Yeastie Girlz (Maximum RocknRoll #61)

The ‘Yeastie Girlz’ started in Berkeley, California, in 1987 as an all-female punk ‘band’ and rap/spoken-word group that expressed themselves in radical, explicit and humorous accounts of sexism, celebrations of women’s (sexual) experience and demystification of female sexuality. They were part of the scene around the Gilman Street Project. Cammie Toloui, Joyce Jimenez and Jane Guskin were the founders of the ‘Y.G.’. Kate Rosenberger joined a bit later and in the 90s Wendy-O Matik did some vocals with Cammie & Kate on the ‘Consolidated’ album.

Joyce (2014): >> My fondest of memories has to be whenever a group of girls would come to the shows and show us moral and other support for what we wanted to express. Although very funny, we obviously were verbalizing problems and issues that most of us young girls at that time & even now would otherwise not express or admit to. Being able to have them relate to our songs and some of these serious problems we ‘rapped’ about and also identify with them, also helped us personally realize that we had comrades in our personal and social battles; we were not alone. If we were able to help and/or open up the eyes of just a few of our sisters and brothers out there to our feminine woes, this would definitely be the fondest of all memories. <<

Cammie lives in the UK and is an established photographer (have a look at her portfolio on cammiet.com). Joyce lives in the Los Angeles area and imports/sells furniture from India. Kate runs a book-store in San Francisco (dogearedbooks.com) and is a painter (kate-akimbo.com). Jane Guskin is in N.Y.C. and plays bass in ‘Huasipungo’ (also drums & vocals in a band which hasn’t been playing recently, called ‘Joda!’; 1996-97 bass/vocals in a ‘Profits of Misery’, and in 1992 ‘Growing Up Skipper’)…

The first time I met (some of) them was when they turned up as a ‘surprise-act’ when our Smurfpunx-collective organised a concert for ‘Fugazi’ (88-10-16). It was a bit of a rush-visit but later that year we got to know them a bit better when we spent time at Van Hall in Amsterdam (where they resided at the time). We invited them back for another show (89-01-21) and my mate Mokka & myself met up with them in San Francisco that summer. At some timepoint I sent them a bunch of questions as the basis for an interview for my zine Tilt! and got a tape from Kate with her and Joyce’s answers. It contained some painfully personal testimonials and after exchanging thoughts about it, in the end we decided not to publish it… But not that many interviews with the ‘Yeastie Girlz’ are to be found. I know of one in the German fanzine Trust (#14; Sep ’88) and the one in MRR #61 (June ’88). So here it is…

No need to explain what Maximum RocknRoll is, I guess… Every now and then I bought a copy from a European distributor. People in the HC/punk scene here were always eager to share it and I ended up with zero copies in my possession. When launching a search for this interview, I was contacted by Heidi Booth who offered to help out. She’s one of the people who collaborates in the archiving of old MRR issues and scanned it for our ‘pleasure’. Very grateful for that!

Yeastie Girlz (MRR #61, '88) aYeastie Girlz (MRR #61, '88) bYeastie Girlz (MRR #61, '88) c

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Cammie and Jane wrote about their experiences as ‘Yeastie Girlz’ in relation to Gilman Street in the book 924 Gilman compiled by Brian ‘Edge’ Wehmeyer. They suggested I’ld reprint this to explain where they were coming from…

Cammie:

Cammie T (Gilman 924) (-)Cammie T (Gilman 924)' (-)

Jane:

Jane G (Gilman 924) (-)Jane G (Gilman 924)' (-)

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One Response to Yeastie Girlz (Maximum RocknRoll #61)

  1. Kate Rosenberger says:

    Thanks Brob, for doing this.
    I do remember watching girls/women faces melt and spin when we were on stage doing what we were doing. I knew their lives would never be the same again.
    For this, I am eternally grateful.

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