries that wove through all of them, Hit So Hard: A Memoir and there's also a great documentary about Patty's life by the same name. Patty also plays with the band Upset who enlivening and intense.
Patty and I discuss the grunge era, misogyny in music, whether or not mosh pits still exist, (both of us) growing up queer in the punk rock scene, what makes for a good drummer, feeling isolated at the punk show and the gay bar, how addiction is connected to the closet, how all songs are about the same thing now, what it means to be born with alcoholism, what secrets can do to us, the time Patty accidentally ended up in a gay scene, and that time I dragged Susan Sontag into one of mine.
Here's the Rolling Stone cover story about Hole from 1995, and check out Patty looking amazing on the cover.
• And here's a great interview with Patty on Stereogum.
Some bands we mention in this episode: Chisel • Dismemberment Plan • Mudhoney • The Beastie Boys • Murphy's Law • Faith No More • KISS • The Clash • The Sex Pistols • Live • The Warmers • The Evens • Scrawl • Phranc • Heatmiser & Neil Gust • Team Dresch • The Saints • Stevie Nicks • Pavement • Karate • Indigo Girls • Tracy Chapman • Luscious Jackson • Hazel • Bratmobile • Nirvana • Metallica • Tanya Donnelly • Belly • Throwing Muses • Jonathan Fire* Eater •
• Roddy Bottum is the keyboardist for Faith No More, the founder of Imperial Teen, and the creator of many other music projects that are great. He was also a huge gay icon for me.
• Here's the truly fucked up Gene Simmons on NPR.
• The Simple Machines record label changed my life. Not only did theuy introduce . to me to so many bands (Tsunami, Circus Lupus, Lungfish, and more), they also helped me develop my own punk rock spirit. They still have a website.
• Stewart Lupton from Jonathan Fire* Eater died last year, and I wish more people knew about him and his amazing music.
• If you're not an addict, you can't understand addiction, but maybe you can find overlapping experiences in your life? I talk a lot about my overlapping experience of depression with Gang of Youths frontman Dave Le'aupepe on AEWCH 31.
• And here's that time I dragged Susan Sontag, Rudolf Steiner, JM Coetzee, and Jonathan Franzen into one of my scenes:
Until next time, folks!