It’s no secret that women are under represented in many different fields of work however sexism and the under representation of women in the music industry is something that artists and fans are really starting to call out.
According to the BBC roughly only 30 – 40 percent of music played on mainstream radio is by female artists. It’s no secret to anyone that I definitely listen to more male artists simply because I’m more exposed to them through radio, streaming services and festivals.
Weather you agree or not gender inequality is very much ingrained into society and therefore this subsequently affects the music industry. For so long when we think of a record producer or songwriter most of us instantly think of a middle class, middle aged white man in a suit leaving those from different backgrounds feeling alienated. Whilst there are many great female artists like Jade Bird, Debbie Harry, Lauran Hibberd and Marika Hackman it seems that being a Male in the music industry gives you an instant unfair advantage even in 2020.
Despite this people are starting to take action with artists such as Matty Healy vowing to only play festivals where there wasn’t such a big gender imbalance like 2019’s Reading and Leeds festival which saw just 20 female artists on the initial lineup. Talking to The Gaurdian The 1975 frontman said “The point is that Reading and Leeds with more women would be honestly the best festival in the world”. As well as Matty Healy, Glastonbury’s Emily Eavis said to Radio 1’s Newsbeat back in February that Glastonbury “has to be 50/50” when it comes to the lineup.
Where the music industry has been so heavily dominated by men it’s even harder for up and coming female artists to climb the ranks as it just isn’t seen as the social norm anymore therefore festivals, award shows and record companies need to do more in order to inspire and support young women and to help address the incredibly uneven balance.
I’ve put together a playlist on Spotify that showcases some of the greatest female talent as well as some amazing up and coming female artists that you can get behind. If you have any suggestions for the playlist please do leave them in the comments. You can listen to it here: https://open.spotify.com/user/faithcmm101-297/playlist/0i38EN1bQyMEnB7GkEoWFu?si=mmtM3_UpQ5–cGsuc3FIYQ
It’s clear there’s still an incredibly long way to go in regards to inequality in the music industry but there are still some amazing women doing great things.