Tag Archives: maddy carty

Matchwomen Festival – 30 June at Bow Arts

This year we celebrate 130 years since the Bow Matchwomen’s groundbreaking strike of 1888.

Speakers confirmed:
Writer and broadcaster MICHAEL ROSEN
SARA ROWBOTHAM And CATH HAYES, the ‘Rochdale Whistleblowers’ immortalised in ‘Three Girls’, on their fight for the truth.
LISSA EVANS, BAFTA-winning Father Ted director and best-selling novelist who’s Their Finest Hour is now a major film, on writing comedy, & the suffragette heroine of her latest book.
DONNA GUTHRIE of BARAC UK (Black Activists against cuts)
ANITA ANAND, BBC presenter & author of ‘Princess Sophia’ about the Indian suffragette who rocked the royal family
SARAH JACKSON, author of ‘East London Suffragettes’ and founder of the eagerly-awaited East End Women’s Museum
KAREN INGALA SMITH, founder of the femicide census ‘Counting Dead Women’
AISHA ALI-KHAN, women’s rights activist
NINA, domestic violence survivor turned facilitator of the Freedom Programme, which helps women in abusive relationships
NUT Vice President LOUISE REGAN on sexism in schools

plus a full programme of music in the evening from LOUD WOMEN bands and musicians, including:
Maddy Carty
I, Doris
Samba Sisters Collective
Steve White & The Protest Family

With no union, no money and no job security, they took action to defend one sacked girl, and ended up facing down one of the country’s most powerful employers. Their unexpected victory began a social movement from which the new union movment sprang, eventually leading to the founding of the Labour Party.

For our 6th annual festival we will take inspiration from each other, and from speakers of diverse gifts who have one thing in common: they never, ever give up!

We are thrilled this year to be just a stone’s throw from the matchfactory, right where the strike began. This is the Bow Road the matchwomen knew, and promenaded, dressed to kill and arm in arm, on their days off. Here they began the strike which led to an unprecedented, supposedly impossible victory for poor, working class, largely migrant women.

Our festival will take place in the courtyard of Bow Arts, an organisation that supports art at the heart of the local community, and celebrates its history.


Tickets from Eventbrite



LW Politics & Music – Part 5: Maddy Carty

maddyMaddy Carty is a multifaceted singer-songwriter. Depending on your introduction to her music you might initially think of her as a folk singer, a ska, reggae or pop artist, or an R&B vocalist. Truth is, she's all of the above, while also being a committed political artist who regularly plays protest songs like her classic "Condemn Age" (from debut album 'Come and Get It') at benefits, political events and picket lines. The latter might surprise some who know her primarily for the reggae-inflected pop songs that predominate on her aforementioned album, but there's no right or wrong way to mix politics and art. In fact, you can make a good case (with many historical examples) for the superior subversive potential of political messages in a mainstream pop context, compared to, say, the archetypal punk gig where everyone is already broadly in agreement. 
Maddy was recently declared joint winner of the CWU-sponsored Bread & Roses Songwriting and Spoken Word Award for her song "Crying at the News" about the Grenfell Tower fire.

What made you decide to use (some of) your songwriting to express political viewpoints?
Maddy: I don’t remember it ever being a conscious decision, I’ve just always written about things I care about and what’s going on around me.

Do you use songs as tools to put across prefigured messages – or is it more that you self-express in general through music, with politics just one aspect of that?

Maddy: If it makes me feel, I’ll write about it. I guess in that sense I can’t help that my politics comes out in my song writing, because it’s something I’m passionate about. Sometimes I’ll just start a song with no real idea of where it will take me, other times, I’ll have a subject in my head that I want to address. For example, during the time of the junior doctor strike where we were also in the midst of the refugee crisis (which we still are) it made me so angry that I knew I would write about it, and that’s where my song ‘What Kind of Life’ came from.

Is the function of politics in music to affirm views within a reciprocal social group, or convert – or at least converse with – a wider public?
Maddy: I would hope that if you can put across an idea in a song, that it could create conversation, or open people’s eyes to things they perhaps hadn’t thought about or didn’t want to. I think that’s something that music does in general, not just political music. But it has to be said that when I play more political gigs I do realise I’m preaching to the converted because of the left wing people who book me!

Explicit or ideological politics is a rarity in music, even most punk/DIY scenes: is that something you’re conscious of, and does it matter?
Maddy: I think because of the circles I’m in I wouldn’t see politics as rare in music or the arts, considering I gig with the likes of Grace Petrie, Nia Wyn, Steve White and the Protest Family and many others. I’m also a big fan of people who sing songs involving social commentary and politics, like Will Varley, Gaz Brookfields and Thee Faction, so it’s probably less a case of the content being rare but the ability to get the content to wider audiences, which is a shame. Also, most of those people are doing really well, so perhaps there’s the matter of the media and industry trying to ignore this type of music!

Is there a pressure that comes with being known as a political musician? And is there a balance to strike between work on the one hand, and fun and self-care on the other?
Maddy: I do think there’s pressure when people refer to me as political artist, especially when I don’t see myself as just that. I’m a singer-songwriter so a lot of my stuff isn’t necessarily political and might just be love songs, or me having a go at my fella! Sometimes it feels like I have to change my set according to the type of gig I’m doing and to fit the audience, but I always like to get a couple of my ‘political’ songs into every set. There’s the worry about other political artists not thinking you’re political enough too! When it comes down to it, I do music because I love it, so having a few different avenues to go down creatively is never a bad thing.

What are the primary political issues we face, in the UK and globally?
Maddy: My two biggest worries are for education and our NHS. I work in a lot of schools and have seen first hand the damage that the cuts have done to education, especially within Special Education Needs, and the idea of all schools becoming academies genuinely terrifies me. And of course the NHS is in crisis and the treatment of the staff is appalling. I think more people are becoming aware of these issues now and taking a step up to try to fight for them. The sooner we get the Tories out the better.

Catch Maddy live when she joins us for Matchwomen Festival on 30 June.

Maddy Carty is currently recording a new EP. You can sponsor and follow its progress here: https://www.patreon.com/MaddyCarty


3 September 2016 | LOUD WOMEN Fest | 25 acts in 1 day


Get your tickets quick for our first ever all-dayer – LOUD WOMEN FEST! Tickets selling fast.

Saturday 3rd September 2016 at T.Chances in Tottenham, 12.30-1am

Tickets from WeGotTickets- http://www.wegottickets.com/event/371192

25 acts across two rooms – no slot clashes

Full line-up now confirmed:

LIPS Choir – https://www.facebook.com/LipsChoir/?fref=ts

Dolls – www.facebook.com/thisisDolls

Argonaut – www.facebook.com/argonautband

Viva Zapata! – https://www.facebook.com/Vivazapatauk/?fref=ts

Fight Rosa Fight! – www.facebook.com/fightrosafight

Petrol Girls – www.Facebook.com/petrolgirls

Dream Nails – https://www.facebook.com/yourdreamnails/

The Franklys – https://www.facebook.com/thefranklys/?fref=ts

Desperate Journalist –  http://www.facebook.com/DesperateJournalist

Vodun – https://www.facebook.com/VODUNBAND

The Wimmins’ Institute – www.facebook.com/thewimminsinstitute

Foxcunt – https://www.facebook.com/fxcnt/

Rantipoles – https://www.facebook.com/rantipoles/

Greenness – https://www.facebook.com/greennessmusic/

Grace Petrie – https://www.facebook.com/gracepetriemusic

Janine Booth – https://www.facebook.com/JanineBoothTheBig

Lilith Ai – https://www.facebook.com/lilithaimusic

Spanking Machine – https://www.facebook.com/spanxphalanx

Maddy Carty – https://www.facebook.com/MaddyCartyMusic

Madame So – www.facebook.com/madamesomusic

Nia Wyn – https://www.facebook.com/niawynmusic

Fightmilk – https://www.facebook.com/fightmilkisaband

The Ethical Debating Society – https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Ethical-Debating-Society/76532450884

Louise Distras – www.facebook.com/louisedistras

Rabies Babies – https://www.facebook.com/rabiesbabiespunk/

The best in woman-led pop/rock bands, plus solo acts, poetry, and a few more surprises.

Children welcome all day (although after 7pm things get a louder and little ears might not like it!). The venue is wheelchair accessible. The venue’s toilets will be de-gendered for this event.

Join the group LOUD WOMEN for news of more women-lead events

“Loud Women will undoubtedly be the beacon for all the best new female talent in 2016” – The Morning Star

“Fans of women-centric punk, rock and riot grrrl will heart this UK-based promoter.” – DIVA magazine

““If, say, Kathleen Hanna flew in to Gatwick tomorrow, grabbed you by the collar and asked “What’s going on here then? Where do I need go? What do I need to see?” – God is in the TV

Number 1 women-led music night in London – thegirlsare.com