Girls Rock Camp Alliance

Radical Approaches to Music

Coordinated by Becky Gebhardt from Rock n’ Roll Camp for Girls Los Angeles and Tanya Palit from Girls Rock Camp Boston.

Track Description
The goal of this track is to broaden and challenge the ways that we think about and hear music, so we can continue to offer a radical approach to music in both abstract and tangible forms at camp. Themes may include: exploring musical roots and traditions from around the world, examining the role of music in social justice movements and political resistance, sharing music education tools, resources, and techniques, and making music through skill sharing, mini-lessons, and jamming.

Experimental Improvisation for Healing and Community Building
Participants will explore fundamentals of improvised music and the qualities that make us good improvisers (listening, trust, belief in our own abilities, willingness to take risks) and how these concepts can be applied to our lives, relationships, and work, with a specific focus on addressing trauma. Workshop attendees will also participate in a free improv session with one another.
Led by:Emily is a board member of the GRCA and corgi (core organizer) with Girls Rock! RVA, and was one of the founding coordinators of Knoxville Girls Rock Camp. She has played music of various styles and modes for twenty years. As a member of the experimental improv collective Womajich Dialyseiz, she engages in live improvised performance and facilitates community workshops on sonic healing, improvisation, and tech in music. Additionally, Emily is a crisis services specialist and volunteer coordinator with the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance. She is interested in the ways sound can help us process, express and heal from personal and organizational trauma.

Roots: an exploration of traditions and social justice through experimental music
Music has always evolved from our expressions and identities. USA is home to people whose roots lie in many different culture, with their unique philosophies, musical traditions, rituals and instruments. I am a queer POC, an Indian artist, scientist and a musician. Through music I have tried to make peace with all the things that I identify as. My solo project Tavishi gives me courage to merge my science, my personal experiences, and Indian roots into experimental music. I faced a lot of discomfort in the experimental music scene. As a result of my experience I formed an all-femme improvisation collective called Womajich Dialyseiz, to offer a safer creative space to femme-identifying musicians. Our collective presently consists of musicians, spoken word artists, performance artists. welcomes any femme, with or without experience, who wants to participate in music making. This collective have since then grown form a jam session to a community of music making that also tried to address various issues in the society. Other than having live musical performances, we have have held fundraisers, workshops, educational film screenings and healing sessions.The workshop will discuss the importance of embracing our roots and exploring/experimenting with them in new creative possibilities, as well as social justice issues. The session will have a small lecture/presentation, discussion an improvised group music session. Participants are encouraged to bring a musical instrument, preferably an instrument that they feel relates to their cultural roots. Through approximately 30 minutes of presentation, 10 minutes of discussion and 20 minutes of improvisation, we will explore how to merge our cultural origins, different aspects of our identities and feelings of solidarity into music. I will be using my solo and group experiences as a model and hopefully spark other participants into considering the idea of using their identities as a tool in the enrichment of the communal music scene.
Led by:Sarmistha Talukdar is an artist, musician, and scientist. She has initiated a new experimental/avant-garde improvisation collective called Womajich Dialyseiz for femme identifying musicians. Womajich Dialyseiz presents performance art as an audio-visual experience and a form of abstract expressionism. Its aim is to express discontent with traditional and conventional music spaces and acts through our performance, as well as reflect the socio-political rise of feminism and non-conformity, through ephemeral, live, experimental and avant-garde audio-visual performance, inviting live audience interaction and submersion Tavishi is the solo sound project of Sarmistha. Tavishi means both courage and feminine strength in Indian culture. Through this project Sarmistha seeks to gain the courage to express the myriad and sometimes mutually antagonistic experiences of her life. She tries to find overlaps between her different worlds. In this project, she uses disparaging elements (scientific research data, Indian music, western noise, ambient and industrial elements) using her vocals, electronics, Shahi Baaja, Esraj, virtual Santoor, Guitar, Keyboards, and other percussion elements to create noise and drone based compositions that are fresh and unique. Through music she seeks to empathically connect with her listeners, while trying to make peace between logic and emotion, traditional and modern, the East and the West. Her personal aim as an artist is to amalgamate science, art and music in a form that engages the audience as well as provides ephemeral sanctuaries for cleansing, reminiscing and dreaming.

Rock Down to Electronic Avenue: Inexpensive and Immediate Introduction to Electronic Music Creation and Production
This session will show you how to instantly break down barriers of electronic music creation and production and get your jams and creative juices pumpin!! This does not apply to one specific genre such as techno or house, but is generally applied to making music on a phone, iPad, or computer instead of with physical instruments. No experience is required. This is for personal interest or even as a cheap and easy way to change up programming at a camp session.
Main goals of proposed session: The goals of this workshop are to have participants learn the basics of navigating confusing music software programs and get right to making a song within minutes. An additional goal is for people to be able to run this exact same workshop at their camps.
Led by: Alison Murray is the Director of Gear and Operations for Girls Rock Campaign Boston, where she has volunteered since its inception in 2010. She is also a co-founder and former board member of Girls Rock! Chicago. She plays drums in the Boston band Shepherdess alongside bandmates and GRCBers Hilken Mancini and Emily Arkin. Alison is originally from Detroit, MI, has a strong affinity for electronic music, and is currently in an electronic music duo with Charlo Huffman. Alison also DJs in the Boston area as DJ Sit & Spin. For her day job, she is a Senior Information Security Specialist at UMass Boston.
Charlotte (Charlo) Huffman:
Charlotte (Charlo) Huffman is the Year Round Program Coordinator at Girls Rock Campaign Boston. After 8 years of teaching in public schools she went back to school and completed her thesis on creating an after-school model for GRCB programming. She is now turning that model into a reality, bringing GRCB into public schools. She plays mandolin as a singer/songwriter.

Relatos del sotavento :: Storytelling in Son Jarocho
The workshop examines the transformative potential of storytelling through music, using the Mexican musical tradition of son jarocho as a frame. The workshop would be bilingual, and open to folks of all backgrounds. There would be a brief overview of son jarocho, then examples of ways that sones (songs) are used as spaces to tell stories, hold important information for the community, and communicate. Then participants would get an opportunity to write their own stories using that as inspiration. The workshop would end with everyone sharing their stories.
Led by:Ximena Violante is a musician, events coordinator, and cultural promoter in Philadelphia. As a queer Mexican migrant, she seeks to create spaces of learning and collaboration between different people and communities. She co-founded a series of son jarocho (music from Veracruz) workshops within the Latinx community of Philly. Onstage, she performs with son jarocho/jazz/rock fusion project Interminable. Drawing on these experiences, she leads workshops on improvisation and storytelling as integral tools to community-building and the potential they hold to re-envision the world we live in.

Making Your Laptop a Band
I will be starting with a presentation of how it is possible to make music with an adaptation of Python programming language called “Jython” that allows you to create music through computer programming, and essentially turns your laptop into your own instrument. Then I would move into how technology can be used in countless aspects of music. And then address how it’s important we get more girls and LGBTQ youth interested in tech and to realise how easy this seemingly daunting task turns out to be.
Led by:Pangur Brougham-Cook is currently a student studying computer music at the College of Charleston. She began playing music at a young age and has stuck with it ever since. She studied classical music and jazz at the South Carolina Governors School for Arts and Humanities in Highschool. Despite being classically trained in music, Pangur loves nothing more than just getting together with friends to jam out and make music for the fun of it.

In this session, Bonnie Jones from TECHNE will introduce some of the key figures in early electronic music who paved the way for generations of musicians who followed. A presentation, listening session and discussion of artists such as Clara Rockmore, Pauline Oliveros, Maryanne Amacher among others, will be followed by a in-depth demonstration of a photo-oscillator instrument and the basic principles of DIY electronic circuit building. Attendees will get a closer view of how these instruments are constructed and get the chance to explore and play some simple oscillator instruments.
Led by:Bonnie Jones is a co-founder with Suzanne Thorpe of TECHNE, an arts organization whose mission is to introduce young women and girls to electronic music, technology and improvisation.

World Tour: Music From Around the Globe
In this workshop we will survey a selection of musical traditions from around the world, including Andean mestizo music, Sufi devotional music, and North Indian classical music. Our discussions will highlight the work of innovative female artists in these and other traditions. Participants are encouraged to share their knowledge and experiences, and we will conclude a discussion on how to broaden the kinds of music represented at girls rock camps.
Led by: Tanya Palit Husain is a volunteer and board member at Girls Rock Camp Boston. She is a singer, composer, punk band leader and multi-instrumentalist, with an interest in decolonizing rock n’ roll in theory and practice through experimenting with traditional South Asian forms of music. She’s a huge fan of any and all cetaceans. Becky Gebhardt is a bassist and sitar player who has performed all over the world, composed music for short films, and written songs with people. She has studied North Indian classical music and has participated in a few projects that blend Indian music concepts and sounds with Western music. She is also Co-Executive Director of Rock n’ Roll Camp for Girls Los Angeles. Mayra Cortez is a Peruvian musician currently living in Los Angeles, CA. She is a board member of the Girls Rock Camp Alliance, a grassroots music festival organizer, a film and sound editor, and an Italian food enthusiast. Her current musical endeavor Inti Wawa (Baby of the Sun translated from Peruvian native tongue ‘quechua’) focuses on mixing Andean traditions with pop, rock and jazz; music reminiscent of her experience as a South American immigrant in the United States.

How to Use Your Smartphone to Make and Record Music
Unlock the the musical possibilities of your smartphone (iPhone and Android) with easy and affordable methods of making and recording sounds. Participants will learn the basics of apps like: Garageband, Voice Memo, multi-channel digital recorders and loopers. Darlene will also demo a selection of smartphone accessories including: Apple Earpods (which can be used as a monitor during recording to create multiple tracks) and the Apogee JAM (a USB audio interface that connects an electric guitar or bass to iOS device or computer).
Led by: Darlene Reina is a first generation American and member of the Girls Rock! Rhode Island Board of Directors. She has volunteered with GRR! as a guitar instructor, a band coach, and helps with a variety of A/V and technical needs. She is an Apple Genius and recently started her PhD in Computer Engineering at UMass Amherst. She hold a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering from Boston University and a Master’s in Computer Science from Worcester Polytechnic Institute.