Who runs the music world? Guys. Women are such a vital part of music and entertainment culture, yet we are grossly underrepresented in the music industry. According to Forbes, a USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative study done in 2019 shows that women make up 21.7% of artists, 12.3% of songwriters, and 2.1 percent of producers in the music industry. A 2019 article by Rolling Stone stated that only 1 out of 13 major labels were run by a woman.
Why are our opportunities being cut off? How can we fight back against these inequalities? When will we gain the confidence to become the leaders of this industry? Turns out, there are more than studies and facts hitting the music industry. Several dozen organizations are actively supporting women in the music world. It's one thing to be aware of the imbalance, but it's another thing to be able to take charge and make moves to close the gap.
Not only are these brands making changes in the music world, but they are inviting you to join the mission and have a chance to make a difference. The more people aware of these places, the faster we can get women the representation we deserve! We are talented, hardworking, creative, entertaining, and essential to the advancement of music for decades to come. We are capable of making the changes that are needed.
Women in music is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that was founded in 1985. Their members are made up of label executives, managers, songwriters, musicians, attorneys, engineers, agents, publishers, marketers, and similar professionals. They are committed to advancing equality, visibility, and opportunities for women in the musical arts through education, support, empowerment, and recognition. Members gain access to unlimited learning and career development opportunities!
Keychange is a movement that actively supports talented but underrepresented artists and encourages organizations to take a pledge for gender equality in the music industry. These ladies aim to accelerate change and create a better, more inclusive music industry for present and future generations with their career development program.
Here is a great nonprofit organization increasing the number of women working in music, including songwriters, engineers, producers, artists, and industry professionals. Their programs currently include an all-women songwriting series, an industry database of women creators, and a mentorship program, with more to come. The SITM Mentorship Program is designed to inspire and develop the next generation of women in music.
Future Female Sounds is on a mission to make DJ culture accessible to women and gender minorities globally. This nonprofit organization, community, and booking agency was founded in 2017 and is based in Copenhagen, Denmark. Future Female Sounds wants to reach particularly marginalized groups of women in countries and areas where access to communities, safe spaces, and DJ equipment is hard to come by or non-existent.
FEMME HOUSE is a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that fosters more equitable opportunities for women and gender-expansive individuals in the technical and behind-the-scenes areas of music. They are creating the future producers, mixers, engineers, DJs, artists, and executives of the industry by providing education and scholarships, cultivating community, propagating visual representation, and offering professional development opportunities.
Women's Audio Mission is a San Francisco/Oakland-based nonprofit organization that uses music and media and a training environment to attract over 2,000 underserved women/girls/GNC individuals every year to creative technology studies that inspire them to amplify their voices and become the innovators of tomorrow. They have given over 4,000 classes to women/girls over the last 16 years.
Change the Conversation fights gender inequality in the country music world by providing support, education, and community for female artists and executives. It was founded in late 2014 by three successful music executives to improve the environment for women in country music. Artists including Martina McBride, Reba McEntire, and Wanda Jackson have shown their support by participating in events and donating time and money to their cause.
Girls Make Beats is lovely a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that empowers girls by expanding the female presence of music producers, DJs, and audio engineers. GMB was founded in 2012 by certified audio engineer Tiffany "Delilah" Miranda. They work with girls ages 5-17 and host educational seminars, summer camps, industry panels, and networking events.
SheSaid.So is comprised of women and gender minorities from all music industry sectors, including labels, artist management companies, composers, artists, and more. Their main mission is to connect and empower underrepresented communities towards a more equitable music industry for all, one woman or gender minority at a time. There are currently 12,000 members across our 18 local chapters!
Women Of Substance is a podcast featuring indie female artists in all genres. A new episode is released every weekday highlighting new indie music added to WOSRadio. According to their site, "Women of Substance are female performers who deliver high-quality music that speaks to the listener through vocal excellence, depth of character and emotion, and lyrics that leave a lasting impression. This includes Label Artists, Indies and Unsigned artists alike."
This company aims to close the industry's gender gap by highlighting and celebrating women in recording studios. Like many of us, they dream of working in a music industry that is flooded with female-identifying producers, engineers & tech performers. They currently provide a platform for women to give and receive training in music technology.
The Women's International Music Network brings together women from all facets of the music industry. The organization produces events, creates opportunities for performance and networking, and works to bring the conversation around diversity in the industry to the forefront. They share news about female musicians, projects relating to women in the industry, products targeted at female musicians, and much more.
Women make up only 5% of the professional workforce in the fields of audio and music production. SoundGirls.Org was formed shortly after the "Women of Professional Concert Sound" panel at the 2012 AES Conference in San Francisco. Its mission is to create a supportive community for females that are involved with music production, and they have chapters all around the world!
Audiofemme has consistently sought to uplift the voices of female and non-binary music writers in an industry dominated by male viewpoints, and to approach music and culture criticism from an intersectional feminist perspective. This brand is designed to provide institutional support for artists and creators, prioritizing those from the BIPOC and LBTQA+ communities.
Music Production for Women (also known as MPW) is a global movement, community, and online education platform which aims to encourage and empower women who are taking their first steps into music production. They run periodic music production workshops throughout the UK, Europe, and virtually in conjunction with local music organizations and studios to empower women in music technology.
We Are Moving The Needle is a nonprofit organization supporting all women recording industry professionals, audio engineers, and producers. They offer scholarships and grants to music technology and recording programs, donated recording equipment, internships, a stellar mentorship program, and much more.
As a session singer, writer, and producer that has worked with over 200 clients to provide high-quality jingles, singles, features, nursery rhymes, and DJ drops, she currently spends her time engulfed in creating and marketing new music and helpful resources for creators. Her most recent creative collaborations include work with PBS Sound Field, Tribe of Noise, and the National Black Chamber of Commerce. Check out Yona’s latest music releases on her Spotify, her Youtube and share the music if you like it!
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