Lilith Fair in full meltdown mode: Liberal feminists in crisis

lilith fair 23.png

Well, wow. When last we left Lilith Fair, its pro-abort organizers couldn't explain to fomenting pro-abort supporters how several pregnancy care centers had landed on their voting roster for charities to support with ticket sales - and nixed them.

sarah mclachlan npr.jpgDespite attempts like that to please liberal feminist supporters, Lilith Fair is now in full meltdown mode, with Sarah McLachlan (pictured right at the July 15 Bonner Springs, KS, show) forced to cancel 13 of the 36 dates according to NPR... and counting....

It comes as no surprise to me that the blathering pro-aborts who threatened to boycott the Fair unless those hated prcs were driven off were just that, all blather. Despite the pro-abort victory, there was no loyalty, and they still failed to buy tickets.

facebook stop lilith prcs.png

Alongside show date cancellations, acts themselves - sensing failure - are bailing. From Perez Hilton on July 17:

carly simon out too.jpg

Carly Simon is the latest performer to pull out of the Lilith Fair, citing medical reasons after the singer injured her foot....

This comes after Norah Jones and Kelly Clarkson have announced that they're canceling their appearances on the tour too.

Is anyone still doing Lilith Fair??

NPR reports Rihanna has also quit. Also, according to NPR, one reason for Lilith Fair's demise is liberal feminism is fading:

"We are in a different time now," says Ann Powers, chief pop music critic for the Los Angeles Times. "On the one hand, there are many, many more visible women at the top of the mainstream pop scene. On the other hand, I think it's arguable that there's less consciousness."

Indeed, I read one of the strangest interviews ever on the Ms. Magazine blog, a July 15 post entitled, "Is Lilith Fair feminist? Sarah McLachlan's not sure." Indeed. I still don't understand why McLachlan would run away from the term - and to liberal feminist readers, no less:

Before taking the main stage, the ladies of Lilith... sat down for a late afternoon press conference where they discussed the challenges for women in the music industry - sexism, media imagery, even juggling motherhood and a career....

I still believed that Lilith Fair was an act of resistance.... I... ask[ed]: "Who here identifies as a feminist?"

I got a long pause, followed by nervous laughter.

brandi carlile.jpg

Finally [Brandi] Carlile [pictured left at the Bonnaroo Music Festival in June] spoke, "I don't know, it means something different that it used to."

Before I could ask what it meant now as opposed to then, McLachlan assumed the role of official spokesperson and began building a mystery:

It's a tricky question, because it's been redefined and I think we all define feminism to a certain degree. We all define femininity. I think we're able to have a little more balance. There's still fights to be fought. There's still inequality, absolutely.

Not what I was expecting from the woman who founded Lilith Fair in 1997.... More than 10 years later, McLachlan seemed frightened of the F-word, equating it with "femininity":

I think as long as we're being mindful and honest with ourselves and doing what we feel is right, and that's a very personal decision for all of us, if we're going forth with that intention, then we are; we're being feminists, we're being humanists, we're being feminine. We're being true to ourselves, in every way, in every facet of our personalities....

Halfway through her lengthy, roundabout answer, McLachlan decided,

It's more than just feminism. It's gone above and beyond that now. At the same time... I have a great respect for the women who have gone before us, and who have had to struggle, and fight for every right....

Were those of us who saw this as a feminist gathering mistaken? I wondered, as McLachlan went on to describe injustice in Iran, where women are stoned for adultery:

We all live in such a bubble here in North America.... When we look out on the rest of the world, the atrocities that are happening to women everyday, it's shocking. So when I think about those things, it makes me want to be more of a staunch feminist....

McLachlan tip-toed around feminism like it was a sleeping lion....

It seems to me the 2 pillars of liberal feminism - abortion and lesbianism - were at the center of the hesitancy. I think McLachlan was saying in so many words the feminist fight is now about way more - or way other? - than those. Why else overtly embrace her femininity?

The Lilith Fair debacle is but one sign of liberal feminism in crisis.

MacLachlan is right. There are ghastly atrocities being committed against women around the globe in Third World - mostly Muslim - countries. This presents a host of problems for liberal feminists, some of whom desire themselves to be so Muslim-friendly as to support genital mutilation.

I also now think listing pregnancy care centers as potential Lilith Fair donation recipients was no slip. It was MacLachlan's attempt to help women in liberally unconventional ways as she grasped the bigger picture. It was a quickly retracted trial balloon.

[Top photo via NPR; middle photo via Perez Hilton; bottom photo via]


"Lilith Fair in full meltdown mode"


Posted by: Jasper at July 19, 2010 8:06 PM

Sounds good to me.

Posted by: Prolifer L at July 19, 2010 8:36 PM

It's not just that. Liberal feminists are mainly middle-aged women, some of them lesbians, others with no kids (since they aborted them all) and others (the minority) with 1 or 2 kids. It's not a coincidence that the pro-life stance has MORE young people than the pro-choice one. Liberal feminism is getting old and preposterous.

Posted by: MB at July 19, 2010 8:42 PM

Sarah went through a couple of full pregnancies...

Not saying that changed her radically, but I think it exposed her to things she had never fully understood before.

Posted by: Chris Arsenault Author Profile Page at July 19, 2010 8:48 PM

My honest opinion on why it's failing? Too much of a hodgepodge of random performers. Back in 1997, when it was wildly successful, it was all indie-girl bands and female singer-songwriters like Sarah McLachlan. Now? How likely is it that a hippie feminist woman who plays the guitar and listens to indie rock is also going to want tickets to see Rihanna? Or Kesha, for that matter? (She's a pop singer, the Tick Tock song girl.) Sure, they're all women, but they all appeal to completely different audiences. And a lot of the hippie types they originally appealled to are going to be turned off by the inclusion of a bunch of pop singers and hip-hop artists.

Posted by: Ashley Herzog at July 19, 2010 8:53 PM

I commented before I even read my post, but Amanda Marcotte nailed it:

"It’s that the content itself is the problem; even in places with more exciting line-ups, there’s such a hodge-podge of acts that it’s a problem from a marketing perspective. Concert festivals usually have an image and a set demographic they sell to, and “women” isn’t well-defined enough. As Amanda noted, the old Lilith Fair’s strength was that it had this wussy folk music image. Not something that I’d want to listen to, but at least it was something substantial you could market to fans of that music, and they did turn out."

The problem isn't feminism. (I love these endless "feminism is dead" arguments that have been going on since the 80s. If it's dead, why do we need to constantly re-declare that it is?) And it's definitely not abortions or CPCs. If people thought the music was worth the money, they'd turn out anyway.

Posted by: Ashley Herzog at July 19, 2010 9:02 PM

Sorry, before I read her post.

Posted by: Ashley Herzog at July 19, 2010 9:05 PM

Concert attendance is down in general - the Jonas Brothers cancelled a bunch of shows too.

Posted by: Marauder at July 19, 2010 9:06 PM


I tend to agree with your assessment regarding the differences between now and 1997. It really is a hodge-podge. A shame, because there was some really great talent there.

It is a shame about the CPC's, as 90% of women who see their sonograms keep their babies.

Posted by: Gerard Nadal at July 19, 2010 9:48 PM

Perez Hilton said: "Is anyone still doing Lilith Fair??"

I may be the only one, but I'd never heard of Lilith Fair until Jill posted on it a while back. I don't know what Sara McLachlan sings either.

Posted by: Janet at July 19, 2010 11:19 PM

The poll at right adds up to almost 150%. Does not compute.

Posted by: Phil Schembri is HisMan at July 20, 2010 9:56 AM

Hey Phil, that's because you are allowed to select 2 answers.

Posted by: Peg at July 20, 2010 10:05 AM


go away.

don't you have something better to do?

I have never read one post of yours that was logical or thought provoking. you have the debating skills of a 4 year old and the attitude of a 13 year old. you are wasting your time and making me feel dumber every time you post.

Posted by: deleteher at July 20, 2010 11:22 AM

While shadenfreude is certainly fun, I highly doubt that it is because of feminism that Lilith Fair has had to cancel some of their events.

Artists of all genres are having to cancel their concerts in venues across the country because of poor ticket sales. The music industry is losing millions of dollars. I could link to some articles, but my posts with hyperlinks never seem to post here. Just google "Concert cancellations" and see what comes up. Even huge names like Rush and the Eagles, bands who have been selling out staduims for decades, have canceld tour dates this summer.

Posted by: len at July 20, 2010 11:58 AM

Uh oh, what are the feminazis going to do now?

Posted by: bill at July 20, 2010 12:28 PM

I wasn't going to go to Lilith Fair anyway, but now I think I will donate the cost of one ticket to my local CPC. I think that is the optimal response to this sort of thing.

Posted by: Clarice at July 20, 2010 12:45 PM

I wonder if Sarah Palin is why some women don't want to say they're feminists... did she go and steal their word? They can't just use it as a code for "liberal and pro-choice-to-kill-babies" anymore?

Posted by: ycw at July 20, 2010 2:01 PM

I have never read one post of yours that was logical or thought provoking.

^Right, it's so illogical to think that a fan of hippie folk music wouldn't want to buy tickets to a concert where they have to sit through hip-hop and pop music before hearing something they like. Take a marketing class sometime, genius. *Kiss*

Posted by: Ashley Herzog at July 20, 2010 2:35 PM

My husband was the production manager of a musical venue. Concert attendance and ticket sales are down across the board. That being said however, if I would expect the pro-aborts to buy tickets for Lillith JUST BECAUSE of the threatened boycott. Just to show their clout and power...but nope. They're ALL TALK. Typical.

CPC's offer FREE help to women. They offer the OTHER side of "choice". I mean if you yap on and on about pro-"choice" and only offer abortion, wheres the choice? CPC's are the other part of that equation yet what do the feminists do? They try to take choice away from women while moaning and spitting about choice.

Posted by: Sydney M. at July 20, 2010 7:14 PM

Ya know what Ashley? I'm glad you're here. I'm glad you take the time to read, think, argue, debate and all that. Sometimes you say things I find myself agreeing with and sometimes you say things that make me so mad I shout at my computer :-) but when all is said and done I'm glad you're here and thinking long and deep about this issue.

And on that note, I'm sure there will be another day that we'll heatedly argue but please don't doubt my genuine happiness at your presence here. That goes for X-GOP and Meghan and Danielle and Hal and all the others I've argued with. I'm GLAD you all get on here.

Posted by: Sydney M. at July 20, 2010 7:18 PM

I hate how the feminists won't acknowledge that women go to CPCs willingly. They're always acting like the poor little wimmins are getting confused and tricked into going into pro-life centers. I doubt most that women are that stupid.

Besides, if you're looking for abortion services and realize you're in a place that doesn't offer them, you can get up and leave.

Women go to CPCs because they choose to, and that's their right.

Posted by: Ashley Herzog at July 20, 2010 7:24 PM

Deleteher... delete yourself. Hiding behind a name like that, shame on you.

Yes, many of Ashley's statements make me want to plant my forehead in my keyboard, but that is NO excuse for such a juvenile statement. At least she has youth as an excuse and she IS learning. What's YOUR excuse for such a closemined and hateful post????

Posted by: Elisabeth at July 20, 2010 9:30 PM

close minded

Dang typos

Posted by: Elisabeth at July 20, 2010 9:30 PM

Deleteher, Ashley is 100% correct on this. Delete yourself.

Ashley, I couldn't have said it better myself.

It was the TYPE of music and the celebration of being women that Lilith Fair was founded on. Now, it's become a hodge-podge of genres that just don't mix. I don't like Ke$ha, Rihanna, Erykah Badu, or Mary J. Blige (I'm not really fond of the new hip-hop brand of pop), but I love the music of artists like Sarah McLachlan, Carly Simon, Norah Jones, and the Bangles. I also love the music of Kelly Clarkson, but she is a different brand of pop altogether. I just can't see these artists of separate genres singing together.

I mean, I guess it could happen. After all, one of my favorite Christmas songs is The Little Drummer Boy by Bing Crosby and David Bowie. Who would think that a classic crooner would mix well with a glam rocker? Things like this COULD happen for Lilith Fair, but getting them to mesh well together would be a rare occurrence.

Also, I don't see hip-hop pop artists, or their type of music, supporting REAL feminism. This new hip-hop genre is all about the money, shopping, glamour, sex, etc. It doesn't show the intrinsic value of women, the intellect, emotion, strength, inside beauty, etc., which is what Lilith Fair was founded upon.

Lilith Fair was named after a woman in Jewish folklore that was Adam's wife before Eve. Lilith became fed up with being subservient to Adam and left him. Granted, she did then become the mother of demons, particularly vampiric demons, and vowed that her children would hunt the children of Adam, but that wasn't the point of Lilith Fair. It was about the strength of women, how we are not objects, but our own people, and men can't hold us down.

However, it's the odd mixture of genres, the loss of identifying what Lilith Fair is supposed to be about, and the fact that the figure they named it after was demonic. All of that mixed together has led to the unraveling of Lilith Fair.

Posted by: Amy at July 21, 2010 12:32 AM

I hate how the feminists won't acknowledge that women go to CPCs willingly. They're always acting like the poor little wimmins are getting confused and tricked into going into pro-life centers. I doubt most that women are that stupid.

You're right -- prochoicers always say that we act like women can't make their own decisions, but then they have to be "protected" from the e-vell CPC's. No one is dragging women by the hair and forcing them to go into one. And at least in my city, CPC's are listed under "Abortion Alternatives." I think that most women know the meaning of "alternative."

Most of the CPC's are run and staffed by women. What is more feminist than women helping women?

Posted by: phillymiss at July 21, 2010 9:00 AM

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