Renowned folk-punk songwriter Shawna Virago dropped her latest album, Heaven Sent Delinquent, this past January via Tranimal Records and it’s filled with her trademark no-frills compositions.
Virago’s storytelling songs are steeped in the need for escape from the restrictive rules and ignorant views of society in general. Being transgender, Virago is on the frontlines of a continuing battle for LGBT rights and acceptance.
“Gender Armageddon” is a signature spare but riveting number that features acoustic guitar strum and a heartfelt Virago regretfully intoning about a friend in need of protection. Virago recounts, “You said you were too afraid to lie in your bed / You had too many cruel strangers sleeping in your head.”
The video for “Gender Armageddon” is equally direct and engaging, with Virago appearing on a stage backed with drawn-open velvet curtains and tall Tiffany lamps.
The San Francisco-based Virago is an artistic trailblazer who is not only a singer and musician but also a published writer and music composer. She’s been featured in the Advocate, Bitch, and Curve magazines and in documentaries on PBS and NPR. Her music video for “Transsexual Dominatrix” has played at more than 30 film fests in North America and Europe and it was awarded Best Music Video at New York’s CineKink Festival. Virago is also the artistic director of the San Francisco Transgender Film Festival.