The "White Midget Rapper"

Lady Sovereign and other female vocalists.

Bumbershoot has always been an equal-opportunity gig, but this year's programmers have done an impressive job including a range of awe-inspiring female voices. This year's scene queen is Deborah Harry of punk-pop legends Blondie (2:15 p.m. Saturday, Mainstage). This last-minute addition reportedly thrilled the Gossip (12:45 p.m. Saturday, Mainstage).That trio's Beth Ditto belts out her soulful scowls with the best of them and has inspired countless women in the DIY/punk arena, as Harry did during punk's first blossoming in the late '70s. Two vocalists who are equally abrasive in completely different ways are Deerhoof's Satomi Matsuzaki (7:30 p.m. Saturday, What's Next Stage), who pairs sweet lyrical melodies and churning bass with her bandmates' obtuse instrumentation, and Lady Sovereign (9:30 p.m. Saturday, Bumbrella Stage), the self- described "white midget" rapper who always draws a crowd in Seattle. Sunday finds two fierce up-and- coming local vocalists in Mon Frere's Nouela Johnston (12:15 p.m., Backyard Stage,) and Thee Emergency's Dita Vox (5 p.m., EMP Sky Church), both with style and energy to spare. They might be fans of Bettye LaVette (4:45 p.m. Monday, Mural Stage), the northern soul singer who's just bewitched a new generation with 2005's I've Got My Own Hell to Raise. This year, Bumbershoot's women will be raising the roof. Rachel Shimp

 
comments powered by Disqus