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e-Journal

 

(NO?) Strings Attached:
Female guitarists in contemporary music

(Released July 2009)

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  by Les Reynolds  

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Summer 93 I was driving in my car
When a song came on called "Girls With Guitars"
So I put the pedal to the metal straight to my record store
Grabbed that Wynonna CD baby
And shot right out the door

Well I tore through the house, cranked it up loud
I could hardly wait to take that booklet out
To read the names of the players, imagine my surprise
When all those girls with guitars
Turned out to be a bunch of guys

Where are the girls with guitars. . .

In 2007, a little-known guitarist from a Los Angeles, California-based blues band released a CD titled "Cures What Ails Ya" (1). Among the songs was a tune called "Where Are the Girls with Guitars?" (2). That guitarist-the tune's composer, Laurie Morvan-and her namesake band, seemed to be making a statement (or voicing a lament) posed by numerous female musicians for decades previous. Is, or was there, a literal dearth of female guitarists in contemporary music? If so, is it the result of discrimination, simple choice or other issues? This Discovery Guide discusses the significance of this concern, and introduces several female guitarists who are actively advocating for change.

Laurie Morvan
Laurie Morvan

Bonnie Raitt on YouTube
Bonnie Raitt YouTube, "Something to Talk about"

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