When the lights
dim at the Planet, The L Word's fictional
coffeehouse hangout, a bevy of croaky troubadours,
white-girl rappers, and Latin sirens arrive to steal the
limelight from Bette, Shane, Kit, and the rest of the
girls. The disparate sounds of these musicians are
painstakingly selected by ezgirl--a.k.a. Elizabeth
Ziff--who serves as original music producer for
Ezgirl, also a
writer on the show, contributes to The L
Word's music in another, even more
direct way--her band Betty performs the theme
song. And aside from giving props to hot musical
trailblazers of a certain age--Heart and the
B-52's both appeared last season--Ziff says her ear is
perennially tuned to female musicians of all stripes,
as well as queer and queer-friendly groups.
Ziff, with help
from music supervisor Howard Paar, showcases performers
unlikely to appear anywhere else on prime time. Last
season's soundtrack included the tune "Unstick"
by Bitch, as well as a performance by Peaches. A
forthcoming episode features funk-folkster Toshi
Reagon, whom Ziff describes as a "big black butch dyke with
an amazing voice."
opportunity to introduce lesser-known acts to millions of
viewers, Ziff says, "I was definitely one of those
kids in seventh grade who made mix tapes for people
and really got off on it. This show is like a big
version of one of my mix tapes."
Tunes: Music From and Inspired by The L Word
(Twist), a compilation CD released this month, a mix tape
from Ziff to you. Much-loved female artists like
Fiona Apple, Nina Simone, Tori Amos, and PJ Harvey
made the cut, and you're likely to discover a new
favorite or two along the way.
New episodes of
The L Word air on Showtime every Sunday
night at 10 p.m. Eastern/Pacific.