Women on Rock!
They say –“Drums are a man’s musical instrument”. Really? Why girls cannot be drummers? Why can’t people give them the equal respect that they give it to any male drummer? Take a look around. The music scene is no more an all-boys club. Female drummers often represent feminism, rebellion and individuality. They play almost every genre of music, from rock, metal and alternative and have been present in the music industry from the time to classic rock to today. Meg White, Karen Carpenter, Sheila E, Maureen ‘Moe’ Tucker are idols for any aspiring female drummer and India is nowhere behind the scene!
Yasmin Claire Kazi, surprisingly a Briton residing in India and playing for an Indian extreme metal band Myndsnare (Bangalore). She graduated from The Musicians Institute, Los Angeles in the Drum Performance program and has started playing drums since 2000. She has been a singer all throughout before taking up drums. Her key inspirations has been Gavin Harrison, Sean Reinhert, Ray Luzier, Gary Novak and Serotura's drummer and good friend Nathan Carter. Yasmin plays mostly metal and progressive rock. Yasmin, has been featured in quite a few magazines in India, such as the Rock Street Journal, RAVE, Business Standard, a couple of daily newspapers etc., and also had an appearance on national TV (Star World). She has won the title of Best Drummer in a number of Band competitions. Presently, Yasmin is working part-time as a tutor at a school and a full-time manager of her band Serotura (LA).
Priyanka Roy who hails from Kolkata has worked as a drummer in a number of bands Ragaaz, Deja vu, Glass Onion, Shiva, Sweet Agitation, The Ee Teez. Priyanka has also been a copywriter, journalist, vocal and drums instructor (at a music school), video jockey, radio jockey and presently, she teaches at a school. Although she was trained in classical dance & singing she always had a fascination towards tabla but never had the courage to disclose that to her family. Then a strange incident in her high school pushed her to take up drums and she says, “good for me, secretly I knew I really wanted to do this!” For her, drums is a direct, impartial and a spontaneous expression. Initially, Priyanka had to deal with a good many raised eyebrows but then she felt good when people stopped saying “she plays well for a girl”, and said instead “she plays well.”
Titash Choudhury who is a drummer of a Kolkata based band Mud Soda Spark is playing drums since her 9th grade. Due to her comfortable college schedule, she manages her studies, friends, jams, gigs well. Inspired by Dennis Chamber, Gavin Harrison, Steve Smith, Travis Barker, Will Champion and Chad Smith, Titash mainly plays alternative, hip-hop, country & rock. Previously, her family did not take her seriously when she decided to go for drums. Titash says, “they were little hesitant for drums being a masculine instrument.. but now they are cool!” Titash adds, “if one plays according to nature’s rule then she would not sound anything less stronger than a man.”
As a female drummer one really goes under a hard scrutiny. Female drummers in particular, trespassing a male dominated territory, often experiences a sneering attitude. Once a girl chooses this instrument, she has to constantly thrive to criticism. Drumming is very demanding. It requires strength, which women don’t inherently possess. You have to be tough and stylish as well. If drumming is your passion, it will certainly require preservance – never give up!