Set #11: The High Moons

Although women across the country had been playing and existing in all-female bands for years prior to the publication of The Riot Grrrl Manifesto in 1991, Kathleen Hanna of Bikini Kill provided a fresh new voice and attitude to the feminist, girl power movement. That mindset has since trickled down into the consciousness of women in the music industry. As all idealistic movements unfold over time, the style and approach to the sociopolitical foundation morphs and changes with the individual. Women have always been charged with the task of clawing their way onto the center stage in order to gain a platform for expression. The gross reality of the female voice being relegated to a minority position creates a form of congenial solidarity with other minority groups, which in turn, is often reflected in the lyrics of many songs written by female artists. History Repeats Itself is one song that comes to mind. “Actually, with the political song we’ve had more people of every race come up and talk to us about that song more than anything else.” Jordan tells me the song came from a place of frustration with recent events. “What’s sad is – I wrote that song a year ago and thought that was the worst it was going to be… and then here we are.”

One of the most redeeming qualities in a band is the alignment of action with the words they write and endorse. There is nothing that waters down music more than the promotion of principles the artist promotes but does not adhere to. The High Moons are quite decidedly themselves with no hint of affectation or artificiality. They are everything they say they are, which forms the basis for a strong respectable band. One node of Hanna’s manifesto comes to mind in particular when considering The High Moons approach to booking gigs:

            -- because we are interested in creating non-hierarchical ways of being and making music, friends, and                 scenes based on communication and understanding, instead of competition and good/bad categorizations --

The interminable issue in all art, music, and literature is the existence of conflicting ideals. The standards are never the same and everyone’s approach is different. Though The High Moons are happy to agree they have had relatively few issues here in the Dallas music scene, Jordan elucidates, “We’ve turned a lot of shows down where we didn’t agree with someone on the bill and if it doesn’t represent us well, being five women in a male-dominant world (especially the music scene) we have to know our worth and stand our ground.” As more and more local, all-female bands such as The High Moons, Lizzie Boredom, and Pearl Earl (to name a few) begin to anchor themselves firmly in Dallas, it is reasonable to assume that their presence alone will help foster support for a more inclusive female voice in the Dallas music scene.

- Brittany Griffiths