Hey Ladies: Being A Woman Musician Today

Overheard: On Being A Woman In Metal

Gazelle Amber Valentine, singer and guitarist for metal duo Jucifer, answers the question "Do you ever find it difficult being a woman in heavy music? What is one of the benefits and one of the downfalls?" in an interview published in Impose Magazine:

"If you're a singer, people will dismiss you out of hand because they don't like the female voice. Even when these same people are fans of high-voiced male singers that sound like women.
99% of the time you deal with male agents, male promoters, male venue managers, stage managers, and sound crew. When you walk in as a female and they know who you are, it's fine. Otherwise get ready to have them assume you're the merch girl.
On top of everything else you're supposed to pretend things are all good. That being female has no effect at all. If you don't keep up that pretense you'll probably get pegged as having some militant agenda or just being a bitch. (But here goes anyway.) Besides: you know you're not actually inferior, so you want to go along as if things are fine. You just wanna do your thing and have it be what it is. For hours, even days at a time this works. You can live life without being reminded that your femaleness is a problem. Then somebody beats you over the head with it again."

— Read the rest of the interview, and Valentine's response to NPR Music's Hey Ladies questionnaire.

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