Happy Halloween, everyone! In honor of the holiday, allow me to present to you my new single, the cover art for which is a picture of me age elevenish, dressed in a DIY witch outfit. I still make that face to this day.
"Surrender Dorothy" is really the heart of this album. I wrote this song upon realizing something kind of bizarre about my childhood. See, I was a theater kid. Of course I was a theater kid, look at me. I did fairly well for myself role-wise, usually getting cast as whatever the antagonist character was in that particular play (this is the same girl who grew up to name her band "vs The Many", so there you go). In traditional musicals, female villains are frequently vamps/sexpots. However, the very qualities I had that made me perfect for these roles (low voice, big ass, affinity for wild gesticulation) also made me completely unattractive to teenage boys. The upshot of this is that I spent much of my teen years having middle aged theater teachers tell me to "be sexier" when I'd never kissed a dude. My first kiss was a stage kiss, as Petra in A Little Night Music at age seventeen, with the 22 year old college student playing Frid.
It's a bit of a mind fuck, honestly. I learned to be a caricature of sexiness without ever having a chance to learn about sexuality. Don't get me wrong, I'm grateful that I was able to perform so frequently in my teens. I'm certainly not blaming anyone for these circumstances, and I'm not angry about it, but that juxtaposition was a really important part of making me the person I am today. Namely, a loud, brash, gutter-minded mezzo who can't flirt. Like at all. Like not even a little bit.
The song also expresses my feelings about the whole Madonna/Whore dichotomy that still exists in pop culture. The biggest issue I find with this trope is that it defines women solely by how they fit into men's lives, which happens in real life more often than I think we'd like to admit. I've been involved with a few too many men who seem to see me as a prop for their story arc (see the rest of my catalog). But I'm not a character in some bro's novella*. I'm not a manic pixie dream girl, or an ingenue, or a hooker with a heart of gold. I'm a fucking person, and I am a fucking person even when I'm not fucking someone else.
"Surrender Dorothy" repeatedly asks the question "where do the funny ones go?" If I ever figure that out I'll let you know.