For International Women’s Day 2017, I’d like to take a moment to celebrate an amazing woman in music and candidate for one of my favorite artists of all time: St. Vincent. Shredding since the age of 12, St. Vincent (real name Annie Clark) has ascended to the pinnacles of rock greatness, challenged genres and sound, and defied all stereotypes along the way. On the cover for the 2017 preview issue of Guitar World, Clark wore a bikini shirt to mock the magazine’s history of sexist covers, saying “[I] just wanted to make my own absurdist comment on it. I couldn’t really let it slide without poking a bit of fun and taking the piss a little!”
While she’s a role model for women, especially young girls looking to get into music, she refuses to have her accomplishments weighed down by gender identity. Speaking to the New York Times, she stated “Growing up, I was never made aware of the idea that because I’m anatomically female, my fingers and brain don’t work as well. I never did feel like I was constantly having to overcome, ‘I’m a girl but I can play.’ That’s just silly.” On a day meant to champion women’s rights, I think her story and approach are a great example of equality, that we’re all human and should be playing on the same field under the same rules.
Below you’ll find the hilarious music video for “Laughing With a Mouth Full of Blood” starring “feminist bookstore owners” Fred Armisen and riot grrrl Carrie Brownstein, and a SoundCloud link to another one of my favorites, “Cruel,” where she makes biting commentary against objectification and the pursuit of perfection. Her sixth studio album is due sometime this spring.