“You can’t just sit on the side/just wasting our time… You gotta vote! Exercise your rights!” (From “Vote!”)
Shrill voice, direct messages, and the sizzling noise of punk rock sound. “Vote!,” a song released in September 2020 by American rock band “The Linda Lindas,” was as fierce as Sex Pistols’ “Anarchy in the U.K.”
“Back then, we had a terrible president, so we just wanted to say we should change things through a vote.” (Eloise Wong, bass)
The Dong-A Ilbo had a written interview with the members of “The Linda Lindas,” a multi-racial American punk rock band created in 2018 with their average age at 13.7. In fact, the singers of the song “Vote!” are not old enough to cast the ballot yet. The oldest is Bela Salazar (guitar) at 17, and the youngest Mila de la Garza (drum) at 11. Covered by The New York Times and The Guardian, however, they are up-and-comers in the music scene extolled by legendary rock bands such as Rage Against the Machine and Red Hot Chili Peppers.
“There was no pressure. We can make any song.” (Lucia, guitar)
One of their better-known songs includes “Racist, Sexist Boy.” “One of my friends in class said she was told not to hang out with the Chinese.” (Mila) As Chinese-American Mila decided to make a song about what she wants to say. “Me and Mila created this song together while stuck at home because of the pandemic. The original title was ‘Idiot Boy’, but we changed it to ‘Racist, Sexist Boy’ since Idiot Boy might sound like discrimination against the disabled.” (Eloise)
While most teenagers are into dance pop or hip hop, The Linda Lindas said their role model is “Bikini Kill,” an American female punk rock band from the 1990s.
“My aunt is a fan of BTS, and the nephews liked them more than they like us” (Mila), “We want to perform with Slant (a South Korean punk rock group) at a small punk rock club!” (Eloise)
They said the band name was inspired by a Korean movie from 2005 called “Linda Linda Linda” where actress Bae Doo-na played a high-school girl dreaming to be a punk rocker. “She is the best,” Eloise said. “I love her acting in the Host as well. Her song resonated with me beyond language.”
The Linda Lindas are performing for Incheon Pentaport Rock Festival on Sunday evening (broadcast free on YouTube on Saturday and Sunday).
“Though we can’t visit this time, I hope you will enjoy our music.” (Bela)
“Turn up the volume!” (Mila)
“Next time, we will definitely be there for a song!” (Eloise)