(Women) Rock n Roll Hearts


I’m A Mother (1st two verses)Chrissie Hynde

I’m a mother
Treat me like a mother
You wanna suck on my breast
It’s no surprise you do
I’m the source and the force
You owe your life to, brother
I’m a mother
And I take like a mother
I understand blood
And I understand pain
There can be no life without it
Never doubt it
I’m a mother


Lyrics © EMI Music Publishing

I picked up a cheap 5 cd boxed set of Lou Reed’s albums from his work at the peak of his career which I have on vinyl , except for Rock n Roll Heart which was a welcome addition to my listening library. No doubt Lou Reed had one of those, though his stopped in October 2013.  I’ve always been interested in the women with the same rock n roll hearts, especially the survivors of a very tough business. Quick caveat, Bonnie Raitt is one, for sure, and her Love me Like a Man is one of the earliest feminist  rock n blues anthems, and I love how Diana Krall kicks the shit out of it on The Girl in the Other Room. Truth is the blues have always had room for women with rock n roll hearts from Georgia Peach and Bessie Smith to Susan Tedeshi, Sue Foley,  and  Bonnie Raitt, who will be headlining the opening Wednesday night show at the 2014 Winnipeg Folk Festival.

I’m talking about Genya Ravan, and her  songs “Pedal to the metal” and “I’m not going to sleep on the wet spot no more.” Here  she is with Lou Reed.

I’m talking about Grace Slick and “Somebody to Love”  and “We Built this City”

I’m talking about Patti Smith’s  “Because the night” and  her performance of “G-L-O-R-I-A.”

I’m talking about Heart’s “Crazy on you,” and “Barracuda.”

I’m talking about Joan Jett’s “I love rock n roll” and “I hate myself for loving you.”

I’m talking about Parachute Club and Loraine Segato’s  “Rise Up,” which she performed at Jack Layton’s funeral. It was a favourite song of his, but likely not the linked disco version mixed by Daniel Lanois.

I’m talking about Bif Naked and her ” I love myself today (not like yesterday)” and her version of  “We’re not going to take it.”

I’m talking especially about Chrissie Hynde and the Pretenders, as I’m tracking down cds to put their music on “my devices,” my favourite record of theirs being Learning to crawl, their most commercially successful record, featuring  a middle age rock  n roll anthem “Middle of the road” though “I’m a mother” quoted above is rapidly rising on my charts, with “Rebel rock me” also on the Last of the Independents CD and “Boots of Chinese Plastic on their “Live in London” film and soundtrack very close behind. “I’m a mother” with the line “And I take like a mother” a smack down of the Dylan lyric “She takes just like a woman, but breaks like a little girl,” with no hard feelings as the cd ends with a lovely version of his “Forever Young.”



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