International Women’s Day: Today’s female jazz and improv musicians

So you can’t name a handful female bass players from Germany – are you kidding? Or you can’t name female piano players from over 15 different countries – seriously?
Here’s a list of over 500 women in jazz and improvised music who are performing currently.
Background
In 2015 I published a list with over 200 albums by women in jazz. This was a reaction to a radio broadcast that alleged that their music selection was solely based on artistic quality, distinction and how up to date the bands are.

But the only woman mentioned in this show, was in a song title. Feedback to my list at that time, ranged from ,Yeah, give it to them patriarchs!’ (a female musician), to ,She made this list because she has a heart for minorities’ (Martin Laurentius). After making this first list of albums I realized that I should actually be researching female jazz and improv musicians who are on the scene; because albums are one thing, but live performance is more or less the foundation of the art.
By the way, I don’t mean to leave out female jazz and improv music vocalists. This would be its own category in the same genre and would be beyond my scope.

You’ll find even more female artists in improv and sonic art at:
https://manymanywomen.com/

Challenge your bias against women in jazz and improv music with the wonderful lectures at:
http://www.europejazzbalance.net/

An exemplary network for female musicians in jazz and improv music in Sweden
http://www.impra.se/english/

Not to forget about the admirable female:pressure, an international network of female, transgender and non-binary artists in the fields of electronic music and digital arts
http://www.femalepressure.net/

If you make it to scroll down, you’ll find some advice of how to actually find women on the jazz and improv music scene.

Photo:  Olga Nosova – Els Vandeweyer and Rieko Okuda performing at Ausland Berlin, March 3rd

 

accordion
Marié Abe US
Simone Beer AT
Ashlae Blume US
Amy Denio CAN
Heidelinde Gratzl AT
Franziska Hatz AT
Yuko Ikoma JP
Barbara Klaus-Cosca DE
Lisa Långbacka SE
Rosie Ledet US
Shoko Nagai US
Anne Niepold BE
Andrea Parkins US
Cathrin Pfeifer DE
Giuliana Soscia IT
Karen Street GB
Inês Vaz PT

alto saxophone
Mindi Abair US
Olga Amelchenko DE
Lakecia Benjamin US
Lisa Cat-Berro FR
Carolyn Breuer DE
Kati Brien DE
Kristina Brodersen DE
Yolanda Brown GB
Dee Byrne GB
Sharel Cassity US
Jenna Cave AUS
Caroline Davis US
Mia Dyberg DK
Silke Eberhard DE
Hilda Ekstedt SE
Viola Falb AT
Maria Faust EE/DK
Jean Fineberg US
Tia Fuller US
Camilla George GB
Scheila Gonzalez US
Charlotte Greve DE
Ilona Haberkamp DE
Anna Högberg SE
Sarah Marie Hughes US
Nicole Johänntgen CH
Anna Kaluza DE
Grace Kelly US
Cassie Kinoshi GB
Julie Kjaer DK
Debra Kreisberg US
Alexandra Lehmler DE
Marilyn Lerner US
Jessica Lurie US
Yunie Mojica US
Allison Neale GB
Angelika Niescier DE
Hailey Niswanger US
Victoria Pfeil AT
Theresia Philipp DE
Tineke Postma NL
Loretta Palmeiro AUS
Mette Rassmussen DK
Matana Roberts US
Anna-Lena Schnabel DE
Julia Schreitl AT
Amanda Sedgwick SE
Rebecca Sneddon GB
Edith Steyer DE
Karolina Strassmayer DE
Co Streiff CH
Alexa Tarantino US
Caroline Thon DE
Marike van Dijk NL
Luise Volkmann DE
Christina von Bülow DK
Anna Webber US
Astrid Wiesinger AT

banjo
Cynthia Sayer US
Zeaira Quinn US
Nathalie Renault FR

baritone saxophone
Claire Daly US
Alicia Gardener-Trejo GB
Paula Henderson US
Leigh Pilzer US
Cath Roberts GB
Almut Schlichting DE
Karen Sharp GB
Katharina Thomsen DE

double bass
Stina Andersdotter SE
Elsa Bergman SE
Silvia Bolognesi IT
Ellen Brekken NO
Rosa Brunello IT
Karine Chapdelaine CAN
Ruth Davies US
Kate Davis US
Nina de Heney SE
Brandi Disterheft US
Svenja Doeinck DE
Shayna Dulberger US
Inga Eichler GB
Cyndy Elliott US
Hendrika Entzian DE
Judith Ferstl AT
Maggie Hasspacher US
Maike Hilbig DE
Jennifer Hodge CAN
Karoline Höfler DE
Lisa Hoppe DE
Carlie Howell CAN
Lindy Huppertsberg DE
Ida Hvid DK
Anne Mette Iversen NO
Hannah James AUS
Mimi Jones US
Berit Jung DE
Athina Kontou DE
Kristin Korb DK
Jenny Kristoffersson SE
Eva Kruse DE
Stefanie Kunckler CH
Hélène Labarrière FR
Kirsten Lamb US
Saskia Lane US
Joëlle Léandre FR
Jennifer Leitham US
Helle Marstrand DK
Antonella Mazza IT
Corey McGillivary US
Mary Ann McSweeney US
Lisa Mezzacappa US
Adi Meyerson US
Federica Michisanti IT
Alma Neumann DE
Lina Neuner AT
Linda Oh US
Iris Ornig US
Endea Owens US
Nicki Parrott AUS
Alison Rayner GB
Gina Schwarz AT
Amy Shook US
Esperanza Spalding US
Katie Thiroux US
Kuriko Tsugawa US
Giulia Valle ES
Ellen Andrea Wang NO
Felisia Westberg SE
Beate Wiesinger AT
Marianne Windham GB
Jeong Lim Yang US

electric bass
Mai Agan SE/EST
Anne Marte Eggen NO
Kinga Głyk PL
Amanda Ruzza BRA/US

bassoon
Claire de Brunner US
Dana Jessen US
Maria Gstättner AT

cello
Emma Augustsson SE
Julia Bilat DE
Leila Bordreuil US
Melissa Coleman AT
Akua Dixon US
Elisabeth Fügemann DE
Clementine Gasser AT
Helen Gillet US
Marika Hughes US
Rina Kaçinari AT
Valerie Kuehne US
Anna Lang AT
Okkyung Lee US
Janel Leppin US
Kelsey Lu US
Hannah Marshall GB
Leyla McCalla US
Eleanor Norton US
Susanne Paul DE
Tomeka Reid US
Shirley Smart GB
Asja Valcic HR/AT
Céline-Giulia Voser CH
Beate Wolff DE
Theresa Wong US
Nioka Workman US

clarinet
Anat Cohen US
Rachel Condry US
Beth Custer US

Isabelle Duithoit FR
Aviva Endean AUS
Susanna Gartmayer AT
Lisa Grotherus SE
Doreen Ketchens US
Kathryn Ladano CAN
Halley Shoenberg US
Rebecca Trescher DE

drums
Martina Almgren SE
Ana Barreiro US
Romarna Campbell GB
Terri Lyne Carrington US
Tiffany Chang US
Sylvia Cuenca US
Billie Davies US
Lisbeth Diers DK
Michele Drees GB
Emeli Ek SE
Katharina Ernst AT
Lizy Exell GB
Kate Gentile US
Nikki Glaspie US
Imogen Gleichauf DE
Bèatrice Graf CH
Carola Grey DE
Benita Haastrup DK
Susie Ibarra US
Camille Gainer Jones US
Kasia Kadlubowska DE percussion
Eva Klesse DE
Birgit Løkke DK percussion
Emma Lönnestål SE
Anna Lund SE
Anaïs Maviel US percussion
Sherrie Maricle US
Lucia Martinez ES
Marilyn Mazur DK
Allison Miller US
Ikue Mori US
Cornelia Nilsson SE
Olga Nosova DE
Lada Obradovic CH
Ingrid Oberkanins AT percussion
Michala Østergaard-Nielsen DK
Anne Paceo FR
Lucianna Padmore US
Dorota Piotrowska PL
Tina Raymond US
Laura Robles DE percussion
Cecilia Sanchietti IT
Cindy Blackman Santana US
Judith Schwarz AT
Elena Shams DE
Zaneta Sykes US percussion
Kimberly Thompson US
Shirazette Tinnin US
Mareike Wiening US
Ebba Wigren SE

flute
Sarah Bernstein US
Jamie Baum US
Andrea Brachfeld US
Anne Drummond US
Henriette H. Eilertsen SE
Yana Hristova US
Gina Izzo US
Zofka Kasparova CZ/SE
Rebecca Kleinmann US
Jan Leder US
Nicole Mitchell US
Sue Miller GB
Elena Ayodele Pinderhughes US
Cheryl Pyle US
Agnès Rakovec FR
Gia Saulnier US
Angelika Sheridan DE
Gina Sobel US
Jessica Valiente US
Sabine Vogel DE
Ute Wassermann DE
Elise Wood US
Stephanie Wagner DE
Bernadette Zeilinger AT

guitar
Susan Alcorn US pedal steel guitar
Charlotta Andersson SE
Maria Anderson US
Lili Añel US
Sheryl Bailey US
Albanie Falletta US
Silke Fell DE
Zelia Fonseca BR
Mimi Fox US
Maria Gadú BR
Rosa Gebhards DE
Vicki Genfan US
Jane Getter US
Sarah Gillespie GB
Ulla Haesen DE
Mary Halvorson US
Sandra Hempel DE
Heidi Heidelberg GB
Naia Izumi US
Tina Jäckel DE
Valerie June US
Barbara Jungfer DE
Ali Kafka US
Lisa Liu US
Heather Leigh US pedal steel guitar
Ava Mendoza US
Leni Stern US
Camila Meza US
Hedvig Mollestad NO
Steffi Narr DE
Ana Popovic US
Toshi Reagon US
Julia Reidy AUS/DE
Susanna Risberg SE
Portia Rolle US
Monika Roscher DE
Nάnα Simopoulos US
Becca Stevens US
Shirley Tetteh GB
Corrie van Binsbergen NL
Rebekka Van Bockstal BE
Johanna Weckesser DE
Susan Weinert DE

hammond organ
Gayle Serdan US
Barbara Dennerlein DE
Monica Dominique SE

harp
Stina Hellberg Agback SE
Julie Campiche CH
Maeve Gilchrist US
Tara Minton AUS
Isabelle Olivier FR
Zeena Parkins US
Kathrin Pechlof D
Laura Perrudin FR
Riza Printup US
Monika Stadler AT
Brandee Younger US

piano
Gerri Allen US
Fabienne Ambühl CH
Maria Chiara Argirò GB
Esther Bächlin CH
Maria Baptist DE
Kristina Barta CZ
Eve Beuvens BE
Carla Bley US
Johanna Borchert DE
Amy K Bormet US
Courtney Bryan US
Sarah Cahill US
Carolina Calvache CO/US
Tania Chen US
Soo Cho KR/NL
Eliane Correa GB
Sylvie Courvoisier CH
Kris Davis US
Delphine Deau FR
Christiane Dehmer DE
Nicki Denner US
Aga Derlak PL
Cettina Donato IT
Kaja Draksler SI
Kait Dunton US
Eliane Elias US
Janice Friedman US
Catrine Frølund DK
Satoko Fujii DE
Tania Giannouli GR
Fanny Gunnarsson SE
Sunna Gunnlaugs IS
Ulrike Haage DE
Clara Haberkamp DE
Elisabeth Harnik AT
Rema Hasumi US
Miho Hazama US
Anke Helfrich DE
Monika Herzig US
Hiromi JP
Julia Hülsmann DE
Nikki Iles GB
Teresa Indebetou SE
Kazzrie Jaxen US
Julia Kadel DE
Yoshiko Kishino JP
Katharina Klement AT
Olga Konkova RUS
Lora Kostina DE
Liz Kosack US/DE keyboards
Diana Krall CAN
Marie Krüttli CH
Carol Liebowitz US
Regina Litvinova DE
Manon-Liu Winter AT
Nathalie Loriers BE
Sarah McKenzie AUS
Myra Melford US
Sharon Minemoto CAN
Adriane Muttenthaler AT
Shoko Nagai US
Tania Naranjo SE
Rebecca Nash GB
Maja Nydegger CH
Erika Oba US
Caili O’Doherty US
Rieko Okuda DE
Marialy Pacheco CU/D
Roberta Piket US
Simona Premazzi US
Agita Rando DE
Eve Risser FR
Zoe Rahman GB
Antje Rößeler DE
Naoko Sakata SE
Angelica Sanchez US
Marta Sánchez US
Julie Sassoon DE
Leonieke Scheuble US
Marie Louise Schmidt DK
Ingrid Schmoliner AT
Maria Schneider US
Julia Siedl AT
Fee Stracke DE
Helen Sung US
Kathleen Tagg US
Aki Takase DE
Ayumi Tanaka NO
Francesca Tandoi IT
Sarah Tandy GB
Marianne Trudel CAN
Lisa Ullén SE
Britta Virves EST
Luzia von Wyl CH
Katharina Weber CH
Anna Wohlfarth DE
Chihiro Yamanaka JP
Miki Yamanaka US
Megumi Yonezawa US
Pamela York US

soprano saxophone
Karolina Almgren SE
Lotte Anker DK
Jane Ira Bloom US
Jane Bunnett CAN
Sarah Elgeti DK
Lisa Hofmaninger AT
Aurora Nealand US
Lee Odom US
Kate Olson US
Su Terry US

tenor saxophone
Melissa Aldana US
Sophie Alour FR
Chelsea Baratz US
Pernille Bévort DK
Trish Clowes GB
Christine Corvisier FR
Christina Dahl DK
Signe Dahlgreen SE
Josephine Davies GB
Birgitta Flick DE
Tori Freestone GB
Nubya Garcia GB
Virginia Genta IT
Alexandra Grimal FR
Jasmin Gundermann DE
Elena Kapeleris CAN
Ida Karlsson SE
Kasey Knudsen US
Elin Larsson SE
Ingrid Laubrock US
Stephanie Lottermoser DE
Lisen Rylander Löve SE
Virginia Mayhew US
Fabia Mantwill DE
Rachel Musson GB
Alisha Pattillo US
Hanna Paulsberg NO
Gilda Razani D
Ada Rovatti IT/US
Kari Sjöstrand SE
Katrine Suwalski DK
Camille Thurman US
Anna Tsombanis DE
Malin Wättring SE
Annelise Zamula US

trombone
Shannon Barnett AUS/DE
Lisa Bodelius SE
Sarah Gail Brand GB
Hailey Brinnel US
Natalie Cressman US
Viola Engelbrecht DE
Melissa Gardiner US
Eva Garín ES
Shannon Gunn US
Karin Hammar SE
Mimmi Hammar SE
Antonia Hausmann DE
Haruka Kikuchi US
Anke Lucks DE
Reut Regev US/ISR
Julia Rüffert CH
Naomi Siegel US
Lisa Stick DE
Maria Trautmann DE
Rosie Turton GB
Kirsten Warfield US
Lis Wessberg DK

trumpet
Yazz Ahmed GB
Liz Allbee US/DE
Kate Amrine US
Anja Bernhard DE
Arielle Besson FR
Samantha Boshnack US
Jaimie Branch US
Cindy Bradley US
Lily Carassik GB
Kiku Collins US
Jenavieve Cook US
Sabine Ercklentz DE
Pamela Fleming US
Vicky Flint GB
Elisabeth Geyer AUS
Nadia Hamouchi SE
Rebecca Hennessy CAN
Hilde Marie Holsen NO
Hikari Ichihara JP
Georgina Jackson GB
Ingrid Jensen CAN
Laura Jurd GB
Anne King US
Ellen Kirkwood AUS
Saskia Laroo NL
Sheila Maurice-Grey GB
Carol Morgan US
Annette Neuffer DE
Hildegunn Øiseth NO
Michaela Rabitsch AT
Alicia Rau US
Stephanie Richards US
Sue Richardson GB
Susana Santos Silva PT
Bria Skonberg CAN
Ann-Sofi Söderqvist SE
Angeleisha Rodgers US
Aya Takazawa JP
Rachel Therrien US
Dawn Weber US
Sarah Wilson US

vibraphone
Lolly Allen US

Photo: Olga Nosova. Els Vandeweyer at Ausland Berlin

Els Vandeweyer BE/DE
Izabella Effenberg PL
Patricia Franceschy US
Nikara Warren US
Susan Pascal US
Patricia Brennan US
Taiko Saito DE
Christina Manceor US
Jackie Walduck GB
Yuhan Su US

viola
Alva Anderson US
Elisa Arciniegas Pinilla FR
Leanne Darling US
Free Feral US
Marie-Theres Härtel AT
Tanya Kalmanovitch US
Joanna Mattrey US
Elina Nygren SE
Jessica Pavone US
Jelena Popržan AT

violin
Karolina Beimcik US/PL
Iva Bittová CZ/US
Johanna Burnheart GB
Regina Carter US
Sara Caswell US
Terese Lien Evenstad SE
Chiara Fasi US
Susie Hansen US
Kaethe Hostetter US
Irene Kepl AT
Carla Kihlstedt US
Elektra Kurtis US
Gwen Laster US
Zuzana Leharovà DE
Héloïse Lefebvre FR
Annabelle Lune US
Rachel Meirs US
Diane Monroe US
Maarja Nuut EST
Mary Oliver US
Tomoko Omura US
Laura Ortman US
Rachel Panitch US
Carolin Pook US
Maria Reich DE
Abigale Reisman US
Jenny Scheinman US
Laura Schuler CH
Fabiana Striffler DE
Mazz Swift US
Mia Zabelka AT

 

How to find women on the jazz and improv music scene

  1. Ask musicians if they know fellow female players.
  2. Browse through event calendars of venues that you frequent and those that you’ve only heard about.
  3. Ask organizers if they program with an eye on gender balance and if not, ask them why.
  4. Don’t only count on your favorite search engine and social media. If an algorithm doesn’t find a female instrumentalist, that doesn’t mean that there isn’t some female artist out there performing quite lively on stage.
  5. Think of other instruments than those you personally would prefer. You’ll find women on steel drums and sousaphones, maybe not as many as on piano and trumpet, but still exciting to listen to. The same goes for other countries and musical styles.
  6. Once found, have a look at the groups a woman is playing with. The chance to find other female musicians in her projects is fairly higher than if you’d just look at male groups.
  7. You’re not done with doing all that only once – do it several times a year. It could be a rewarding experience to follow the path of a woman in jazz and improv music and each time being surprised by her new endeavors.
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5 Antworten auf „International Women’s Day: Today’s female jazz and improv musicians“

  1. hello,

    this list is a very good start, but only a start i am afraid.
    i am a (male) improviser, and i have played just in the past year with many fantastic female improvisers who are not on it (magda mayas, angharad davies, tisha mukarji, andrea neumann, christine abdelnour, annette krebs, hanna hartman, to name only very few of them).
    maybe it would be good to make it editable? or to permit in some way to the reader to add or suggest names?

    again, the initiative is a very good (and needed) one.

    mazen

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