CROWN HEIGHTS — After three years of making music and playing for all-female audiences, the Hasidic rock band Bulletproof Stockings are ready to make their first full-length album — with help from their fans.
The founders of the four-person band — Crown Heights locals Perl Wolfe and Dalia Shusterman — put out a plea on the Jewish holiday of Purim to raise $36,000 through Kickstarter to record an album, following up on their 2012 EP, Down to the Top, and dozens of shows played in the city over the years, including at Arlene’s Grocery, Bar Matchless and The Rock Shop.
“We have tons of music we’ve been working on and the only thing we haven’t done yet is to record it and get it out there,” said Shusterman in a fundraising video message.
“We really hope that if you're inspired by our story or you like our music, that you will help us take Bulletproof Stockings to the next level,” Wolfe said.
That story started in 2011 when Wolfe met Shusterman at a tough point in each woman’s life: Shusterman’s husband, with whom she had four sons, died suddenly at the same time Wolfe was processing a divorce, they told DNAinfo New York in December. The experience forged an unbreakable bond between them.
“It was this crazy thing. Our paths are so parallel,” Shusterman said.
Since then, the two added a cellist and a violinist to the band, which aims to provide a place where women can “rock out without guys there” — a mission unrelated to Jewish law or teachings, they said.
“There’s no mitzvah [rule] for women to not sing publicly. There’s no mitzvah for women to not perform,” Wolfe explained.
“There would be no issue for us to open our audience to men," she said. "We’re choosing not to because we realize that women really feel empowered and strengthened by each other when they have time to connect.”
Bulletproof Stockings hopes to raise the $36,000 they need for their album by April 4, they said. The two are offering digital downloads of their new album to those who give $15 or more. And for big spenders who give $10,000 or more, the band offered to write an original song just for their hypothetical donor “hero,” they wrote.