Local female-fronted bands celebrate the power of friendship at 123 Pleasant Street.
What is Galentine’s Day? Some consider it an alternative—or maybe even an illuminating addition—to the traditional, mushy-gushy holiday that rolls around every February 14. Rather than emphasizing romantic relationships, Galentine’s Day is a celebration of female friendship.
This year, Fairmont native guitarist and front-woman Maleri Tustin and her bandmates—along with a few other local female-fronted bands—are celebrating this increasingly popular holiday by playing a Galentine’s Special gig at 123 Pleasant Street on February 17.
We spoke with Tustin to learn more about the event.
Q: How did the idea for the Galentine’s Day show come about?
Maleri Tustin: It first came to life when I was talking to L.J. Giuliani, the owner of 123, about possible dates in February that both of my bands could play. February 17 started out as just a random Thursday, but then I thought, I want to do something special that isn’t a typical Valentine’s Day–themed gig. I am so passionate about supporting women in music, so I thought, how about a show that centered around female-fronted bands? It just clicked—Galentine’s Day: a girly theme encouraging other women to come watch a lady-dominated stage and enjoy themed drinks!
Q: How did you make the show a reality?
MT: I pitched the idea to L.J., and he loved it. So I got together with the other members of my bands, Blasfemme and ROT—Megan Rinker and Taylor Morgan, and Max Ostrow and Kory Stevens, respectively. We brainstormed some of our favorite bands in town that had a few ladies in them—Ex Olympia, Porch Geese, and Pants Queen—and we reached out. I also talked to one of my favorite female artists in town, Olivia Gianettino, about creating a graphic for the show, and suddenly it was in the works!
Q: What does this Galentine’s Day gig mean to you personally?
MT: To me, Galentine’s Day is celebrating being a woman and the friendships and bonds we create together. I want the atmosphere of this gig to support not only female friendships, but friendships in general, and loving everyone! The energy at 123 is always off the charts, even since the changes the venue has had to make since COVID-19, so I’m sure it’ll be a good time.