Meet the Young Latinas and Non-Binary Latinx Keeping Punk Alive
Old, grumpy, white dudes who used to listen to bands like The Exploited or Dead Kennedys like to proclaim that punk is dead, but punk is alive and thriving, thanks in large part due to young Latinx women and non-binary folks. These chingonx are doing their fair share of forming bands and writing punk protest songs that are feminist, anti-transphobic, body positive, and patriarch-smashing.
Here’s a look at 11 Latinx Punk girls changing the game.
Monsí Segura, TOZCOS and AUSENCIAInstagram
Monsé is both the singer for Toscos and the bassist for Ausencia. Originally, Monsé wanted the Santa Ana, California based Toscos to be all women, but after not finding other women to play music with, she and Corrina the Toscos drummer “let two of their guy friends join the band” after the kept begging. Growing up in a “traditional Mexican household” Monsé says that punk helped her figure out who she was “under the strict regime of [her dad], and his patriarchal expectations.”
Drew Arriola-Sands, TRAP GIRLInstagram
Drew Arriola-Sands is the singer of Trap Girl, the queer hardcore group from Los Angeles, CA. Drew is one of the founding organizers of Transgress Fest, a gathering of trans punk bands that started in 2016. Drew is featured in the 2015 film Lost Grrrls: Riot Grrrls in Los Angeles.
Kiwi Martinez, GENERACION SUICIDAInstagram
Believe it or not, there are many Latina and Latinx punk drummers. There are three on this list alone. Kiwi Martinez plays drums and sings in Spanish. Kiwi and the rest of Generacion Suicida, who play melodic punk, want you to know that they’re a band from South LA and not East LA.
Alexia Roditis, DESTROY BOYSTwitter
Alexia Roditis, not even twenty-years old (center) sings, writes lyrics, and plays guitar in Destroy Boys based in Sacramento, California. Roditis, whose father immigrated from Argentina, identifies as gender queer, “drinks mate, speaks Spanish, and all that.”
Victoria Ruiz, DOWNTOWN BOYSInstagram
Victoria Ruiz is singer and lyricist for Downtown Boys from Providence, Rhode Island. She sings in both English and Spanish and her mom and abuela can often be found watching her perform from the side of the stage. In 2017, Victoria and Downtown Boys guitarist were instrumental in forcing the South By Southwest music festival promoters to remove and change a clause in their contract that threatened to deport artists who violated the agreement and, according to their open letter, to “cease any collusion with immigration officials that puts performers in danger.”
Mari and Stevi Campos, SARCHASMInstagram
Siblings, Mari and Stevi Campos are the guitar player and drummer of the California, Bay Area, 924 Gilman punk band, Sarchasm. Both Mari and Stevi sing and write vulnerable pop punks songs that will give you all the feels. Unabashed Green Days fans, Sarchasm often play Green Day songs live and believe that gender is over. Their mom is a writer and an immigration lawyer.
Cristy C. Road, CHOKED UPTwitter
Queer Latina, Cristy C. Road (center), or Cristina Carrera, is an artist, writer, and singer/guitarist of the Brooklyn based band Choked Up. Touring the East Coast this fall, Cristy is also promoting her latest work the Next World Tarot, a deck of Tarot cards of original illustrations of gender queer and body outlaw women and non-binary folk.
San Cha is a singer, composer, and performer. She describes her music as “cumbia, church, and nightmare.” She performs as a solo artist and, at times, in the queer and POC latin beat, punk band, Sister Mantos. San Cha’s audience “has always been queer, art punx” but she says she wants to sing for everyone.
Jen Alva, Phanie Diaz, and Letty Martinez, FEAInstagram
Chicanas, Texans, and Beto O’Rourke supporters, Fea plays write songs with titles like “Feminazi,” and “Mujer Moderna” Both Phanie Diaz (drummer) and Jenn Alva (bassists) are also in the band Girl in Coma. Both bands have released records on Joan Jett’s Black Heart Records label.
Teri Gender Bender, LES BUTHERETTESTwitter
Teri Gender Bender, or Teresa Suárez Cosío, was born in the US, but grew up in Guadalajara, Mexico where she started Les Butcherretes when she was just seventeen. Les Butcherettes have release new music and are currently touring US.
Mary Regalado, DOWNTOWN BOYSTwitter
The Downtown Boys sing in both English and Spanish and write punk protest songs with titles like “The Wall,” and “Somos Chulas (No Somos Pendejas). Bassist Mary Regelado wrote the song “Tonta” on the band’s most recent record, The Cost of Living.
If you’re not a total punk girl yourself, be sure to support the ones that are by buying their music, downloading their songs, and going to see them when they pass through town.
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