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[People] just see me as this person they know from television, and then they listen to Sleater-Kinney and they think, ‘What is this scary music? The photo shoot over, she’s back in her street clothes—black jeans and boots, a distressed T-shirt, and a floral panel hat, the brim of which she tugs up and down as we talk.
From riot grrrl trailblazer in the band Sleater-Kinney to sketch comedy genius on Portlandia, Carrie Brownstein has been cranking out pop culture gems since 1994.
“I’m like, ‘But wait a second, that’s what I did first! “They just see me as this person they know from television, and then they listen to Sleater-Kinney and they think, ‘What is this scary music? They formed Sleater-Kinney, named for an Interstate exit near Olympia, in 1994 (Weiss joined two years later), and quickly gained a devoted following, even among mainstream press (in 1997, they were named one of , Sleater-Kinney’s seventh full-length, came out, they were more popular than ever.
But they called it quits shortly after its release, a demise akin to the breakup of the Beatles for those reared on the passion and fury of riot grrrl music. I mean, Sleater-Kinney was lucky, we didn’t ever really have a moment that faltered,” Brownstein says. Even though it felt like we ended prematurely, 11 years now seems like a long time to do anything. Kind of a dive, that ER.’” And making such high voltage music—which music writer Ann Powers dubbed “suffragette rock”—took an energy they didn’t necessarily want to put forth anymore. A short stint at uber-hip Portland ad agency Wieden Kennedy gave her what she’s called an “existential crisis” before she found a niche as an NPR music columnist and “All Songs Considered” contributor.
In fact, the last time a woman won that category, it was Sinéad O’Connor in 1991, the year the category was introduced. After the album’s release, the pair toured together to much fanfare and acclaim.
(Think of this like Lady Gaga teaming up with Tony Bennett, but instead of jazz standards, they wrote and performed brassy, twisted pop.) 3.