October 26, 2010
THOMAS F. BERTONNEAU writes:
Everything means something, the Good Lovelies and the Viswijfenkoor not being excepted. For what it’s worth, I concur with Laura that the Good Lovelies put me off; the little-girl, sleepover antics and the false lesbianism are inconsistent with my sense of adult femininity. The Dutch ladies of the Viswijfenkoor play at nothing, make no attempt to doll themselves up, but sing lustily and are unmistakably female. In these traits they strike me as more feminine, actually, than the trio of teasing come-on girls. Laura mentioned the four girls of Kraja, the Swedish folk-group. They are in their late teens and early twenties, but their presentation is not “girlish” in any pejorative sense; they maintain a happy (sometimes a solemn) dignity (depending on the song) that requires no antics. They have enormous natural charm, an essential component of which is an unstudied modesty. I very much liked the Quebe Sisters. Playing the fiddle signifies plenty of discipline over the years, and their choice of repertory is refreshingly non-contemporary. The last fact suggests their healthy independence from “youth culture.” Does anyone remember the Elvis film, Viva Las Fishwives?