Photo Carol Grimes
My take on the ‘Me to’ Debate… Yes, me too.
On Sexism ©
I have had both luck & misfortune in my time…
The Luck to have had two wonderful children a Girl and a Boy, the luck to have found a means of self-expression, I could sing, I could put words together and make songs and it fed me & my Kids…. me and my heart, singing for a roof over our heads and our suppers. The luck to have worked with both great male Musicians and as the late 1970s arrived there were more women appearing on the scene…Loverly. No longer the lone woman in the Pack. None of the men, the musicians ever took advantage of me..on the road, far from my Home…long hours in studios. I met many men who were pretty free with their mouth, often in a highly sexist manner, but they never physically harmed or harassed me…or took liberties. You could say it was the laddish mindset of the times…no excuse, it was the 50s & the 60s, not a very enlightened time.
Particularly for the Gay community and vulnerable young people new to City ways. I was on the music scene as an inexperienced fledgling from1964/5 and that speaks for its self, I was out in the world alone from the age of 15.. it was a cruel corrupt business, however, whenever a promoter or agent cornered me in a dressing room or backstage, it wasn’t very long before one or more of the lovely musicians I worked with would wade in and do the decent thing, making it very clear that it wasn’t appropriate behaviour. Recently, we have been finding out about the rampant abuse, like no one knew? DJs, of the old Radio kind, BBC! The record company chiefs & managers, the A & R Guys, the agents, the producers and the man on the street…We must not vilify every man for the appalling behaviour of some. Similarly, I was vilified by other feminists during the 70’s when I was working hard, singing at benefits and raising awareness about female and racial inequality, let alone homophobia.. young men and boys in those days were at the same risk of abuse from predatory men. The vilification came because at the time I was in my 20’s, a single mother with a boy child. I was told on a few occasions when asked to sing at women-only festivals and benefit gigs, that I could not bring my son, aged 5/6/7/8, which is an attitude that will only extend the lack of male respect towards women. I wanted to raise a very different sort of young man and I was successful.
I weep for all those women and we must not forget, Men, who have been abused both, on the so-called casting couch, ‘suck on this and you will have fame…. ‘ defenceless and vulnerable young people often afraid of being pushed out in into wilderness if they didn’t comply, failure. This furore over the Hollywood practice of powerful and rich film moguls is not new. The scandal of the BBC personalities was covered up for many years despite being reported often. As human beings, both men and women must learn to speak up. Tough, as I well know, nobody listened or believed me as a child and then a young woman. The Men who abused me in my adult life were the Deal makers and breakers, the men with power and the cheques, the power to lift you into the world of fame and fortune, or not!
The luck I spoke of, lay in the ability and the privilege I have been given, singing, music and writing about my own experiences whilst the horrendous and cruel mistreatment of people in our world, the darkest side of Human Nature, continues.
Yours in love and respect Carol Grimes
Below is the inner label of an album released on the Virgin label Caroline….1972
And then again, a track of mine released on a Cd without my knowledge, a naked woman with a Guitar! Not a singer not featured in the CD, late1990s.Before that on Virgin Richard Bransons label, a really disgusting ‘lads’ identity art work? Twin pre pubescent girls back to back..
What!!! yes indeed, said it all, no changes…
On the skin, human skin.
Skinside Out ©
A track called Skin side out
Skin side out
Shssssss don’t look ……
Inside out, the skin is inside out.
Outside the skin are other eyes,
see those eyes, see those eyes looking for the inside.
close the eyes, hide, hide from the eyes, on the outside looking in.
skin side out, the skin is inside out
Inside out, the skin is inside out.
outside is everything, outside is everyone,
outside is too hot, outside is too cold,
inside lies the unborn,
outside is dying. skin side out, the skin is inside out.
Outside in, you can impale a heart, break a heart.
outside confusion, hullabaloo out of you, out of mind, and out there.
inside lie shadows to hide in, inside out
Outside the skin is out there.,
outside the skin is out there. let me in.
I’m out here let me in, I’m out here.
Skin side out, the skin is inside out.
Outside in, within the walls of skin and bone,
intestines coil and spit sits behind the teeth and lips,
bile in the spleen squeezes in between the cracks on the scars on the skin
inside it is warm, and red blood pumps life inside beating, beating.
Outside in lies the wind, a howl in the ears appearing to pierce the skin
drum the skin, inside in, the heat on concrete burns the skin
inside through a split in the face, I need ice to freeze the disease.