Women in Music etc



Seems like there has been a definite sea change in the discussion about gender in the music business of late. Whilst stats and figures are still brow-raising in terms of the numbers of women on festival bills, radio playlists, songwriting teams and working in studios, it does seem like change is in the air with a shift toward analysing why things are as they are, exploring the solutions, and acting on them.

There was a great conversation about some of the initiatives at Sound City earlier this year. Vanessa Reed from PRSF chaired the conversation (she’s behind the Women Make Music fund) and there’s a good summary here with links to initiatives like She Said So that are worth exploring: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/vanessa-reed/gender-equality-music_b_10475886.html

Laura Marling has started a podcast exploring this topic a little. There’s an interesting piece in Metro today about it https://edition.metro.news/content/20160907.am/htmlpages/373695.html

What do you think the one thing (or more) that should change is that will make a massive difference to the gender imbalance in music?


We need more men to stop making music

Your overlooked masterpieces with too few likes

i don’t know what the solution is, but i’m sure if enough white bedwetting men use this forum we’ll get to the bottom of it.


DiS’ audience is only 55% male. Perhaps you don’t realise the gender of someone because of their username?!


in truth: we need society as a whole to have a massive change. this isn’t the only industry where women are poorly treated, given fewer opportunities, not expected to excel. these are getting at wider issues that are (unfortunately) really fucking deep rooted in our culture.


this is the problem, 55% is too low!


people to stop treating ‘female music’ as a genre i guess


that’s why I changed mine


one of the strange things i find about live music is that small indie/diy gigs are often male dominated in both audience and on stage. maybe there should be more events where the line up is only bands that have girls or who don’t align with the gender binary. i know ones like those do happen but not very often, at least where i’ve lived.


We definitely need to do away with “women artists” or “female musicians” … I think it will still be forever before it changes, though


great bunch o lads


like kill them or wot?


yes absolutely advocating MURDER, for sure. nah man I just meant the dumb terms. Actually, my opinion means nothing because I like very few women artists which I’ve always thought was a bit odd considering I am actually a woman artist, myself. Personally, there’s just not AS MANY great women in music as there are men. Name the top 5 FEMALE musicians. … (even thought I said let’s do away with that term) … who is the greatest that there ever was???


Here’s a playlist to get you started


stop :clap: tokenising :clap: women :clap: in :clap: music :clap:


i’ve noticed even certain journos who seem to pride themselves in writing about bands with women in them a lot still write about them in often quite patronising terms and get very sulky and entitled when someone tries to tell them that


Its very obvious in the electronic music scene. But I think thats part of the biases in all the tech industries. Both Bjork and Grimes complained about people constantly thinking that they cant work some of the gear or dont produce their music. I agree its social but there is no reason why the music industry cant be the leaders here. When all reports seem to suggest that its a boisterous industry where woman are regularly sexulaised.

Not sure about solutions though. I think it is getting better a bit slowly.


Bjork is quite frankly fantastic. I think very few people have had such a great run of albums from Debut to Vespertine. Also Joanna Newsome is brilliant. Possibly one of the most consistently great artists atm.

Apart from that I love PJ Harvey, Grimes, Jlin,Courtney Barnett etc.


Londoners! Go to Loud Women gigs please. They are doing God’s work.

That’s all I have to add. As you were.


I think we need to see the end of the all male, all white gig lineup. It’s considered totally unremarkable and normal, but is actually pretty weird when you look at it properly. They say “you can’t be what you can’t see”. I’m about to turn 32, and when I was a teenager I pretty much never saw women on stage at local gigs. Once in a blue moon a woman would be allowed to be a bass player, and then creeps in the audience would make remarks about her tits. The general idea was that boys did exciting fun stuff, and you were meant to just watch and inflate their ego by praising them, rather than having a go yourself.

Things have improved slightly, but I still hear the same stories about patronising sound men and bookers (still a total outdated boys club in many regards), and having to deal with creeps, meaning you don’t just have to deal with anxiety about your music and performance, but you have to summon up the energy to push your way through this actively hostile environment to even play the gig. It’s the same story for non-white people and trans people playing small time gigs.

Like a load of men forming a band is still seen as totally natural and unremarkable, and something they should be doing, but everyone else has to muscle their way through this level of hostility to even the idea of it, using up some of the energy they’d love to just devote to the music.