cover image Angry Women in Rock

Angry Women in Rock

A. Juno. Juno Books, $19.95 (224pp) ISBN 978-0-9651042-0-3

Okay interviewer/editor Juno has an obvious predilection for the early '70s--its music, its brash feminism and some of its more transient trappings (the interviews feature drawings of ""Healing Herbals"" in the margin of each page, and when interviewing Lynn Breedlove of Tribe 8, Juno points out that Breedlove is Sagittarius). Still, Juno got some good dirt from some pretty scary and hip women. Forget the laws of journalism: Juno needs her 13 subjects to be pissed, and many of them cooperate. The best parts of the book offer hands-on technique--7 Year Bitch's Valie Agnew on drumming; Naomi Yang, formerly of Galaxie 500, on playing bass--and discographies and equipment lists. One learns that erstwhile Dream Syndicate bassist Kendra Smith was a slalom skiing racer, and that gender-teasing folkie Phranc was a nude model for art students. Luminary Joan Jett is too friendly to be angry, and Chrissie Hynde reminds us that ""Cool people like their privacy."" Juno can't avoid clumsy definitions of feminism, or resist denouncing certain activities (reading Vogue) or persons (Courtney Love, Robert Christgau) as vaguely counter to the cause. Her ""Women in Rock Map"" is woefully incomplete and places Brit Dusty Springfield in Memphis because she recorded her definitive album there. Worse, she leaves out angry women who rock the mic--where are Roxanne Shante, Queen Latifah and MC Lyte? Despite its inadequacies, the book is a worthwhile supplement for the collector of women-in-rock literature or women who want to take guitar in hand. (Aug.)