FEMALE EMPOWERMENT - 3
Everyday this week I’m bringing you guest blogs on the topic of 'Female Empowerment' / 'Empowering Women in song'. Please check out the links to each of these talented people:
Sammie - Music Blogger
Female empowerment in a song is pretty similar to female empowerment in real life. It's about women building women up, not tearing people down (and that includes men). Looking at my 'miss independent' playlist for songs that celebrate girl power, there are two favourites that perfectly encapsulate what I'm trying to express.
Lauren Alaina's 'Ladies in the 90s' is a celebration of women in music, and Shania Twain's 'Man! I Feel Like a Woman!' is a triumphant display of self-love, and both champion being women, other women and living as women - all without taking anyone down. It's all too easy to step on people to reach where you want to be, but to me, empowerment is taking the route that lifts you and others along the way.
Another thing I've noticed about all of the songs on my playlist - there's not a single sad song among them. They're all upbeat, they're sassy, they're catchy, they're fun. Empowerment is a triumph, it's a celebration, it's powerful - that's not a downbeat kind of song. That's a “scream it from the rooftops” kind of song.
Zoe Newton - Singer Songwriter
I think it’s important to portray strong females in music as we’re so used to being labelled as over-emotional for writing about our feelings. But female empowerment songs should celebrate how we feel, which doesn’t necessarily just mean writing ‘I’m-a-badass’ songs but songs that portray a range of actual emotions. Sharing personal songs for anyone to listen to is a really strong and powerful thing to do and it’s a shame that female songwriters can feel discouraged about releasing emotional songs when that in itself is empowering! I think female empowerment songs should be about being badass/angry/in the middle of a break-up/feeling good/being lonely (maybe all in one song?!) and should own all of those emotions rather than avoid them!
Charlie Turner - Songwriter and composer
I can only speak from my own personal experience as a woman in music, which has overall been very positive - I know that so many women have not had this kind of experience so I count myself as very fortunate in that way, and do not necessarily consider my history as representative of the industry at large.
However, personally I have always felt respected and on an equal footing with my collaborators - both male and female - and do not feel that I have been treated differently in any way because I am a woman. That said though, I am acutely aware that women are underrepresented in the music industry, particularly as writers. This has become clearer throughout our process with Gretel, as it has been considered highly significant that we have an all-female creative team. For example, the top 10 shows in London - not one has an all-female writing team.
We have received a lot of support and encouragement, so our personal experiences have been positive, but I think that the industry is waking up to the fact that it is not especially diverse and still has a long way to go before it attains full gender equality, however from what I can see, I do feel that on the whole steps are being taken in the right direction.