listening recommendation: Good Day by The Dresden Dolls
I read an article on Reverb.com this morning called "An Open Letter: The End of the Female Bassist" Which implores people to retire the term Female Bassist and instead use the gender neutral, just as good term "Bassist". The piece even opens saying it's "the best thing we can do for both genders, and for that matter, the transgendered". This makes me happy. It is great that more people are aware and considering trans folk as well, people worth considering. But the article also got me thinking about my identity as it pertains to music and gender.
I am a bass player, which we call a bassist. I am a lady, which falls under female. As a person who ultimately just wants to play bass (among other things) I'd rather my gender not get in the way of my bass playing, which is what the article is saying. I don't want to be a "good girl bassist," I just want to be a good bassist period.
That being said, I've been dealing with gender identity issues for a long time, and growing up, even without realizing it, I wanted to be the female bassist (I wanted to be D'arcy Wretsky of the Smashing Pumpkins to be specific). Now that I've come out and am starting to explore what it means to me to be a woman, I find that I need some of these qualifiers to the stuff that I do, if only to feel some amount of (admittedly superficial) gratification from them. Attaching my gender to the stuff I do is what I need. Maybe not always, but at least for now.
Except the term "Gamer Girl". I can leave my gender off of that.
TL;DR Reverb article calling for a stop to the term "Female Bassist". Having recently come out as a woman, I'm going to use it for a while longer.