Female Singers:

Creativity, DIY, reviews, art, gaming and entertainment

Moderators: Neko, Rainbow Dolphins

Post Reply
Endymion

Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Female Singers:

Post by Endymion » Wed May 15, 7:36 2019

In the topic Women in history and an examination of gender norms: I wrote that according to a number of sources women are underrepresented in the music industry. For example The Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism reports that on average per year over the seven years from 2012 to 2018, 21.7% of artists were women (out of 700 songs) (3.6 males to 1 female). (See here: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838 comments dated April 22nd and April 26th.) The problem for me is that I generally prefer female singers, possibly due to having heard so many male singers throughout my life. So I would like this topic to be about female singers. To start with I have provided links to four videos on which female vocalists could be heard and I encourage others to add more.

Born in Seoul, South Korea the soprano Kathleen Kim debuted at the Metropolitan Opera in 2007. In this video she portrays the role of Olympia, singing the aria "Les oiseaux dans la charmille" (The birds in the bower) aka “Olympia’s Doll Song” from Jacques Offenbach’s operetta "Les Contes d'Hoffmann" (1881), 6 minutes, see here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9emRjIMZsVk. I enjoy watching how her mouth moves and how her tongue flutters – such control.

The soprano Marian Anderson was born on February 27, 1897 in Philadelphia. According to an article at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum website (see here: https://fdrlibrary.org/anderson), “In January 1939 Howard University petitioned the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) . . . “ to allow Marian Anderson to perform at the organization’s Constitution Hall. However, “As part of the original funding arrangements for Constitution Hall, major donors had insisted that only whites could perform on stage.” In response to this in February of 1939, Eleanor Roosevelt resigned from the DAR and then worked to arrange a concert for Marian Anderson on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial for Easter Sunday. Attendance at the concert numbered 75,000 and the performance was broadcast on NBC Radio – two strong women Marian Anderson and Eleanor Roosevelt. The following link does not go to a video of the Lincoln Memorial concert, but to a 5 minute long video of Marian Anderson singing Ave Maria: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GksRp42s3S8.

I tend to prefer music composed prior to 1950, but there are some more modern songs that I like. Here is a link to Cyndi Lauper’s (b. 1953) music video (4 ½ minutes) to "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" (1985): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PIb6AZdTr-A. I like the music and the lyrics (not written by Cyndi) and the way Cyndi dances down the street, as well as her singing.

Singing a cappella that is without musical instrumental backup seems to me to be a real test of how well a person or people can sing. On the other hand I feel that many modern singers, in particular male singers, would not sound very much like they were singing if not for the instrumental backup. Here is a video (3 minutes long) of four Russian women singing a cappella, in Russian. The group is called "Белое злато" (White Gold) and the song is “За тихой рекой” (Behind a quiet river). It is a Russian Folksong: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANKjat2bj94. The members of the group are Daria Luneeva, Valeria Grigorieva, Maria Baranenko and Ekaterina Radygina. To me the song, despite or because I do not understand the words, is beautiful and fits very well in with their location which is a compartment in a railroad car. In the background is the sound of the moving train and I get a strong feeling of them traveling a long way behind a quiet river.

Tom,

To be continued,
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

User avatar
Storage and Disposal
member
member
Posts: 5943
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 5:31 2004
Location: Iowa
Contact:

Re: Female Singers:

Post by Storage and Disposal » Sun May 19, 20:31 2019

I'm not listing women prior to 1950. Good chance you won't be into any of this, but oh well, haha

https://vimeo.com/77950999 Springtime Carnivore

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rO6KESpkPl0 Anna Calvi

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BX2bCSoMOOc Cat Power

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1kIQT7uUiME Land of Talk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eg-ER1Gf1vQ First Aid Kit

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JeIHZvZTJTg Sinead O'Connor

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MdBu21i9aEE Julien Baker
"He weeps for he has but one small tongue with which to taste an entire world." - Dr. Mungmung

Endymion

Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Singers:

Post by Endymion » Mon May 20, 13:58 2019

Storage and Disposal, thank you for linking to those videos. I enjoyed listening to and watching them. When I wrote that I tend to prefer music composed prior to 1950 that doesn't I don't like any music after that year. I like the human voice more as a musical instrument and so I usually don't care much for the words being sung, but then that is not always the case either. It seemed to me that the women singing in your videos sang with more musicality (I'm not sure if that is the right word to use) as compared to many modern singers. What I mean is that they varied their pitch while singing. Another thing that I like is vocalization without lyrics that is singing without words, which I noticed in a number of the songs including Anna Calvi's No More Words and First Aid Kit - In tbe Hearts of men - Thekla Bristol. Also I'm not too up to date on more recent music so I've not heard any of these songs before which is a plus. What I'm able to do is add these videos to a playlist, both the youtube and vimeo ones and then while I'm sitting in my recliner, cast the videos to my TV and hear the sound through a stereo. So, again thank you for contributing.

Tom,
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Singers:

Post by Endymion » Thu May 23, 7:24 2019

The singer Edith Piaf “The Little Sparrow” was born near Paris in 1915. At this website https://secondhandsongs.com/work/9571, she is given as the writer of the lyrics for the song “La vie en rose,” in 1945 with someone else given as the composer of the music. However it is also stated that “Edith Piaf originally wrote this song as "Les choses en rose" but couldn't publish it under her name at the time so she asked her friend Louiguy (Luis Guglielmi) to publish it. Some sources thus claim he didn't write the music, but that he got the credit for publishing it.” It would seem that if she tried to publish under her name she would have already written the music. In any case here is a video (3 minutes long) of Edith Piaf singing La vie en rose (The life in pink): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzeLynj1GYM in 1954. This is one of my favorite songs.

This 10 minute video is entitled Number One Hits of The Supremes. The twelve songs are listed below the video. Florence Ballard (b. 1943), Mary Wilson (b. 1944), Diana Ross (b. 1944) and Betty Travis (b. 1941), first formed a group called the Primettes after meeting in Detroit during the 1950’s. They were in High School at the time and because of this Betty Travis and Florence Ballard had to quit the group leaving Mary Wilson and Diana Ross temporarily as a duo. In 1961 Florence Ballard, Mary Wilson and Diana Ross signed with Motown Records as the Supremes. Then in 1967 Cindy Birdsong (b. 1939) replaced Florence Ballard. Here is the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jFIyLRGBKvQo.

Billie Holiday was born either in Baltimore or Philadelphia in 1915 as Eleanora Fagan Gough or Elinore Harris. While still in her teens she started singing in nightclubs in Harlem. In 1934 she performed at the Apollo Theater and by 1935 she had recorded her first record and in that same year appeared in a movie. She eventually made records with a number of Jazz bands. The sound track of this video is Billie Holiday singing Blue Moon (3 ½ minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ntDnwBiORu8). Included among the songs she wrote or co-wrote are “Billie’s Blues (1936),” “Fine and Mellow (1939),” “God Bless the Child (1941)” and “Lady Sings the Blues (1956).” She also sang “I’ll Be Seeing You,” “Solitude,” “Summertime” and the controversial “Strange Fruit” among many others. She performed at Carnegie Hall in 1948 and 1956. As with other blacks in America she was a victim of segregation. In at least one case she was told to use the freight elevator because of her race and could not eat in the same dining room as the white members of the band she was singing with. After her death the Recording Academy honored her with a Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award in 1987 and in 2011 she was accepted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame in 2011. She was also known as “Lady Day.”

The following link is to a video (2 minutes) of Anna Caterina Antonacci (b. 1961 in Bologna) singing the aria 'L'amour est un oiseau rebelle' aka “Habanera” from the Georges Bizet’s 1875 opera “Carmen.” This opera was taken from the 1845 novelette of the same name. See here for video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJ_HHRJf0xg. I like Anna Antonacci’s performance in this video, since to me she accuracy portrays the title character by the way she looks and acts except that in the book Carmen is described as wearing black stockings with holes in them – at least from what I remember. In the novelette Carmen is an independent, vibrant woman who knows what she wants and will do what she has to, to get it, but is not particularly mean spirited. I did not feel that she was meant to be a beautiful woman, but was a type that certain men were attracted to. The story can be seen as a cautionary tale of what happens to women like that and to the men who become obsessed with them. The name Habanera refers to a dance from Habana, Cuba.

Tom,

To be continued,
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Singers:

Post by Endymion » Thu May 30, 6:16 2019

The Andrews Sisters – Patty born 1918, Maxene born 1916 and LaVerne born 1911 – appeared in their first movie – Argentine Nights – in 1940 and by 1948 had performed in or have voiced for at least 16 films including the animated films Make Mine Music (1946) and Melody Time (1948). In 1941 they appeared in the film Buck Privates in which they sang Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy. See here (2 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8of3uhG1tCI. By the way “eight to the bar” refers to a fast boogie beat composed with eighth notes.

The soprano Natalie Dessay was born in 1965 in Lyon, France. She is one of my favorite singers and you could expect to hear of her more in this topic. When young Natalie wanted to be a ballet dancer and an actor, but then switched to singing. Perhaps she satisfies her acting ambition by being particularly expressional when performing, not only in her voice, but also in her movements. Here is she performing, in German with French subtitles, the Queen of the Night’s first Aria (O Zittre Nicht) five minutes, from Mozart’s “The Magic Flute:” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1ODbDKmSEc.

Jennifer Hudson was born in Chicago in 1981. She portrayed Effie White in the 2006 film version of Dreamgirls for which she won a Best Supporting Actress Oscar in 2007. In 2009 she won a Grammy for Best R&B Album and over the years have won or been the nominee for many other awards. Here is a 4 minutes video of her singing “Burden Down” as well as accompanying herself on the piano: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oPM3jxnoqhk. In addition to Dreamgirls Jennifer Hudson has been in a number of movies and television shows including “Hairspray Live!” During her youth she sang in gospel choirs. I’ve read that she had “no formal music training” (see here: https://myhero.com/J_Hudson_dnhs_US_2011_ul), but also that at age twenty she studied music at the Kennedy-King College in Chicago.

Janis Joplin was born in Port Arthur, East Texas, just across the state line from Louisiana in 1943. In 1968 she released the album “Cheap Thrills” with the group Big Brother and the Holding Company. From that album here is a recording of her singing Turtle Blues (4 ½ minutes), which she also wrote: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xiX1ZnyceNI. This is a good example of 12 bar blues. In this form of music there are passages of 12 bars (measures) with the first four being pretty much repeated in the second four. The last four are different with the lyrics being somewhat of an explanation. Example:

Well I’m a mean, mean woman 1st two
I don’t need no one man for no good 2nd two
Said Im a mean, mean woman 3rd two, repeated
I don’t need no one man, for no good 4th two, repeated
I just treats em like I wants to 5th two, explanation
I never treats em honey like I should 6th two, explanation

Tom,

To be continued
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Singers:

Post by Endymion » Thu Jun 6, 12:30 2019

This video shows Linda Ronstadt (born in 1946 in Tucson Arizona) singing “Poor Wandering One” as Mabel, from the 1983 movie of Gilbert and Sullivan’s 1876 operetta “The Pirates of Penzance” (4 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfjAJn4SC-w. She also performed this role in the 1980 to 1981 Broadway production of this operetta (787 performances). Over her life Linda Ronstadt received 12 Grammy Awards and recorded in a variety of styles including a number of Spanish Language albums.

“Dream a Little Dream of Me” was written in 1931 and has been covered by many singers, both female and male. Later that year Ozzie Nelson and his Orchestra recorded the song, the first to do so. This video (3 minutes) shows the German singer Lara Loft singing “Dream a Little Dream of Me:” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1QmVTSOzztc. Lara Loft was born in Bremen, Germany in 1988 and in addition to being a singer is a voice actress.

Whitney Houston was born in Newark NJ in 1963 and as a child sang in a church choir. Her mother, Cissy Houston, also was a singer. In 1985 Whitney released her first album apply called – “Whitney Houston” – and recorded a second album “Whitney” two years later. She starred as Rachel Marron in the 1992 movie “The Bodyguard” which was the first of her three movies. Here is the official music video of Whitney singing “I Will Always Love You” (4 ½ minutes) from that film, a song written by Dolly Parton: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JWTaaS7LdU.

A little known singer and pianist of the 1930s and 1940s, Hazel Scott was born in Trinidad in 1920 and came to the United States when her parents moved to Harlem in New York City. She studied classical piano, but also played and sang Jazz. Here she combines both in a video entitled Female Flying Fingers (2 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RINO48yHpQ8 and in order to keep with the title of this topic here is her playing piano and singing Foggy Day (3 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DTtX7QVaQWk. She was such a great musician I can’t resist linking to his other video, wherein she plays the musical piece “Black and White are Beautiful” on two grand pianos (1 ½ minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1HdnjTCMzpg.

Tom,

To be continued
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Singers:

Post by Endymion » Fri Jun 14, 7:11 2019

Hello again, earlier I wrote that Natalie Dessay (b. 1965 in Lyon, France) is one of my favorite singers and you could expect to hear of her more in this topic. Well here she is again this time singing “Glitter and be Gay,” as Cungegonde from Leonard Bernstein's 1956 operetta Candide (7 ½ minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bCg4r1Ile4w.

What I most like about singing is not the lyrics, but listening to the voice as a musical instrument. As a consequence I enjoy listening to songs in a language other than English, sometimes more than listening to an English version. I have already linked to a number of such songs and here are two more:

First is a video of Amika Shail singing Jeena Jeena (Live Live) in Hindi (5 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xAseRBtr174. Amika Shail was born in Howrah, West Bengal, India on November 12, 1992.

This link goes to a video entitled Chinese Love Song. The song is Beauiful Flower and the singer is Hanna Lilly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25uLhe4gl8Q

Leslie Uggams, was born in Harlem, NY on May 25, 1943. In addition to being a singer she was also an actress starring in many films and TV shows and also appeared as herself on many more, including TV Teen Club (1952 age 9) where she was a winning contestant, in 47 episodes (1961 to 1964) on Sing Along with Mitch and as Kizzy Reynolds in two episodes of the TV miniseries Roots. She had her own TV show The Leslie Uggams Show in 1969. Here is Leslie Uggams sing “A Lover’s Concerto” (2 ½ minutes):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o1RSY3bVNPQ. The music to his song is from the “Minuet in G” (before 1726) originally thought to have been composed by Johann Sebastian Bach, but now attributed to Christian Petzold.

Tom,

To be continued, kindy let me know if any of the links do not work.
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Endymion

Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 0:03 2017
Contact:

Re: Female Singers:

Post by Endymion » Fri Jun 21, 6:35 2019

Memphis Minnie, birth name Lizzie Douglas, was born across the Mississippi River from New Orleans in the community of Algiers in 1897. She was a street singer, worked for a circus and anticipated much of the later Rock ‘n’ Roll musicians by playing the guitar, as well as the banjo. Here she is singing her song Bubble Bee (1930, 3 ½ minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_qLUxdbkv1Y.

Memphis Minnie’s wrote the lyrics to “When the Levee Breaks” (1929), with Kansas Joe McCoy composing the music. The words were inspired by the 1927 flood on the Mississippi. Kansas Joe sang on the song’s first recording, while Led Zeppelin covered it in 1971. However to fit with this topic here is a cover by Zepparella an all female Led Zeppelin tribute band (7 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xH-_9cwdLug. The members of Zepparella are Anna Kristina (Vocals), Gretchen Menn (Gutar), Nila Minnerok (Bass) and Clementine (Drums). Both Bubble Bee and When the Levee Breaks are written in the 12 bar blues form.

Born in Alabama in 1926, Willie Mae Thornton, also known as Big Mama Thornton sang and played the harmonica and the drums. As a teenager left home and worked cleaning a tavern. That job lead to her singing in addition to cleaning. At age 15 she started singing full time and eventually moved to Texas where she recorded for Peacock Records. She recorded “Hound Dog” by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, before anyone else did. The song shown here is “Ball ‘n’ Chain” (7 ½ minutes) which she also wrote and which she recorded in 1959: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWe4uq6WkK0. Later in life Willie Mae played at the Monterey Jazz Festival and toured Europe.

Josie Miles was born in Summerville, North Carolina, c. 1900. Here she is singing Mad Mama’s Blues, (1924, 4 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EmU9XYmD378. She first recorded in 1922 and performed in the shows Shuffle Along (1922) and Runnin’ Wild (1923).

A close contemporary of Josie Miles was Beulah “Sippie” Thomas born in Houston, Texas in 1898. She received her early musical experience performing in her father’s church – then went on to perform throughout Texas with two of her brothers. While still in her teens she went to New Orleans and later on to Chicago. Her album “Sippie” was nominated for a Grammy in 1983 and won a W.C. l Handy Award. Here is Sippie Thomas singing “I’m a Mighty Tight Woman” (1929, 5 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sYFUaGb4C1M,

Also born in Houston, but born in1906, was Victoria Spivey. She started her musical career by playing piano in a movie theatre in Dallas and then went on to perform in “gambling parlors, gay hangout and whorehouses in Galveston and Houston. See here: https://aaregistry.org/story/she-could- ... ia-spivey/. Here is a link to her singing “Black Snake Blues” (1926, 3 minutes): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLQI6qxgE3g. Victoria Spivey and Sippie Thomas were friends and recorded together in 1966.

Tom,

To be continued
See here for a topic on Women in history: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50838

See here for a topic on Female Singers: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=50851.

See here for a topic on Female Artists and the Nude: viewtopic.php?f=28&t=50860

Post Reply