The Rise of Female DJs in Electronic Dance Music
For the past couple of years, Electronic Dance Music, or EDM for short, has grown into a very lucrative genre in the music industry. Before this era arose from the ashes, such music was categorized as nerdy and uncool with few who would enjoy it without being considered geeks. The likes of David Guetta, Tiësto, Calvin Harris and the late Avicii have become the global rock stars of this generation and probably the role models of many for tomorrow. Their contribution to the entertainment world has left a legacy and continues to move the earth up to date. Let’s not forget beats that hypnotize one into a deep state of trance.
However, it seems hard to ignore how much male-dominated the Electronic Dance Music industry still is until today. Even organising and booking shows results harder for female DJs than for male DJs. This, yet, could be seen as an international gender inequality scene. There are many powerful women behind the scenes making awesome music and flying the female flag high. Females DJ names may not get their due in such a patriarchal industry, but that doesn’t mean they lack the talent or ability to shine. Such girls have waned the barrier to entry in such a production and are currently showing popstar-progress and soon enough, will outshine the male counterparts.
Here are a few top female DJ names honoured and appreciated for their work in the industry:
This majestic, 33-year-old Australian is a woman of many talents when it comes to EDM. As a music DJ, producer and singer, Alexandra Sholler, her birth name, is an uprising star recognized for her ambitions and potential. Her groundbreaking album, Run, was released in 2015 which saw its way past many awards and high rankings. She was named New Artist of the Year at the Electronic Music Awards and held the record for the highest-ranked female DJ in Coachella history on Billboards. She is also very enthusiastic about her support for mental health and is regularly in touch with her fans about her own experiences.
This unique female is a famous DJ, producer, radio presenter, and label owner in the Electronic Dance Music industry. She started her career at a private radio station in berlin called Kiss FM, and that’s where she learned to DJ. Her radio show “Dance Under the Blue Moon” caught up with the masses and soon she got the attention of major sponsors. Her debut album came into the light in 2008 after a few released accessible records such as Maya Jane Coles, Pan-Pot, and many others.
The Black Madonna
Marea Stamper, otherwise known by her stage name, The Black Madonna, is a Chicago bred DJ and producer who became widely known as the first-ever creative director. This was at the well renowned Chicago based club Smart Bar where she distilled her musical talent, into a powerful example that inspired the potential of dance music all over. She is a strong supporter of female DJs in EDM and insists that the genre needs more of them and less of the status quo. Her popular albums include labels such as Argot and stripped & Chewed as well as records “Exodus” and “A Jealous Heart Never Rests.” Her career in DJing began halfway through college; thus, she adopted the stage name, The Black Madonna, which was back in 2012.
Annie MacManus, as is her real name, is a famous Irish DJ and TV presenter. Since taking the lead in her first BBC Radio 1 show in 2004, the host has emerged as one of dance music’s favorite love child. Her Radio 1 show on Friday nights attracts more than a million listeners, and her expansion to BPM Channel 51 and SiriusXM has put her in the spotlight for EDM. She is a mother of two and currently resides in Queen’s Park London with her partner, a fellow Radio 1 presenter. Despite being a mother and wife, she still takes up the task of entertaining her fans with electrifying dance music on the show.
The Australian DJ, producer, and singer have had her potential recognized worldwide through her partnerships with artists such as The Weekend, Disclosure, and M.I.A. She is currently a resident of Los Angeles and has become a regular at HARD events which are very popular. Her previous tours, like Destructo’s Ship 2 Ship and Holy Ship, have put her on the map for the world’s top-ranking female DJ names. Her recently announced tour, GO HARD is much awaited all over the globe as she is expected to represent female DJs well.
Blond:ish is a Canadian DJ/producer duo that constitutes of Anstascia D’Elene Corniere and Vivie-ann Bakos. The pair met in Montreal in 2008, and that’s when their career hit off. In 2009 while DJing nights called Blond:ish at the Cherry Nightclub in Montreal, the crowd started referring to the duo by that name and it stuck to this day. Blond:ish has gone on to release music on famous labels such as Berlin’s Get Physical & Cologne’s Kompakt.
It’s about time the gender gap in the music industry becomes narrow as women have shown as much prowess when it comes to EDM as much as men have. Many times, people tend to female DJs as ‘women’ first, then the DJ or producer part comes in second. This may be the leading cause that the potential portrayed by female DJs is not as anticipated as that of the men. The women are struggling to be recognized in the EDM industry in this era doing small gigs when they’re reputation and talents are fit for global live stages. Since men pioneered the genre, many individuals lack belief in women when it comes to similar fields.
Blindly offer a fan an album and tell them that it belongs to Calvin Harris when in the real sense, a female DJ name is on the original cover. They will fall in love with it. This isn’t because they may have listened to it, but the reason being that they are such huge fanatics of the massive superstars. They will blindly fall for anything to do with them without thinking twice. However, female DJ names are increasingly finding their way to the stage lights, and soon, these ghost DJs will be legends sang on the tongues of every fan.
Article by Andrea Abbondanza – Founder and Head of Contents at LiveTrigger, drummer and music lover, living in Melbourne, Australia