Over the weekend, I had the pleasure of checking out a new documentary called Girls Rock! Though it was not new information to me that girls did indeed rock, the subject matter was certainly intriguing.
Two male filmmakers, Arne Johnson and Shane King, spent a week in Oregon at the Rock 'n' Roll Camp for Girls, a place where young women ages 8 - 18 gather to learn not only how to play music and write songs with fellow campers, but also take self-defense classes, talk about overcoming negative body image, and other very cool self-esteem-building activities.
Founded in 2001, the camp has grown from a tiny day camp held on the Portland State University Campus to a four-session behemoth with its own facilities and wait-listed attendance. All adult mentors attend the camp on a volunteer basis and work day and night to ensure the campers get the best week possible.
Girls Rock! follows four campers' first Rock Camp experience. Palace (pictured) is 7 years old and has an excellent scream of a voice. Amelia, 8, is a creative genius who doesn't shy away from noise rock. Laura, 15, is a free spirited young woman who vacillates between loving and hating herself -- and ultimately gives an incredible end-of-week performance. And Misty, 17, has overcome battles with drug addiction and eating disorders to learn the bass and feel comfortable up on stage.
The film features interviews with a ton of musicians, notably out rockers Carrie Brownstein (Sleater-Kinney) and Beth Ditto (The Gossip).
Girls Rock! is making its very limited nationwide tour. For cities and dates, please click here and support independent filmmaking!