by Lucifera Elena
"Every other Saturday, I spend three hours doing a small service for the local Metal community. I host a heavy metal radio show on a non-commercial station located at the University of Delaware. With some of the requests I get (Kate Bush, Mudhoney), I wonder if people are actually listening to me *shrug*."-Metallikate
Metallikate is a DJ from Delaware supporting not only women in the metal scene but the bands of her local area. SHe has two shows on Ruffage Korefest- a whole program dedicated to the works of female artists in celebration of Women's History Month. And Local 913 allowing bands in her area to expose their music. If you're in her area, let her know you're listening!
1. Metallikate, tell us how long you've been a DJ? And how did you end up DJing a metal show for the University of Delaware?
I've been a DJ since October 18, 1993. I was a regular listener of the Ruffage radio program in high school. When I started college at the University of Delaware, one of the first things I did was volunteer to help Traci Neaves (my predecessor) run the show by fetching requests from the record library and answering the phones. After I got my radio broadcaster's license, I began to substitute for her as well. When she left the radio station in the spring of 1994, I was offered full hosting duties but I chose to split the responsibility with another DJ instead.
2. Was Ruffage your creation? Is Ruffage only on Saturdays?
Ruffage was created by Rich Grafstein in the late 80s or very early 90s (talking to him recently, I think it was probably 1990 or 1991). It has been broadcasting on Saturdays from 9pm to midnight since then.
3. Who came up with the music to be played and the format of the show?
Since its inception, Ruffage has always been devoted to Metal. Each host pretty much put their own spin on the show's structure, however the first hour has usually been devoted to new or Thrash music.
4. What bands are you into?
Too many! Off the top of my head I can think of Fear of God, Dismal Euphony, Fear Factory, Venom, Deicide, Rammstein, and Type O Negative.
5. How long have you been a metal fan? And what bands made you realize that you loved metal music?
I was really into Kiss when I was very young (that was the heaviest stuff I'd ever heard). I didn't rediscover heavier music until I was in middle school and got my first taste of "skater music" (Punk/Metal crossover) via my younger sister. I have been an avid fan of Metal since then.
The Titans! Remember the "Clash of the Titans" tour in 1991? Megadeth, Anthrax, and Slayer; Sepultura; Kreator and Danzig.
6. You did a radio show in March called "Korefest" and the whole program was dedicated to female artists. Have you gotten more requests for that show? Did you find out there were more female artists than you originally may have imagined?
I've gotten a few more, but most folks aren't exposed to female artists very much and don't know what's out there. I started Korefest to promote awareness of females in heavy and extreme Metal music and to hopefully expand listeners' musical horizons, but it's hard to tell how sucessful I've been in my quest.
When I started out, I only knew about Jo Bench from Bolt Thrower, Sean Yseult from White Zombie, and possibly a few others. Now, there seems to be a mindboggling amount of bands that would fit the Korefest programming criteria, however, it's still hard to find out much information about them or to locate copies of their music.
7. What's your opinion of women in the metal scene? What's the difference you see from when you first started getting into the music and now?
Women in the Metal scene still suffer from lack of airplay and media exposure. They still seem to be treated as a bit of a novelty, though perhaps not as much as they were in the early Nineties. Thankfully, women don't seem to be promoted as sex objects as much as they were in the past. We still have a long way to go for equal respect in the music industry.
8. Are there any female musicians that you find inspiring?
They all inspire me! It takes a lot of guts to get up on a stage, expose your musical creations to the general populace, and field the subsequent criticisms. And on top of that having to deal with the "groupie" assumption when you are playing out (as in 'Are you a girlfriend? Are you a wife?')- as if it's almost taboo for a woman to be a musician / have something to proclaim to the world in the form of song!
9. Do you have any new ideas you are going to include in your radio show?
Not really at the moment. I am always brainstorming and am always open to suggestions.
10. Aside from metal what else do you enjoy?
HTML authoring; gardening; reading; genealogy; miniature wargaming; watching videos of older cartoons like Dungeons and Dragons, Thundarr the Barbarian, and Jem
11. What is the metal scene like in Delaware?
Hard. Since the early Nineties, the number of willing venues has dwindled considerably. All ages venues are just about nil. Band activity waxes and wanes. Although many radio stations have "local music" programs, a lot of them seem to focus on more Pop and radio friendly material. Ruffage has always been supportive of local Metal musicians- in the past, we hosted interviews, live performances, etc. Due to the most recent up-tick of band activity, I began producing a segment during my first hour dedicated to local music dubbed "Local 913". Like "Korefest", it took me a while to build up enough material to fill out the segment (especially since the air studio's tape player ate a lot of older demos I had)and keep it varied.
12. Do you go to any metal fests? Or do you go outside of Delaware for shows?
Not really. I prefer to patronize shows in Delaware.
13. Did the University ever ask you to play something you didn't want to or to censor anything you were playing?
They've asked me to avoid airing the "Seven Deadly Words". A sensible request due to the reality that we probably would have to close our doors if we ever got hit by FCC (Federal Communications Commision) fines. The FCC is now headed by an individual who is especially determined to stamp out indecent and obscene material in the media. Although I am pretty careful monitoring lyrics in the songs I play, I still miss the occasional "bad word" and have cut way back on live recordings for this reason. The University has also asked me to pay a mind to drug and alcohol references in music.
14. Any last words?
Don't give up!
Contact and send material to MetalliKate at:
P.O. Box 143
Wilmington, DE 19899-0143
Metalikate's Website The Dead of the Night