Potty Mouth Want To Change The Way We Talk About “All Girl” Bands
Potty Mouth is lead singer and guitarist Abby Weems, bassist Ally Einbinder and drummer Victoria Mandanas—a band comprised of all women. Shocking, right? It must be a complete anomaly, seeing as every interviewer the band encounters asks what it’s like to be a woman in a band. An “all girl band” is even used as a defining label, as if it describes the sweetly crushing ‘90s-influenced music that is Potty Mouth. All sarcasm aside, finding the balance between having a thoughtful discussion about women’s experiences in the music industry and perpetuating the media novelty is difficult. Nearly impossible even. This headline alone, while attempting to bring new light to the discussion, also perpetuates the problem.
“It’s one thing to highlight a band that’s all women but it’s a different thing to make that a defining feature of a band.”
So how then do we make any progress in eliminating this dichotomy? Well for one, stop making gender a musical influence. “It’s one thing to highlight a band that’s all women but it’s a different thing to make that a defining feature of a band,” Abby said. “All girl” in no way describes the band or their sound. On the contrary, why don’t writers also use the term “all boy” bands, then? Two: stop making it seem like women who are talented and make incredible music are rare. “Every time you talk about how unusual it is, it never ends of getting to a place where it is usual,” Ally said. And lastly, just stop talking about gender all together and start talking about music. Besides, as Ally so honestly pointed out, “in a post-utopia world, gender won’t even be a factor.” It’s not as easy as those three steps, but it also doesn’t need to be any more complicated than that. We need to not get hung up on all the talk of gender and focus on empowering women and encouraging girl power, regardless. It’s time we get untangled from the complex webs of talking about gender and focus on giving a spotlight to musicians making fantastic new music.
Like our new favorite band, Potty Mouth. Formed in 2011 at Smith College; Abby, Ally, Victoria and Phoebe (former PM guitarist) started with no road map for their band, just an exciting idea. “At first we were inspired by Grass Widow because they of their vocals but eventually we all figured out our pieces in the puzzle,” Abby said. Now the band champions a killer ’90s retro sound and aesthetic with their self-titled EP and video for ‘Cherry Picking’.
“We have a new cohesive sound that I think is a lot more solid and uniform than the past and as people, we are more confident and secure,” Ally said. And there are plenty of reasons to be proud. Potty Mouth has shared the bill with bands like Perfect Pussy, Upset and Kate Nash. In addition, their new EP is gaining tons of critical praise from power outlets like NPR. But most importantly, the PM crew is proud of their band and their sound. Ally said she loved the sound of her bass tones, Abby got crafty with recording her vocals and Victoria digs the fullness of her drum sounds thanks to the help of their producer John Goodmanson (Sleater-Kinney, Blonde Redhead, Bikini Kill) . This is Potty Mouth on the cusp of something really big. “You have to give a shit to get shit done,” Ally said is the Potty Mouth motto. Abandoning their egos and giving a shit; Potty Mouth are ready to be a truly special band.
POTTY MOUTH ON TOUR NOW
Sun Nov 01, 2015 – Harrisburg PA
Harrisburg Midtown Arts Center with Screaming Females
Mon Nov 02, 2015 – Pittsburgh PA
The Smiling Moose with Screaming Females
Tue Nov 03, 2015 – Buffalo NY
Mohawk Place with Screaming Females
Wed Nov 04, 2015 – Toronto ON
The Garrison with Screaming Females
Thu Nov 05, 2015 – Montreal QC
Bar Le Ritz PDB with Screaming Females
Sat Nov 07, 2015 – Providence RI
Columbus Theatre with Screaming Females
Sun Nov 08, 2015 – Brooklyn NY
Music Hall of Williamsburg with Screaming Females