Oh Darling Ones,
Being a Replacements fan is sometimes the worst. Being a female ‘Mats fan is always the absolute worst.
As you may or may not know, the “Tim (Let it Bleed Edition)” was released today. It’s a remastered version of “Tim” with a whole bunch of other amazing stuff. Specifically, “Can’t Hardly Wait (Cello Version)”.
As is to be expected, boners are up all over town about this record. I was so excited I stayed up until 2 a.m. listening to it.
However, unlike a lot of ‘Mats fans, I am not myopic sycophant. I believe you can love a band and still be critical.
So last night I was on Bluesky, the Twitter clone, complaining about the box set because it’s four CDs, one LP, and some other stuff. It cost $90! Sure it’s expensive, but more importantly what in the hell am I gonna do with four CDs? Listen to them in my 1999 Chevy S10, which I still cannot drive because of the stroke.
And I get it, the ‘Mats are not required to cater to my specific listening habits.
What bothers me is the guy I’m having an argument with on Bluesky is all “well, there’s one vinyl.”
REALLY? I HAD NO IDEA!
I’m a dumb girl who was invested enough in the new release to listen to that Cello Version 100 times and find out there are four CDs, but I stopped reading after that.
Come on, Dude.
You’re ‘Matsplaining to someone who has the words “I Will Dare” in her username. Did you really think I didn’t know there was a record included?
Just seeing that username should have given him enough information to figure out I would have known about the record.
What sucks is this is not unusual. I get ‘Matsplained to all the time. And it’s frequently by men who email me from the Paul Westerberg site I created and maintain.
What sucks is that men will tweet about the ‘Mats and address their tweets to Dads. Hello?
I’ve been a fan for thirty fucking years, and that gets me nothing because I am a woman. I guess love of rock & roll and knowledge of it is stored in the testicles.
It’s so frustrating, and especially maddening this week after the Jann Wenner bullshit.
Wenner just said the quiet stuff out loud. Rock Dudes everywhere are rushing to condemn him for the racism and misogyny, as they should, but those very same Rock Dudes never hold space for anyone else to contribute their thoughts about rock & roll.
I complain a lot about how men do not value art made by women, but they also don’t hold space for women to talk about music made by anybody.
I saw a tweet after the Wenner stuff came out and the guy said, oh this is probably a think piece I’ll write.
Oh joy! What we really need is another white dude rock pundit, and his thoughts on sexism and racism in rock & roll.
The problem isn’t just that Jann Wenner is a misogynistic racist, he’s always been that way. It’s that he has been allowed to influence a large swath of pop culture history.
He’s not alone. A lot of men erase the work of women and people of color all the time. This is why it’s so problematic when we let white men be the ones who write the history of rock & roll or pop culture.
Last year Chuck Klosterman wrote an entire book about the 90s that was lauded by a lot of people, and he completely erased third-wave feminism and Riot Grrrl. That happened in the 90s, but you wouldn’t know it from his book.
It’s not that women and people aren’t there, aren’t important, or aren’t influential. It’s that their work is deemed less than by the men who get to write about rock & roll, and pop culture. They don’t see the value in it so it doesn’t get written about, and that is fucking garbage.
Love & kisses,
P.S. I have to say that the male Westernerds of my acquaintance have always held space for the female Westernerds. In fact, one tweeted today about how “‘Mats fans” would enjoy something, and not how “Dads” might like it.