More women are picking up guitars than ever before, according to a new study. Which is exciting — because this should inevitably mean more females in the music industry.
The research conducted by guitar brand Fender reveals that 50% of young, aspiring guitar players in the US and in the UK are female. Over recent years, the company has targeted millennials, not necessarily females or males in particular.
Fender’s study also investigated the meaning behind picking up a guitar for the first time. For 72 percent of players, it was to gain a life skill or improve themselves. Meanwhile, 61 percent wanted to learn to play songs for family, friends, or simply themselves. 42 percent viewed the guitar as part of their identity.
Fender CEO Andy Mooney spoke on the current trends he’s hearing — “Today’s players have grown up in a different cultural context and popular music landscape, and rising artists like Mura Masa, Tash Sultana, Youngr, Daniel Caesar, Grimes and Ed Sheeran are changing the way guitar is being used. As a brand, we are committed to creating tools – both physical and digital – that this generation of creators needs for self-expression, now and in the future.”
And, on the supposed “Taylor Swift factor” — “There was also belief about what people referred to as the ‘Taylor Swift factor’ maybe making the 50 percent number short-term and aberrational. In fact, it’s not. Taylor has moved on, I think playing less guitar on stage than she has in the past. But young women are still driving 50 percent of new guitar sales. So the phenomenon seems like it’s got legs, and it’s happening worldwide.”
While this probably has far less to do with Taylor Swift than one might think — the future is definitely female.