They're lesbians. They're not particularly attractive lesbians.
Your guitarist can snort his father's ashes and openly admit to it, and millions will line up to buy $100 tickets to your concert.People in the '80s wore FRANKIE SAY RELAX! shirts and didn't seem to mind that the entire song is about a dude who loves to blow other dudes.
So I'm not sure why it's so easy to dismiss this one particular band because they kiss a other girls. Meanwhile, Katy Perry and that TATU group can do it, sing about it, and reap a profit solely because of it.
So why is it somehow acceptable to dismiss the Indigo Girls because they're unattractive lesbians?
Fortunately for me, I fell in love with them before I ever knew about that stuff. I saw Emily Saliers and Amy Ray open up for R.E.M. in Murphreesboro, Tenn., on the Green tour in late 1988. I honestly didn't pay attention to their performance at first. Just two girls and two acoustic guitars. Big whup.
Lyrical brilliance, exquisite harmonies, and a down-home feel that felt like they were playing in your living room. These were magnetic qualities upon first listen, and they continue to be the key draws of their music. If fairly stripped-down, mostly folk and country-folk music ain't your thing, I doubt any of their music will knock your socks off. If you don't feast off of brilliant lyrical turns of phrase that frequently comes with religious references or allusions to their bipolar Southern heritage, I doubt this band would convert you.
And that's fine. I'm OK with someone not liking music because they don't like the music. It's just annoying when the hypocrisy of values or personality conflicts becomes the excuse, because these judgments are almost always restricted to when they're convenient.
The single greatest weakness of the Indigo Girls is that their songs lose potency in mixes. Their songs tend to get lost in the shuffle, it seems. Ironically, though I own every Indigo Girls album, they almost never show up on mix CDs I make for others. Their songs rarely feel like the "fit" in with the other songs I've chosen.
Although both women write equal numbers of songs on every album, I'm personally drawn to the subjects and tenderness of Emily Saliers' songs. Amy Ray tends to have rougher edges and harsher words, while Emily mines the timeless (some might say overdone) themes of lost loves and lost souls.
Lesbians yes, but those chicks can express an adult's broken heart better than just about anyone.
My All-Time Top 10 Indigo Girls Songs (in chronological order):
- Hey Jesus
- Closer to Fine
- Southland in the Springtime
- Watershed (mp3)
- Thin Line (mp3)
- Hope Alone (mp3)
- Come on Home (mp3)
All Indigo Girls albums can be purchased on iTunes or Amazon.com. If you want the single best album, go with Become You. If you want the most well-known ones, try their self-titled 1988 album or Rites of Passage. Their 1200 Curfews live 2CD concert is pretty awesome, too.