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September’s Honorary Lady: Jona Bechtolt/YACHT

October 1, 2010

The “Honorary Lady” is a monthly feature we do on Girl Germs in an effort to discuss the boundaries that come attached to a radio show devoted to female artists. We wish to challenge what it means to be a girl or lady, and to recognize that artists who fall outside of this gender definition do make huge contributions to the music and culture we celebrate on the show.

Oregon native Jona Bechtolt performed for several years as part of (Girl Germs fave) The Blow, a visual art-meets-electronic music project led by Mikhaela Maricich (formerly of the Microphones). Before The Blow, Bechtolt, who also played in Allegro and The Badger King, had already started performing and releasing music under the YACHT name. He has always embodied the D.I.Y. spirit that is so prevalent in the Pacific Northwest–creating his own beats, producing his own music and releasing it on independent labels. He’s also a talented multi-media artist who’s been commissioned by the Portland Institute of Contemporary Art and New York arts nonprofit Rhizome, and is a founder and contributor to the Urban Honking blog. We not only love Bechtolt’s contributions to art, music and the D.I.Y. music scene, but we love that he’s collaborated with such talented ladies as Maricich and Claire L. Evans, who became an official member of YACHT in 2008.

But perhaps what we love most about him is: dude is NOT afraid to bust a move–even while having paint dumped on him.
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