Queer women are playing your song at CMJ


New Yorkers, it’s your lucky week — all the hottest musical acts are in town for the CMJ Music Festival, which kicks off Tuesday and extends through next Sunday. While some of your favorites like Joan Osborne are scheduled to hit the stages of NYC, I urge you to pencil in some time for some of the lesser known queer female acts that are hoping to garner some great reviews and build their fan base with exposure at the famous festival.

Rachael Sage & The Sequins

The bisexual singer/songwriter releases a lot of material, which must be a huge benefit of owning her own record label. In fact, her label MPRESS will be hosting two nights at CMJ, including MPRESS FEST on Wednesday and Sage with her supporting band on Friday.

Yo Majesty

With their debut LP from Domino Records finally available, Yo Majesty will be well-known at CMJ 2008. Not that they need to be any better than last year — their show was part of what scored them their record deal. Don’t miss them playing Saturday night (which is technically Sunday morning).

An Horse

Lucky for us Americans, Australian duo An Horse have signed to a new American label (Mom & Pop) and have announced a full-length release coming in February. Even better news, however, is that their CMJ date actually kicks off a fall U.S. tour. See them play in New York Tuesday or Wednesday, or when they come to your town.

Tara Jane O’Neil

Somewhat of a well-kept secret, singer/songwriter Tara Jane O’Neil is known more with the indie crowd than she is with lesbians. This should definitely change, though, once you give her a listen. I promise, she hasn’t been recording and playing for almost a decade for nothing. See her at CMJ on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday.



Swati is a New Yorker through and through, which is why seeing her play as part of the fest is seeing her at her best. Wednesday night is when you can catch her singing her powerfully dark tunes.



A queer punk band that has their own stage on Warped Tour, their spirited sets are fun to be a part of when you’re just one of the dancers in the thrashing crowd. They’ll be playing at Trash in Brooklyn on Tuesday night.



One of the most prolific and consistent queer singer/songwriters of modern times, Mirah is a joy to listen to and even better live. Her tender voice suits her lyrics about ex-lovers, difficult times in Jerusalem and other hardships. She plays Wednesday evening.

Chris Pureka


Most likely she needs no introduction, but Chris Pureka is still under the radar enough that I feel the need to rep for her performance at CMJ. There’s only one way to find out if she’s got some good follow-up material to 2007’s Dryland, so report back to us from her show on Wednesday.

Are you headed to CMJ? Who are you planning to see?