Putting Women At The Center Of Pop Music History

Aug 2, 2017
Originally published on August 2, 2017 3:18 pm

When you see a list of the best albums of all time, what’s behind it? Sales? Influence on other acts? Or the subjective opinions of a magazine or website editorial staff?

“Lists have their limitations,” writes NPR Music critic and correspondent Ann Powers. “It’s arguable, in fact, that beyond getting the groceries, lists are fundamentally lies. They reflect unconscious biases and whispered compromises; they solidify beliefs that may seem relevant in the moment, but become incomprehensible to the next generation.”

In the Turning The Tables series, Powers and about four dozen other women at NPR re-examine the idea of lists and canon, then create their own.

The list of 150 greatest albums made by women spans genres and decades to show how women have been at the creative forefront of a field that has been less equal for essentially all of its existence.

See the list


Ann Powers, Music critic and correspondent, NPR; @annkpowers

Jim DeRogatis, Co-host, Sound Opinions; Music Critic and Blogger, WBEZ; @jimderogatis

Keanna Faircloth, Host, “Evening Jazz” on WPFW 89.3 FM in Washington, DC; @jazzygirlrockin

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