Girl in a Coma is an amazing band from San Antonio. Jenn Alva, the bassist, was nice enough to take a break and fill me in on the band and tour. These amazing girls were signed by Joan Jett the first time they played for her. They have toured with some amazing talents including Morrisssey and are here in Seattle tonight. If you are in Seattle you should definitely attend their concert this evening. There are a couple of tickets left click here.
Earle Dutton: How’s the tour going?
Jenn Alva: It is going really well, especially since we were just in Seattle not that long ago. We are back and getting a great response. We are playing quite a few all ages venues and people are coming out with their kids even on school nights. It has been a really good tour so far.
What was it like to get signed by Joan Jett the same night that you performed for her?
It was unreal. At the moment, I did not understand what happened. One of the girls explained to me, no they are singing us. I thought it was a maybe. It was a great moment for our group. We already had an idea of her in our head from being fans of the Runaways and her music. She is a sweetheart. It is great to work with her.
I have to admit that I did not know a lot about you before the last couple of days. I thought it was an amazing coincidence that I was listening to Morrissey and The Smiths when I read you bio and came across his name.
Oh cool, we are huge fans. I wish we could go on the road with him again. That would be awesome.
You have been on the road with a lot of brilliant artists. Do you get to perform with them?
Well, Nina has had a chance to jam with Joan Jett and the Smoking Popes. We have really been able to meet and tour with a lot of our idols. It is pretty cool. The Toadies were a Texas bans we admired and we toured with them. Of course, Morrissey, Social Distortion and we just did a couple of dates with Smashing Pumpkins too.
Who was your favorite to perform or collaborate with?
I think it would always be Morrissey. It was our first big tour and we refer to it as “Morrissey Bootcamp.” Because you have to kind of learn the ways to be an opening act on the road. Morrissey fans are very particular. Most of the shows were amazing with accepting crowds but there were a couple with people screaming “Hurry Up.” You just learn to realize that you have to get a few people interested in your music from each crowd. There is a huge crowd and you learn that they are not there for you but for the main event. During the Morrissey tour we got a taste of it all. We learned to be prompt, to get our stuff off the stage fast, and just enjoy the rest of the show. To get to see him every night was incredible. It was a great tour.
You have been an opening band for so many great performers. Now you are on tour yourselves. How does it feel to be the band everyone came to see?
It is a comforting feeling. We know they are there for us and singing along. We appreciate every second of it. We have the coolest fans. They are devoted and unique. Traveling is nice but we make a lot of sacrifices being away from family and friends but the fans really make it worth it. We love our fans so much.
How did it feel to get the “Women of the Year” award from Michael Cooney at Exceptional Ability Entertainment?
Michael Cooney is one of our amazing fans. He hosted the awards ceremony and presented us with the certificate. It was such an honor. He and his organization are really amazing. It was eye opening to see who they chose.
What do you guys do during your down time?
We all like to hang out with our family and friends. Nina has a solo project and works on her music. I paint. I love to paint and have been doing a lot of that lately. I bought a sketch book for the road. Phanie collects vinyl and does some DJ stuff. She loves spinning records.
Is there a message you would like to put out there for LGBTQ youth?
Absolutely! If you are thinking about playing music, go for it. It is the greatest thing you can choose to do. You can say whatever you want and get your message out there. We are so fortunate to have a great lesbian and gay following. They see us out there as just normal girls who love to play music. We aren’t the typical girl band in stilettos. We don’t believe you have to look a certain way to be successful. We want girls to see that if they want to play music they can. We just want to play music and inspire other people to do it as well. Three girls from San Antonio that love to play music. If we can do it so can you.
Is there anything special we should look forward to during your show?
We have been doing a new cover of “Little Red Riding Hood.” We kind of made it in a 90s style. The crowd loves it. It is quite unexpected. Out new single, “Here is Now,” our new single has been doing really well too.