Our latest interview features GRP Volunteer and Philly musician, Jen Sperling. Don’t forget to check out her band Break It Up!
Name: Jen Sperling
Location: Philadelphia, PA
How long have you been volunteering for GRP?: Since 2009, shortly after I moved to Philadelphia.
How do you volunteer for GRP? In all kinds of ways! As an attorney, I helped Girls Rock apply for status as a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. As a musician, I have also volunteered at camp as a guitar instructor, band coach, and guest performer. And most recently as a member of the Advisory Board and Hiring Committee, I helped with the process of hiring GRP’s fabulous new Program Director, Diane!
Why do you volunteer for GRP? In our society, girls get a lot of direct and indirect messages about how they are “supposed” to look, think, feel and behave. I think it’s vital for girls to have communities where they can be exactly who they are, and get support for that from other women and girls. Girls Rock Philly provides that opportunity through music, and it’s amazing to me every summer to see what all these young people are capable of when given the space to express themselves authentically.
Why do you love GRP? Because it brings together so many people of different ages, experience levels, tastes, and personalities for a week of supportive and creative collaboration that is always inspiring. In particular, the variety of fantastic band names and t-shirt designs blow me away every year!
What have you been listening to lately? Beach House, Thao, and The Pixies.
What else do you do when you’re not rockin’ with GRP? Rockin’ with my own band, Break It Up! I also write a blog about cheap and free things going on in Philadelphia.
What are some of your favorite spots in Philly? Barcade (I am mildly obsessed with Ms. Pacman), Retrospect (I am completely obsessed with vintage), and the Philadelphia Art Museum (it’s free first Sundays of every month!)
Why do you rock? I taught myself to play the guitar, so I was nervous at first about playing with “real” musicians. I rock because I didn’t let my lack of formal training stop me from being in bands. I would have missed out on a lot of fun if I had!