Vancouver-based guitar and vocals twosome Mecca Normal has always had a political bent. Sure, the band serves up smartly written songs and obstreperous guitar rock, but its lyrics and visuals reveal a fair amount of conscious advocacy, alongside a feminist bent. So when singer Jean Smith recently got laid off from her part-time job at an eco-friendly clothing store, the prolific writer, musician, and visual artist took it not as a setback, but as a chance to further the cause of political content in art. It also gave her and guitarist David Lester the chance to take their show on the road, just in time for Mecca Normals 25th anniversary. On April 12, the band plays at the Hemlock Tavern, and today it hosts the workshop How Art and Music Can Save the World, in which Smith and Lester explain how they incorporate politics into their work and encourage other artists to do the same. Their concepts are illustrated with a few politically charged songs and exhibits, making this a worthwhile freebie for artists and music fans alike.
Mon., April 13, 1 p.m., 2009