This week I interviewed my University friends who all share the dream of being a producer or sound engineer. I wanted to know what their expectations for the future were and how they experience the music business as students.
There is not a lot of material for us to base our arguments on because this subject just hasn’t been studied properly. One article that I did find is from BBC which said “The Music Producers’ Guild says less than 4% of its members are women. And the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts says only 6% of the students enrolled on its sound technology course are female. That figure hasn’t changed for three years.” (Savage, M. 2012)
Therefore, I wanted to talk about this with the young producers and ask them why they think there is such a small number of female music producers and why more girls are not more eager to study this in schools and Universities?
They thought the main reasons would be the lack of role models for young females when they start to be interested in the music industry. “While George Martin or Pharrell Williams are household names, only three women have ever been nominated for best producer at the Brits or the Grammys. None of them went home with the prize. Recording artist Regina Spektor, promoting her album Far in 2009, admitted to the BBC she had “never even seen the names” of female producers on her record company shortlist.” (Savage, M. 2012, BBC)
How can we ever picture our own names at the top of the industry, when we don’t see big female names there currently?
The producers on the film say that one reason for the lack of females in the industry is confidence and the learned behaviors we have been taught since a young age. In an email interview with Sanura, she commented “I think it’s mostly been myself doing the underestimating. I went about two years without putting out material solely because I didn’t think my sound would be good enough. Because “women don’t really produce”… or because I felt I should just stay in my lane as a Singer. I didn’t wanna step on any toes… I thought I would be the only one who liked my beats.” (http://sanura.co/)
Here is the full Week 2 episode:
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Savage, M. (2012) Why are female record producers so rare?. Available at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-19284058 (Accessed: 7 March 2016).