Electronic Press Kit

Header photo credit: Michael O’Donnell

Electronic Press Kit

Header photo credit: Michael O’Donnell

Bio

Tae Phoenix (she/they) is a singer-songwriter, filmmaker, activist, and theatre artist based on the occupied territory of the Coast Salish and Duwamish peoples, colloquially known as Seattle, WA. 

As a queer, autistic Latine Jew, Tae’s work is shaped by lived experience, ancestral memory, empathy, and common sense.

They were notably arrested in January 2020 for singing “Brave” in the US Senate’s Russell Rotunda during the first impeachment trial of the then-president. They have participated in many civil disobedience actions across the country and gave a talk on the subject for beginners at Ignite Seattle #38.

They serve as the resident music & arts leader for the Washington State Poor People’s Campaign and frequently contribute op-eds on politics and social justice to publications including NewsweekThe Guardianand The Forward.

They are also the co-founder of Trek the Vote, a non-partisan network of Star Trek actors, fans, and creators dedicated to fair and equitable elections and have written for both StarTrek.com and Women at Warp.

Awards and nominations include: 2020 nominee for the Seattle Mayor’s Arts Award and Best Music Video at the 2019 Hollywood Women’s Film Festival and the 2019 Shoreline Short Film Festival for “We Shall Not Be Moved,” which was also a finalist at the 2019 Oaxaca FilmFest and screened at the 2019 SIFF Bumbershoot showcase.

About “The Girls You’ll Be”

Artist Statement:

“The Girls You’ll Be” is a five-song EP about big dreams, late diagnosed autism, and all the ways the world tried and failed to crush my spirit. I’m trying to really capture what this period of my life feels like, both personally and politically, and give it the feel of timelessness.

I’m looking forward to working with my community to make this project a reality on Kickstarter.

The Girls You'll Be

I know you feel like you’re on the wrong planet

And you keep looking for the crash site where you landed

Taught to see weakness in your greatest strengths

So shut all those lies out if you can and listen to me

Don’t worry baby, there will come a time

Don’t worry  worry baby, you’ll be alright

 

I know you’re angry, you’ve every right to be

I know you’re sensitive, excruciatingly

No one will save you, but girl you can save save yourself

So go on and do it, forget about everybody else

 

CHORUS

 

Just when you think the ground you’re standing on is solid it changes

That’s what happens when we write a song with G-d and she never stops arranging

 

CHORUS

 

I’ve counted our blessings, I’ve been all the girls you’ll be

I’ve witnessed the broken parts you didn’t wanna see

I’ve seen your dreams dear, I’ve walked down their halls and stairs

I am the doorway you didn’t know was there

 

Don’t worry baby, there will come a time

Do not worry baby, you’ll  be alright

Oh listen to me when I say we’ll be alright

Play the Fool

Teachers used to take us to the operas and the ballets and the shows that came through town

I’d be bouncing in my seat, flapping hands, feet wiggling, tears rolling down.

Every nerve in my body screaming, “please let me do that! I can be that good!”

Kids are so predictable, hate the atypical. Grown ups say what they think they should:

 

Dreams don’t make you very much money

They can be a nice hobby. But you’ll be disappointed honey

You’re such a little oddball, and the world wants cool

They already think you’re crazy. Don’t play the fool.

 

  I sensed the danger, picked a sensible major. Stopped flapping my hands

Kept climbing up the ladder but no rung was ever high enough to save me from drowning

I wouldn’t go to shows, couldn’t sing with the radio through the knot in my throat.

Dancing with the lights off every night, exhausted by the nine to five, still feeling every note.

 

Dreams don’t make you very much money

They can be a nice hobby. But you’ll be disappointed honey

You’re such a little oddball, and the world wants cool

They already think you’re crazy. Don’t play the fool.

 

Am I too late now? Did I throw away my shot?

Was I ever good enough to make a mark?

How many dreamers got lost trying to fit in and make a living? 

 

Dreams don’t make you very much money

They can be a nice hobby. But you’ll be disappointed honey

You’re such a little oddball, and the world wants cool

They already think you’re crazy. Don’t play the fool.

 

Teachers used to take us to the operas and the ballets and the shows that came through town

I’d be bouncing in my seat, flapping hands, feet wiggling, tears rolling down.

Every nerve in my body screaming, I can be that good!”

 

Free Woman

 I wanna be a free woman.                                            

I wanna live with free people cuz it’s my privilege and my pride to be my sister’s keeper.

I wanna be a free woman.

 

There’s plenty tried to hold me down

Who know I’m not easy to drown.

Cuz I’m the truth and holy rage. 

The wild voice they can’t contain.

And I refuse to show proper deference.

To the artful deal or the best defense of complicity.

I wanna be.

 

Been breathing lies all my life.

Now I’m gonna make it right

I criticize, I terrify.

I’m crucified or burned alive

Or they laugh at my impertinence

That a girl like me could take such offense

When my body is the least that they deserve

I’ve got some nerve.

 

I wanna be a free woman.

I wanna live with free people cuz it’s my privilege and my pride to be my sister’s keeper.

I wanna be a free woman.

I wanna be a free woman.

 

I am done with deals with the devil.

I’m ready for the glory

Cuz the people my blood keep telling stories.

 

I wanna be a free woman.                                   

I wanna live with free people cuz it’s my privilege and my pride to be my sister’s keeper.

I wanna be a free woman.

I wanna be a free woman.

My sister’s keeper       Free woman

My sister’s keeper       Free woman

These Days

These days I feel like I’ve swallowed a stone

And it’s stuck down somewhere in the the middle of my throat

There’s so much love and yet I feel so alone

Always on the edge of running away from home

 

And all I dream about are big waves

A mile tall and half an ocean away 

But crashing towards me  at such a pace

It always startles me awake

 

It’s all I dream about these days

Days of sorrow and unspent rage

I’m rushing in and I’m running away

That’s what I’m up to these days

    

I’ve been staring at this screen too long

My eyes are blurry and my mind’s just gone

But if I look away I’ll lose everyone

All these little pictures one by one

 

They’re all I have these days

Of muted sorrow and unspent rage

I’m rushing in and I’m running away

That’s what I’m up to these days

I wanna run like a river and burn every bridge so no one can cross me after I’m gone gone (x4)

 

These days

Days of sorrow and unspent rage

I’m rushing in and I’m running away

That’s what I’m up to these days

Days of sorrow and unspent rage

I’m rushing in and I’m running away

That’s what I’m up to these days

Rich Man's Daughter

I used to think I was better than you, I’m ashamed to say

I walked my shiny shoes past your face every day

I sleep in a bed and I drink clean water

I am rich man’s daughter

 

After school you got a job on Aurora Way

Seems dignified enough to me, girl you had bills to pay

By the time I had my degree, you had a toddler

There’s doctors for sale to a rich man’s daughter

 

It should have been plain to me

Everyone works, but some people have to work for free

I wasn’t meant to see you led to the slaughter

They shield the eyes of a rich man’s daughter

 

But even when my back was turned, I could hear you crying

And I didn’t understand the truth, but I knew they were lying

When they said, “don’t worry honey, all boats rise with the water.”

Comforting lies for a rich man’s daughter

 

And now I don’t know what to say, I don’t know what to say to you.

There’s nothing I can say, but there’s plenty I can do.

To honor you, my sister from another father.

And make a world with no more rich men’s daughters

Let’s make a world with no more rich men’s daughters

Some nice things people have said:

Credit: Danielle Barnum

“Whether bringing life to other people’s words or her own, Tae Phoenix is a natural-born storyteller with the polish of an accomplished actress and the authentic edge of a seasoned blues musician.” – Seattle Weekly

“Tae Phoenix’s beautiful voice and moral clarity pack quite a punch.” – Alyssa Milano, actor and activist

“Supremely talented, eloquent and sassy.” –  Brooklands Radio London

“Damn this is great great stuff. Tae has a beautiful voice and stage presence.” – Nadamucho.com

“Without a doubt, Tae Phoenix will be the one that future artists look to when starting their music careers” – Guerilla Candy

“Tae Phoenix’s Lilli Vanessi was sympathetic and dimensional, and she has impressive vocal range.” – Broadway World

“Tae Phoenix perfectly captures the mixture of confidence and self-consciousness the modern public have come to expect in the wildly famous. Her character, Melanie Wheeler, is exactly how you’ve always dreamed your favorite singer would be in person, tough but compassionate, deeply proud of their art and even more deeply touched that you love it so much. Additionally, her powerful voice swept me up until I felt like I was at a bona fide concert.” – Drama in the Hood

“In a wounded world filled with betrayal and hate, Tae Phoenix lifts the spirit and inspires us to make the difference we know we can be.” – Washington State Senator Lisa Wellman

“Whether on a street march for immigrant rights, or a grassroots rally to tax Amazon and other big businesses to fund affordable housing, Tae Phoenix brings vital culture into today’s leading struggles. Tae’s passion and fighting spirit, combined with her extraordinary singing, poignant lyrics, and vivid story-telling, elevate organizing events and protests from the mere ordinary to the extraordinary.” – Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant

Media

Photos
(music venues, studio, theatre, and protest)

Audio
(selected tracks from two decades worth of recordings)

Music Videos
We Shall Not Be Moved (2018)

Brave (2020)

Play the Fool Lyric Video (2021)