As a female singer-songwriter, people usually have 2 thoughts when I’m at a gig:
1. “She must be the groupie.” Riiight because my boyfriend is carrying the guitar? (FYI, I insisted on carrying the guitar case myself from then on)
2. “Oh look, an Alanis Morsette cover artist.” I’ve actually been asked multiple times while on stage, “Do you have any sad or angry girl songs?”
No and no.
For those of you who don’t know, according to Wikipedia a groupie is “a particular kind of female fan assumed to be more interested in relationships with rockstars than in their music. A groupie is generally considered a devoted female fan of a band or musical performer.The term originates from the female attaching herself to a band. A groupie is considered more intense about her adored celebrities than a fan and tends to follow them from place to place. A groupie will attempt to have a connection with the band and may seek intimate contact. Obsessive groupies will almost certainly involve themselves sexually with any members of the band including the roadies (4 September 2016).” As I promised in the first installment of my e-newsletter, I will not call you groupies because you are much better than that. Followers help make authors and singers’ worlds turn around.
As for Alanis Morsette, I respect her as an artist but I’m my own hurricane. People often request that I perform a Bruno Mars song. Again, I respect what he does as an artist, but dude, come on. When I perform cover songs like say, Free Falling by Tom Petty, I switch the lyrics up, add my own spice to the vocals, and sometimes even slide the chords up on the fret board. Another point of caution when it comes to covers is that as performers we can easily get pegged as the Brad Paisley or Christina Perry cover artist. You get the idea. While it can be complimentary, it is also the opposite of a songwriter’s goal: to perform one’s own music and have it speak to the audience’s soul.
From one non-groupie to another, having a fabulous day.