If you're a woman who has ever leaned toward punk, you've either worshipped her or secretly hoped someone like her existed: Penelope Houston is an international icon. Not just as the lead singer of the Avengers, the band famous for the song "The American in Me," either, although the pictures of her in the early days of punk are as punk as anything else -- young, intelligent, infuriated, leather-jacketed. But in the rather many ensuing years, she's done nothing but continue to be admirable, in the form of taking on a new musical genre that's really hard to define: Mod-folk, maybe, or heartfelt go-go New Wave film soundtrack, with autoharp. Tonight, she reads at The Nervous Breakdown series, along with Johnny Genocide aka Hugh Thomas Patterson, Stephen Elliott, Paul Clayton, Lauren Becker, and Thomas Wood.
Tue., May 25, 7 p.m., 2010