Thursday, March 22, 2012

5 Most Influential Women In Rock : Featuring Patti Smith & Suzi Quatro

Patti Smith the unconventional and ambitious “Godmother of Punk”, is an American singer-songwriter, poet and visual artist. After seven years of working solo in New York, falling in love, busking and dealing with poverty, she formed The Patti Smith Group in 1974 alongside guitarist Lenny Kaye who has been a permanent member to the present day.

Their full band consisted of the two, along with Ivan Kral, Richard Sohl and Jay Dee Daugherty. Their first album, challenged the New York music scene by combining both punk rock music with poetry and spoken word. Patti Smith has written songs from simple, three-chord rock to free-form experimentalism and her creativity shows she can truly be classified as a musical artist. Her most widely-successful song is “Because The Night”, written collaboratively with Bruce Springsteen.

Patti Smith is also a huge idol for women as she has never relied on sex appeal for her success, actually having quite a plain and even androgynous look. She dressed simply like any male rock musician, not feeling that any alternative occurred to her. And why should it? She referred to herself as an artist, not a woman, and this no doubt eradicated any expectations for female performers; she showed people there was no limit when it came to expressing yourself.

Smith has inspired a number of modern musicians, such as Michael Stipe of R.E.M., Garbage and Sonic Youth. KT Tunstall supposedly dedicated her song, “Suddenly I See” to Patti Smith and if the lyrics “Suddenly I see, This is what I wanna be” aren’t obvious enough to point out Smith’s influence, I don’t know what is.

Dressed from head to toe in a leather playsuit and wearing one of the heaviest bass guitar models is a common look for Suzi Quatro, one of the greatest glam-rock, bubblegum pop artists out there. Bubblegum pop may sound a little unfamiliar, but typically refers to a music genre which ran between 1967 and 1972, and was thought to have influenced punk music.
Quatro has been playing music since she was fifteen years old, playing bass guitar for the all-female garage band, Pleasure Seekers, which she formed with her sisters, Patti, Arlene and Nancy.

In 1971, Suzi Quatro had been discovered by British record producer, Mickie Most, and had moved to the UK where she began her solo career. Although she had not been particularly successful in her native United States, Quatro received huge recognition for her early singles, “Can the Can”, “48 Crash” and “Devil Gate Drive” throughout Europe and in Australia.

The release of “If You Can’t Give Me Love” made her popular in the United Kingdom in 1978 and the following “Stumblin’ In” finally reached the US charts. By the time she was thirty years old, Suzi Quatro had released her Greatest Hits album and had become a huge influence for female artists, specifically Joan Jett and The Runaways, as well as inspiring the Riot Grrrl scene of the 90s.

No comments:

Post a Comment