The F-List CIC, a not-for-profit that supports female musicians, launched today by inaugural president Anoushka Shankar

Women in Music is delighted to share news of the launch of the F-List CIC. This wonderful resource will make a difference for female musicians. Things are changing and there is a lot to celebrate. Huge credit to Vick Bain who got this project off the ground.

Here is the F-List's press release today:

Anoushka Shankar announced as inaugural president of The F-List CIC, a not-for-profit that supports female musicians 

Genre-defying and award-winning artist Anoushka Shankar is announced as the inaugural president of The F-List CIC.  The-not-for-profit enterprise launches Monday 23rd November to support the work of The F-List website the first directory of its kind to feature female musicians, songwriters, composers, and bands, all in one place. As the music industry anticipates re-opening next year, there has never been a better opportunity for festival promoters and commissioners to find or hire female talent and ensure we create a more equal industry after covid19.

Anoushka Shankar says:

“I am delighted to represent this fantastically talented and committed community, who are passionate about creating opportunities for the great wealth of female talent that exists in the UK. The F-List is the first initiative of its kind to give female artists and musicians a platform where they can be discovered. Its breath-taking thoroughness and scope nullifies any excuses from people in the music industry who blame a lack of representation and diversity by saying there’s a dearth of women to hire. But it’s also a supportive network that can transform the music industry into a place that better represents, and reflects, the richness and diversity in British society.” 

The F-List is a comprehensive resource that contains the latest information on over 4,500 musicians, 1,000 bands and 300 labels and publishers with women on their rosters, across all musical genres.  Any musician, songwriter or composer can join if they are female*. UK record labels and publishers can also apply if they have female artists on their rosters.  The F-List, originally published in February this year as a simple Google spreadsheet, has been upgraded to a fully functional and searchable website that makes it even easier for promoters and commissioners to find female talent.

The F-List is the brainchild of equality and diversity campaigner Vick Bain. While researching the careers of women in the music industry for her PhD, she uncovered these startling statistics.

14% of UK writers and composers signed to publishers and just 20% of artists signed to record labels are female.

These low figures are reflected in most UK festivals and events. In 2017, 84% of festival acts were entirely male, 10.5% were mixed bands and only 5.5% were solo/all-female (BBC, 2017).  When festival bookers responded with: ‘we don’t know where to find female acts’, Bain saw a solution. She began compiling The F-List – an all-female roster of musicians and bands that she had discovered through her research.

But The F-List is more than a directory.  After Bain published the list, she received a groundswell of support for her venture from female artists in the industry. Since then, it’s grown into a not-for-profit Community Interest Company (CIC) that’s committed to challenging a number of barriers that prevent women from progressing and thriving in the music industry – from the gender pay gap to sexism and harassment, and the motherhood penalty.

The F-List CIC is developing a range of initiatives to dismantle these structural inequalities and ensure that a 50/50 gender split becomes the norm across every festival and event in the UK.  British Asian musician Bishi, Music Week rising star Alex Ampofo and Keychange founder Jess Partridge are among the 13 directors on The F-List’s CIC board.  The F-List CIC is also proud to announce partnerships with Independent Venue Week and Scottish Women Inventing Music.

Sybil Bell Founder of Independent Venue Weeks says:

“The F-List encompasses everything we need to move towards making a lack of female representation a thing of the past. Independent Venue Week is so proud to be a partner of this brilliant initiative. We look forward to working closely with Vick, and her team, as we develop programs to ensure greater gender balance and more equitable representation across the industry.”

Hilary Brooks the Chair of SWiM comments:

Scottish Women Inventing Music (SWIM) is proud to be a partner of game-changing initiative The F-List. We are very excited about working together on what will surely be a fundamental tool for those in the music industries. The F-List will be a directory which will prove invaluable on a macrocosmic scale when it comes to providing opportunity and growth.”

Further partnerships and projects will be revealed in the coming weeks.

Vick Bain adds:

“I wanted to create a nationwide network that represents the interests of all female artists and musicians in the UK, and spearheads projects and initiatives that match their ambition. I am thrilled to be working with so many talented and experienced women, who are committed to creating the lasting changes that are so desperately needed in the music industry. With their collective passion and energy, I believe we can empower more female artists to successfully start and sustain their careers in music.”  

*The F-List is proud to be trans and gender minority inclusive

For more info or to request an interview please contact [email protected]  


WiM Chair Debbie Golt interviewed

Women in Music Chair, Debbie Golt is a dynamic arts consultant with many years successful engagement with the music world and she has toured and written about many great women artists. Currently she broadcasts The Outerglobe weekly on Resonance FM - 104.4fm/DAB London at 6.30pm GMT on Thursdays Repeat Mondays 4am mixcloud and Outerglobe Abroad Lunar Monthly (every 4 weeks) on Thursdays 10am-12pm GMT - see for archive. Find out something about Debbie Golt by listening to an edition of 'Drop Da Biscuit' interviewed by Michael Fuller

"In this new episode of Drop Da Biscuit I’m joined by DJ Debbie Golt (Sisters of Reggae), whose journey encompasses Rock Against Racism, political activism, linking with Fela, promoting top African musicians, writing, DJing, broadcasting and being part of a number of progressive music business initiatives. Check it out.

#dropdabiscuit, #djdebbie, #sistersofreggae, #outerglobe, #resonancefm, #mbokafestival, #womex, #podcast,"

Jocelyn Pook free online presentation with Coronet Inside Out

Coronet Inside Out  - Enjoy these remarkable pieces by WiM member Jocelyn Pook

Hello and welcome to Coronet Inside Out!

Coronet Inside Out is a series of free online presentations and artistic encounters including film, dance, art, installations, theatre, poetry and seminars. Each has been specially made so that The Coronet Theatre can continue to present and share art during this period when the theatre is closed. Each piece is preceded by a personal introduction from the artist, and will be available to audiences permanently once launched.

The Coronet Theatre is known for presenting new, exciting work from across the globe in the atmospheric setting of this beautiful theatre. Coronet Inside Out allows us to carry on with this work – new, exciting and created with the Coronet in mind.

Coronet Inside Out is curated by The Coronet Theatre’s Artistic Director Anda Winters, who said “The passion shared by all artists, whether large or smaller scale, to make and share their work, is as strong as ever. Please join us in our ongoing relationship with these special artists, as we all find new ways to engage with the arts. Artists from so many countries and creative directions have generously responded to the challenges we are facing, and we are grateful and delighted to continue to present their work to audiences”.

Women as Musician Entrepreneurs - Virtual Lecture-Recital with Dr Fabiana Claure - 15 Nov 8 pm GMT

An exploration of Fanny Mendelssohn, Clara Schumann, and Teresa Carreño's works and career ventures. A reappraisal of these women's careers from the entrepreneurial viewpoint.

'Special emphasis will be placed on the context of each woman’s successful, long-term career as pianists and composers while still handling domestic life, raising children, and facing the gender-discrimination barriers of their time.'

Live performance and virtual Q&A with Dr Claure.

2 pm Central Time (8 pm GMT)

More information including an interesting video introducing the research

Illuminate Digital Concert Series 2020-21 - Shining Light on the work of Women Composers and Performers

In response to the postponement of their live concerts at the present time, Illuminate is presenting its first digital concert series.

Artists include classical guitarist Eleanor Kelly, double bassist Maggie Cox, early keyboard instrumentalist Marcia Hadjimarkos, pianist Ania Vu, violinist Sofia Yatsyuk, pianist Samantha Ege and soprano Rose Hegele.

These concerts start on 29th October 7.30pm (UK time) with:

Illuminate Women's music digital concert with Eleanor Kelly

Works include

Catharina Josepha Pratten (1824-1895)
Teresa de Rogatis (1893-1979)
Phyllis Tate (1911-1987)
Nina Danon (b. 1989)
Claudia Montero (b. 1962)

More information and links can be found here

Music week Women in Music Roll of Honour 2020

Music Week has announced the Music Week Women in Music Roll of Honour 2020 with some outstanding women working right across all sectors. Women in Music extends hearty congratulations to all those included.

It is heartening to see how #womeninmusic has become a generic and mainstream term/reality after all our struggles, successes and joys over the years. Women in Music our organisation was founded in 1987 and at that time this roll of honour would have been unheard of! Chair Debbie Golt recalls how hard it was to persuade women in leading roles in the music biz to agree to be panelists or even attend a panel she co-coordinated and moderated at In The City, the industry's flagship event, in 1992. Our work is by no means done, however these awards are a giant leap. Congratulations to all.

You may need to sign up for a free subscription for headline articles to read this, no purchase necessary.

Guest blog post: 'She Wrote the Songs' - by Patricia Hammond

When writers include women in a survey of music history, they often spend a lot of effort attempting to find composers of symphonies, operas and string quartets. This is always a tough job because for centuries, women weren’t allowed to play in symphonies, much less conduct them; positions at universities and cathedrals weren’t open to them either. Instigating and superintending experimentation with these sorts of forces was extremely difficult.

But if these historians were to broaden their search to include the genre of domestic song – otherwise known as Parlour Song, music intended for performance in the home – there would be a radically different story to tell.

Carrie Jacobs-Bond became a millionaire in the 1910s and 20s by publishing her own songs after music companies had turned them down, and was inducted into the Songwriters’ Hall of Fame in 1970.

May Brahe, a plucky Australian who came to London in her 20s wrote the mega-hit “Bless This House” in 1927 and earned enough from Boosey’s to buy one.

In the 1860s, the huge success of the clear, simple melodies of Charlotte Alington Barnard, pen-name Claribel, prompted music critics to savagely denounce and mock her, claiming that music easily playable in the drawing-room would degrade public taste.

Songs with a direct practical application were frequently by women: Happy Birthday, Rock-a-bye Baby, and the popular beginner piano piece, Chopsticks (The Chop Waltz) were all by women, the last two of them teenagers. And what could be more practical than entertaining oneself or one’s friends in the home?

One of the most-quoted lines from Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own concerns culture’s contempt for the domestic: “This is an important book, the critic assumes, because it deals with war. This is an insignificant book because it deals with the feelings of women in a drawing-room.” The same is true of music. In my book She Wrote the Songs I speak of the Beethoven Lens: a composer has to have composed symphonies, string quartets, piano concertos, choral works to be considered a composer. But in recent years this template has been laid aside to include people like Paul McCartney and Burt Bacharach. I think it’s time to look into the past and invite these women in too.

If performers opened up to the unpretentiousness and directness, the melodic purity of the works of women who wrote for the parlour, we might overcome the snobbishness that have excluded these works from exams and the concert platform. And in allowing ourselves to enter the drawing-room of the past, we will enrich ourselves by allowing a fuller, more inclusive picture of our cultural heritage. We’ll finally take a proper look at the one genre to which women have always had more or less the same access as men.

You can hear some of the songs on the CD sampler here


And here is a link to the LSE Zoom concert from July featuring songs by Caroline Sheridan Norton

This extract from the book tells part of the story of Caroline Sheridan Norton

Keychange EU webinars focussing on gender balance in the UK music industry - tomorrow - 24 September - online

With panellists from all aspects of the music industry, Keychange EU is hosting live webinars tomorrow on the topic of gender balance in the UK music industry. You can join them live on Facebook 12-1 pm, 2-3 pm, 4-5 pm and 6-7 pm.

Gender and activism in Scotland; Structures for progress

Date:24th September 2020 - Location:via Facebook Live @keychangeeu, 12-1pm (BST)

How can we all make gender equality a reality?

Date:24th September 2020 - Location:via Facebook Live @keychangeeu, 2-3pm (BST)

Let's talk about gender baby

Date:24th September 2020 - Location:via Facebook Live @keychangeeu, 4-5pm (BST)

Mind the Gap! Talent is distributed evenly, opportunities are not!

Date:24th September 2020 - Location:via Facebook Live @keychangeeu, 6-7pm (BST)

Composers Andrea Tarrodi, Anne Dudley and Errollyn Wallen, BBC Last Night of the Proms, tomorrow Saturday 12 September, BBC One 8 pm

A BBC commission world premiere, Solus, by Andrea Tarrodi, and new arrangements, Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance March No 1 arranged by Anne Dudley, and Parry's Jerusalem arranged by Errollyn Wallen (a long-standing member of Women in Music), are highlights of the Last Night of the Proms tomorrow, with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Singers conducted by Dalia Stasevska. The soloists are Golda Schultz and Nicola Benedetti. A notable evening for women in music.

Saturday 12 September, BBC One 8 pm