An agent of change: The value of music for June Millington
June Millington, co-founder and lead guitarist of Fanny, has long seen the value that music can have on someone's life. Fanny was the first all-female rock and roll band that was able to produce an album with a major label according to an article by Rolling Stone. For female artists, the members of Fanny were trailblazers in the rock and roll industry.
Millington describes her music style as rhythmic, inspirational and deeply spiritual. To many, she is a rock and roll inspiration, and LunART is beyond excited to have her at the 2023 LunART festival.
Music was always a part of June and Jean Millington’s story. The sisters played the ukulele when they were kids. Later, June’s life changed when she heard the guitar when she was in middle school.
“The moment I heard a guitar at the end of 6th grade, in Manila, I knew it was my ticket, and our, mine and Jean's, liberation,” Millington said.
As for her parents, music was also something that they greatly valued. The Millington kids wre lucky to have parents who guided them to their passion.
“My parents loved music in their own ways, my Dad especially, the big band music of Benny Goodman, but I don't think either one of them influenced us too much,” Millington said. “Main thing is, they allowed us to pursue our interests - as long as we got good grades.”
As a renowned musician, Millington has done much performing in her time. With this, nerves are something that many face.
“At first I was very, very shy, almost painfully so,” Millington said. “But playing with people like Cris Williamson slowly showed me tricks of the trade by example, and slowly I gained confidence.”
Although there are nerves, being able to perform can be an artist's favorite gift. Millington states that this is her favorite part of being a musician.
“Being able to write and perform," Millington said. “Both have afforded me to be able to fly places easily, in different ways. I'm so fortunate to be good at both, after all these years.”
Music is all over the world. It impacts all of society in one way or another and can be valuable for many. Millington examined the impact of music on society and vice versa.
“Society not only frees everyone within, it also causes explosive demonstrations of dance and happiness,” Millington said. “What could be better? Also, it's the perfect agent for change - it literally walks through walls with every vibration.”
When looking to Millington’s inspiration, she draws from many different styles. She listed people like Brian Wilson, Burt Bacharach (and Hal David), Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles (esp Paul McCartney), and Laura Nyro.
Many young female artists look up to Millington as an inspiration. She gives some advice to young women who aspire to be musicians.
“Be careful to take care of yourself, and I mean the basics like eating, brushing your teeth, getting enough sleep, and choosing your friends well,” Millington said. “Don't believe what everyone tells you, especially the compliments which may be taken to be 100% eternally true. Tastes change. Be prepared to change with the times.”
Millington emphasizes that you may not always feel the best or like you are properly prepared. She says that this is normal and will happen.
“Sometimes you may feel like you're plummeting,” Millington said. “That's OK, prepare strategies to survive. As long as you work with true intent and a good heart, good situations - and quite possibly success! - will find you. Know that you can survive hard times, and maybe sleep on a living room sofa or two. Don't take advantage of people in a way that might hurt them though!”
Millington is excited to bring her art to Madison, Wisconsin.
“Connecting with people, meeting old and new friends and being thrilled with my life and accomplishments all over again…that's fun,” Millington said.
We are always on the lookout for interesting and talented women artists!
Article by Ava Wojnowski
Ava Wojnowski is an intern with LunART. She is majoring in journalism and Spanish and is excited to bring her passion for writing to LunART. Outside of school, Wojnowski loves to spend time outside and also loves to listen to music. She played the viola from 4th to 12th grade, so music has always been a part of her life.