Remember when Phoebe Bridgers smashed her Danelectro electric guitar during a performance on SNL, and the internet erupted in outrage at her antics? Well, among the many haters who labelled her “disappointing” and “extra” were a legion of supporters who saw the guitar smash for what it really was: a pretty darn epic way to close her set.
That support has now materialized stronger than ever before, thanks to Girls Smash Guitars – a musical project set up by Rockit Music Gear’s Halee Smith, who has assembled a group of plucky youngsters to do their best Phoebe Bridgers impressions.
And when we say “best Phoebe Bridgers impressions”, we don’t just mean a musical impression. That’s right: each guitarist in the video takes turns in smashing up their six-strings. Not a single axe makes it out alive.
Admittedly, it’s an incredibly entertaining video. There were no instrumentalists harmed in the making – obviously the same can’t be said for the actual instruments – and the mash-up is very well put together.
Of course, the two songs have been the subject of much musical discussion in the past given their easily identifiable similarities, but we digress.
Smith says the entire idea was born from Nick Loux’s YouTube video – which humorously addresses the impact Bridgers’ smash had on his daughter – and that she reached out to him to make a strap that reads “Girls Smash Guitars” in a bid to hammer home the not-very-well-accepted notion that, well, girls can smash guitars.
“We were watching SNL, like most families, and the musical guests came on,” Loux recalls in his tongue-in-cheek video. “It was Phoebe Bridgers. I hadn’t heard of her, I was like, ‘Oh, is this like a Taylor Swift kind of thing?’
“Then something happened at the end of the (second) song, and it really… it shook me, and it changed something in me. She started screaming, and then… then it happened. She smashed her guitar. And I didn’t like it. I didn’t like it at all. It hit me like a ton of bricks.
"Next thing you know we'll have girls playing drums."
From there, the pair enlisted the help of Karen Scheirhorn, who turned their guitar strap designs into the final product.
And, to boost the traction surrounding the release, Smith then recruited a series of female musicians from local bands to perform the punk pop mash-up, which you can check out above.
Featuring Lily Wohlstadter, Zoe Leach, Edie Leach and Emma Musso on the electric guitars and bass guitars, as well as vocalist Victoria Fitzgerald and drummer Ben I, the video is certainly a wild ride – we'd advise the faint of heart avert their eyes.
Girls Smash Guitars straps are available now, and already have a number of high-profile advocates – JHS Pedals' Josh Scott, for example, was recently seen with one slung over his shoulder.
And, as an added bonus, for every two straps sold, one gets donated to a rock school.
To support Rockit Music Gear's message that girls can smash guitars, head over to its Etsy page to pick up a guitar strap for $47.99.