Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Top 30 Lesbian/Bisexual Musicians

This list originally started as the Top 10 Lesbian/Bisexual Musicians of all time, but once I got going, I could not stop. I did limit it to the top 30 lesbian, bisexual and even one transgender musician and/or band. The musicians were chosen based on their musical impact, both on the lesbian and straight communities.

1. Melissa Etheridge is perhaps the best know lesbian singer of our time.
2. The Indigo Girls are a folk pop duo who have been uncompromising in their
3. k.d. lang was one of the first artists to come out after rising to fame.
4. The Butchies are Kaia Wilson, Melissa York, formerly of Team Dresch and Alison Martlew.
5. Tribe 8, the lesbian queercore band’s wild stage antics earned them a huge punk following.
6. Alix Dobkin released Lavender Jane Love Women in 1973, the first overtly lesbian album ever.
7. Cris Williamson is one of the early pioneers of lesbian music.
8. Janis Ian won two Grammy awards and married her long-time partner in Canada.
9. Janis Joplin was not out about her bisexuality, yet she was known to have affairs with both men and women.
10. Tracy Chapman’s sexual orientation remains a secret, but many believe the folk revolutionary is a lesbian.
11. Sweet Honey in the Rock was founded in 1973 by Bernice Johnson Reagon, the all black women’s group sings acapella, except for percussion instruments. They have seen more than 20 women pass through the group over the years, many of them lesbian and bisexual.
12. Me'Shell NdegeOcello, the out bisexual bass player was discovered and promoted by Madonna.
13. Le Tigre are punk rockers with a feminist edge.
14. Team Dresch, queercore revolutionaries rocked the lesbian nation in the 1990s.
15. Tegan & Sara are lesbian twin sisters, quickly making their way up the charts with their hit “Walking With a Ghost.”
16. Melissa Ferrick is an out lesbian rocker with a devoted fan base.
17. Joan Armatrading. Is she or isn’t she? We’re not sure, but she did write one of the best lesbian love songs ever: The Weakness in Me.
18. Ani DiFranco is a positive feminist bisexual folk/rocker.
19. Sleater Kinney. Half of Sleater Kinney is queer....Carrie and Janet are, Corrin is not.
20. Ferron is the one of the best songwriters of all time. The Boston Globe said, “Someday they will call (Bob) Dylan the Ferron of the 60s.”
21. Laura Love is a Seattle based vocalist, bassist, and songwriter.
22. Billy Tipton, technically a transgender musician, was a longtime veteran of the jazz circuit who only in death was revealed to have been a woman and spent her life passing as a man.
23. Ma Rainey was known as Mother of the Blues.
24. Gladys Bentley was known as the Bulldagger who sang the Blues.
25. Bessie Smith, The "Empress of the Blues" had affairs with both men and women.
26. Joan Jett became a star with her 1982 hit, I love Rock and Roll.
27. Dusty Springfield scored big with her hit Son of a Preacher Man in 1968 and came out as bisexual in 1971.
28. Vicki Randle is the percussionist for the Tonight Show Band.
29. Meg Christian was one of the co-founders of Olivia Records.
30. Holly Near is an activist and musician who's music has an incredible influence on the peace and justice movement.