Saturday, March 28, 2015

Holly Throsby on motherhood and music

It is really sad when you’re in a same-sex relationship, that you can’t create a baby with your partner. I really went through that feeling, we both did – just looking at your partner and wishing so much that we could combine our genes and make a baby together like heterosexual couples can. But of course we cannot do that, so it was very planned.

This was musician Holly Throsby's very generous and heartbreaking answer to perhaps the silliest question I asked of anyone while doing interviews for Motherhood & Creativity: "So getting pregnant was a very deliberate decision for you then?" Duh!

I felt genuinely shamefaced, less about my stupid question than by the fact that I had never really fully considered this inherent predicament for same-sex couples: the deep frustration and sadness that would come of not being able to make a baby with the person you love.

Her comments on sexism in the music industry were also fascinating:

Women always get asked about how they juggle work and family life, and men never do. I’ve even been asked that on Clare’s behalf – I did an interview a few years ago where the first question was, ‘How do you find touring with three children?’ And I was like: ‘That’s Clare Bowditch, not me!’

But I remember thinking that if I was Clare Bowditch, that would have been my first question. So it’s obviously true that that happens. I’ve been asked a lot about what it’s like to be a female musician in a male-dominated industry, and I’ve spent my entire career being compared not just to other female musicians, but to other Australian female musicians. It’s as though, when it comes to music, nobody can draw a comparison beyond this small pool that you live in. So many of us are so heavily influenced by men too – or not just by music, but books and films and so on as well – but journalists’ references can be so narrow.

I was so grateful for Holly's openness throughout our conversation. She is one super smart, super warm and super talented woman. You can read an excerpt from her book chapter in Junkee here.

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