When The Drummers Were Women?

When The Drummers Were Women

When the drummers were women is a book by layne redmond that explores the history of female drummers across different cultures and time periods. The book provides an in-depth understanding of the significant role played by women in drumming traditions worldwide, dispelling the widely held misconception that drumming has always been a male-dominated activity.

Through detailed research and compelling storytelling, redmond highlights the powerful and influential contributions of female drummers throughout history. This fascinating exploration of women’s drumming traditions sheds light on the often overlooked and erased female voices in the world of percussion.

From ancient goddess worship to contemporary music scenes, the book celebrates the resilience and creativity of women drummers and amplifies their invaluable contribution to rhythm and sound.

When The Drummers Were Women?

Credit: www.amazon.com

A Brief History Of Female Drummers

Discover the fascinating history of female drummers and their impact on the music scene. From ancient times to the present day, these women have shown their talent and passion for drumming, breaking barriers and challenging gender norms. Uncover their stories and the power of their beats.

Drumming is often considered a male-dominated field, but throughout history, there have been countless talented and influential female drummers who defied societal norms and made their mark on the music world. From ancient civilizations to the middle ages and the 20th century, women have been breaking barriers and showing that the drumming world is not exclusive to one gender.

Early Examples Of Female Drummers In Ancient Civilizations:

  • In ancient mesopotamia, women played an essential role in religious ceremonies and were known to play the frame drum as a way to communicate with the divine.
  • Egyptian hieroglyphics depict women playing drums during both religious rituals and entertainment events.
  • Archaeologists have discovered evidence of female drummers in ancient china, where they played drums made from animal skins.

Women’S Role In Drumming During The Middle Ages:

  • The middle ages brought about a significant shift in societal roles, and women were expected to conform to traditional gender roles. However, there are still examples of women playing drums during this time.
  • In europe, women were allowed to play drums during certain festive occasions and royal ceremonies, including processions and weddings.
  • Nuns in medieval convents were often highly skilled at playing percussion instruments, including drums.

The Rise Of Female Drummers In The 20Th Century:

  • The 20th century saw a significant increase in the number of female drummers, thanks in part to advancements in technology and changing societal attitudes towards gender roles.
  • In the early 1900s, jazz bands began featuring female drummers, such as viola smith and baby dodds’s sister, baby dodds actually played in the “traditional jazz” style
  • In the 1960s and 1970s, rock and roll bands like the velvet underground and the runaways had trailblazing female drummers, breaking down barriers in the predominantly male-dominated genre.
  • Today, there are numerous talented female drummers across various genres, including rock, jazz, and pop music, continuing to push the boundaries of what is possible on the drum set.

Female drummers have always been present throughout history, even if their contributions have often been overshadowed or downplayed. As we continue to break down barriers and challenge gender stereotypes, women in drumming are making more significant strides than ever before.

Whether in ancient civilizations, the middle ages, or the modern era, female drummers have left an indelible mark on the world of music and continue to inspire future generations.

Influential Women Drummers Throughout History

Throughout history, women have made their mark in the world of drumming, challenging the notion that drums were only for men. These influential women drummers have broken barriers, leaving a lasting impact on music and inspiring future generations. Whether it was sheila e.

‘s dynamic percussion in prince’s band or maureen tucker’s influential drumming for the velvet underground, their talent and passion have changed the drumming landscape forever.

Breaking Barriers: Female Drummers Who Defied Stereotypes

  • Women have long been underrepresented in the world of drumming, facing societal stereotypes and barriers. However, there have been a number of influential female drummers throughout history who defied these norms and made a significant impact on the music industry.
  • Here are some notable female drummers who broke barriers and paved the way for future generations:
  • Viola smith: Viola smith, known as the “fastest girl drummer in the world,” gained recognition in the 1930s and 1940s. Her exceptional drumming skills challenged the notion that women couldn’t hold their own behind the drum kit.
  • Sandy west: As the drummer for the all-female rock band the runaways in the 1970s, sandy west showcased her powerful and energetic drumming style, proving that women could rock just as hard as their male counterparts.
  • Sheila e.: Sheila e., a percussionist and drummer, was a prominent figure in the 1980s music scene. Her incredible talent and versatility led to collaborations with renowned artists like prince, and she became an inspiration for aspiring female drummers.
  • Cindy blackman santana: Cindy blackman santana is a highly respected jazz drummer who has made significant contributions to the genre. Her technical prowess and unique style have earned her acclaim and respect in the music industry.
  • Meg white: As the drummer for the white stripes, meg white showcased a minimalist approach to drumming that perfectly complemented the band’s raw and stripped-down sound. Her impact on alternative rock cannot be understated.
  • Hannah welton: Hannah welton, the drummer for prince’s band 3rdeyegirl, gained recognition for her explosive drumming skills and electrifying stage presence. She continues to break barriers and inspire aspiring female musicians.

Women drummers throughout history have continuously shattered expectations, proving that talent knows no gender. Through their exceptional skills, they’ve challenged stereotypes and permanently marked their place in music history.

Pioneers Of Rock And Roll: Women Who Made Their Mark On The Music Industry

In the male-dominated world of rock and roll, several pioneering women have left an indelible mark on the music industry. These trailblazers defied expectations and helped shape the sound and culture of rock and roll. Here are a few notable examples:

  • Maureen “moe” tucker: As the drummer of the influential rock band the velvet underground, moe tucker’s simplistic yet powerful drumming style provided a driving force behind the band’s avant-garde sound. Her contributions continue to inspire generations of rock drummers.
  • Karen carpenter: Known for her incredible vocals, karen carpenter also played drums in the popular duo the carpenters. Her understated drumming skills added depth to the band’s melodic pop-rock sound.
  • Patty schemel: As the drummer for the grunge band hole, patty schemel showcased her raw and aggressive drumming style, helping to define the sound of the 1990s alternative rock scene.
  • Janet weiss: Janet weiss, known for her work with the bands sleater-kinney and quasi, is recognized as a powerhouse drummer in the indie rock world. Her energetic and precise drumming has earned her accolades and inspired countless musicians.

These women defied norms and broke down barriers, contributing to the evolution of rock and roll music. Through their talent and perseverance, they have left an indelible mark on the music industry for generations to come.

Contributions Of Women Drummers In Jazz, Funk, And Other Genres

Women have made significant contributions to various genres beyond rock and roll, including jazz, funk, and many others. These talented drummers have played a crucial role in shaping the rhythms and sounds in these genres. Here are a few notable female drummers and their contributions:

  • Terri lyne carrington: Terri lyne carrington is a highly esteemed jazz drummer, composer, and bandleader. Her innovative approach to rhythm and her dedication to musical excellence have made her one of the most influential female drummers in jazz.
  • Sheila e.: Sheila e.’s versatility extends beyond rock music. She has had a profound impact on funk and pop as well. Her infectious grooves and masterful drumming contribute to her status as a multi-genre music icon.
  • Cindy blackman santana: Cindy blackman santana’s jazz drumming prowess extends to a wide range of genres. Her ability to seamlessly blend styles and techniques has earned her respect and recognition in the jazz, rock, and fusion music scenes.
  • Evelyn glennie: Evelyn glennie, a scottish percussionist, is renowned for her exceptional musicianship and groundbreaking contributions to classical percussion. Her unique approach to playing has inspired countless percussionists worldwide.
  • Anika nilles: Anika nilles is a rising star known for her technical prowess in the world of drumming. She combines elements of fusion, progressive rock, and groove to create a distinctive and captivating style.

These women have made substantial contributions to their respective genres, cementing their place in music history. Their talent, dedication, and boundary-pushing approaches continue to inspire and empower female drummers around the world.

Challenges Faced By Female Drummers

Female drummers face unique challenges in a historically male-dominated industry. Despite their talent and passion, they often encounter limited opportunities, stereotyping, and discrimination. However, their impact is undeniable, as they resolutely break barriers and inspire future generations.

Gender Discrimination And Prejudice In The Music Industry

Despite their undeniable talent and contribution to the music scene, female drummers have faced numerous challenges and barriers in the male-dominated music industry. Here are some of the hurdles they have had to overcome:

  • Stereotypes: Female drummers often have to deal with stereotypical assumptions that drumming is a “masculine” instrument, leading to skepticism and limited opportunities.
  • Bias in hiring: Many female drummers experience gender discrimination when it comes to being hired as session drummers or joining bands. Biases against their abilities can sometimes result in their talents being overlooked.
  • Lack of representation: Historically, female drummers have been significantly underrepresented in the music industry, making it difficult for aspiring female musicians to envision themselves pursuing a career in drumming.
  • Limited role models: The scarcity of female drumming role models has made it challenging for aspiring female drummers to find inspiration and guidance, hindering their progress and overall visibility in the industry.

The Battle For Recognition And Equal Opportunities

Female drummers have not only faced gender discrimination, but they have also fought for recognition and equal opportunities. Here are some key aspects of their battle:

  • Breaking the glass ceiling: Female drummers have strived to break through the metaphorical glass ceiling that has hindered their progress in the music industry. By facing adversity head-on and proving their skills, they have begun to shatter the boundaries that once held them back.
  • Advocacy for inclusivity: Many female drummers and their allies actively advocate for inclusivity and equal representation in the music industry. They work towards creating an environment where talent is valued over gender or any other factors.
  • Highlighting achievements: Female drummers have continuously worked towards gaining recognition for their exceptional talents and accomplishments. Through various platforms, social media, and performances, they aim to highlight their skills and achievements to challenge prevailing biases and stereotypes.
  • Support networks and organizations: The emergence of support networks and organizations focused on promoting and empowering female drummers has been instrumental in advancing their cause. These groups provide mentorship, resources, and a sense of community for female drummers, enabling them to navigate the industry more successfully.

Female drummers continue to inspire and challenge the status quo within the music industry. Their perseverance, talent, and determination are paving the way for future generations of female musicians to break barriers and achieve their dreams.

Frequently Asked Questions On When The Drummers Were Women?

Were The Original Drummers Women?

Yes, some of the original drummers were women.

When The Drummers Were Women Eggs?

Drummers were not women eggs; instead, the question is likely asking about the historical presence of female drummers. Women have been drummers throughout history, contributing to music and cultural practices. They have played a significant role in various societies, from ancient civilizations to tribal communities.

These female drummers have showcased their talent, creativity, and rhythm on diverse types of drums, such as djembes, congas, taiko drums, and more. Their skills and contributions have enriched musical performances and helped bridge cultural gaps. Female drumming movements continue to thrive today, empowering women to express themselves through rhythm and beats.

So, drummers were not women eggs; they were skilled, passionate women who made their impact on music history.

How Long Have Women Been Drumming Throughout History?

Women have been playing drums throughout history since ancient times, spanning across different cultures and continents.

What Roles Did Women Drummers Play In Various Societies?

Women drummers held various roles in societies such as religious rituals, communication, storytelling, entertainment, and even in warfare.

How Did Cultural And Societal Changes Impact Women Drummers?

Cultural and societal changes over time have both suppressed and empowered women drummers, with their visibility and acceptance varying across different periods and regions.


Drumming has been a universal art form for centuries, and it’s important to acknowledge and celebrate the contributions of women throughout history. From ancient matriarchal societies to modern-day female percussionists, women have played a vital role in shaping the rhythm and heartbeat of music.

The stories and achievements of these women often go untold, but their impact cannot be overstated. The power and passion they bring to the drum kit breaks down barriers, defies societal norms, and inspires future generations of female musicians. It’s time to challenge the stereotype that drumming is a male-dominated pursuit and recognize the significant role women have played and continue to play in the world of percussion.

By highlighting their accomplishments, we can encourage more women to pick up the sticks, ensuring that drumming remains a diverse and inclusive art form for generations to come. Together, let’s rewrite the narrative and honor the legacy of the drummers who were women.

Similar Posts