American Women Songwriters: A Biographical Dictionary

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Greenwood Press, Jan 1, 1993 - Biography & Autobiography - 279 pages
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Although American women have written many of our most memorable popular songs, their contributions have received little recognition. The first biographical dictionary devoted to American women songwriters, this work profiles 181 well-known and little-known women who have written popular and motion picture songs, musicals, country, blues, jazz, folk, gospel, and hymns. Many African-American and contemporary songwriter/performers such as Madonna, Janet Jackson, and Mariah Carey are included. This volume provides hard-to-find biographical and career information across the broad spectrum of indigenous American popular song.

A history of women's contribution to the creation of American popular song emerges through these profiles. Grattan takes pains to profile the famous, the unsung, and those who persevered through sheer tenacity and against all odds. The dictionary is divided into ten music categories and profiles are alphabetically arranged within each category. An introduction to each chapter gives an historical overview of women's contributions to that form of music. Each profile consists of an up-to-date biographical essay on private life, career as both songwriter and, in many cases, performer, most famous songs, and sources of further information. Entries are cross-referenced. Lyrics from a number of the best-known songs by women songwriters are included. A bibliography and song index will aid the researcher.

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American women songwriters: a biographical dictionary

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Although most music dictionaries ignore American women (e.g., David Ewen's American Sonwriters , Wilson, 1986), Grattan's guide to 184 American-born popular woman composers and/or lyricists only ... Read full review


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About the author (1993)

VIRGINIA L. GRATTAN is the author of Mary Colter: Builder Upon the Red Earth. She also taught secondary school English for twenty years.

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