Did you know that March is International Women’s month? In 1977, the United Nations declared March 8 International Women’s Day, a day for women’s rights and world peace. This year’s theme is “A promise is a promise: Time for action to end violence against women.” One way to support women is through their music.
Women have long been an important part of the music scene. Swedish opera singer Jenny Lind, who toured with P.T. Barnum in 1850, was arguably America’s first singing superstar, performing more than 93 concerts and earning more than $350,000 – today’s equivalent of more than $10 million.
The first female Grammy winner was Ella Fitzgerald – who won in 1959, 1960, and 1961! Ella won for Best Female Pop artist, but we file her sultry swing under Jazz. Check out Ella’s albums Pure Ella, Ella Sings the Cole Porter Songbook, and The Ella Fitzgerald Gold Collection.
The first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, however, was Aretha Franklin, in 1987. Cheshire Public Library has several of Aretha’s albums, including The Great American Songbook, Jewels in the Crown, and the Very Best of Aretha Franklin.
The top-selling female singer of all time? Madonna, with certified sales of more than 160 million albums. That puts her at the fourth-highest selling performer of all time, after Elvis, the Beatles, and Michael Jackson. Not bad company at all for a Material Girl!
Who’s YOUR favorite female vocalist or band?