International Women’s Day for the Music Board

Happy International Women’s Day fellow DiSers! I wanted to start a thread to celebrate the many amazing (but, unfortunately, often unappreciated) women working in all sectors of the music world.

I’ve been thinking for the past week of a meaningful way to celebrate the amazing music made by women already in this young year. Making lists of your favourite “women’s albums” is often sniped at for ghettoising music made by women (though I think it can still be a good exercise if done sensitively and with the right intentions)

Therefore I thought it might be fun/useful to discuss our favourite albums of the year so far as a whole, and then look in particular at what percentage are made by female artists and groups featuring women/how high they rank.

Or we could do something else. Or we could nuke this thread! Whatever we do, please make sure to appreciate and respect the countless women working in the music industry, not just today, but everyday.

Happy International Women’s Day to you all too.

I’ve queued up only female-fronted music all day on Spotify.

I should do this more often - just had The Breeders, now The Orielles, bit of Hollie Cook coming up.

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Nice initiative.

As I haven’t listened to enough 2018 music to make a comprehensive list, I’m going to project this to my 2017 EOY albums:

Actress - AZD
Children Of Alice - s/t
Chino Amobi - Paradiso
Circuit Des Yeux - Reaching for Indigo
Derya Yildirim & Grup Simsek - Nem Kaldi
Differ-Ent - It’s Good To Be Differ-Ent
DJ Python - Dulce Compañia
DJ Sports - Modern Species
Earthen Sea - An Act Of Love
Ekoplekz - Bioprodukt
Ellen Arkbro - For Organ And Brass
Félicia Atkinson - Hand In Hand
Jonny Nash - Eden
Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith - The Kid
Karen Gwyer - Rembo
Kuniyuki Takahashi - Newwave Project
Tom Rogerson & Brian Eno - Finding Shore
Träd, Gräs Och Stenar - Tack För Kaffet / So Long
Vince Staples - Big Fish Theory
Yamaneko - Spa Commissions

If I only count the people who are listed as the ones who actually wrote the songs (so, excluding the session musicians or featured artists) then I am getting to only 7 women for 23 men.

Not a good statistic.

If you check which albums have been created by woman as a leading person of the project then you get at 14 albums that has a leading man and 6 albums that have a leading woman. But in that aspect women even aren’t represented half as much as men.

Pretty early in the year atm to do 2018 - my favourites have been Hookworms and Ought which are both all male, but theres plenty of time. Both of the new Hop Along singles absolutely slap so i’m dead excited for that record.

How about a thing where we name a genre that we like (maybe a normally male-heavy genre?) and people suggest women writing stuff in that genre.

Does anyone have any recommendations for really sludgy grimy metal from a female band / artist? I’m thinking of something like ‘Terminal’ by Salome

I guess it depends on how much good stuff you think is out there already. For 2018 I’d already say I have 20 albums that I’d rate 8/10 or above:

  1. Tune-Yards - I Can Feel You…
  2. Car Seat Headrest - Twin Fantasy
  3. Rae Morris - Someone Out There
  4. Joan as Policewoman - Damned Devotion
  5. Maxo Kream - Punken
  6. Jeff Rosenstock - Post-
  7. Haley Henderickx - I need to Start a Garden
  8. Cupcakke - Ephorize
  9. Screaming Females - All at Once
  10. Rhye - Blood
  11. Hookworms - Microshift
  12. Dream Wife - Dream Wife
  13. Anna Burch - Quit the Curse
  14. Django Django - Marble Skies
  15. Anna von Hausswolff - Dead Magic
  16. Sarah Blasko - Depth of Field
  17. Dave East - P2
  18. Loma - Loma
  19. Calexico - The Thread that Keeps
  20. Ought - Room Inside the World

That gives me 11/20 if you count groups that have at least one woman in them (which is actually way above my usual fare).

I’m very happy for people to do 2017 if they haven’t got a long boring commute like me though :slight_smile:

Women in music? You can’t go past this lady:

So many women in music have cited Joni as a role model, even women who make music entirely different from what she makes (made). “Uncompromising” is the word often used.

FWIW the last time I did an inventory I had more albums by Joni than by any other single artist or band.

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People talk about quotas for women on company boards, that kind of thing - well how about setting a quota for yourself, where you make sure that at least 50 per cent of the music you listen to is by women?

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I’m afraid I can’t help you @Scagden as I don’t know ANY music of that sort! But I like the idea a lot. I hope someone gives suggestions!

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Just going to big up some of the females/bands with female members making incredible music atm in the form of a list… I like lists

Nadine Shah
Kelly Lee Owens
Susanne Sundfør
Big Thief
Jesca Hoop
Julien Baker
This Is The Kit
St Vincent
Chelsea Wolfe
PJ Harvey
Japanese Breakfast
Marika Hackman
Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith
Jen Cloher
Aldous Harding
Nadia Reid
Allison Crutchfield
Adia Victoria
Julie Byrne
Annie Hardy
Angel Olsen
This Becomes Us
Haley Heynderickx
Rolo Tomassi
Anna von Hausswolff
Soccer Mommy
Joan As Police Woman
Goat Girl

Some of the best music has been/is being made by women


Sound. Cheers for the list, a lot of new stuff to give a go (and old stuff I guess - how are Django Django still around?!) Also can’t believe I missed a new Tune-Yards, loved all her other stuff.

Have to head out for the day and already posted way too many links in the corresponding thread on the social board, but as a latecomer to Sleater Kinney I just want to say that The Woods is one of the best albums ever made by anyone and I would give anything to be able to sing like Corin Tucker does on it. All three of them were so incredible on it, and I’m still finding new amazing subtleties that each contributed each time I listen to it.

I’ll try to work on a list later tonight though.




This is a great list, pal, and I appreciate you contributing it to the thread :slight_smile:

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My top three albums of this year are releases by Joan As Policewoman, U.S. Girls and Brigid Mae Power. Best gig of the year was Jen Cloher at an afternoon Rough Trade East gig with her wife Courtney Barnett on guitar.

Yeah US Girls should Ben number 4 on my list. Don’t know how I didn’t notice that as I was writing it up. Phenomenal record

Missed Braids on the list… damn it

EDIT and Julia Holter and JOANNA NEWSOM

Point made

Early to rate 2018 albums, but I’ve got 11 that I’ve liked so far this year of which 6 are made by female artists or female fronted bands:

Anna Von Hausswolff
Laurie Anderson/Kronos Quartet

and five are male:

Nils Frahm
Ty Segall

We did a similar survey a while ago looking at previous years and there was a definite year by year increase in the proportion of female artists.

I’ve always had female artists I love, including some of my absolute favourites (Joni, Bjork, PJ Harvey, Joanna Newsom) but what is new is the volume of women producing high quality music (or being able to get themselves heard)

It was great getting to hear this live when they played in London a few years ago

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My favourite new small band is Whenyoung. An Irish trio based in London. Brilliant live.

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