An Investigation into the Vocal Trends and Characteristics of Female Country Singers

Essay by babeinha April 2003

download word file, 13 pages 3.0

Country music, for the most part, was mainly dominated by male artists for the first thirty years. Country music was viewed as being masculine, and too much of a 'butch' western theme for women to sing. In 1935 though, a woman from Arkansas changed those views. A singer and fiddler named Patsy Montana broke into the country music scene with a song named, 'I want to be a Cowboy's Sweetheart'. This record became the first female, million record sale. Her yodelling and western themes became well known across the country music world. Although Patsy Montana never became as big of a star as many of her male counterparts of the time, she became a role model for the women of country music that was to come.

The Carter Family, who were making their mark in country music in the early 1940's, also featured the voice of a female/s. The lead singers wife Sara and her sister Maybelle did backing vocals and harmonies.

A church style group, whose theme was 'God, Mom and Hope', exemplifies their certain Christian style of music. Their image of family and stability are now known as 'twangy' country music styles. The Carter Family held a great impact on the Country Music scene in the 1940's.

Around 1952, women finally hit it big when Kitty Wells recorded 'It wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels'. This song became country music's first number one billboard hit. This song was an answer to the Hank Thompson hit, 'The West Side of Life', which was recorded a year earlier. Kitty was not typical of the female singers of this time, she dressed and acted as she pleased, like a cowgirl. Her lacy outfits and cowboy hat were well known around the country music scene. This rather quiet natured girl...