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Progressing Gender Representation in UK Dance Music: Thoughts of a DIY Music Artist

I recently came across the report “Progressing Gender Representation In UK Dance Music” and the figures were shocking (but in all honesty, not surprising). The report was released by The Jaguar Foundation, which was founded by Jaguar Bingham. Jaguar is well-known within the industry for hosting the BBC Introducing on Radio 1 Dance show, the Future1000 (a free programme to introduce 1000 female, trans and non-binary students into electronic music), amongst many, many other amazing things.

Image Credit: @JaguarWorldwide Twitter

Speaking on “Progressing Gender Representation In UK Dance Music”, The Jaguar Foundation website explains how this debut report “uncovers evidence supporting long-held beliefs about gender disparity in dance music – across the live industry, radio airplay, streaming platforms and in the gender balance of music organisation employees – as well as exploring a number of other discriminatory issues that female and non-binary people face.”

To dig deeper on some of the figures included in the report, a key part that stood out to me was that within the most commercially successful dance and electronic music tracks in the UK from 2020-2022, 95% of tracks included a male artist, whereas only 5% of tracks were by female or non-binary artists only.

The report also highlights that many women and non-binary people don’t feel safe at electronic music events.

So what can we do to balance things out?

After reading through the document, there were key takeaways and indications of how change could (slowly but surely) happen. I’ve summarised these below:

  • Allies: Check out the resources section of Jaguar’s website to learn about funding/education, events, online communities, industry schemes and further reading on Trans and Non-Binary Gender Experiences. I’ll post a link to the website in the closing paragraph of this blog.

  • Music artists: Consider a safety and inclusion rider to make sure that the events you’re booking have inclusive line-ups and a diverse range of artists performing.

  • Booking agents: Review your line-ups and consider your event. What is the gender split?

  • Music lovers: Support grassroots organisations and artists. Check out the resources section of The Jaguar Foundation website too.

There’s clearly so much more to be done to fix issues within the music industry, but I think it’s amazing that we have committed people within the industry like Jaguar who are pushing forward and speaking out. As an emerging artist, I find reports like these inspiring, and it makes me determined to not just sit by and watch change happen, but to actively play a part going forward.

You can find more information on The Jaguar Foundation’s website, where you can also download your free copy of the report and access the resources page.


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