don't pop my sheep

    Surrounded by pre-pubescent girls and boys on hand to idolize Gwen Stefani of No Doubt, ensconced in my free-for-the-press concert seat at Cox Arena, watching Brody Armstrong of The Distillers, I had It. The realization.

    I want to show my black bra strap onstage. I want to be up there in bondage pants. I want to be a hellion. I want to “”sing”” like I have had no formal training. Here it comes folks — The realization.

    I want to be a knock-down, hard-core, cooler-than-cool female in a band. Girls rock! Mohawks anyone?

    The inner battle was getting ugly. One side of me said, “”No, sorry girl. You are a college student who has finals coming up, and you just do not have the attitude.”” The other side of me spurted forth a lot of expletives, threw the bird to some grandmother in the crowd (who was wondering when Garbage would hit the stage), and then shaved my head.

    Well, figuratively speaking, of course.

    Bear with me — I am rewinding back to last Tuesday at the Distillers/Garbage/No Doubt concert. Though it seems the estrogen would be running high in this Holy Trinity of female frontiers, it most certainly was not. These women could kick my ass for sure. I’d be willing to bet that they could make mincemeat out of 80 percent of the crowd, all the while blotting the sweat off their faces so their makeup wouldn’t run (as the Gwen-meister did at least five times during No Doubt’s set).

    They are part of the tough, too-cool, attitude-driven female band members whose breed seems to be growing.

    There I was, my meager little self, in total and absolute awe of the attitude that was emanating from the stage. I got to hear Shirley Manson of Garbage say “”bitch”” a lot, saw the ladies sweat, cuss and generally rock the stage with their male band members.

    As the show wore on and Gwen strutted the stage, I had some major introspection. Though I wanted to show a hint of the ol’ bra strap and be up there, I don’t think I could handle gyrating on a catwalk like Gwen, or flouncing around in a uni-tard (yes, apparently they still make those) and polka dot tutu like Shirley.

    But, the little hamster on the wheel in my brain sped up a little bit. Now is the time for me to become this on-stage female alien of myself. All the girls are doing it — whether they are on the mic, manhandling a guitar or manning the drums. Peer pressure, man (Ha! Man!). The ladies are everyone.

    This recent wave of real women musicians into the music scene is heartily welcomed.

    Can I be one? That’s all I want to know.

    Well, I’m a complete introvert. So I started to mentally explore my options to be in a band. It dawned on me about the time No Doubt launched into “”Just a Girl.”” I don’t necessarily have to front the band.


    I could be the Meg White of the White Stripes. She’s ultra-cool, never speaks, hardly smiles and I have never seen her strut a catwalk. She throws her hair around the way I imagine Mozart would on the ol’ piano, and is a major force in a back-to-basics duo; she has no small role as one half of a band. Though her drumming style is rather simple, she still drives much of the White Stripes music. I could handle that.

    If I could, you know, play the drums.

    Onto the next option: The Donnas. First of all, what the heck happened to them? They are slimmer, polished and (hold your hats) on MTV. Second, despite all of that, they still rock.

    I could be any one of them, Donna one, Donna two, Donna three or Donna four. Even the lead Donna isn’t too over-the-top for me, and the other Donnas hold up their ends of the band better than well.

    The Donnas are in the process of becoming a major rock band. Expect to hear their songs on the radio more frequently, with their harmonized backup vocals and hard rhythms.

    I would have fit in slightly better before The Donnas turned 21, when they were still based in the Bay Area (my old stomping grounds) and weren’t quite so marketable. But hey, I could still pull it off.

    That is, if I had talent.

    OK, another option who is singing her way up to No. 74 on the Billboard charts is our very favorite foul-mouthed Kelly Osbourne. I can swear like a sailor. She does what she wants, which doesn’t sound like too much of a stretch for me.

    Singing on an MTV awards show seems a little intimidating, but at least she’s modest about it — not much skin, regular clothes and a comfy pair of Converse. I’ve heard voices that are worse, and she has a good stage presence. I could handle that.

    If, of course my dad was a professional musician — and didn’t just play guitar in the garage after work with his cronies. Or if my mom wasn’t a preschool teacher, and could instead put together a record deal for me.

    Despite the personal musical flaws that should keep me off the stage and out of bondage pants, I realized at that concert that I longed to be up there. Not necessarily in the spotlight, but up there. Being onstage as an aggressive member of a band who happens to be female and kicking some boo-tay is incredibly enticing.

    Mohawks anyone? I thought so.

    And that’s that. Lack of instrumental dexterity and talent aside, attitude and band here I come. Right now, the music world has a good crop of female teachers, and I am a willing student. I can multi-task. College and being a female force in a band? No prob!

    Brody, Gwen, Shirley, Meg, all four Donnas, Kelly and Jessica. Ahh.

    Please, whatever you do, let me have this immature, unreal, sad dream, and let me show my bra strap. Please, don’t pop my inflatable sheep of a bubble.

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