The Philadelphia music scene (which reacted so swiftly and decisively to this absurd bill that it got withdrawn in record time) aims to encourage participation from everyone. First Time’s the Charm, a yearly event that booking collective DIY PHL has been running since 2013, aims to explicitly include marginalized people who are traditionally discouraged from participation in music, not through formal rules but via a confluence of cultural factors like messages received through media (straight white men’s work held to different critical standards), experiences at shows (how many of us have dealt with pit gropers?) and more (see Jessica Hopper’s Twitter timeline ask for more concrete examples).
Some acts, like Bad Canoes, Marge, Littler and Teenage Bigfoot formed at past FTTC events and are still going strong. Madeline Meyer of Littler says, of her experience, “It’s not an overstatement to say FTTC changed my life. I’ve been involved in music for basically my whole life but almost always as a fan and a critic. Not knowing an instrument felt like a hole in my heart. Without FTTC, who knows how long it would have taken me to be in a band – if I’d ever even done it at all?”
Check out the flyer for First Time’s The Charm below, and if you’re in Philly, consider getting involved! Registration opens February 25, and the shows will be held on June 3 and 4.