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Vanessa Silberman aka Diamonds Under Fire

How would you describe your music?

Rock

What is your role in your band? In the studio? In business or marketing decisions?

In Diamonds Under Fire I make all the decisions. In the studio I'm very hands on with arrangement, production & the whole vision. I take on the role of singing & playing most of the instruments but will also sometimes get a friend or session player to help out. For business & marketing I like to consult my manager, we bounce ideas off of each other which is great but ultimately I make the final decision.

Describe your gear.

Gibson & Epiphone guitars, Fender Deville combo amp, Boss overdrive & distortion pedals, Ernie Ball strings (Skinny top, heavy bottom), Dunlop guitar picks, & audix OM5 vocal mic.

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Do you think being a woman and a musician is different from being a man and a musician? If so, how? Was there a moment that made a difference clear to you?

I think in 2010 being a woman & musician compared to being a man & a musician is a lot easier than it used to be. I am so thankful for female musicians like The Runaways, The Go Gos, Patti Smith, Hole, L7, Pj Harvey, & Tegan & Sara to name a few who have helped pave the way & have opened so many doors for other female musicians like myself.

Do you see differences between generations of women musicians?

I don't really see many differences between generations of women musicians -- I think it's probably easier for female musicians presently as audiences are more accepting and supportive. There are also so many more female musicians now.

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Did anyone ever give you any valuable advice about making your way in the music industry? What advice would you give to a woman musician just starting out?

Navigating through the music industry can be daunting & a lot of it is trial & error. I was lucky & fortunate enough to have met my music manager early on & the honest advice she has given me about the business has been very valuable. Having people around you who don't sugar coat things & who support your creativity in the right way is important. Working with people who nurture your art but don't kiss your butt for you makes you a better artist. My advice to any female musicians & artists first starting out is to try & develop your own opinion/style/sound. Write as many songs as you can & tour. Don't follow trends, be yourself, respect yourself & let the music do most of the talking.

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Why did you choose to play the instrument you play?

I chose to sing so I could say how I feel & the guitar is great for accompanying those vocals.

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