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Lisa Simpson, Finn Riggins

How would you describe your music?

My band plays indie rock, it's experimental, prog, post-punk music that tends towards anything from math rock elements to americana. We're eclectic, but super fun.

What is your role in your band? In the studio? In business or marketing decisions?

In my band I am one third of the writing process... we do tons of group writing. I also write the lyrics that I sing. I am active in the studio, though it's not my favorite part of the process. I am in charge of our books and our merchandise. We make most of our business decisions as a group.

Describe your gear.

I play a newer Gibson Les Paul Stusio. It's a dark red with silver hardware. I use a 1984 Fender Twin II amp. My pedal board has a tube screamer, a big muff, and two delay pedals, a tuner and a volume pedal.

Related Themes: Gear

Do you think being a woman and a musician is different from being a man and a musician? If so, how? Was there a moment that made a difference clear to you?

Yes I do. I studied music in college and did my masters degree in music history on women and music. I think it was always something I was aware of. It just was a part of my conciousness. I think it is better now than it was even 20 years ago, but I have many people come up to me and tell me how much they love seeing a lady up there rocking the guitar. On the other hand, I work our merch booth and a lot of people just assume I'm "with the band" when I'm behins the merch booth and then seem taken aback when I tell them I'm in the band.

Do you see differences between generations of women musicians?

That's a tough question. I think what you see in the mainstream is only one part of the story. So when you have women in the fifties having to be very demure and singing pop songs, that doesn't tell the whole story of women and music from that era. The blues women were raunchy and rambuncsious. I think there is a consistency throughout the history of popular music in the 20th and 21st century where you see women who are marginalized or stereotyped, but you also find the women who were twisting the stereotypes, and women who were fighting against an unequal system. There are still glass ceilings in some areas of music (like classical music...women conductors). I think there is only the changes in cultural acceptance that show up as differences.

Related Themes: Off The Clock

Did anyone ever give you any valuable advice about making your way in the music industry? What advice would you give to a woman musician just starting out?

Someone once told me that a woman musician should never tell people her age... and I thought that was total bullshit. The reasoning was that you never want a man to equate you with your mother (and this was from a woman!). The best advice I was given was to have it always be fun. When it stops being fun, it's time to re-evaluate. I would tell women just starting out to not let fear and intimidation stand in the way of learning and having fun, and also, imitation is great when you're first learning but then it's time to find your own voice.

Related Themes: Advice

Why did you choose to play the instrument you play?

As far back as I can remember, I've wanted to play the guitar. I really have loved moving from the acoustic to the electric guitar and playing around with the differences between the two.

Related Themes: The First Time