Women in music

Roncalli Central High
Port Saunders, Newfoundland

By Christine W. (Grade 9)

It's a cold, stormy Saturday night. There's nothing to do. You get up and put a Sarah McLachlan cd in your cd player. You stand there listening to "Building a Mystery" and immediately hate it. You take it out and replace it with your favourite male artist. You lie on your bed and relax.

In the music industry today, female performers are given as many chances and opportunities as male performers. Their cds are selling at the same rate as cds by male performers and their music is being listened to by almost everyone.

But it wasn't always that way. Until recently, songs by female performers were uncommon in the music industry. Many people didn't listen to songs written by female artists and some may have believed that songs written by females weren't as good as songs written by male artists.

In the late nineteenth century, the women-in-music movement started, to improve opportunities for women. They want female artists to be taken seriously and to be recognized for their work. They also believe that, through unity, they will reach this goal and that all women-in-music organizations should combine to make one women-in-music movement and broaden their base of support.

The National Network for Women in Music is a non-profit organization that was created to promote the recognition of women in music through education and networking resources. One of their many goals is to encourage and support the activities of women in all areas of music.

Over the summer, an all-female concert tour took place. This tour, called Lilith Fair, was a celebration of women in music. Sarah McLachlan came up with the idea of all-female performers performing in a 35 city tour across the United States and Canada.

This tour brought over thirty female performers together, including Sarah McLachlan, Meredith Brooks, Fiona Apple, Joan Osbourne, Jewel and The Cardigans. At the end of the tour, over $600 thousand U.S. dollars was donated to various groups and charities throughout the United States and Canada.

In the last decade, male performers were dominating the music industry, but since 1990 more female performers have popped up. These performers have been rising to the top of music industry's Billboard Charts as their debut albums and hit singles are being listened to and played on television. Dominating female performers range from solo artists to female-fronted bands to all-female bands including performers such as Jewel, No Doubt, Spice Girls and The Cardigans.

In recent years, the numbers of new female performers have increased. Newcomers, like Meredith Brooks and Robyn are already making an impact on the world and in the music industry.

Ever since the women-in-music movement, more opportunities have been created for female performers and in the future, there will be more female performers because of these opportunities.

Female performers worked hard to have their songs played over the radio and made into music videos for us to see and they never gave up when someone rejected their music.

The next time you see or hear a song or music video by a female performer, don't turn it off. Instead, listen to it and try to appreciate all the work that these singers had to do for an equal opportunity and to be recognized for their work.

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