Claudia Saenz spinning 45s in San Antonio. Photo by Arlene Mejorado.
Claudia Saenz of Chulita Vinyl Club told us her intention behind the mix and shared some of her favorite artists.
What inspired you and how did you select the music to include?
It’s important to recognize it’s hard being a woman in this world. Our passion is constantly misunderstood. We are told we are too needy, too emotional, too bitchy, too loud. We’re taught to hold back our outcries and to handle things like a “lady” would. This mix is an all female mix dedicated to Chulitas out there that are constantly misunderstood, that have that passion but the world won’t listen.
Where is Chulita Vinyl Club based? Who is a part of it? How is it ran?
CVC was founded and functions out of Austin, TX but we’ve got chapters across TX and in California. In order to join the club, you must identify yourself as a girl, there is no experience needed to join the club, a policy of all vinyl when you DJ and there is no music genre policy- anything goes. We organize an event rotating the DJs and we book accordingly depending on the individual DJs’ taste and the particular show we are playing. It’s a collective effort and we’re here for each other.
Who are some of your favorite oldies women artists?
Little Ann, The Dreamliners, Barbara Mason, Patti Drew, Ronni Spector, Etta James, Irma Thomas, Terri Bonilla, Rosie Hamlin, Wendy Davis, Barbara Lynn
Who are some of your current favorite women artists?
Selena, Jenni Rivera, Erykah Badu, Beyonce, Kali Uchis, Rihanna, Rocio Durcal, Lala Romero, Ana Tijoux, Lila Downs, M.I.A.
It’s important for women of color to be archivists and curators of music because we’re not here to be one of the boys, we trust our passion, appreciation and knowledge in music as our own and we’re more than glad to share that.
Why is it important for women and women of color to take up sonic space? Why should they be curators of music? Why should they be music archivists?
We live in a male-dominated society and it permeates from large scale industries to smale-scale outfits like a DJ booth. We’re taught that men are the DJs and that men are the curators of music. It’s a common perception that women and women of color are not behind the DJ booth, much less can they carry a conversation about music. Stereotype threat exists and when a space is dominated by men, we as women and women of color think, “If girls like me are not represented here, then it must not be for me and I don’t belong here”. It’s important for women of color to be archivists and curators of music because we’re not here to be one of the boys, we trust our passion, appreciation and knowledge in music as our own and we’re more than glad to share that.
Enjoy the mixtape!