TO SHINE OR NOT TO SHINE: FEMALE DJS ARE STILL PUSHING THROUGH

TO SHINE OR NOT TO SHINE: FEMALE DJS ARE STILL PUSHING THROUGH

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Eff the all-boys-club cliché, female DJs have been doing it for years and they are still doing it now. With the legendary DJ Spinderella becoming the first female to be honored with the Global Spin Breaking Barriers Award after 30 plus years in the game, Tokimonsta killing it on tour, and DJ Diamond Kuts still making it hot, I felt the need to big up our beloved DJ sisters who don’t get nearly as much shine as their male counterparts.

Now, before you begin to brush this off as some random, feminist rant—tell me how many of your favorite female DJs have you seen breaking the top ten on any DJ list UNLESS it’s an all female DJ list? How many female DJs do you see playing at your favorite clubs, festivals, or backing your favorite artist on tour on the reg? Right, that’s what I thought. Now, let me take a quick moment to point out a few reasons why.

Obviously, systemic patriarchy is nothing new. It’s universal and is still prevalent today, especially in the music industry and the DJing sector is no different.

After all, the music industry is run by men, major record labels that sign DJs are run by men. Major clubs, and promotional parties where DJs are booked are all run by men. And, when it comes to choosing who should DJ at a festival or club, male promoters and club owners are more than likely to pick men.

Older men are more likely to mentor younger men because they relate to them more. Younger women are least likely to seek mentorship from the opposite sex for similar reasons, and also to avoid any conflict with their boyfriends. Makes sense, right? However, of course, the struggle doesn’t stop there. Female DJs like Lindsey Caldwell have talked about being judged by their appearance as well as having to put their sexuality out there by wearing heels and make up, for an example. Though on the other hand, male DJs get booked wearing jeans and a t-shirt or even if they’re not as gifted on the 1,2s.

So it’s no surprise why female DJs have to work thrice as hard to gain success. But that doesn’t stop them from making strides by keeping steady at their craft, mentoring other female DJs, and launching their own female DJ crews like Born N Bread, and the Apeiron Crew.

It may be a while before female DJs gain as much exposure as the Calvin Harrises, DJ Khaled’s and Steve Aoki’s of the world. However, keep in mind that perseverance, confidence, integrity, respect, and calculated strategy are all vital to winning any “race.”

It’s the same formula used by many successful female DJs to catapult their careers into success. Now, in light of our fierce DJanes—veterans and new schoolers alike, join us in paying homage to the ladies who have helped to defy the all-boys-club stereotype.

 

DJ Carisma

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DJ Spinderella

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DJ Cocoa Chanelle

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DJ Rap

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DJ Kitty Cash

DJ Kitty Cash

 

DJ Heather

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DJ Diamond Kuts

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DJ Tokimonsta

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DJ Miss K8

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