5 Musicians Who’ve Said the Music Industry is Sexist

Posted by PZ on July 13th, 2015

It seems crazy to think that sexism is still around – but unfortunately it is, and women are often judged differently to men in many different circumstances and professions. These 5 musicians have noticed how women are often treated unfairly in the music industry, commenting on what their experiences have been and what they think needs to change to improve the situation.



Bjork says she has to fight to have her opinion heard: “Everything that a guy says once, you have to say five times. After being the only girl in bands for ten years, I learned — the hard way — that if I was going to get my ideas through, I was going to have to pretend that they –men — had the ideas. I became really good at this and I don’t even notice it myself.”


Grimes is often looked down on by males in the industry: “I’m tired of men who aren’t professional or even accomplished musicians continually offering to ‘help me out’ (without being asked), as if i did this by accident and i’m gonna flounder without them. or as if the fact that I’m a woman makes me incapable of using technology. I have never seen this kind of thing happen to any of my male peers.”

Jack White

Jack thinks women are often not taken seriously when they get involved in music: “It’s sort of a real shame that if a woman goes on stage with an instrument – a guitar or drums or something – that it’s almost a novelty to people; like, ‘Oh, isn’t that cute?… The ultimate shame of it… is that… girls have to try twice as hard to really prove themselves, they don’t have a free ticket or something like that. But in the end you almost get something better than any other sort of everyday, run-of-the-mill male musician… ’cause they’re (women are) sort of put in a position that they have to (be better).”

Janelle Monáe

Janelle has encountered sexism and believes she has to fight against it: “I absolutely have encountered sexism in the music industry. I don’t look at myself as a victim; I just think that some people aren’t taught any better…I think it’s up to us for women not to accept it.”

Lily Allen

Lily is always surprised by how few women even work in the music industry and thinks a man is often credited for work done by a woman: “You will also notice of those big successful female artists, there is always a ‘man behind the woman’ piece. You will also notice of the big successful female artists, there is always a ‘man behind the woman’ piece. If it’s Beyoncé, it’s Jay Z. If it’s Adele, it’s Paul Epworth. Me? It was Mark Ronson and the same with Amy Winehouse. You never get that with men. You can’t think of the man behind the man. Because it is a conversation that never happens. If you are Ed Sheeran or someone, no one ever talks about who has produced or who is the man behind Ed Sheeran.”

Category: Grimes, Janelle Monae, Lists