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Thread: Carrie Underwood Makes a Case for Ladies of Country

  1. #1
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    Carrie Underwood Makes a Case for Ladies of Country

    CMT : News : Carrie Underwood Makes a Case for Ladies of Country

    Take a good look at any recently published country charts, and you may be thinking, "Wait, where are all the girls on country radio?"

    It's a question many folks have been asking lately -- from Carrie Underwood to even Luke Bryan, who talked about it in a recent Entertainment Weekly magazine interview. Labels, artists and fans alike want to know why we don't see more females on the charts. With so many viable gals in our format poised for success, it seems like a good question.

    Underwood herself has enjoyed tremendous radio success in her career and will tell you she is truly, immeasurably grateful for that. She recently snagged another No. 1 single with "See You Again." Yet at one point during the song's meteoric climb, she was the only female with a single in the Top 20. Yep, out of 20 spots, only one belonged to a woman. And it happens more often than you think.

    "I would love to see that a little more equaled out, but it will happen," Underwood said in a recent interview with CMT Radio. "We'll get there."

    Yes, ladies, these numbers might seem a little dismal at the moment, but Underwood has a steadfast belief there's room for these incredible female artists waiting to catch a break.

    She also encourages us to look at how far women in country have come over the years, thanks in large part to her heroes like Dolly Parton and Loretta Lynn. They are the iconic gems who forged a path for the current generation when there wasn't even a clearing in the road.

    "I think it took all those people to pave that for us," Underwood said. "I still think we have a long way to go."

    I think most of us -- men and women alike -- would agree that we'd like to get there sooner than later.
    glenn7, rainbow1, txacar and 7 others like this.

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    "It's a man's world" in too many ways in our US land of equality. Other countries are much more advanced than we are whether it be politics, private business or entertainment. It is discouraging to witness talented women being pushed aside in so many areas.

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    Ultimate Carrie Fan Farawayhills's Avatar
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    This is another good example of Carrie using her position in the genre to make a point about an issue she believes in. She chooses her "battles" well, makes her points with tact (as here, in the tribute to her forerunners), and judges the time to raise issues that are clearly a current area of concern. It's actually not an easy area for a current female singer to address, as those on the outside risk being dismissed for "special pleading", and Carrie herself could be resented for not settling for being the main beneficiary of the current sparse recognition given to other women. I think she's dealt with that by including her personal gratitude to radio, and choosing to make the point in areas like the songwriters' award and CMT radio, where she has strong recognition. It makes it clear that she's putting the good of the genre ahead of her own self interest.

    There are some signs that others are showing interest. Sheryl Crow said that, as a "newbie" to the Mainstream, she doesn't feel she should criticize it - but she is interested in what others are saying. (She said the attitude to criticisms was a bit like "I can say my mom’s fat but you can’t.") She also said that it may be relevant that only about two of radio program directors are women.

    Matraca Berg made a few tweets about deciding to check the Mainstream charts, to see how bad the "gender imbalance" was:
    ""Watching @gactv top twenty countdown. Getting an education"
    "so when did women disappear from radio? I guess I don't pay enough attention."
    "Well, @mirandalambert made me feel less out of it. Thanks sista!"


    One of Matraca's Twitter followers made an interesting reply:
    "When they "Dixie Chicked" the Dixie Chicks, it's been downhill for women ever since."

    The problem is that (leaving aside "Red", that Matraca may not recognize as a Country song), you have to wait till no 20 to find a current song by a female at all - and that is one that I don't feel radio is fully getting behind. As that song is thematically very different from the prevailing "good time" party songs - and the same could be said for all of Carrie's recent chart toppers - I think the "gender imbalance" is also in part a reluctance by Mainstream radio to back more than a handful of more challenging, thought provoking songs
    One problem still to be addressed is that this imbalance does not seem an issue in Country Music as a whole. The Roots radio chart usually includes around 40% women at any one time (and some of these are women who have left the Mainstream.) That sector also has less liking for cozy "rural good time" symbolism.

    I'm certainly not saying that women should tone down their more edgy or thought-provoking songs in favour of reassuring stereotyped party songs - but I think Mainstream radio seems unwilling to tolerate more than a few songs that are either musically or thematically stronger - and that adds to the hurdles faced by singers who want to support more challenging songwriting.
    Smokyiiis, rainbow1 and txacar like this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jaylee50 View Post
    "It's a man's world" in too many ways in our US land of equality. Other countries are much more advanced than we are whether it be politics, private business or entertainment. It is discouraging to witness talented women being pushed aside in so many areas.
    It's always been a man's world in the work force and in the music business. We come so far in equality and now we are slowly getting there

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    Carrie Fans Maniac kewlie78189's Avatar
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    she's awesome..I love how she is all about being fair!!


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