The short history of Women's History Month began only 40 years ago, when Congress passed legislation to proclaim a week in March of 1982 as a nationally recognized celebration. The month long celebration began in 1987, and since 1995, each male president of the United States has proclaimed an annual "theme" of the month, which ranges from "Celebrating Women of Courage and Vision" in 2001, to "Nevertheless, She Persisted: Honoring Women Who Fight All Forms of Discrimination Against Women," in 2018. 2021's theme is an extension of 2020's (as the events were cut short by the pandemic): "Valiant Women of the Vote." Each of these themes recognize - predominantly white - women who have made an impression in the history of the United States in various fields.
When looking at the music industry, well... Statistically speaking, in popular music today, only 22% of the voices represented are women's. Just 15% of labels are owned by women. Only 13% of the songwriters are women. Producers and engineers only make up 3% of their fields. And in our field of radio? Sadly, it isn't uncommon for caps to be placed on female representation in playlists that hover around 20%. When we talk about equal pay? The numbers are even less than the national averages, and you can bet that non-white women are paid less. You can read more on that here.
Thankfully, numbers are rising in each of these fields, and because representation matters, women are able to advocate for themselves to be seen, heard, hired and paid more in the music industry - but there's still a long ways to go.
This month, we're taking a look at some of our favorite femme artists on air--with highlights on their careers and some of our favorite tunes (and check out the playlist below!). We'll also be checking in with the local music scene, highlighting some truly amazing artists in Colorado with the Local 303. Beyond that, we want to introduce you to a few women working in the music industry on the other side of the mic. Finally, be sure to join us on Monday, March 8th - International Women's Day - at 4pm on our Instagram for a chat with the women of Indie 102.3.
We hope that you learn more about women in music and continue to uplift them along with us!
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