BULLETPROOF STOCKINGS @ THE MINT
Photos and words by Scott Sheff
On Christmas Eve, much of the Southland gathered with family and friends to celebrate the holiday. However, at The Mint, it was a rockin’ night of music, but for women only. See this band isn’t like any other out there. Yes, they are all female, which isn’t unique in itself, but the fact that the four women that comprise Bulletproof Stockings are Chasidic Jews and the world’s first all-female Chasidic alt rock band at that, precludes them from singing or dancing in front of other Jewish men in accordance to Kol Isha. Their shows are meant to serve as a safe place for women to sing, dance and enjoy their music without prejudice.
The music is open and available to all, including men, but the shows are meant for women only. While some of their songs incorporate influences from their Chasidic faith, the vast majority of their music is approachable and enjoyed by all regardless of age, race, gender or religious belief. With a mix of jazz, funk, rock and classic Chasidic sounds, Bulletproof Stockings fit in with just about any other mainstream alternative-rock band out there today. All one needs to do is give a listen to songs like “Vagabond’s Wagon” and “Frigid City” off their debut album Homeland Call Stomp and see how their music transcends any religious stereotypes.
Now, legally the band can’t prohibit men from attending their shows, but it’s generally respected and understood that the shows are for women only. However, a few men were in attendance on this night, but likely out of ignorance to the custom than out of disrespect (or working the event in some other capacity). For the few men in attendance, no one was kicked out or shunned, but rather were given a rare, inside look at a groundbreaking band only half the population will ever get to see live.