1) There is a whole generation of young women who picked up guitars because of Taylor Swift — she’s almost single-handedly responsible for the recent resurgence in acoustic guitar sales.
2) As a guitarist who frequents guitar fora, I can tell you that the online and offline communities are very much a boys club. You can probably count the number of signature guitar models given to women over the last 100 years on one hand (St. Vincent, Mary Kaye, Susanna Hoffs, Bonnie Raitt, and, uh…). One forum recently had a thread about Fender targeting women with upcoming campaigns, and literally, the first comment was, “So, does that mean smaller necks and neon pink finishes?”
(Fender actually has done a great job marketing beyond just dudes. It’s one reason they are in much better shape than Gibson.)
3) An iconic exhibit of rock instruments that overlooks things like Chrissie Hynde’s Telecaster, Bonnie Raitt’s Strat, Carol Kaye’s P-Bass, Joan Jett’s Melody Maker, or any acoustic played by Joni Mitchell is just nuts.
All that said… this does not surprise me at all. All of the iconic instruments in popular rock mythology are associated with men.
I’ve been listening to a lot of Olivia Newton-John the last couple of days, and I was thinking that I’d like to start a band that does ’70s prog-flavored ONJ covers and I’ll call it Olivia Newton-John-Bonham.
Modern recorded music, especially rock music, would not sound the way it does were it not for Mr. Emerick. His book Here, There, and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of the Beatles is also a great read if you’re into that sort of thing.