Ed. note: As long as humans have been making music, it’s been used as a form of protest. As part of KQED Arts’ 100 Days project, documenting artists’ responses to our new administration in its earliest days, I’ve asked Bay Area musicians to get in touch with songs they’ve written or recorded that serve as reactions to our current political climate. Over the next couple months, I’ll be highlighting the most compelling entries I receive, along with a few words from the artist about their inspirations and intentions.
Dooms Virginia, "Devour"
"I wasn't surprised," wrote Annie Lipetz, the singer of Dooms Virginia (formerly known as Annie Girl & the Flight), when I asked if she was caught off guard by the presidential election's results -- and how she coped. "I spent the night wasted, calling friends in other countries and asking them to marry me."
She's not one to wallow, though. At 23, Lipetz is one of the most captivating singers I've seen in the Bay Area indie scene; her visceral delivery, even at its great, growly weirdest, always has something natural and old-school rockstar about it. So it's not surprising that she quickly channeled her anger into music. "Devour," above, paints a somewhat desolate lyrical picture of our current landscape:
Tied to the current in a river of madmen
Where the dead are looking for a place to rest
Just because it's on the news doesn't make it true
When ya gonna see that they're lying too?
"It's an artist's responsibility to create -- to make people feel. It doesn't have to be directly related to politics. Any honest creation is crucial," she says.
"We all have an important role to play in the revolution, and the revolution is now. This system never worked. When you put monsters in charge of a defective government, the outcome is a corrupt, disruptive and hateful regime. Dictatorship, fascism. A new system is needed. To get it we must revolt. We must participate with our most authentic selves. March, speak up, contact government officials, pick up a history book, adorn yourself with knowledge, create, trust your gut, love as much as you can, and do not back down."
Lipetz recently moved from San Francisco to Los Angeles (sigh) but will be back up here soon enough; Dooms Virginia plays The Uptown's First Friday show in Oakland on April 7.