Violence Girl: East L.A. Rage to Hollywood Stage, a Chicana Punk Story

Violence Girl: East L.A. Rage to Hollywood Stage, a Chicana Punk Story

4.9 7
by Alice Bag
     
 

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The proximity of the East L.A. barrio to Hollywood is as close as a short drive on the 101 freeway, but the cultural divide is enormous. Born to Mexican-born and American-naturalized parents, Alicia Armendariz migrated a few miles west to participate in the free-range birth of the 1970s punk movement. Alicia adopted the punk name Alice Bag, and became lead singer

Overview

The proximity of the East L.A. barrio to Hollywood is as close as a short drive on the 101 freeway, but the cultural divide is enormous. Born to Mexican-born and American-naturalized parents, Alicia Armendariz migrated a few miles west to participate in the free-range birth of the 1970s punk movement. Alicia adopted the punk name Alice Bag, and became lead singer for The Bags, early punk visionaries who starred in Penelope Spheeris' documentary The Decline of Western Civilization.

Here is a life of many crossed boundaries, from East L.A.'s musica ranchera to Hollywood's punk rock; from a violent male-dominated family to female-dominated transgressive rock bands. Alice's feminist sympathies can be understood by the name of her satiric all-girl early Goth band Castration Squad.

Violence Girl takes us from a violent upbringing to an aggressive punk sensibility; this time a difficult coming-of-age memoir culminates with a satisfying conclusion, complete with a happy marriage and children. Nearly a hundred excellent photographs energize the text in remarkable ways.

Alice Bag's work and influence can be seen this year in the traveling Smithsonian exhibition "American Sabor: Latinos in U.S. Popular Music."

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Violence Girl is not some sentimental look back at how great it all was. Alice [Bag], without exaggeration, allows the reader to understand how exciting and in-the-moment things could be—but also how quickly and easily things can go bad and come to an end.With The Bags in the middle of it, it was a time of incredible innovation, explosive creativity and recordings that stand the test of time."—Henry Rollins for LA Weekly

"The book’s slices of punk life from thirty-five years ago also document a flashpoint for a city rich with talent and anger, erupting into something completely oppositional to the feel-good, pastoral, and often saccharine Laurel Canyon melodies and glistening surf music of the preceding decade." - City Watch LA

"Now 52 years old and a lot less angry, Alice is an author. Last year she published her first book Violence Girl: East L.A. Rage to Hollywood Stage, A Chicana Punk Story (Feral House) which spawned from a blog she started for fun. Violence Girl details stories of the 70s punk scene, her complicated relationship with her parents, her father’s rage, her nationality, drugs, growing up poor in East LA and rising into a punk icon." -Vice

"After decades of dudes telling their stories of punk's formative years in memoir, we finally get one of L.A. punk's most crucial figures—Alice Bag, frontwoman of The Bags—telling her tale. Unsentimental and tough, she gets out from under her patriarchal family and finds her place among a crew of motley, misfit kids as they accidentally invented the American West Coast punk in bands like X, Black Flag, Germs and her own band, The Bags." —Jessica Hopper, Rookie

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781936239139
Publisher:
Feral House
Publication date:
09/27/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
320
Sales rank:
845,456
File size:
4 MB

Meet the Author

Alice Bag was there at the origins of L.A. punk, at the famed Masque and Whisky-a-Go-Go, hanging out with Darby Crash and the Go-Gos. But she started as Alicia Velasquez, and English was her second language. She knew Mariachis better than rock music. A certain violence was passed on to her from her Mexican-American father. Alice's feminist qualities were seen in the notorious Castration Squad band she formed in the late '70s.

Alice and her Bags band was featured in the notorious documentary, The Decline of Western Civilization. She is currently married, has children, and lives in Phoenix, Arizona.

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Violence Girl: East L.A. Rage to Hollywood Stage, a Chicana Punk Story 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a very interesting book about a girl and her quest to find herself. She used her music as a means to get from point A to B. Alice writes a beautiful story about the love of her parents, the challenges of growing up with little financial security, and being apart of a new movement. She is intellectual, well written, and I feel that I know her from reading this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
WendelynHH More than 1 year ago
This was a great book and brought back so many memories of the early 80's and the world I moved into to.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
NancySheets More than 1 year ago
This is an autobiography unlike any other..not selectively choosing only the flattering memories to tell the reader, but rather openly, willingly, painfully at times & with great humility Alice's recollections are conveyed. As a woman who was part of the same music scene a few years already into her genesis as a frontwoman for the Bags, I am humbled to have shared the intimate details of just how this woman put HERSELF up front. There is a constant thread throughout this book...it is one of hopefulness & truth. The lessons in futility become the fuel for this formidable female who realized her value emanated from within not from the external view..there is great beauty in this book, even within the violent times painful as they must have been. This is a story for everyone..about growing up, rising up, surviving, finding your voice & healing your heart through your own actions. Inspiring, interesting, funny & powerful define this book....these same traits describe the Author. Get this, share it with your daughters. Empowering. xoxo
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Chapter Two What the Waves Take ————————————————————— Mistypaw rushed over to Stormpaw, afraid. Something was on the bushes. Something big... it all started when Stormpaw and Misstypaw snuck out of camp when their mentors said they couldnt ogo training today, and that they were too busy. Mistypaw hadnt wanted to, but Stormpaw was so.... nevermind. Oh, I love him! Mistypaw yelled in her head when she thought that. She took a step back, seeing whatever it was starting to emerge from the bushes. She tripped over a rock, and fell into the raging waters of... bigriver! It was the part of the territory that waas so raging and rapid, you couldnt survive it, and no cat ever has! Mistypaw's last word before being dragged under were,"HEELPP MEEE STORMPAW!!!" Continued at Stream all results.