My favorite South by Southwest moments always seem to involve the Badge and “the Reveal,” as reality shows are so fond of saying. For this one, late Nineties, I was standing on the street scanning badges when my eyes stopped on Carla DiSantis. You mean Rockrgrl magazine maven? Seattle savior of women’s rock? Yes m'am!
I marched over to her and held up my badge. It beats yelling at someone who inhabits your online reality but that you don’t otherwise know personally. We hugged and hollered in each other’s ears and I ended up flying to Seattle in 2000 for the first Rockrgrl Conference.
That was heady stuff. Imagine a wild dose of feminine music muscle bringing together Ronnie Spector, Courtney Love, and Heart's Ann Wilson with her dreamy Lovemongers. Neither was there any shortage of wannabes, almost-there’s, and veteran musicians. Regrettably, it didn’t happen again.
A couple years ago, DiSantis – now Black (because that’s what women do sometimes, get over it) – moved to Austin, having folded Rockrgrl. MEOW (Musicians for Equal Opportunities for Women) was her new endeavor, so we wasted no time establishing it with MEOW Day at Momo’s, High Tea during SXSW, and most recently, the Discoveries 2012 Playlist competition.
Austin singer-songwriter Erin Ivey is the Grand Prize Winner in the Playlist competition, MEOW announced today. Among her prizes are a Daisy Rock Wildwood guitar, Fender amp, and a Toca tambourine and djembe, plus consulting sessions with producer Mark Hallman, and the lead spot on the Playlist. Look also for Ivey in an upcoming feature on the MEOW website.
“We're also a daily online, with MEOW providing news about women making important strides in the industry,” explains Black. “You can't be it unless you see it and some people - not all - just need a little extra encouragement.”
Black, MEOW, and Austin: perfect fit.
“Austin has exceeded all my expectations,” she agrees. “Austin and Seattle are similar in that they're very community-oriented, revere music, and respect musicians. They're relatively progressive and forward-thinking.
“The real differences are weather-related,” she chuckles.
“It's been a refreshing change to escape the gray that hovers over everyone and everything in dark and rainy Seattle. The weather makes people a bit snarky in the nine months of winter. There's definitely something to be said for the sunshine!”
Does that really make a difference? Oh yes, assures Black.
“I suspect Austin Carla is much easier to get along with.”
Copyright © 2022 Austin Chronicle Corporation. All rights reserved.