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GRRL010: sexual assault & feminist organization Af3irm featuring Miah Spring

The first time I met Miah Spring, she came up to me after a show and asked me to be on my podcast. Ah-wahh? Usually finding interviewees is like herding cats! But this is one cat that fell right into my lap purring.

Okay, enough cat analogies. In this episode, you’ll get to hear two songs performed by Miah live at a recent Flim Flam Revue show in San Diego in addition to a song she did in collaboration with Irate Productions. The song, “Sandy Still Speaks,” is about Sandra Bland, who was arrested in 2015 and died a few days later in jail. We’ll also talk about a feminist organization called Af3irm that Miah is involved in, creating music with and without friends, and supporting others when it comes to talking about sexual assault and rape.

I will be issuing a content warning midway through the interview for sexual assault. Please, please, PLEASE feel free to skip past that portion if you need to.

If you liked this episode, rate us on iTunes so more people can find the podcast. And as always, feel free to leave a comment, email me, follow me on Twitter, or like Grrl on Grrl on Facebook.

Listen Here

Download here. [~42 mins, 39MB]


  • [2:00] Miah Spring with Irate Productions – Sandy Still Speaks
  • [6:45] Explanation on Af3irm, self-described as “militant feminist organization”
    • “Sex-negative” feminism (also known as “anti-porn” feminism, although it is not all about pornography)
    • Women’s experience in the global context
    • “Prostitution as the oldest form of oppression and legalized rape.”
    • Note: I will be writing a blog post about the differences between sex-positive and anti-porn feminism soon.
  • [10:00] Is all prostitution legalized rape?
    • Using Amsterdam as an example
    • “It’s not as glamorous as it sounds.”
    • Harm reduction; criminalizing johns and pimps, not the women
  • [11:45] Sex worker co-op or unionization?
  • [12:45] Miah Spring – Lovely (live)
  • [17:30] Different types of musicianship and songwriting
    • Writing lyrics/having a story vs. technically good musicians
    • Writing and performing songs about my (June’s) sexual assault
      • June: “Why am I playing this for people? Do people care? And if they care, do they really want to get that close to me? It’s not something that comes up in a conversation.”
      • Jung quote: “Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.”
    • [23:00] “Why are being such a downer?” – Anxiety over rejection when talking about sexual assault
      • Why aren’t there more voices speaking out about their experiences with sexual assault and rape?
      • Examples of songs referencing these issues, including “Gratitude” by Ani DiFranco
      • “There are women who can tell those stories… I don’t want to make you feel silenced.”
  • [27:00] PODCAST UPDATES!
    • Gloomsday’s new album “Worst Coast Scenario”
    • Upcoming blog posts about feminist issues
    • Call for submissions: I’m looking for bloggers, artists, poets, writers, and other creative peeps to submit to the upcoming Grrl on Grrl collaborative zine. For now, the plan is to have interview transcripts, poetry, how-to’s, and articles targeting feminist women and non-binary folks. Please email me at [email protected] for more details.
  • [28:00] Learning music through collaboration rather than teaching yourself
    • “Oh, that’s how it works!”
    • Working on music in a bubble vs. working with other musicians
    • “Getting better [in music] is not a destination.”
  • [31:00] Do you need classical training to be a good musician or songwriting?
    • Simplicity versus technicality
    • Connections between songwriter and audience
  • [34:00] “The process of writing for me is kind of like a grab bag.”
  • [35:45] Miah Spring – “Anomie” aka “Sweet Preserves” (live)
  • [40:00] Miah Spring’s Soundcloud

Other Notes & Thanks!

Thank you again to Miah Spring for interviewing with me and talking about some tough topics.

Special thanks to: Sullen Ray who graciously allows me to use their song “Get Up Got It” as the Grrl on Grrl podcast intro and outro–listen to and buy their album Blue Minor on Bandcamp and look out for the upcoming new album Outside the Color Wheel; Greg Guiliano for his financial support; and Gary Hankins for making the episode sound good.

And to all my friends who have been so supportive of this project, I love you!

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