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Julia Rothman was studying the art featured in her bathroom magazine collection when she realized that every cover in the stack had been created by a man. She dug into the magazine’s archives to investigate the year’s covers, and discovered that out of 55 covers released in 2015, only four had been created by female-identified artists. “I called Wendy MacNaughton and I was like, ‘Did you know about this,” said Rothman. “‘This is wild...
The quickest way to aggravate a comedian: Ask them to tell you a joke. No matter how pure the intention, it's like saying "prove it" to win an argument, but it's also a hard impulse to resist. And yet, when I talked with Brooke Van Poppelen—comedian, writer, and producer, who co-hosts Hack My Life and appeared on The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore among other shows—there was never a moment where I doubted her ability not...
Among friends and exes of the band Childbirth, the hilariously funny, unbelievably mean 2014 single, “I Only Fucked You as a Joke,” was the source of a deep and sudden existential panic. “People took it really personally,” says singer Julia Shapiro. “They were like, ‘Wait, girls do that???'” But for far-away listeners—those not plausibly fucked by the Seattle band’s members as a literal joke—the song fell at the very top-tier of modern punk, and...
In her songs, Julia Holter has trouble being herself. “I don’t think I can really sing and think, 'This is me, I’m just singing,'” she says. “It’s so weird for me, personally.” Instead of direct confessionals, the acclaimed L.A. songwriter has regularly projected herself backwards in time, building her records off of high-minded old fictions. Her 2011 debut, Tragedy, inhabited Euripides’ ancient Greek play Hippolytus. Last year’s Loud City Song mused on modernity, but...

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