Annie Mac has announced the launch of the Equalising Music Pledge, a movement to push for greater gender balance in the music industry.
The pledge is the latest move by Smirnoff Equalising Music, a three-year, global, multi-million pound campaign. Endorsed by the PRS Foundation’s Keychange initiative for this next phase, Equalising Music is calling on everyone in the music industry to take direct action on gender equality.
Mac (pictured) is challenging her peers and the industry at large to do one thing in 2019 to make music a more equal place through the pledge.
“The music industry is still embarrassingly lopsided when it comes to gender parity," she said. "There is still so much work to be done in terms of fighting for women of all ages to be embraced and championed by this industry, both in front and behind the scenes. I’m genuinely excited to see the impact women will have on this industry.”
Initiatives such as PRS Foundation’s Keychange have fuelled a growing awareness of the issues women face, persuading more than 150 festivals to fulfil a 50/50 gender balance across their lineups.
However,, lack of diversity is still an industry-wide problem. Just 17% of PRS for Music’s registered songwriters are female, the gender pay gap at major music companies averaged at 30% and only 15% of labels are majority owned by women.
Vanessa Reed, CEO of PRS Foundation and Founder of Keychange, said: “We’re excited to see Annie Mac working with Smirnoff to engage even more people from across the music industry in positive actions towards gender equality. Keychange has now united over 150 festivals from across the world in a pledge towards gender balance by 2022 and we’re delighted that Annie’s AMP festival is one of our signatories.
"Annie’s new call for action, which encourages anyone working in the music industry to do one tangible thing for gender equality, will get more people in music thinking about the benefits of a more balanced workforce. This will help us to achieve the change we all want to see for the next generation of men and women considering a career in an industry that should be open to all.”
Coda agent Alex Hardee said: “Coda is happy to align with Smirnoff Equalising Music as we feel strongly about working with the best talent, artists and staff, whatever the gender, so when the Equalising Music pledges kick in and we as an industry collective create more opportunity, that will be genuinely exciting.”
Sam Salameh, head of Smirnoff, added: “Smirnoff set up Equalising in Music in 2017 because the music industry had been sidelining female talent for too long.
"We all know the statistics so now it’s time for action. Together - and proudly endorsed by PRS Foundation’s Keychange initiative - we’re asking everyone in the industry to step up and do one significant thing for gender equality in 2019.”