October 17, 2015

God, I drank so much that summer. On the rare night I spent at home, I holed up in my room, wrote long, sad, tales of people in the legend of my life, and drank blackberry brandy mixed with Sprite. Something like that would taste over-sweet to me now, make me shudder, but maybe the same part of me that craved sentimental poetry also thirsted for sugary drinks. And most nights, I wasn’t at home. Most nights, I changed clothes in my car after work. I swapped my reeking-of-pizza button down shirt and black slacks for one of my vintage dresses. A mint green confection, or a pink and white sundress. Something from the ‘50s, blue with red and white polka dots, or a slinky black number that a ‘30s jazz singer would have worn. And I sat at one of two bars, drank whiskey and Coke, or brandy old-fashioneds, or gin and tonics all night long. I waited for my friends to arrive, and I drank and smoked and entertained myself with one of the items I always had in my bag – a book of poetry by Dorothy P...

October 17, 2015


Photo of Pistofficer, by V'ron


KHCP, Track #2: "Punk Life"


I was drawn to the sound of punk, which had, to quote Rebecca Solnit, “a tempo and an insurrectionary intensity that matched the explosive pressure in my psyche.” And its trappings, the things that punks did when they weren’t playing music, those appealed to me, too – getting wasted, smashing shit. I know, those are some of the more boneheaded aspects of punk, but god, they were great outlets for the explosive pressure in my psyche. (read more)


KHCP, Track #3: "Isn't Life Crazy"


In early 2009, I was down in Chicago visiting a friend of mine. We’d both recently had our hearts broken (mine by a punk boy from Kenosha!), and decided the best cure for it was to put on our reddest lipstick, get wasted, and slam to some good old-fashioned punk rock. At the club, we drank shots of whiskey and pitchers of beer, and watched the opening band set up. “Wait a second,” I said, “I recognize those guys.” It was Pistofficer, a Kenocore group o...

August 2, 2015

Imagine that night in Alphabet City when

we couldn’t find the bar we were looking

for. Everything was fire escapes, dirty

slush piles. A drugstore cowboy held up

a lamppost. The night was a dimestore

novel. We found another bar, with Edith

Piaf songs that spilled out onto the sidewalk,

went in for wine so sweet and too expensive.

And you in the window like a woman

in an Edward Hopper painting, surrounded

by people but alone unto yourself in the bar

light. In the dark that pressed in from

outside. -from "Dimestore Ghosts" (published at Uut Poetry)


I can’t find the beginning, so I begin with the music. I put the records on and I listen to the voices of these women, and as they sing they appear before me, flickering like footage from an old film. There is Billie Holiday, Lady Day singing the blues with flowers in her hair and veins full of opiates. With her golden reed of a voice, she sings her own pain – good morning, heartache – and the deeper pain of topics no one else will touch: Blood on th...

July 16, 2015

Just like that, I was a Sonic Youth fangirl. No longer was I content to try and be as cool as the indie kids at my school, no, I was gonna try and be as cool as Thurston and Kim (to say nothing of Lee and Steve). I saw a picture of Thurston in some mag, and he was wearing a pair of maroon low-top Chuck Taylors, so I bought myself a pair. I vowed that one day I would have an electric guitar, and I would make weird, noisy music of my own. (And I eventually did, and it was terrible and great.) And I bought my second Sonic Youth album, Experimental Jet Set, Trash and No Star.

—Jessie Lynn McMains, from TEACH US HOW TO FAIL: A SONIC YOUTH PLAYLIST at witchsong.com

June 17, 2015

Photo: Watcher's Woods @ Filth Fest III, June 13th 2015


Black Sunday Magazine chatted with me about zines!

I reviewed Filth Fest III for the Shepherd Express!

The first installment of my piece about Kenosha punk and indie music is up at Witchsong!


AND - You can listen to and download some songs I recorded in the late '90s and early '00s!

I made a .pdf version of excerpts from Reckless Chants #20!

I made a .pdf version of Belmont & Clark!

May 22, 2015

you ever listen to a mix tape (or CD, or playlist - I forget sometimes that it’s 2015 and almost no one makes mix tapes anymore) so many times that you get used to the songs in their relation to other songs on the mix? you know what I mean - you hear, say, “Jeepster” by T. Rex, and you expect to hear Johnny Thunders’ “All By Myself” right after. and when you don’t, it throws you off.


you ever wonder what happened to all the people who once made mixes for you? you ever think: well, they’re out of my life, but I still have the music? mix from _____. he carved that into the cassette, but he may as well have carved it into your fucking soul.

February 14, 2015

I saw them up on that small stage - Carrie with her rockerboy stance, Corin with her wailing voice, Janet with her mad drumming - and I knew that I wanted that in my life forever. I wanted loud music and dark clubs and wild wildness - but I wanted to write about it. I want(ed) to be your Thurston Moore, yeah, but with a typewriter instead of a guitar. (x)

October 30, 2014

The Salteens - Whiskey & Records 7"

Ama-Dots - s/t


May 22, 2014

I make music and do spoken word, too. The long-lost One Beer Prophet album, Freight Train Heart, is finally available for download. (Bandcamp)

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