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7 Visionary Women Who Paved The Way For Electronic Music
March 9, 2014 1:12 PM   Subscribe

7 Visionary Women Who Paved The Way For Electronic Music
posted by Blazecock Pileon (50 comments total) 49 users marked this as a favorite

 
Page looks sort of broke and has a comedy alt tag at the top left.
posted by GallonOfAlan at 1:25 PM on March 9


Yeah, it looks like something's wrong with the page in Chrome and Firefox.
posted by clockzero at 1:32 PM on March 9


It's not working in SeaMonkey either.
posted by Too-Ticky at 1:33 PM on March 9


There had been a page there with YT links, etc. Delia Derbyshire was the first "honoree." I changed tabs, went back and it was broken. Weird.
posted by the sobsister at 1:36 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


Looking at the page source reveals:
Fatal error:  Allowed memory size of 33554432 bytes exhausted (tried to allocate 1134648 bytes) in
 /home/champion/public_html/modules/mod_minifrontpage/image.php on line 56
So there is a server-side issue, not badly formatted HTML/CSS that isn't rendering properly in the browser.
posted by James Scott-Brown at 1:36 PM on March 9


CaseyB: They probably want to bookmark it to view it later from a different computer.
posted by Too-Ticky at 1:37 PM on March 9


If the page were to load properly, it would probably list Lucinda Untz, Bernice Tsss, Eulalia Wubwub, and Janice Drop.
posted by evidenceofabsence at 1:38 PM on March 9 [6 favorites]


This page is refusing to operate in Chrome on Android for me, but judging by the tags, Cosey Fanni Tutti has been left out. Not the first time she's been snubbed and it won't be the last. When asked to choose between the safe PG-13 sexuality of someone like Madonna and Cosey's raw talent (with unhinged sexuality present but not the main selling point), the world's consumers will prefer shit they can watch with their mothers time and again.
posted by item at 1:38 PM on March 9 [5 favorites]


Site is getting hugged to death.
posted by idiopath at 1:38 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


Going to http://championupnorth.com/music/features/ seems to work.
posted by CaseyB at 1:41 PM on March 9 [2 favorites]


If the page were to load properly, it would probably list Lucinda Untz, Bernice Tsss, Eulalia Wubwub, and Janice Drop.

The seven people listed are:

1. Delia Derbyshire
2. Suzanne Ciani
3. Daphne Oram
4. Eliane Radigue
5. Clara Rockmore
6. Pauline Oliveros
7. Laurie Anderson
posted by dng at 1:41 PM on March 9 [5 favorites]


It's working fine for me currently.
posted by mathowie at 1:41 PM on March 9


Derbyshire best be on the list or heads will roll.

*click*

All right, carry on then.
posted by mediocre at 1:47 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


Working for me. Here are the clips given in the article for each person:
1. Delia Derbyshire
2. Suzanne Ciani
3. Daphne Oram
4. Eliane Radigue
5. Clara Rockmore
6. Pauline Oliveros
7. Laurie Anderson

I'm surprised Wendy Carlos was omitted. The comments on the original article also suggest Bebe Baron, Laurie Spiegel, and Else Marie Pade.
posted by knuckle tattoos at 1:48 PM on March 9 [11 favorites]


Still doesn't work for me. Here's a Google Cache link.
posted by grouse at 1:49 PM on March 9


Page is working for me now. And, by "working" I mean "yes, that damned moving social media menu in the left column is a huge pain in the ass."

The stories of the women are pretty interesting, too.
posted by Thorzdad at 1:55 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


Works fine for me, in Chrome.

The list is from the the Wombeatz blog, which posted one entry per day leading up to the International Women's Day, and is now posting entries about women in radio.
posted by effbot at 1:56 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


No Laurie Spiegel?!
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 1:57 PM on March 9 [3 favorites]


Love seeing eliane radigue mentioned somewhere.
posted by milarepa at 2:11 PM on March 9


Total fatality(of the mortal kombat variety) in the comments pointing out that they completely skipped Wendy Carlos.

I bet there's already a couple outragefilter-formatted but completely justified blog posts getting shared around right now crapping on this for that, and by extension being transphobic or any number of other things.

I think it's especially egregious too, since that's seriously the first person i thought of when i saw the title. It's like writing a "top ten most influential rock musicians" list and not including John Lennon or something.
posted by emptythought at 2:36 PM on March 9 [3 favorites]


You guys to realize that it says "7", not "top 7" or "only 7", right? Maybe leave the tumblr-style "these women are not as worthy as this woman, so fuck you for promoting women in music" pseudo-outrage stuff for tumblr?
posted by effbot at 3:13 PM on March 9 [17 favorites]


I think it's especially egregious too, since that's seriously the first person i thought of when i saw the title. It's like writing a "top ten most influential rock musicians" list and not including John Lennon or something.

If it was my list of favorites Lennon would not be on it. Everyone has an opinion, and this list did not claim to be definitive.
posted by bongo_x at 3:18 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


You guys to realize that it says "7", not "top 7" or "only 7", right? Maybe leave the tumblr-style "these women are not as worthy as this woman, so fuck you for promoting women in music" pseudo-outrage stuff for tumblr?

THERE CAN BE ONLY 7
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 3:20 PM on March 9 [7 favorites]


Oliveros' creative contributions are wonderful. It should also be noted that as a professor, she's been mentoring new talented female electronic musicians for many years.

I'd list some of them too, but it'd be friendslinking. Some of her students were my housemates a few years back, they're super talented and had great things to say about Pauline.
posted by MeanwhileBackAtTheRanch at 3:24 PM on March 9 [2 favorites]


You guys to realize that it says "7", not "top 7" or "only 7", right? Maybe leave the tumblr-style "these women are not as worthy as this woman, so fuck you for promoting women in music" pseudo-outrage stuff for tumblr?

There's really no way to ever have a comprehensive list of this type. Nor did it seem like anyone was saying the women listed are "not worthy." These are all excellent choices. The comments in this thread are a good place to point out some more.
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 3:28 PM on March 9 [2 favorites]


> I'd list some of them too, but it'd be friendslinking.

As long as it's not in an fpp, you're not personally profiting from it, and with caveats noted, it's usually OK.

And speaking for me, I'm always interested in knowing about more good music. So share!
posted by ardgedee at 4:21 PM on March 9


Without Wendy Carlos, it's not like leaving Lennon out of the top ten rock musicians, it's like leaving out Elvis. Even for a clickbaity post deliberately made to generate outrage (and I'm not saying that that was the motivation here), that's ludicrous.
posted by Halloween Jack at 5:20 PM on March 9 [4 favorites]


Hmmm..No Wendy Carlos OR Bebe Baron. Must be a computer glitch.
posted by TDavis at 5:49 PM on March 9 [3 favorites]


I remember being thrilled when I first heard that Delia Derbyshire - a woman! - created the Dr Who theme tune. And literally created it, invented the sounds. Thanks for the post.
posted by billiebee at 5:57 PM on March 9 [2 favorites]


Maybe leave the tumblr-style "these women are not as worthy as this woman, so fuck you for promoting women in music" pseudo-outrage stuff for tumblr?

That's kinda putting turds in my, and others mouths there. No one is saying that stuff. I didn't say anything about the women on there not being relevant for this type of list or anything like that you're implying here.

I just thought it was an odd omission, and one that i could reasonably see some people being upset by. I didn't say it was a crap list or take it to some weird hyperbolic nth degree.

To get back on track though... Another avenue that's somewhat unsung if you're interested in women+early electronic music would be to start mining the history of Italo Disco. Italo is not only the blatant precursor to a lot of todays dancey pop tracks(and funky electro/house stuff with very 80s inspired sounds) being one of the very oldest genres to have tracks performed 100% on synths/drum machines, but also had a number of women composing hit tracks within the genre. If you mine into the history of a lot of songs they may not be written by who performed them or performed the vocals, but quite a few are written by other women who contributed studio time/production or were collaborators with the releasing artist.

...And i really only know this because one of my friends is obsessed with italo, heh. Her and another friend from high school introduced me.
posted by emptythought at 6:57 PM on March 9 [2 favorites]


Why Wendy Carlos:

here she writes about the passing of Bob Moog, and her 41-year professional relationship with Moog

To put it politely, she is a giant among the pioneering synthesists and is routinely derided and overlooked due to her status, yet her influence and importance is immense. She shaped everything that came after her.
posted by Annika Cicada at 10:07 PM on March 9 [5 favorites]


effbot: "Maybe leave the tumblr-style "these women are not as worthy as this woman, so fuck you for promoting women in music" pseudo-outrage stuff for tumblr?"

Maybe leave the "when people care about a thing I personally do not think is important, that is TUMBLR TUMBLR OUTRAGE DOGWHISTLE TUMBLR TUMBLR" stuff for... well, nowhere, just let people express the sort of criticism of the content of the link that passes muster in pretty much every other Mefi thread?
posted by emmtee at 11:06 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


Maybe everyone settle down, act like adults, and talk about women in electronic music here? This looks like the origin of the list, with an arbitrary number of seven because they did one a day for a week (scroll down, list begins at 01 March 2012). Here's another list of 10 Female Electronic Music Pioneers You Should Know that makes some different choices. Feel free to discuss women in electronic music, on or off these lists.
posted by taz at 11:15 PM on March 9 [6 favorites]


From the lists that taz gave, I submit Mary Anne Hobbs as a resident ruler of sound.
posted by Annika Cicada at 11:24 PM on March 9 [1 favorite]


Mary Anne Hobbs is on their Women in Radio (unfinished?) series. Unfortunately, they don't have a way of listing just the Pioneer Women in Electronic Music week of entries, but you'll see them if you scroll down.
posted by taz at 11:42 PM on March 9


...just let people express the sort of criticism of the content of the link that passes muster in pretty much every other Mefi thread?

So of the women listed, who do you feel should be dropped to make room for Wendy Carlos? Be specific as to why you feel she shouldn't make the cut. You don't get to cop out by expanding the list- you have seven. Choose.
posted by happyroach at 12:53 AM on March 10


[Hey, maybe you didn't mean it this way, happyroach, but discussing back and forth, totally fine; brusque imperative demands, not so much. It's a conversation.]
posted by taz at 2:08 AM on March 10 [2 favorites]


BTW, people who are interested in the topic should also check out this recent, rather wonderful post by Mezentian: Women And Their Machine.
posted by taz at 3:16 AM on March 10


Thanks taz, I totally missed that post first time around and it's awesome!
posted by billiebee at 3:33 AM on March 10


Great stuff. I've met Pauline Oliveros and hung out more extensively with Laurie Anderson. Both are fantastic people as well as awe-inspiring artists. Both were hugely influential on my own music back in the 80s when I was still composing.

The art music world, at least in the academy, remains shockingly, anachronistically, misogynist. The battle is far from won. I speak from inside the belly of the beast.

If only I could have known Ms. Derbyshire. I admit to a serious posthumous crush, if that's even a thing.
posted by spitbull at 5:20 AM on March 10 [2 favorites]


As an electronic music listener with only a casual knowledge of the history of the genre, I'm quite interested in all the extra names and information on the list. I've liked the music of the artists I knew from the list, but I'm always happy to be introduced to musicians--particularly women who may not get the publicity their male counterparts get--whose music I would enjoy.
posted by immlass at 8:21 AM on March 10


This is very cool. Thanks for posting.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:19 AM on March 10


I was also expecting Wendy Carlos on the list, but I'm guessing she was excluded because all her ground-breaking stuff was recorded by Walter Carlos. She became Wendy to the public afterwards.
posted by Rash at 12:03 PM on March 10


Wendy always will be a woman, in her eyes and in mine.
posted by DonnyMac at 2:55 PM on March 10 [1 favorite]


She was dismissive of smaller systems like the EMS Putney and the Minimoog as "toys" and "cash-ins"

It's so weird seeing a woman being grognardy.
posted by Sebmojo at 6:06 PM on March 10


nthing Wendy Carlos. She was Wendy all along, whether physically or otherwise.
posted by ostranenie at 9:49 PM on March 10


I was also expecting Wendy Carlos on the list...

Definitely a glaring omission, and no need to bump any of the other pioneers: they could have easily turned it up to 11.
posted by Pudhoho at 12:12 AM on March 11


So yes, we did miss out a few important women in our first list, but as it's been said before, it wasn't a top/best list, just some of the women in electronic music who we thought were inspirational.

We have now compiled part two and yes it includes Wendy Carlos! Enjoy :)

7-visionary-women-who-paved-the-way-for-electronic-music-part-2
posted by championupnorth at 12:24 PM on March 15 [8 favorites]


championupnorth: Jessica Rylan is awesome, and a very nice person. Also her name is misspelled as "Ryan" in at least one place.
posted by idiopath at 12:51 PM on March 15


We have now compiled part two and yes it includes Wendy Carlos! Enjoy :)

championupnorth: Nice list! Both pt 1 and pt 2 - excellent stuff.
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 5:45 PM on March 15 [1 favorite]


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