Johnette Napolitano: Shows, Art, Cover, Protest






Concrete Blonde singer
plays shows, shows art, covers Midnight Oil, protests Joshua Tree dump and
prepares second solo joint.

By Randy Harward


Usually artists give us one little tidbit to talk about: Concrete
Blonde singer Johnette Napolitano has released a laundry list of new projects
including shows (concerts and galleries), a new single, a political protest and
new album news.


First, she’ll play three one-night only” shows this month in
Hollywood (Oct. 14, Hotel Café), Tucson, AZ (Oct. 16, Hotel Congress) and San
Francisco (Oct. 17, Café du Nord). Simultaneously, she’ll show her wood and tin
sculptures in “Saints and Crosses” at the Art Queen gallery in her hometown of
Joshua Tree. The show “explores the art and symbolism of the cross while also
acknowledging the contributions of a few of the lesser-known Saints.” The
gallery is at 61855 Highway 62 in Joshua Tree and will be open from 1-6 pm on


Speakin’ of Joshua Tree—she and her neighbor Dave Catching
from Eagles of Death Metal have created a PSA regarding a proposed Joshua Tree garbage
dump site. Check out the avant-Public Service Announcement here. Also, visit





Napolitano—along with UK artist Will Crewdson—has also
recorded a cover of Midnight Oil’s “Beds are Burning,” which you can hear here (or purchase on The two have been collaborating online (Crewdson
sent Napolitano material that wound up on her debut solo LP Scarred) and both shared an affinity for
the Oils politically charged song. Crewsdon will appear with Napolitano at the
one-off shows.



“I always thought that Oils song was genius: a great dance
track, great bass line, and a political message [about] Native Rights,
something I believe in strongly,” says Napolitano. “I’d been inspired from
recording John Trudell out at my cabin, and am always trying to fuse the right
balance of thought, subject, emotion and badass groove into whatever I put
out… Will and I talked about it, and he sent me this track and I flipped, it
was so great. I love what he did to the choruses, they’re very female; sad and
pleading where the Oils’ is more demanding and macho… Will’s sounds are more
industrial, more Modern War.”


Finally, Napolitano is hard at working crafting a follow-up
to Scarred, to be released next year,
along with a lyric and art book based on the albums. She’s also creating the
third disc in her Sketchbook series—Sketchbook III will be available on in December.


(Photo: Crewdson by Michael Gamon, Napolitano by Doc @ Barfly)

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