Tuesday, June 29, 2010

More female instrumentalists, please.

Lisa Simpson smiles and holds a saxophone
I pride myself on listening to a lot of different kinds of music. I’m not a genre snob – I listen to pop and jam bands and hip-hop and country and classic rock in pretty equal measure. I’ve got enough privilege that I can listen to music that offends me politically but appeals to me aesthetically without costing myself too many spoons. My boyfriend has access to huge stores of music, particularly live music, and I try to make a point of varying from the normative white male artists he is often drawn to.

And we’ve had some success. We’ve been going to see more female artists, from Donna Jean of the Grateful Dead to Taylor Swift. We’ve listened to Laura Nyro and Aretha Franklin and look forward to Lady Gaga’s show in September.

But, from my subjective experience, I see a lot more men than women playing instruments. While I see women who are using their voices to create beautiful music, I notice a lot less who are using their fingers, and even less who are only using their fingers.

When I see female musicians, they’re usually singers. This is wonderful, as many ladies have beautiful voices, and it’s important to hear and listen to the voices of women who are often marginalized. If they do play instruments, they usually sing, and their voices are more of a focal point (e.g. Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift).

I began to wonder, “why does it seem that almost all the women I see making music have to use their voices to do it?” Sure, part of it is self-selection, but I see probably upwards of 60 acts a year – some of it’s got to be sexism, right? Why does it seem like vocal talent is often a requirement of lady musicians? Why don’t we see any instrumentalists who are just bassists or drummers or keyboardists, as male musicians so often are?

When a woman who is primarily an instrumentalist does try to pursue her ambitions, she is made to be a singer as well. A good example of this is Orianthi, a guitarist from Australia whom I noticed in Michael Jackson’s This Is It. You’ve probably heard her recently if you listen to pop radio, but it’s her voice that’s most heavily featured on “According To You”.

Now, I’m not saying that there is anything problematic about a multitasking lady musician who sings, or women who use solely their voices. Lady singers are super fantastic! Janelle Monae rock my socks, Beyonce is a terrific pop artist, and Janis Joplin is one of my all-time favorites. Lady singers who also play things are extra terrific! I am looking forward to seeing singer and keyboardist Lady Gaga in September, and I love Laura Nyro’s piano stylings, and I have seen Taylor Swift in concert and she is better than you might think (and has a woman fiddler).

But I would like to see women more women playing on instruments, more women whose fingers are making the music. I want to see women worked into my concert schedule in a widely equitable way, and see more women who aren’t singing onstage. I doubt that all women who have musical talent of the sort I enjoy just happen to have it in their vocal chords.

This is, I hope I’ve made clear, partially because of my own myopism. In fact, while I was editing this post, I came across a reference on fourfour to bassist Rhonda Smith, who plays with Prince:



One of my favorite bands, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, not only has a frontwoman doing double-duty on keyboard and guitar in addition to vocals and songwriting, but also has a lady guitarist, Catharin Popper. Here they are playing my favorite Janis Joplin song, Try:



And Esperanza Spalding is a terrific jazz bassist and vocalist. The following video shows her at the White House performing Overjoyed for President Obama and Stevie Wonder:



Video descriptions and lyrics in the comments.

What I’m saying is that there’s probably not so much a lack of talented female instrumentalists as mine/mainstream media’s failure to seek out, promote, and take notice of these women.

Considering this likely unintentional erasure on my part, I’d like to make this a reader-participation thread. Share some favorite lady musicians, particularly those who play instruments. Share a video. Have you seen her live? If I get some great responses, I'll share them in a future post.

30 comments:

  1. [Video description: Grind by Rhonda Smith plays over pictures of Smith, a petite black woman with curly hair, in photoshoots and playing bass onstage.]

    I need your touch
    You made it right
    Turn out the lights
    Let’s grind tonight
    I wanna grind with you
    Baby

    [bass solo]

    Cause I want you
    Right now a million miles apart
    I need to see you baby
    So far apart it breaks my heart

    I need your touch
    You need a night
    Turn out the lights
    Let’s grind tonight
    I wanna grind with you
    Baby

    Cause I want you
    Right now a million miles apart
    I need to see you baby
    So far apart it breaks my heart

    I need your touch
    You need a night
    Turn out the lights
    Let’s grind tonight
    I wanna grind with you
    Baby

    Right now a million miles apart
    So far apart it breaks my heart

    I need your touch
    You need a night
    Turn out the lights
    Let’s grind tonight
    I wanna grind with you
    Baby

    [video description: Grace Potter and the Nocturnals play on a low stage in a small club after an introduction from the manager. Grace, a white woman wearing a leather jacket with blond bangs, starts off on tambourine and later moves to keyboards. Colored lights shift and change throughout the performance.]

    Lyrics:

    Try, try, try just a little bit harder
    So I can love, love, love him, I tell myself
    Well, I’m gonna try yeah, just a little bit harder
    So I won’t lose, lose, lose him to nobody else.
    Hey! Well, I don’t care how long it’s gonna take you now,
    But if it’s a dream I don’t want No I don’t really want it
    If it’s a dream I don’t want nobody to wake me.

    Yeah, I’m gonna try yeah, just a little bit harder
    So I can give, give, give, give him every bit of my soul.
    Yeah, I’m gonna try yeah, just a little bit harder
    So I can show, show, show him love with no control.
    Hey! I’ve waited so long for someone so fine
    I ain’t gonna lose my chance, no I don’t wanna lose it,
    Ain’t gonna lose my chance to make you mine, all mine.
    All right, get it! Yeah!

    Try yeah, try yeah, hey, hey, hey, try yeah,
    Oh try whoa! Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa,
    Oh anybody, oh anybody, oh anybody,
    Try oh yeah (just a little bit harder)
    Whoa I gotta try some more,
    I said try yeah, aw I said try,
    I said try try try try try try,
    Oh try oh yeah, try oh yeah!

    Hey hey, I gotta talk to my man now,
    You know I, I gotta feel for my man now,
    I said I, I gotta work for my man now,
    You know I, I gotta hurt for my man now,
    I think-a every day for my man now,
    You know it, every way for my man now.
    I say try, try yeah, oh try yeah,
    Hey hey hey, try yeah-hey, oh, try...

    [video description: Esperanza Spalding, a black woman with an afro wearing a long black dress, plays the bass and sings in an ornate White House room in front of a band.]

    Lyrics:

    Over time, I've been building my castle of love
    Just for two, though you never knew you were my reason
    I've gone much too far for you now to say
    That I've got to throw my castle away

    Over dreams, I have picked out a perfect come true
    Though you never knew it was of you I've been dreaming
    The sandman has come from too far away
    For you to say come back some other day

    And though you don't believe that they do
    They do come true
    For did my dreams
    Come true when I looked at you
    And maybe too, if you would believe
    You too might be
    Overjoyed, over loved, over me

    Over hearts, I have painfully turned every stone
    Just to find, I had found what I've searched to discover
    I've come much too far for me now to find
    The love that I've sought can never be mine

    And though you don't believe that they do
    They do come true
    For did my dreams
    Come true when I looked at you
    And maybe too, if you would believe
    You too might be
    Overjoyed, over loved, over me

    And though the odds say improbable
    What do they know
    For in romance
    All true love needs is a chance
    And maybe with a chance you will find
    You too like I
    Overjoyed, over loved, over you, over you

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  2. The Hush Sound has dual vocals - one male, one female. The woman, Greta, also plays the piano. The band Stars also has a similar vocals things happening.

    There are a couple of women in Broken Social Scene, including Leslie Feist, who also just records as Feist.

    As divisive as she's been lately, Amanda Palmer also plays her own instruments.

    Hayley Williams of Paramore mainly just sings, but she can play the guitar.

    Eisley is a band fronted by two sisters (or are they cousins? I always forget) who also play instruments.

    I recently started reading a book about the riot grrrl movement in the '90s, so I've been listening to a lot of Bikini Kill/Bratmobile/The Raincoats/etc lately. It's quite fun and the style as a whole is a great motivator.

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  3. The Hush Sound has dual vocals - one male, one female. The woman, Greta, also plays the piano. The band Stars also has a similar vocals things happening.

    There are a couple of women in Broken Social Scene, including Leslie Feist, who also just records as Feist.

    As divisive as she's been lately, Amanda Palmer also plays her own instruments.

    Hayley Williams of Paramore mainly just sings, but she can play the guitar.

    Eisley is a band fronted by two sisters (or are they cousins? I always forget) who also play instruments.

    I recently started reading a book about the riot grrrl movement in the '90s, so I've been listening to a lot of Bikini Kill/Bratmobile/The Raincoats/etc lately. It's quite fun and the style as a whole is a great motivator.

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  4. Yoko Kanno. I cannot shower her with enough praise.

    She plays the piano. But more over, she is a brilliant composer, crossing almost every genre. She has done blues, pop, orchestral of many kinds, rock, electronic, folk, jazz, new age, etc. etc. etc. and she does them all BRILLIANTLY.

    The bulk of her music has been written for television and movie soundtracks, but even so she is massively popular simply for her music.

    Personally, I will watch shows and movies for no other reason than that she wrote the soundtrack. I've even bought soundtracks of hers for shows that I still haven't seen.

    She is easily my favorite musician. I would have little reservation saying that she is one of the most talented composers to ever walk the earth.

    She is also a talented vocalist, but until recently she did so only in recordings and under a pseudonym, so people did not know it was her. Her popularity certainly is not based on her singing. And most of her music that includes singing are voiced by other vocalists.

    She is also ridiculously prolific.

    Gah. She is so freakin' amazing.

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  5. I was an Indigo Girls fan in the mid-1990s and I noticed that all their side players in the touring bands (as opposed to those who played on the records) have been female, except the drummers. So the players are out there.

    But that's pretty unusual, actually - even some very feminist singers and bands (Ferron, Ani DiFranco) have generally performed and recorded with mostly male bands.

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  6. Ani DiFranco and Dar Williams are some obvious winners in this category (guitarist/vocalists), but let's move on from the female-centric folk rock:

    The band Neon Trees has an awesome drummer named Elaine Bradley, who does some of the backing vocals as well for the band.

    Alison Mosshart is best known for singing lead vocals in the the Kills (where she was known as VV) and The Dead Weather, and she also plays acoustic guitar and keyboard as well as percussion. She was first in the punk rock band Discount and she's sung with a lot of other bands from Arctic Monkeys to Placebo, but she's definitely an instrumentalist as well.

    Meg White plays drums. She's sung maybe once or twice but she basically...plays drums. And some other things, including keyboard.

    Of course, there's D'Arcy (guitarist) from the Smashing Pumpkins and Melissa Auf der Maur (bassist, Smashing Pumpkins and Hole).

    Obviously Courtney Love plays guitar as well. And you should check out the Hole wikipedia - there have been 8 women in that band over the years, haha.

    Paz Lenchantin is a pianist, violinist, bassist and vocalist who has been in a ton of bands, but most notably A Perfect Circle. She also was in a all-female supergroup with Melissa Auf der Maur, Samantha Maloney (also of Hole at one time) and Radio Sloan (The Need) - Courtney Love and Emilie Autumn were briefly with this band - called The Chelsea.

    Everyone from Veruca Salt (except that one dude whose name I can't remember, ironically): Louise Post and Nina Gordon both played guitar, this is another band where the lineups were frequently mostly female with touring male backups. (Kellii Scott and Nicole Fiorentino are the current drummer and bassist respectively.)

    Kim Gordon is another female bassist everyone should know, lol. (Sonic Youth).

    Emilie Autumn plays electric violin and piano as well as vocals and her backup artists (cello, bass, guitar, burlesque dancers! etc) are all female - but I can't recall their names unfortunately.

    Jenny Conlee from the Decemberists plays almost any instrument you've ever thought of (hammond organ, accordion, melodica, piano and keyboards according to her page on Wiki).

    Obviously Joan Jett (rhythm guitar), but also the others from The Runaways, her first group, which was all-female: Lita Ford (guitar), Sandy West (drums), Micki Steele (also bass for a while), Cherie Currie (guitar and keyboard), and Jackie Fox (also on bass)

    Branching off that, the Germs (whose first album was produced by Joan) played most notably with Lorna Doom [Teresa Ryan] on bass, and briefly had Dottie Danger [Belinda Carlisle, more famously of the Go-Gos] on drums, replaced by Donna Rhia [Becky Barton].

    Kira Roessler played bass with Black Flag for a while. (Check out this site for more women in LA Punk: http://www.alicebag.com/womeninlapunk.html)

    Kittie and L7 are both all-female metal bands.

    Speaking of Kittie, Kitty (drums) and Lyn-Z (bass) are important just-instrumentalists from MSI (awesome band!)

    I think what we're seeing (well, I definitely am seeing it because I had to work around it a couple times when looking up things on wikipedia) is that females aren't nonexistent in the music scene: they're erased from history.

    (Jess says she can think of more - but we have to leave!)

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  7. ...now I feel like I should come post videos of all these awesome women. Haha. I might do that later.

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  8. I was about to make a post about this in the very near future! Unfortunately most of the women I have to offer are vocalists as well, but their playing either takes precedence over their singing, or is fifty-fifty. Silversuns Pickups has Mikki Moninger, a vocalist, but she mostly is a badass bassist. Earl also has a bassist, vocalist and keyboardist named Kamara Thomas. Kaki King is by repuatation one of the better guiatrists out there. Tori Amos, of course. And then there are a great deal mentioned in the comments to this post. People like Melissa De Auf, and Cindy Blackman (drummer for Lenny Kravitz) and Posion Ivy (guiatr and theremin for the Cramps) and Invocal (all women band from Britian) and The drummer for Kid Rocks band: Stephanie Eulinberg, plus teh drummer for Black Veil Brides if I'm not mistaken...aah got her: Sandra A.
    Also: Venus Magazine did greatest Female Guitarists two years ago and...Top 5 female pianists and carole King and Alicia Keys. And I can't think of anything more right now, soooo.

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  9. As examples of female musicians who are known as singers or songwriters but also have some serious instrumental skills: The Dixie Chicks, Regina Spektor, Brandi Carlile, Alison Krauss, Rhiannon Giddens of the Carolina Chocolate Drops, Amanda Palmer.

    And the first person I thought of: Kaki King, who is an amazing guitarist. I saw her live a couple of years ago and she was phenomenal. Her first album (or couple of albums?) are instrumental, I think, and she incorporated some vocals into a later album, but she is primarily an instrumentalist.

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  10. Funny you should mention it, I just posted about doing my part my first punk rock guitar lesson.

    In addition to all the fabulous women already mentioned, can anyone remember the name of the percussion guitarist whose video was making the rounds a few years ago? She performed with a blue guitar on a white background. I can't remember her name and now I really want to watch it again.

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  11. I just remembered! Her name is Kaki King. Amazing.

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  12. I just had to throw out a word for two of my favorites, Alicia Keys and Melissa Ethridge.

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  13. My personal female instrumentalist is Mo Tucker from The Velvet Underground. While not exactly virtuosic, she brought a completely unique and original approach to drumming that was absolutely essential to the Velvets' sound. A lot of those songs just aren't the same without that pulsating rhythm. I think her approach in large part created punk rock.

    I also nominate Joanna Newsom. Although she sings, her mastery of the harp is beyond impressive. I frankly dont understand how anyone plays that instrument. And while the harp is kinda a traditional soft, feminized sort of instrument, she makes it indie rock and takes it in a lot of original and unexpected directions.

    also, good job liking Laura Nyro!! Not enough people know about her. "Eli and the 13th Confession" is one of my top 5 albums ever. :]

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  14. Taking a break from job applications to add to the list Faye already started. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

    I'm going to try to avoid singer/songwriter type women of the traditional sort because, while I think what they do is valid, that isn't what we're looking for here. I will include female front-women if they, in addition to playing an instrument, also defy the role expected from a female lead by being more rock or hip hop oriented and less folky and sorrowful, because I think that's important here, too.

    So, additions to the list:

    Kate Pierson (keyboard, guitar, bass, percussion) and Cynthia Wilson (percussion and vocals) of The B-52s. These two are super relevant and interesting to me because, um, I'm from Georgia, and they're members of the only band I can think of with three vocalists, two female, where every member plays multiple things and no one has a set role.

    Tina Weymouth is the kind of incredible bassist for Talking Heads, Tom Tom Club, and Gorillaz, making her a talented female instrumentalist whose musical reach spans four decades.

    Chrissie Hynde is the punk rock Goddess singer and rhythm guitarist who, in the mid 70s, began searching for a rock band to join. She eventually formed The Pretenders, a successful early punk band that has continued to have success into the 21st century.

    Bif Naked is a singer who, rather than playing piano, also plays guitar and bass on her albums.

    Bjork, I think, is as much an instrumentalist as a vocalist, and in fact, I think her voice is used is many of her tracks as much an an instrument for sound as for a way of speaking lyrics. She plays keyboards, piano, flute, drums, harp, and other instruments.

    Greta Cohn (cello) was a member of Cursive until 2005 and now collaborates with other artists.

    Stefanie Drootin is the bassist for The Good Life and has played for other Saddle Creek bands, as well as She and Him and other groups.

    Sherri DuPree is the vocalist and a guitarist for Eisley. She somehow made the mistake of marrying Max Bemis, which will make for the most interesting children ever. Her sister Chauntelle is the lead guitarist for Eisley, and her sister Stacy is their other vocalist and keyboardist.

    Tiffany Kowalski is a violinist who records with a number of Saddle Creek and Nebraska area bands.

    Maria Taylor is another Saddle Creek signed musician and long term (on-off) partner to Conor Oberst. She has worked as a member of several acts (Azure Ray with Orenda Fink, Now It's Overheard), as well as recording as a solo artist and as a backing artist for other musicians. She plays piano, guitar, vocals, and drums.
    Jenny Lewis, solo artist and lead singer of Rilo Kiley, plays keyboards, guitar, bass, and harmonica, in addition to singing lead and background vocals on a number of projects.

    (cont., because my comment is just slightly too long)

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  15. Cobra Starship has had two female keytarists, with Elisa Schwartz leaving the band for reasons still not entirely known (several stories have circulated) and being replaced by Victoria "Vicky T" Asher. In addition to her role as keytarist, Vicky T has worked as a solo artist and a member of Optimo, directly music videos for her band and others, and created commercials with Terry Gilliam and Michel Gondry. She's also kind of awesome.

    Brody Dalle and Rose Mazzola were female members of the defunct punk band The Distillers. Rose played back up guitar and sometimes sang, while Dalle variously handled lead vocals, guitar, bass, and keyboard. Dalle now fronts Spinnerette.

    Corin Tucker and Carrier Kinney both sang vocals and played guitar for the riot grrrl band Sleater-Kinney (that broke up right before a festival Faye and I were set to see them at). Laura Macfarlane played drums for their first two albums; Janet Weiss was the later drummer of Sleater-Kinney and is a member for several bands currently. Other Sleater-Kinney members included Toni Gogin and Misty Farrell.

    The Breeders is a mostly female band made up of Kim Deal (also Pixies) on vocals and guitar, Tanya Donelly (also Throwing Muses) on guitar also, and various other women including Kelley Deal, Cheryl Lyndsey (guitar), Carrie Bradley (violin), Josephine Wiggs (bass, guitar, drums, cello, vocals) and others. Kind of a group of epically talented women.

    Skin, of Skunk Anansie, is a vocalist and guitarist so bad ass that I wish to be her on a regular basis. Not only is she a female instrumentalist, but she's a rare POC in the rock music scene. She's also incredibly talented, and her music addresses social politics, gender issues, infidelity and sexuality in a way that is ridiculously awesome.

    I could obviously list a huge number of other riot grrrl musicians, singers who play piano or acoustic guitar, etc. but I wanted to focus on women who play instruments as much or more so than those who sing. A lot of these women do sing, but often that's a secondary role.

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  16. While some probably would consider them a novelty act, The Donnas have always put out music that would sound right at home in the eras they pay homage to.

    Chiasm and Ayria are two female solo goth/electronic artists that write and perform all their music.

    Client is an all female electronic group.

    Drain S.T.H. I've always said was the female version of Alice In Chains.

    Ladytron is an electronic band similar to Client with two front-women who also play keyboards heavily.

    Luscious Jackson is an all-female band who played a very groove-based alt rock in the 90's. (Their drummer also worked with the Beastie Boys).

    Aimee Mann sings, plays guitar and piano, and writes. She's has a solo career as well as fronting new wave 'Til Tuesday.

    Pure Reason Revolution's (prog rock) has a female bass player who also sings and plays keyboard.

    Those are the ones that I can think of that haven't been listed yet. Highly recommend any band listed.

    And have to give my thanks to Veruca Salt for being the first band to make me fall in love with female musicians.

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  17. Le tigre

    Bikini Kill

    Bratmobile

    Sleater-Kinney

    The Thermals (bassist is a woman of color)

    Arcade Fire has female musicians

    Dresden Dolls/Amanda Palmer

    Tori Amos

    Excuse 17

    Elastica

    Ladytron

    Metric

    the B-52's

    PJ Harvey

    Tegan and Sara

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  18. WOW, folks! I am loving all of these responses more than I can express! Feel free to keep them coming and I will work on a follow-up post tonight :)

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  19. Michelle Malone, guitar
    Laura Love, bass
    Sarah Watkins, fiddle (Nickel Creek)
    Sara Lee, bass (Gang of Four, B52s, Indigo Girls, etc.)
    Gail Ann Dorsey, bass (Thompson Twins, David Bowie, etc.)
    Julie Wolf, keys (Ani DiFranco, Dar Williams, Amy Ray/Indigo Girls)
    Erin McKeown, guitar
    Kaia Wilson, guitar (Team Dresch, The Butchies, Amy Ray Band)
    Melissa York, drums (Team Dresch, The Butchies, Amy Ray Band, Humble Tripe)
    Vicki Randle, percussion (Tonight Show Band,
    Gretchen Phillips, guitar
    Allison Miller, drums (Brandi Carlile)
    Carol Kaye, bass

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  20. I think you might find more women musicians in traditional music ensembles, such as Sharon Shannon, who plays accordion.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jzlIq5BTXM&feature=related

    Several women musicians here, and she plays fiddle too.

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  21. I received an Error 404 message, so I'm not sure whether my first comment went through. If so, I apologize for the double-posting.
    **

    Thank you so much for writing this article. I couldn't agree more that (non-singing) female musicians are less prevalent in the music biz than their male counterparts.

    My daughter, who is a drummer, often has her drumming abilities questioned...until people hear her play! She likes to sing (for her own enjoyment), but the drums are her passion, so she just keeps pushing forward.

    If you would like to see her in action, she has two older videos here:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-3CkZd9jGs

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBmde6HzLCY&feature=channel

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  22. Lots of great names here so far! I'm into a lot of heavy metal which is very male dominated but there are a few women who stand out:

    Angela Gossow - While a singer, she's not exactly one in any traditional sense...
    Ensiferum - Finnish folk metal band that has a female keyboardist named Emmi Silvennoinen
    The Great Kat - Virtuoso guitarist/violinist. She's a little bit crazy (interviews with her are wonderful to watch) and plays just as well as her male counterparts.
    Emi Gilbert - Keyboardist who worked in the music industry and now plays in bands with her guitarist virtuoso husband Paul Gilbert.
    Vixen - An all female 80's hair metal band
    Heart - Sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson, 70's/80's rock band (who I think are mentioned on one of the top female musicians lists)

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  23. Check out Rodrigo y Gabriela: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-lvMQCmUVv8
    Just a man, a woman, and two guitars. The speed of their hands is amazing to watch too.

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  24. Marnie Stern,Tilly & the Wall,Scout Niblett,Bonfire Madigan.

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  25. Check out Flutronix (http://www.flutronix.com) Two female musicians that play, compose and arrange music for flute and electronics. Very cool, very different. Their album will be out this fall, watch for it!

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  27. There's also a singer/guitarist I heard of back in the '90's named Sherry Jackson who did a song I liked (can't remember the name)whom I always assumed was white---years later, came across her CD and found out that was actually African-American---she seems to have made only 2 albums in the last 17 years,unfortunately--she had a good strong rock/country fell to her music, and I liked the CD.

    The Story---with singer/songwriter/guitarist Jonatha Brook, whom I got to see live downtown Detroit 14 years ago in concert--she was really good, and even danced for a minute on stage. Both the Story's only 2 CDs are worth tracking down, as well as Brook's first 2 solo CDs and former Story member Jennifer's (can't remember her last name) solo CDs also.

    There were a couple of pioneering all-female rock bands like Michigan natives The L'uved Ones,some group called She, Suzi Quatro,a guitarist/lead singer whose aunt was in the L'uved Ones, and also Fanny, who were the first all-female rock band to get signed to a major record label in the early '70's.

    Also the '70's funk/disco group, A Taste of Honey (their most famous hit was the great funky funk classic "Boogie Oogie Oogie")featured Janice Marie Johnson and Hazel Payne as the lead guitarist and bassist of the group,respectively.

    Barbara Lynn was a singer/guitarist from the early '60's who is still playing today. Also I got much love for guitarist/singer/songwriter Laura Love, whom I has the pleasure of seeing live at a free music festival about 14 years ago, and I've enjoyed her music ever since. Get Octaroon and Shum Ticky if you're into her wonderful voice AND music.

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  28. There's also a singer/guitarist I heard of back in the '90's named Sherry Jackson who did a song I liked (can't remember the name)whom I always assumed was white---years later, came across her CD and found out that was actually African-American---she seems to have made only 2 albums in the last 17 years,unfortunately--she had a good strong rock/country fell to her music, and I liked the CD.

    The Story---with singer/songwriter/guitarist Jonatha Brook, whom I got to see live downtown Detroit 14 years ago in concert--she was really good, and even danced for a minute on stage. Both the Story's only 2 CDs are worth tracking down, as well as Brook's first 2 solo CDs and former Story member Jennifer's (can't remember her last name) solo CDs also.

    There were a couple of pioneering all-female rock bands like Michigan natives The L'uved Ones,some group called She, Suzi Quatro,a guitarist/lead singer whose aunt was in the L'uved Ones, and also Fanny, who were the first all-female rock band to get signed to a major record label in the early '70's.

    Also the '70's funk/disco group, A Taste of Honey (their most famous hit was the great funky funk classic "Boogie Oogie Oogie")featured Janice Marie Johnson and Hazel Payne as the lead guitarist and bassist of the group,respectively.

    Barbara Lynn was a singer/guitarist from the early '60's who is still playing today. Also I got much love for guitarist/singer/songwriter Laura Love, whom I has the pleasure of seeing live at a free music festival about 14 years ago, and I've enjoyed her music ever since. Get Octaroon and Shum Ticky if you're into her wonderful voice AND music.

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