MUSIC WOMEN

National Public Radio and Lincoln Center list the greatest albums by women.

In her 1981 album, Dolmen Music, Meredith Monk used an amazing array of vocalizations to reflect the 1980s woman and the timeless voices of many women. Others join in the singing; Julius Eastman contributes rich baritone and percussion on one of the tracks. Monk plays piano, too, and various tracks include additional percussion and violin. But this is a record, overwhelmingly, about voices.

Music writer and critic Geeta Dayal has compared Dolmen Music to “a hidden passageway, that mysteriously opens to a secret room.” Meredith Monk herself described her work as “folk music from another planet.” Over time, she has played lots of instruments in performance and in studio — but the most important instrument of all is her voice.

The beauty and power of Meredith Monk’s voice is reflected in sampling from Dolmen Music on DJ Shadow’s track, “Midnight in a Perfect World” from his 1996 album, Endtroducing from Mo’ Wax FFRR.

Meredith Monk, Dolmen Music, ECM New Music, 1981

International Musician, American Federation of Musicians; Sept., 2017.