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Thread: Gender issues in bands/music

  1. #1
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    Gender issues in bands/music

    This is just something i wanna know. A couple of people in the band arguments thread mentioned problems caused by gender ie not being taken seriously, guys thinking girls get all the attention etc, and id just like to hear from anyone who has any exprience whether your own or what you've seen happen to others in bands/music in general.

    I'd like to hear from the girls in particular. I've been the lone female (yes female) in a few working situations now and sometimes it works, sometimes not, and should i ever end up the lone female in a band situation i'd kinda like to know what i'm in for.

    Guys, if you've also got experience of having girls in bands and something keeps occuring that annoys you, please add it so i'll have a better idea of how to avoid potential problems.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Bedroom metalurgist LaughingSkull's Avatar
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    Timestorm, you are a girl? How cool.
    I am the only person in the one man band, so no problems there. But since i still only play in the bedroom I get no attention even that way, so ....
    Mostly I would say girls get most attention, and why not. If you want to spread the attention then all girl rock band is the solution.

  3. #3
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    A shallow view would be that females get more attention because all the guys just want to gawk at the chick on stage.

    As a musician though, I have worked with many females and gender is never an issue. People get the attention they deserve. If your good at what you do, your more likely to get more people looking your way.

    Then again, when I was younger and spent more time in the rock/metal scene. I can see how a female in the band could be more cause for attention, considering those type groups are 99.9% males. Also the crowds are usually 80% guys. So women were a bit of a rarity and usually turned heads when they appeared on stage.

    As for being taken seriously. I think if you have a professional attitude you will be treated equally. If your band mates don't respect you because your female then leave. If they don't respect you full stop, leave.

    This message proudly presented by a gentlemen

  4. #4
    Registered User Malcolm's Avatar
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    Not from the UK, as you can tell from my accent. However, ole time Country - the girl was the added attraction, and 99% of the time the vocalist. That has changed. And I ditto the other posts, now days if you function as a professional you get treated as such. You know in about a year we could have a lady President. We already have a lady as our Secretary of State. Your government has been around a little longer than ours and has already worked this out. Not sure how this has filtered down to the band level.

    We have two ladies in our band. One is the wife of the director. She and the director are our lead vocalists. The other plays rhythm guitar and sings backup. We've been together over 7 years now and have worked out all the ego problems. Over the years there have been several that were not sent the monthly schedule -- nice way of saying you don't fit in and are no longer needed.

    I think you will find that in a mature band all the ego issues have already been worked out and you will be treated as a professional if you act professionally.

    Bunch of young guys in a start up band --- that's another story.
    Last edited by Malcolm; 02-12-2008 at 04:34 PM.

  5. #5
    Wordgirl: Jaded Musician jade_bodhi's Avatar
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    Woman's Intuition

    Quote Originally Posted by Timestorm
    This is just something i wanna know. A couple of people in the band arguments thread mentioned problems caused by gender ie not being taken seriously, guys thinking girls get all the attention etc, and id just like to hear from anyone who has any exprience whether your own or what you've seen happen to others in bands/music in general.

    I'd like to hear from the girls in particular. I've been the lone female (yes female) in a few working situations now and sometimes it works, sometimes not, and should i ever end up the lone female in a band situation i'd kinda like to know what i'm in for.
    One female in an otherwise male band is a noticeable difference. I used to sing and play in a blues band in just such a situation, and I did most of the singing in this group. I chose not to be just another member of the band but instead to emphasize my role as the female attraction. And the band supported this. They even told me to "shake it a more" on stage, which I learned to do, although it didn't come naturally to me at first. I also varied my "costume" more than the guys. They dressed in the same clothes they wore day to day; I wore sexy, colorful clothing (not flamboyant). I viewed this as a "role" I played in our performances and nothing more, and that role helped to round out our band, making it more appealing not just to males in the audiences but females, too.

    The only problem I can foresee being the only female is getting involved romantically with one of the guys in the band. That never happened to me (I already had a boyfriend), but I can imagine it would create awkwardness and jealousies.

    Now I mostly play in a duo with a male; we both have significant others and it's a professional occupation (if not a decent living!). We do more lounge-y stuff and I've toned my dressing style down a little (I sit down when I play a lot), and my partner is a lot more professional in dress than the guys in my old blues band were. You find your musical partners where you can, and when it works, it's worth holding onto by maintaining a professional attitude toward it.
    Nobody ever shared
    what we have known...

  6. #6
    Late bloomer high-strung's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jade_bodhi
    The only problem I can foresee being the only female is getting involved romantically with one of the guys in the band. That never happened to me (I already had a boyfriend), but I can imagine it would create awkwardness and jealousies.
    Yeah but maybe this is great fertile ground for good songwriting (Fleetwood Mac, No Doubt, etc.) j/k....

    In my experience, all the bands w/female singers and male rest-of-band that I've seen/been around have just been really talented. Basically the women could SING, so looks were not the issue. If the looks got them the gig, then they managed to earn it with skills. I think it's important to have presence if you're fronting the band, but that's not gender-specific.

    It would be cool to see an actual band with a male lead singer and the rest of the band female. Wonder why that doesn't happen, guess the guy would have to be pretty secure lol. Reminds me of that Robert Palmer video.

    Good thread...

  7. #7
    Punk Freud
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    I fancy a guitar duel with a member of the female species. Ripping up "Endless Sacrifice" @ 5:24..... Unfortunately, that hasn't happened yet. I am sure that Mr. Petrucci found the idea attractive too, but as you can see there are no females in Dream Theater. BUT he does have Mr. Myung, who looks like a cute korean girl if he hides behind his gorgeous hair.

  8. #8
    Jazz is Life bilbo230763's Avatar
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    Gender politics are a complex issue any way you look at it. A female in a band of men has the potential to create difficulties of an obvious nature but only if people are unprofessional. This is no different in a factory or a school or a cafe. To be frank, due to the nature of these gender politics and the difficulties women face in getting taken seriously as players (in certain genres), female musicians tend to be more professional.

    In my experience, if a female is up to the job in terms of her abilities as a player, I will book her without a second thought. If any male band member has a problem with that, I will let them go. I will book the best person for the job irrespective of theIR respective chromasone make-up. As for the girl singer debate, its old news. 50% of the world's population are and always have been women. Get over it!
    I don't think therefore I'm not...

  9. #9
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    personally, I feel that a person should get kudos on what they can do not what they are. Jason Becker is a good example of that.

  10. #10
    Registered User Obivion's Avatar
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    I'd probably feel more comfortable in an all guy band because if the band member's get romantically involved, it creates problems.I think the other issue is vocal styles if we're talking about vocals and lyrical content. I mean, can you really imagine covering "The lemon song" with a chick as the singer? It'd just be weird.
    No one sings the blues quite like Yngwie!

  11. #11
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    ya, its sad but chicks dont really do well in guitar oriented music.
    or they have a very short life.

    I mean, where is the female equivalent of hendrix, zepplin, yngwie, satch, holdsworth, whoever.

    the only few chicks ive heard and liked are jennifer batten, janis joplin etc i dont even remember more names. and Ive heard plenty of chicks in bands before, they just dont have life, musically. They dont last (like an 80s boy band)

    furthermore chicks are more suited for vocals than instruments in my opinion. More range. but instrumentwise chicks dont have what it takes.
    i have seen some kick *** violin and piano playing chicks. They are great but they just dont do it for me, musically. i dont know why, but thats the way it is.

  12. #12
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    That is not the way it is as far as I have exprerienced.

  13. #13
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    name me a chick guitar virtuoso, chick equivalent of pink floyd? sabbath, jeff beck....

    thats my point...i cant think of any? and there isnt any solid reason why.....
    in my experience, thats the way it is. guitar music is just mostly male dominated.

  14. #14
    Jazz is Life bilbo230763's Avatar
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    Jennifer Batten? Emily Remler? Leni Stern? Dozens of female classical virtuoso guitarists, never mind violinists, cellists, double bass players....

    The reason there are fewer female guitarists is social conditioning not inate ability or the absence thereof.
    I don't think therefore I'm not...

  15. #15
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    i dont really think its a social reason. Men not letting women rock seems too convienient an excuse.

    but there is a huge difference btw female and man made rock.
    there is a lack of soul (dare i say) in most chicky rock music, and technical and melodic playing when you compare them to the greats in the genre.

    but whatever, this debate is neverending, you know.
    The above is my opinion.

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