UPDATE (3/11/15) – I get a lot, a lot, a lot of emails about this post and the fact that the links are expired. I wanted to let you know that as of now, I don’t have any plans to reupload these files. Both Jen and Madigan are still making music and I recommend supporting them if you’re able. Madigan’s current releases can be found here and Jen’s can be found here. Thanks for understanding!
I know that I’ve written about Tattle Tale on this blog before (read previous thoughts on Tattle Tale here)– but I’m a girl of recurring themes. I’m going to write about certain bands and certain albums over and over again, there’s just no getting around it.
Like a lot of people who spend too much time on the internet, I have a tumblr account, and while I have a love/hate relationship with tumblr in general, I do like that it occasionally serves as a platform for a particular kind of discourse that gives equal importance to visuals, words, and sounds — so that on a day like today, I can answer a question from a friend about what my favorite albums are by writing about them, posting pictures of their covers, and sharing songs from them. Anyway, when I wrote about Sew True being one of my favorite albums, my friend replied with the thought, “I wish I could find a copy of that album for less than $100,” which just seemed unbearably sad to me, even though it is a very realistic thought — copies of Sew True are getting to be pretty rare (not that they were ever commonplace to begin with) and it’s not unheard of for people to sell them for upwards of $100, which just breaks my heart because I love this album and I want everyone to be able to hear it, not just in that, “Hey, I downloaded this album on the internet and really like it” sort of way, but in the kind of way where they can hold it in their hands and say, “God, I love the linocut of the sewing machine on the inside of the album cover” and marvel at the liner notes and know that Madigan and Jen have some of the best handwriting ever.
It’s stupid to say that the internet has changed music forever — everyone already knows that. Nothing gets lost anymore — it always finds a home somewhere, on a blog or a messageboard or a file sharing community, and that’s ok, but sometimes I wish it was different. I got my first copy of Sew True in the mail from Hayley, a Bonfire Madigan superfan who put together a great (and sadly no longer existent) Tattle Tale fansite. I listened to that CD-R over and over again, so thankful for those songs and for Hayley’s kindness in sending them to me, and I wish I could do that for everyone who’s ever complained about downloading a cut-off mp3 of “A Girl’s Toolbox.” But I can’t, so I’ll put the files on a blog just like everyone else does.
It’s not normally my policy to post full releases, but I also think it’s totally wrong for people to sell these tapes and CDs and 7”s on eBay for 10 times their original cost — so here it is, here is all of the Tattle Tale I have. I’m putting it out there for anyone who wants to hear it, who has missed out on it, who has no idea what I’m talking about, but is now curious, etc. Maybe it’s absurd to quote Defiance, OH (but maybe not, since they’re tenuously linked to Tattle Tale through Sherri Ozeki’s time with Bonfire Madigan), but share what ya got, right?
So, if you already know, you already know, but if you don’t: Tattle Tale was Jen Wood (guitar) and Madigan Shive (cello), a teen girl duo with riot grrrl influences who left behind a small, but singularly raw and sincere body of work: one album, one demo tape, two 7”s, and a handful of songs released on compilation albums. Their music relies largely on the interplay between Madigan’s cello and Jen’s guitar, and is occasionally added to by some spare drum parts. There is an intimacy to these songs, and a worldliness, and a quiet sort of anger that, I think, might be particular to teenage girls (but maybe I am wrong about that.)
So, here is what I’m giving you:
Early Daze 7” (Download) Released on Pillarbox Red Records in 1992. Features the songs “Running Too” and “Zachary’s Mother.”
Tell/Yell Demo (Download) A cassette only demo released by Kill Rock Stars in 1993.
Alder-Wood Mall/Loose Lips 7” (Download) Released on Chou-Chou in 1995.
Sew True (Download) Tattle Tale’s only full-length release, put out by St. Francis records in 1995. Sew True features “Glass Vase Cello Case,” which, thanks to its use in Jamie Babbit’s But I’m A Cheerleader, is probably Tattle Tale’s best known song.
“Girls Go To Heaven” (Download) Featured on the Yo Yo Records comp, Periscope.