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Country and Western Music, Women in

Women have been a part of country music from its beginnings. They have served in most all capacities including writers, producers, performers (both vocalists and instrumentalists), managers, and company executives.

Early in the development of country music in the United States, women were more likely to be working behind the scenes rather than on the stages; even in these early times, there were a few women who earned audience favor and fame. However, it was not until the 1950s and 1960s that women as “star” performers began to increase in numbers. Today, the Country Music Association Awards and the Country Record Charts abound with women both visible and lauded in all aspects of the music business.

In its earliest form, country music was a derivation of centuries-old ...

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