We’re living in 2017 and yet we’re still far too often faced with the ugly reality of sexism. This year, in the music industry alone, we’ve seen female artists fight for their voices to be heard, while music festivals like Days Like These go and drop all-male lineups. Well, take a leaf from the book of these strong female artists, who are on a mission to stomp out sexism for good.
Alison Wonderland Calls Out Producer On Twitter
Sydney DJ and producer Alison Wonderland has long been vocal about her dislike of artists having to cop the ‘female’ label, categorised by their gender instead of by their work. So you can imagine the super-successful, ARIA-nominated DJ wasn’t about to play shrinking violet when Ukranian producer Dimitry Bondarenko sent her a sexist message on Twitter, insinuating her success was the result of ‘tits and blowjobs’. She wasted zero time in calling him out, naming and shaming him to her 122,000 followers and adding a few eloquent words of her own to put him in his place.
Lauren Mayberry Of Chvrches
Lauren Mayberry’s fight against sexism has always been a public one, with the 29-year-old frontwoman of Scottish band Chvrches ever vocal in her stand against online abuse. By calling out her own online trolls, Mayberry encourages other victims to speak out, sending the resounding message that this kind of behaviour isn’t ok, nor is it simply part and parcel of being a prominent figure. The artist has penned multiple pieces on the topic for publications like The Guardian, determined to tackle this widespread form of misogyny head on.
Evelyn Morris AKA Pikelet
Evelyn Morris, a former solo artist who now makes up one quarter of Melbourne band Pikelet, got fed up with the lack of gender diversity in Aussie music, founding the Listen project back in 2004. The organisation is about questioning the norm and pushing for equal participation, looking to “promote the visibility and experiences” of women and other marginalised groups in the local music scene. Listen hosts a range of events, including a bi-annual conference with a hefty program of workshops, panels, performances and discussions – all designed to champion diversity.
Ali Barter, Song Girlie Bits
Melbourne rocker Ali Barter’s response to sexism in the music industry was to take that sexist dialogue and make it her own. The result? Catchy tunes like ‘Girlie Bits’, inspired by the double standards in today’s music scene and peppered with those all-too-familiar ‘lines’ encountered by women on the daily. Phrases like ‘give us a smile, princess’ are suddenly a whole lot easier on the ear. Barter’s also out to take the shame out of other female realities like periods, last month collaborating on a tea towel design with local charity Gift Box, which works to donate tampons to homeless Australian women.
Kelly-Dawn Hellmrich (Camp Cope, #ItTakesOne Campaign)
While gender diversity seems to be the core of the music industry’s sexism issues, Indie rock three-piece Camp Cope were out to tackle another aspect of sexism when they launched social media campaign #ItTakesOne last year. Fuelled by news of a spate of sexual assaults at gigs across the country, the trio created a video aimed at raising awareness about the issue and to encourage music-goers to speak up if they saw anything uncool going down. And they pulled in the big guns of Aussie music to help them get the point across, including The Jezabels, Courtney Barnett, Frenzal Rhomb and The Bennies.
Image Source: Ali Barter Facebook.