Kristin Hersh

Kristin Hersh

Musical Artist
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Kristin Hersh

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Kristin Hersh (born August 7, 1966) is an American singer/songwriter who performs solo acoustic concerts; she also continues to perform as lead singer and guitarist for alternative rock group Throwing Muses and the hardcore punk-influenced power trio 50 Foot Wave. She has written a memoir, titled Rat Girl, which was published in the USA by Penguin Books on August 31, 2010 and is co-founder of the non-profit, open-source software project for recording artists, CASH Music.

Early life

Born in Atlanta as Martha Kristin Hersh, she was raised in Newport, Rhode Island. She learned guitar at age nine from her father, and started writing songs soon after. As a teenager, she formed Throwing Muses in the early 1980s with stepsister Tanya Donelly and other high school friends.

Hersh began singing and writing most of Throwing Muses' songs in changing tempos, with Donelly also singing and writing some of the songs. The group was signed by the British 4AD Records label in 1986 and, after one album, signed a U.S. deal with Sire/Reprise Records in 1987. They began touring around the U.S. and Europe while recording critically acclaimed rock albums, with Hersh writing most of the songs.

Hersh has listed among her early musical influences The Raincoats, Talking Heads, Violent Femmes, Meat Puppets, Dead Kennedys, Hüsker Dü, Velvet Underground, R.E.M., and X. She has said her parents' albums by Patti Smith, the Carter Family, Stevie Wonder, Robert Johnson, Talking Heads, The Clash, Steve...
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