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Sarah Bernat

How would you describe your music?

"Work - noisy post-punk; loud Limosine - alternative psych Murder Murder - noise jazz super group Forked - industrial noise Weird Habit - noise folk 16 Bitch Pile Up - harsh drone; horror soundtrack "

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

"in Work, i write the lyrics, sing and play guitar. my bandmate and i make all decisions equally for the most part. in Limosine, i played guitar and handled our recordings/mixing/mastering, which i did in the sound program Logic. i often take on the role of recording, and like to play a large part in album packaging. my bands have frequently made our own releases, from cassette tapes to vinyl. "

Describe your gear.

"in Work, i sing vocals and play a white Fender guitar which i run through a Big Muff distortion and Boss EQ. similar set up for Limosine, but no vocals. i play trumpet through FX in Murder Murder. Forked and Weird Habit are experimental noise projects, as was 16 Bitch Pile Up. i use the things i've already mentioned above, and also a 404 sampler, various pieces of metal, contact mics, various FX pedals, keyboards. songs and shows depending."

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?

"this was the number one question that 16 bitch pile up (all girl group) was ever asked. i used to respond by saying that there is no difference - i don't think about the fact that i'm a woman when i'm making the sound, i'm thinking about the sound. however, since that time i've worked a lot more with both men and women, and i guess i realize there are differences - mainly in how people view a woman on stage, but i do find that men are often more confident about performing, and less likely to waffle about in indecision. as far as creative processes go, it's very much differs from person to person and doesn't seem to have much to do with gender. however, most of the men i work with are highly sensitive artistic types, so maybe i'm not getting the full force testosterone blast that might exist in some male dominated projects."

Related Themes: Behind The Music

Do you see differences between generations of women musicians?

i think women making music 40 years ago are probably pretty similar to women making music today. you see a few strong female personalities that are able to distinguish themselves in the midst of a mostly male dominated industry (Laurie Anderson, Kim Gordon, Lydia Lunch, Cosi Fanni Tutti), then you have your puppetshow female pop star types who are arguably being put on display by some male mastermind and/or the record industry (the Shaggs, Phil Spector's girl groups, Lady Gaga). it's a tough call on who's who though, as it's pretty much impossible to be an artist or do anything at all without involving both genders figuring in somewhere in the equation.

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?

"different things work for different people. i've heard just about all the advice there is, but i keep just doing what works for me. i'd like to be making more music, but college loans are a real bitch. my advice to anyone who has a dream they want to follow is just figure out a way to do it. i started out with nothing but a four track recorder and some instructions on how to build a contact mic. before that there was a piano somewhere in my life. just gather what you know, start experimenting, and keep a practice regimen. eventually you might really surprise yourself with what you're able to pull off. oh, and don't be afraid to work with other people! "

Related Themes: Advice

Why did you choose to play the instrument you play?

it's all about what i can get my hands on

Related Themes: The First Time