Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Starting a conversation: Women in the Music Industry


So here's the deal. I am angry. I can't go into it now. By posting this blog I am hoping to attract people who have an opinion about how women are treated differently than men in the music industry.

Point of contention:

Portland is a progressive city. Yeah. Not really when it come to women in the music community.

I am searching for more women bloggers to contribute to Crappy Indie Music. Your voice is valuable and much needed.



mz. hernandez said...

goldie - do you mean "women in the music community" as in just bookers, bloggers, etc? or are you including musicians?

Sara Hernandez
the angry orts

Goldie Davich said...

all of it -- who knows who is out their suffering unneeded bullshit.

Bryant said...

On the point of how women are treated differently than men in the music industry:

I hate it when people categorize kick ass garage rock/punk groups that happen to be all female (Mika Miko, Explode Into Colors, Vivian Girls, etc...) as "girl rock" -- like it's some type of trivial genre that can be considered just novel. Or the critics who need to qualify their music in a sort of gendered way (although not as explicitly stated as this, but something along the lines of "they are a pretty good band...for girls" type thing). These and groups like them transcend the male/female divide -- they're amazing bands, period. No need to bring belittling gender comments into the equation.

Goldie Davich said...

It may be musicians vs promoters etc get the brunt of the poor treatment.

Hannah said...

i'll give you my opinion on the music i see any day. is it relevant besides the fact that i am a woman and am a spectator at lots of shows... yes?!

Goldie Davich said...

No. I only want you because you are woman... Really?

I want to hear women's voices. Is that fucked up or something?

Jess Gulbranson said...

You're so sexist, Goldie. ;)

I've talked about this before- as far as wanting to bring some parity to the blog, bravo. You, Amber, the good Dr. and occasionally Sparkle Girl are all great voices. Even throwing it in there that you happen to be chicks, well, still awesome within that duality. I really don't believe there's anything intriniscally different that a woman can bring to a blog based on her gender, but moreso as you've mentioned based on her experiences in the world being treated as such.

Goldie Davich said...

How is wanting to hear more women's voices on the blog any different from wanting to hear a female vocalist? Those of you speak out against me talking about gender specific issues can post a blog about it.

For the record: There are some serious issues I would like to address. Things like branding, getting on a bill ('oh sorry we already have a girl on the bill')... As always I hope by starting this conversation I provide a platform for peoples voice to be heard. There are people who suffer injustice and they think they are alone. I want to reach out to them.

mz. hernandez said...

i sing in a band and i've never felt like we weren't given a show because i'm a girl. more honestly, i felt like we weren't put on some bills because we didn't fit within the genre of music the venue was looking for or because we didn't draw the amount of people they wanted, but never because i didn't fit within the gender of musician they were looking for. maybe the booker who says ""we already have a girl on the bill" is simply trying to be nice (and drastically missing the mark, obviously) instead of telling said band "you're not really what we're looking for" or "we don't think your band is very good". or maybe, yes, that specific booker is just a dick.

also - Bryant, I think some bands are called "girl" rock because people hear the congruity and perhaps the influence that has occured between them and the whole riot grrrl movement. i'm sure someone out there calls the music my band plays grrrl rock (even though the other three musicians are dudes) but it doesn't bug me. it feels just the same as having them call us dance-punk. they may be wrong or they may be right. to me, it's just a category to help people get an idea of what we play.

Goldie Davich said...

mz. h. -- good for you. clearly you have no issues. I am reaching out and want to give voice to people who do have some issues. These problems exsist whether you've experienced them or not. Are you planning on telling the women who have issues that they are wrong because your experience is the be all end all of what is going on in the world?

Jess Gulbranson said...

You have to be careful about things like 'possible alternative explanations' on the comments to this blog. Some of us are a little aggro on that subject.

If we're asking for people's experience- and they're sharing it- then cool. Let's not harangue them. PS, we're doing some karaoke tonight, Goldie.

mz. hernandez said...

No actually, I wasn't - I was just voicing my own experience. I am most definitely NOT saying that other women haven't experienced discrimination - I'm sure that it happens all the time. I'm really interested in hearing the experiences women have had in Portland regarding gender and music and the barriers that are created because of sexism. I'm sure they run the gamut of being unaware that there is a problem to experiencing heavy and troubling amounts of sexism in this marketplace. I was simply responding to your request: "I want to hear women's voices. Is that fucked up or something?". I apologize that mine is not the voice that you were hoping to hear. I look forward to reading the experiences other women have regarding the music scene in our community.

Thank you.

Sara Hernandez

Dr. Something said...

I really don't believe there's anything intriniscally different that a woman can bring to a blog based on her gender.

I'd have to somewhat disagree with you here, Jess. Not to assert any sort of ridiculous separate spheres ideology, but I think that women's experiences and narratives can offer insight that those with male privilege might not readily discern, and because of this I wholeheartedly support proactively seeking out women's voices for such a discussion.

However, this isn't to say that there's a monolithic female experience either, and I'm glad to see that Mz. Hernandez has provided us with a thoughtful response based on her own experiences, and didn't take it as an attempt to silence other women whose experiences are different.

Also, I'd be happy to participate in a discussion on women in the music industry, but I think we need to have a more focused topic or questions in order to really delve into female musicians'/bookers'/promoters'/etc. experiences. I seem to be sensing a lot of fractured communication in this comments section because of the vague nature of the post.

Jess Gulbranson said...

I think we're more on the same page than you realize, Dr. Again, I think that the intrinsic differences in temperament between individual women are varied and great enough that to lump them together doesn't help- and I'm sure plenty of chicks would object to that, as I certainly object to my identity being reduced to a single poorly defined category. But as a category of consciousness, used to reference an individual's experience within the boundaries of that construct, is a useful starting place. I think that is what Goldie was asking all along- What are your experiences as a female in a presumably male-dominated field, not "How does your vagina feel about the PDX music scene?" ;)

goldie d. said...

MZ H. -- I read your comment completely differently that what you intended. What you shared is great. Thank you. In many instances the moment I talk about gender (or god forbid race) I get slammed just for wanting to talk about it. Also -- do you want to blog here? If you do let up know!

DR S. -- I the generality of this post was just to get the ball rolling. I cast a net to see if anyone was biting. I came home that night crying and angry from a couple of stories I had heard from a woman musician. I do want to get specific for sure.

My late response is due to:

My google account was compromised so i have to use a whole new ID -- "goldie d." -- VERY FRUSTRATING!