Friday, April 11, 2008

Bass not for girls, say the girls?

image courtesy of Marissa Cap.

A bass guitar on the BBC news site? Oh yes, right here: Why don't girls play guitar?

Interesting that it is either a lefty bass (yeah!) or they have mirrored the picture (looks like the later, from the headstock - doh! Slaps forehead). Anyway, that niggle aside. The article talks about the influence of gender stereotypes on musical choice.

There is still a lot of "girls play flute, boys play guitar" about, and it needs to go.

Top instruments for the boys:
  1. Electric guitar - 81%
  2. Bass Guitar - 81%
  3. Tuba - 77%

Top instruments for the girls:
  1. Harp - 90%
  2. Flute - 89%
  3. Voice - 80%
On the good news front, I am surprised and happy to see bass right up there with the miniature squeaky guitar. On the bad news front, it is sad to see no guitar at all in the girls list.

The article says it is hard to step across the gender line, but easier for girls to play 'boys' instruments, than the other way around. I know a male bass player learning flute - wulf, your secret is out - and I know of infinitely more female bass players around now that I did a decade ago (ok, that is from zero to about a dozen now). So, hopefully, things are on the mend.

Let's break the stereotypes. Bass is for everyone, come and play!