In the early 1990s, the accordionist and musical improviser Pauline Oliveros wrote the soundtrack for a feminist porn film called The Sluts and Goddesses Video Workshop. The film is presented and co-directed by Annie Sprinkle, a sex worker turned academic whose lecture covers everything from deep breathing and vaginal bling to STD prevention and “mega orgasms”. Along the way, we get a spectacular sonic counterpart of drones, glitches, bleeps, twangs and pulsations.
Conventional porn music this is not: no sultry saxophones, no oily bass guitars. Instead, Oliveros made sounds that are fun, tactile and inquisitive. If Sprinkle’s mission was to confront industry standards of what erotic looks like, freeing viewers to define their own tastes, Oliveros reminded us that the power to decide what music means should ultimately belong to the listener.
This autumn, in the wake of the allegations against Harvey Weinstein and others, a…
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