EDGE Interview: How About Some BETTY Pride?

Nicholas Dussault READ TIME: 10 MIN.

BETTY, the indie rock-pop trio that's been traveling the globe delighting audiences with their unique, incredibly danceable music and passionate, theatrical performances for 38 years is releasing their new anthem, "Pride," on Friday May 17.

This first recording in seven years will be part of their upcoming 11th album, "EAT," which will later be released on September 13. The trio, tireless fighters for civil rights – especially in the LGBTQ+ community, will be performing a special Pride launch concert at Joe's Pub in NYC on Thursday May 30. Information about the single, the release of their new album, and all of their upcoming performances can be found at this link.

Sisters Elizabeth and Amy Ziff, and Alyson Palmer (a friend who's as close as a sister can be) began their music career in Washington DC in 1986, but quickly relocated to NYC where they have become a household name in all the most interesting houses. In addition to concerts, festivals, clubs, magazine features, TV appearances, and two Emmy Awards, they've received many arts and humanitarian honors for their fight for equality over the past four decades. At the suggestion of Gloria Steinem they founded The BETTY Effect, an organization dedicated to helping individuals and groups, especially women and girls, and the LGBTQ+ community, find their voice and share it effectively.

Their most well-known song, "The Way That We Live" was the theme song for "The L Word;" plus more of their songs can be heard throughout the run of the hit Showtime show. Their music has also been featured on "Ugly Betty" and "Encyclopedia" and has been licensed by numerous networks including HBO, Showtime, Comedy Central, The Discovery Channel, and PBS.

EDGE recently had the chance to chat with the trio as their new single is about to drop and yet another busy Pride season is about to begin.

Watch this special video made to celebrate BETTY's 38 years as a group.

EDGE: Wow, BETTY. 38 years?

Aly: That's correct. It started in 1986 in Washington, DC but we wised up and moved to New York. And we've been together ever since.

EDGE: Most people don't do anything for 38 years, especially a group.

Aly: I honestly do believe it's because, aside from being a band, we're a family and friends. But that's all because we share the same values for certain things. All three of us are ardently and passionately supporters of equal rights, especially for women and through the years, especially if you're LGBTQ+ people. We've been linked arm in arm with what we were fighting against. And for a lot of things, we're very fortunate that we've seen change for the good. For some though, we've unfortunately seen change for the bad.

Elizabeth: Two steps forward and three steps back. Also, we laugh together, that helps.

EDGE: Let's get to your music. You have a new single coming out.

Aly: We have a new single coming out and we're really, really excited about this. BETTY has been together for 38 years. This album, called EAT, is our 11th album. And over the years, we have been so fortunate to play pride parades and pride festivals all over the world, places where they never actually had them or they've only had one before, like Eastern Europe, Russia, many different festivals. And one thing that unites us all is when we all fight together for pride. And so, the fact that we had this new album with these great songs, we said our first single, since it's going to be dropping in May, has got to be "Pride."

Elizabeth: And it's pride and celebration. So it's fighting and celebration, which is what the gay community has been forever, right? Fighting. You gotta dance, you gotta be able to dance,

Aly: What's really exciting about our new single, "Pride," is that we've been fortunate enough to play in prides with people like Sia and James Brown and Peaches and the B-52s and Cab Calloway, Ani DiFranco, the Indigo Girls, these incredible people all over the world. And now that we've got a song that sort of establishes that pride, it makes it even more authentic that we're bringing all of it with us to this song.

by Nicholas Dussault

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