Two of my most popular posts ever were sadly, two posts that brought up the attitude towards country music women in Australia. One was about a certain judge on a talent show saying that there wasn’t any women in Australian Country Music and the other one about a woman not being allowed to perform at a venue because she was a woman and ‘too old’. Two totally crazy situations.
Golden Guitar winner for best new talent this year, Fanny Lumsden, pointed out on Facebook this week that most line-ups for upcoming festivals (save a few like Tamworth and some smaller Indie ones) featured only a few token females.
I am of the opinion that Australian Country Music is at its strongest at the moment, and women are leading the way. I have been following country music for nearly 55 years and I truly believe that the last couple of years have been the strongest in talent and songwriting in our history. There are some wonderful women artists and they need to be recognised and appreciated as much as the men.
I shouldn’t have to write articles like this in 2017. Fanny shouldn’t have to post this grievance on Facebook either. It should be a given that women be awarded equal consideration in selection of line-ups for gigs and festivals. I know that a lot of Australian Male Country Music Artists would agree too.
If you look at the charts and releases in the last few years, they are dominated by women, or women who lead bands. A lot of our women have gone off to be trailblazers overseas as well.
My collection and my taste is well balanced, not dominated by one gender or the other, it is all just great music. When I was selecting for Bob’s radio programme, I tried to play equal share. Sometimes it had more women or more men depending on current releases, so I balanced it out by playing some classics by either gender to make it fair.
I welcome the day when it is not necessary to bring up these issues. It shouldn’t be an issue. If it is great music, whether it is a male artist or a female artist, it should be played and both genders should be represented equally. No tokens, please, that it is just as insulting.