Rasputina (band)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Rasputina
Rasputina1.jpg
From left to right: Sarah Bowman, Melora Creager, Jonathon Tebeest
Background information
Origin Brooklyn, New York, United States
Genres Cello rock, dark cabaret, indie rock, folk rock
Years active 1992–present
Labels Filthy Bonnet Records
Columbia Records
Instinct Records
Website http://www.rasputina.com/
Members Melora Creager
Daniel DeJesus
Dawn Miceli
Past members Jonathon TeBeest
Sarah Bowman
Zoë Keating
Julia Kent
Kris Cowperthwaite
Agnieszka Rybska
Nana Bornant
Serena Jost
Lisa Haney
Perry James
Tom Martin
Mark Hutchins
Catie D'amica
Melissa Bell
Julie Griner
Stephanie McVey (touring)

Rasputina is a cello-driven band based in New York that is renowned for their unconventional and quirky music style as well as their fascination with historical allegories and fashion, especially those pertaining to the Victorian era. The sound and visual concepts that began in Melora Creager's 1991 Rasputina manifesto presaged and influenced movements and trends such as Modern Victorians, Steampunk, freak folk, corsetry, and crafting.

The group is fronted by cellist/vocalist Melora Creager, who writes the music and lyrics and creates art for the band's albums, singles, and website.

History[edit]

In 1989, Creager wrote a manifesto, and placed an ad in The Village Voice seeking women to form an electric cello choir. Julia Kent, then an editor at the Village Voice, was the first respondent. The original group of nine was whittled to three. They named themselves "Rasputina", after one of Creager's songs. The group performed frequently and became a local favorite in New York City. Columbia Records signed the group in 1996.

In 1996, they released Thanks for the Ether. In 1997 the band released Transylvanian Regurgitations, a follow up EP remixed by Manson and Twiggy Ramirez.

On their second full-length album, How We Quit the Forest, Rasputina signed on Chris Vrenna (from Nine Inch Nails) as their drummer and producer. He also provided electronic drums and sound effects.

Rasputina toured with such bands as Bob Mould, Porno for Pyros, Marilyn Manson, Siouxsie Sioux, and Les Claypool. Creager played cello with Nirvana for their final tour in Europe, 1994.

In summer 2010, a documentary was made about Rasputina called Under the Corset by Dawn Miceli.[1] In January 2011 Melora Creager announced on The Dawn and Drew Show that Dawn Miceli would be playing the drums on the February 2011 tour.[2]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Live albums[edit]

Compilations[edit]

Singles and EPs[edit]

Promotional[edit]

Videos[edit]

  • The Olde Headboard - Music Video, 1998
  • The Olde Headboard (Weathered Mix) - 1998
  • My Orphanage Live at the Knitting Factory - 1999
  • Under the Corset - Documentary, 2010
  • Great American Gingerbread - Combination of CD rarities, including a DVD of live performances at The Knitting Factory, 2011

Misc[edit]

Song inspirations[edit]

Creager is a self-proclaimed history buff and often bases the lyrics for the band on that historical knowledge.

These include:

  • Thanks for the Ether
    • "My Little Shirtwaist Fire" is based on the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire of 1911.
    • "The Donner Party" discusses the Donner Party, a group of American pioneers traveling to California who encountered a series of mishaps and resorted to cannibalism. The track compares them to the colonial pilgrims.
    • "Howard Hughes" is about the eccentric billionaire aviator.
  • How We Quit the Forest
    • "Rose K." is about the matriarch of the Kennedy family, who had a stroke at age 94 and was cared for at the Kennedy Compound by private nurses and staff. Although Melora jokingly refers to this as her "Alzheimer's Song" on A Radical Recital, Rose was not known to have suffered from Alzheimer's disease. In concert, Melora also frequently introduces the song by referring to Rose's decision to have her daughter Rosemary Kennedy lobotomized at the age of 23, to calm her alleged mood swings.
    • "Herb Girls of Birkenau" describes the victims of human experiments in the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz-Birkenau, from the point of view of a powerless witness.
    • "Diamond Mind" is a satire inspired by the music of a De Beers diamond commercial that uses music composed by Karl Jenkins, which he later used as a theme of the orchestral piece Palladio.
  • Cabin Fever
    • "Rats" is about the 16th century decision by the then Pope to declare the semi-aquatic capybara as fish for Catholics to eat during Lent.
  • Poor Relations in the Shed Out Back (Frustration Plantation bonus disc)
    • "Yellow Fever" is about an outbreak of yellow fever in New Orleans in the summer of 1853.
  • Oh Perilous World

In popular culture[edit]

  • The Dead Milkmen have released a song titled "Melora Says" which is about some of the themes covered in Rasputina's music.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Under the Corset with Rasputina - a documentary by Dawn Miceli". Underthecorset.com. Retrieved 2012-12-07. 
  2. ^ "DNDS-953". Thedawnanddrewshow.com. 2011-01-25. Retrieved 2012-12-07. 
  3. ^ "Various - The Black Bible (CD) at Discogs". Discogs.com. Retrieved 2012-12-07. 
  4. ^ Allen G. Breed (2005-03-09). "New Orleans Evacuation Picking Up Steam". Retrieved 2008-01-11. 

External links[edit]