Whatever Wiki says...
origin: New York, NY
genre: Rock music, alternative country
years active: 1994–present
label: Lava Records/Atlantic Records, Hear Music. Blackheart Records, Rising Shine Records
associated acts: Rob Thomas, Trina Hamlin, Lori McKenna, The Pushstars, Joan Jett, Melissa Etheridge, Raul Malo, The Mavericks
current_members: Kristen Henderson, Cathy Henderson, Nini Camps
past_members: Dena Tauriello, Cassidy, Jen Zielenbach, Penelope "Peppy" Kokines, Suzanne Obolsky, Ann-Marie Stehn
Antigone Rising is an all-female rock band formed in New York City in 1994. Catapulted into the spotlight in 2005 when Hear Music and Lava Records partnered to release their major label debut, "From The Ground Up," the band is best known for relentless touring and grassroots marketing ideas. In 2012, they formed a nonprofit, Girls Rising (501c3) to empower and inspire young girls and LGBT kids globally. Since then they have traveled to the Middle East, Viet Nam, Germany, France, Austria, Mexico and all over the United States doing outreach work and concerts.
Their 2005 album 'From the Ground Up' was the first to be promoted in Starbucks' Hear Music Series, created to discover and spotlight new music. It spent several weeks on Billboard Magazine's Heat Seekers charts, topping out at #20 for the week of November 5, 2005.
The band originally met and formed at Bucknell University in the early nineties, and reformed after graduation in Greenwich Village, New York City, in 1994 with sisters Cathy Henderson|Cathy (guitar) and Kristen Henderson (guitar/drums), Penelope "Peppy" Kokines (lead vocals) and Suzanne Obolsky (vocals and percussion). The band played sold out shows regularly all over New York City at clubs like The Back Fence, The Bitter End and The Bottom Line. In 1998 founding member and lead vocalist Penelope Kokines left the band.
By 1998 the band underwent several shifts with founding member Kristen Henderson moving from drums to rhythm guitar, the addition of drummer Dena Tauriello, the exit of founding member Suzanne Obolsky, and eventually by 1999 the addition of Cassidy as lead singer. Bass guitarist, Jen Zeilenbach, joined the band in 2003.
The band's first four albums were recorded mostly with independent labels and financed through fan donations. In 2003, the band was signed to Lava Records, a label personally run by Atlantic Records Chairman/ CEO Jason Flom.
In 2005, Antigone Rising became the first artists to be promoted in Starbucks|Starbucks Hear Music First Series, created to discover and spotlight new music. The high visibility, exclusive sale, in-store promotion and airplay at Starbucks across the USA helped the band's acoustic album, ''From the Ground Up'', reach #20 on Billboard's Heat seekers chart on Nov 5, 2005. The album's single, "Don't Look Back", gained popularity among country audiences after its video received heavy airplay on CMT (U.S. TV channel).
Flom departed Lava in 2005. The band's deal with the label continued, but ended in 2008. A new album, ''Tales From Wonderland'' was recorded in 2007, but not released.
In 2009 Nini Camps, having made several guest appearances with the band, officially joined as lead singer and rhythm guitarist. Kristen Henderson, now known as Kristen Ellis-Henderson, shifted from rhythm guitar to bass. Also in 2009 both Ellis-Henderson and Camps became mothers.
A studio CD ''23 Red'' was released in 2011, distributed through Joan Jett's Blackheart Records Group.
In 2012, Antigone Rising traveled to the Middle East as United States Cultural Ambassadors to perform concerts and outreach workshops during women's history month. The trip changed the trajectory for the band. Upon returning to the U.S., Antigone Rising formed their own nonprofit, Girls Rising (501c3). Girls Rising's mission is to empower and inspire girls and LGBTQ kids to pursue careers in STEAM. A yearly music and arts festival, Beach Fest, was held for 5 years at Sea Cliff Beach Pavilion in Sea Cliff, NY. The festival, which has grown year after year will move to a larger venue and undergo a branding rename in 2019 to Girls Rising's Game Changer Festival to be held on two stages at Morgan Park in Glen Cove, NY on June 22, 2019.
Many female artists, athletes, and other well known women in science and technology have become involved with Girls Rising including 2018 Girls Rising Game Changer Award Recipient, Carnie Wilson, Girls Rising Grant Awards Creators, Melissa Etheridge, Joan Jett and WNBA All-Star Sue Wicks, Grammy winning songwriter Julie Gold, Gold Medal U.S. Hockey star, Angela Ruggierio, artists Natalia Zuckerman, Trina Hamlin, Garrison Starr, Williams Honor, Patrice Pike, Raul Malo, and Mindy Smith.
In 2011, Kristen Ellis-Henderson released a memoir titled "Times Two, Two Women in Love and the Happy Family They Made" (Simon/Schuster).
In 2013 Kristen Henderson appeared on the cover of Time Magazine "Gay Marriage Already Won" issue.
In 2014, the band released an EP, ''Whiskey & Wine Vol. I''.
In 2015, the band released another EP, ''Whiskey & Wine Vol. II''.
In 2015, Nini Camps co-starred in the indie film, Alto, along side American Idol's Diana Degarmo and Annabella Sciorra.
In 2018, drummer Dena Tauriello took leave from the band in order to pursue other opportunities. She was first chair in the orchestra pit for Broadway show Head Over Heels until it closed on January 6, 2019. She has yet to return to the band though she remains on good terms with her bandmates.
Kristen Ellis-Henderson now shifts between drums and bass guitar, with the band appearing mainly as a trio and from time to time guest musicians Trina Hamlin (keyboards, harmonica), Matt Schneider (bass guitar), Dan Roth (drums) or Rosa Avila (drums) sit in to fill out the band's sound.
In their early years Antigone Rising toured widely, and have shared stages with The Bangles,Joan Jett, The Rolling Stones, moe., Rob Thomas, Aerosmith, and The Allman Brothers. They performed at Lilith Fair in 1998 and at South By Southwest SXSW in 2005.
Kristen Ellis Henderson wrote a memoir about marriage and family titled ''Times Two, Two Women in Love and the Happy Family They Made'' (Simon & Schuster). The book chronicles the journey she and her wife, Sarah Ellis-Henderson, took to start a family - eventually getting pregnant on exactly the same day and giving birth to their son and daughter. The book's success led to many speaking engagements press appearances advocating for marriage equality, and the couple were featured on the cover of April 8, 2013 issue of Time Magazine - "Gay Marriage Already Won." Kristen's wife, Sarah Kate Ellis, went on to become President and CEO of LGBTQ media advocacy group Glaad, a post she still holds today.
*Nini Camps - lead vocals, rhythm guitar
* Kristen Henderson- bass guitar, vocals
*Cathy Henderson lead guitar, vocals
*Dena Tauriello - drums
* ''She's Gone A Little Mad'' (1996)
* ''Snapshot'' (1998)
* ''New and Used'' (1999)
* ''Rock Album'' (2000)
* ''SaY iT! an-TIG-uh-nee'' (2002) (live)
* ''Antigone Rising's Traveling Circus'' (2003) (live)
* ''[[From the Ground Up (Antigone Rising album)|From the Ground Up]]'' (2005) (Hear Music)
* ''Tales from Wonderland'' (released as ''Sink or Swim'' - The Cassidy Project in 2009)
* ''Live From NYC'' (EP) (2010) (recorded live at The Bitter End in NYC, includes 1 studio track)
* ''This Christmas'' (2010) (download only single)
* ''23 Red'' (Rising Shine Records) (August 2011)
* ''Whiskey & Wine, Vol. 1'' (EP) (2014)
* ''Whiskey & Wine, Vol. 2'' (EP) (2015)
* "Don't Look Back" (from ''From The Ground Up'', May 11, 2005)
* "Everywhere Is Home" (from ''23 Red'', August 5, 2011)
* "That Was The Whiskey" (from ''Whiskey & Wine, Vol. 1'' EP, 2014)
* "Game Changer" (from ''Whiskey & Wine, Vol. 1'' EP, 2015)
* "Fat Bottomed Girls", from the album ''Killer Queen: A Tribute to Queen'' (2005)