When writing my essay on the representation of women in classic rock from the 60s to the 80s, I noticed a trend of increasing involvement and influence of women in rock music starting in the late 60s. More than singing and being album cover models. Representation really matters and without these amazing ladies, maybe girls in the future wouldn’t have considered that they could be rock stars too. Women were also writing songs and singing them as well. The late 60s had the rise of female singer-songwriters, but they really flourished in the 70s. 1975-1977 were big years for women in rock because bands like Fleetwood Mac, Heart, and The Runaways released albums. Many people remember the Stevie Nicks/Lindsay Buckingham/Mick Fleetwood/Christine McVie/John McVie lineup the best of any incarnation of Fleetwood Mac. Heart’s songs were the baby of Ann and Nancy Wilson, who were responsible for pretty much all of the songwriting in their 70s albums: Dreamboat Annie, Magazine, Little Queen, and Dog and Butterfly. The Runaways was what launched the careers and brought attention to Joan Jett and Lita Ford. Progressive rock, while predominantly male had a few women involved: Sonja Kristina of Curved Air, Inga Rumpf of Frumpy, Kate Bush, and Annie Haslam of Renaissance. In punk, X-Ray Spex and Siouxie and the Banshees were fronted by Poly Styrene and Siouxie Sioux, respectively. Patti Smith was also important in the punk scene. In ska, Pauline Black was in The Selecter and The Bodysnatchers were an all girl group. Women weren’t just singers in rock bands, Tina Weymouth played bass in the Talking Heads. Suzi Quatro played bass as well as singing. Karen Carpenter was also a drummer. Poison Ivy played guitar for The Cramps. Christine McVie played keyboards for Fleetwood Mac.
Like the last post, I will post my top 20 moments of women rocking out. However, this time it’s the 70s turn to dazzle and amaze. These are in no particular order: