Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Exclusive: A Moment With Trish Bendix!

Afterellen.com's music blogger Trish Bendix has kept me up to date for some time now with her column "Soundcheck" on the site. She's interviewed Missy Higgins and Tegan Quin, two of my favorite people (and yours)! So I was honored when she agreed to answer a few questions for me. I really didn't need an introduction, after you read this interview you will see why I wanted to interview her and why she's one of the coolest people....ever. YEP.

How did you begin working for Afterellen.com? Was this before or after you started "The L Blog"?

I started writing for AfterEllen as a freelancer, covering music. Eventually, I started the music column, SoundCheck, and when ScribeGrrrl left the position of Blog Editor, the powers that be asked if I'd be interested in working for the site full time. The L Blog started after, for Chicago lesbians, separate from AE.

As a music blogger you have to cover a number of genres to please your readers. What kind of music are you actually into though?

I really do like most kinds of music, or at least some artists in each genre. I find, though, that my favorites are those that are more eclectic and mix genres, usually bands that have a pop edge to whatever kind of music they are actually making: folk-pop, dance-pop, indie-pop and hip-hop and R&B, which are just innately filled with some pop. I go through phases, sometimes, and right now I've been really into the country-tinged alt-rock like Brandi Carlile and Neko Case. My girlfriend (an addmittedly huge metal head) and I are really into Jace Everett's album, too - he sings the twangy theme song for "True Blood," which I think sparked the latest obsession.

You've done SO MANY interviews and articles over the years, is there one in particular that sticks out in your mind?

I once interviewed Missy Higgins backstage before a concert after watching her do a soundcheck. She had just recently come out as bisexual, and I was glad to get her to open up about my favorite song, "Secret," of hers, which was about dating a closeted girl. Tegan, of course, is a great interview, and that's because she's not afraid to answer anything. Molly Siegel of the Baltimore indie band Ponytail was really refreshingly honest and laidback, and both gay women of The Gossip (Hannah and Beth) were awesome. It was right before they blew up huge and were playing a tiny venue in Chicago. Beth was eating chocolate cake and bought me a coffee. Oh, and Sia right after she inadvertently came out in a UK gay men's mag.

Can you name three people that you want to interview that you haven't yet?

I'm hoping to get an interview with Brandi Carlile ASAP and would also love to talk with Carrie Brownstein and Joan Jett. Probably Sam Ronson, too, because she's been thrown into this crazy position of high-profile lez and I bet she'd be an interesting interview.

How do you feel about "Women In Rock" features/articles (and things of that nature)?

Ah, such a loaded topic. In general, I do not think they turn out to be much more than "These women are great - for women!" It would be a wonderful world if we didn't have to have specific issues dedicated to women because they had equal coverage everywhere else. The same could be said for lesbians: We have AfterEllen.com because we need it.

In my opinion this has been a great record release year (at least for indie rock). I haven't found myself listening to so much current music in years. Could you tell us a few of your favorites so far?

Some of my recent gay faves: Telepathe - "Dance Mother," Brandi Carlile - "Give Up the Ghost," The Gossip - "Music for Men," Tegan and Sara - "Sainthood" and Dance Yourself to Death's debut. Despite being semi-closeted, I'll also say Lissy Trullie's been a mainstay. I also love Ladyhawke and Little Boots, both rumored gays but otherwise, just really awesome musicians.

My blog is all about indie music/bands (for the most part). Are there any indie bands you think people should be aware of? Perhaps some local Chicago acts?

Chicago is lucky enough to have two great indie bands with lesbians in them: Bound Stems, The Scotland Yard Gospel Choir. We also have an awesome lesbian rapper named Psalm One who is on the Rhymesayers label with Atmosphere and some other hot MCs.

Favorite Sleater-Kinney song/record? (Oh you so knew that was coming)

Album: One Beat, Song: Jumpers - it used to be my ringtone

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