A Queer Country Music Magazine

QueerCuts: Alynda Segarra aka Hurray for the Riff Raff

A Brooklyn native, former traveler kid, and a songwriter in the tradition of Hazel Dickens / Woody Guthrie / Peet Seeger – Alynda has been crafting folkpunk / americana songs that can make you cry, dance, and smile with unabridged joy for many many years. I’ve personally been a fan since her New Orleans days in the band Sundown Songs – which also included the talents of Sam Doores and Pat Reedy who have also gone on to mainstream success.

In recent years the political content of her music has gotten even more forthright with songs like Everybody Knows (written for Trayvon Martin) and The Body Electric (a feminist commentary on murder ballads.) This evolution has only sharpened her songwriting skills and if you ever thought a political song couldn’t also be a seriously moving heartbreaker of a song that gets right into your heart – Alynda is here to prove you wrong.

As her music is evolving so is her stage presence – Bitch magazine says – “When Alynda Segarra performs these days, she drapes the stage with two flags: a rainbow flag and a Puerto Rican flag. Putting her identity as a queer woman of Puerto Rican descent front and center is important for Segarra, who fronts the politically minded folk-blues band Hurray for the Riff Raff. Even if the people dancing along to the tunes don’t always get the depth of her lyrics, the flags are an unmistakable symbol of pride. Segarra has been a punk ever since she was a teenager growing up in the Bronx, and in her album, The Navigator, her politics and exploration of identity are more pronounced than ever before.” -Bitch Magazine

-Cindy Emch

Here’s a video of her performing one of my favorite songs – Look Out Mama.

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