True Grrl Power: Talking music with Emily Jayne of The Fashion Slaves

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The Fashion Slaves is a girl fronted punk rock band  birthed when Emily Jayne, the band’s creator, broke her arm at an Iggy Pop concert. Her music is a delicious mix of energetic pop and creative rock with Gwen Stefani style vocals. Truth be told Emily has a lot of range and talent, previously singing and rocking out in the ska band The Uptones. But in her latest album “Go Insane” you can hear the ska and punk influence put perfectly together. Live TFS bring the rock and roll and that celebrated rock star presence. Shows begin with Emily tied up in a straight jacket, and as the show progresses she changes down to sparkly fashionable outfits.

The Fashion Slaves latest EP features a cover or re-vision of Chelsea the punk band’s song “Your Toy”. After she was sexually harassed by a dickwad on BART with no help from BART staff, she was brave enough to come forward. Emily went to the local news to say “Hey, this isn’t right!” On the heels of that incident the music video for “Your Toy” hit the internet. James Stevenson formerly of the band Chelsea posted on Twitter “Love this version of my old Chelsea song Your Toy by Fashion Slaves singer Emily Jane is brilliant.” TFS do shows regularly in the Bay Area with growing attendance.
I recently got the opportunity to ask Emily a few questions about music and her band.
 

When I was growing up, I didn’t look at beauty magazines. I idolized Joan Jett, Debbie Harry and Suzi Quatro. Those were the chicks I looked up to and wanted to be like. I read music publications and guitar magazines and never gave a crap about Teen magazines. I have a theory that it was like that for all my female friends.

What was it like you for you?
When I was growing up (a young teen, kid) I didn’t know about any Joan or Debbie. I was the oldest child in a family of much older parents. The closest thing I could relate to was the pop music on the Radio Disney, because that’s all I knew. I didn’t have any older sibling to tell me “THIS IS COOL” It was either that which was presented to me by media, or the  Folk music my parents listened to. (And lets face it, folk just DIDN’T seem like the cool thing to do.) Eventually I was turned onto punk/rock. But not until I was a much older teenager. Until then you could say I was just a teen magazine reading mainstream kid. It’s what was available.

Growing up, would you say music had a positive impact in your life?

It did. It gave everything a place. It made sense of things. It gave me a voice. It made me feel strong even at my most vulnerable.

What’s your favorite live show that you’ve been to?

Devo, Blondie, Iggy Pop, Green Day. All musicians who have evolved and become more beautiful with time.

If you could see any band or artist perform live (living or dead), who would it be?

JOAN JETT PLEASE. It’s about goddamn time! And Johnny Cash.

As a music artist yourself, what message would you like to get across the most to your listeners?

That’s a great question. Every song has a different message. If I could break it down I would say this. I hope the music I put out there gives the most powerless feeling person a feeling of power and control. I want to create the kind of music that literally anyone can relate to at the end of the day. I want to make other people feel empowered and great.

What do you find that inspires you the most?

Animals. Cats especially. They just do there own thing and don’t give a F*$K