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Directory of UK female musicians launches

The F-List directory provides details of more than 4,500 female and non-binary musicians across all genres of music and is free to use

By IQ on 23 Nov 2020

Vick Bain will take part in Gender Equality: The Next Level at ILMC 33

Vick Bain is the founder of the F-List directory

Today marks the launch of the F-List, a directory of UK female and non-binary musicians to be used by promoters, festival bookers, commissioners, music supervisors and “those scratching their heads over the fact they don’t know any female artists”.

The resource, launched by equality campaigner Vick Bain, provides details of more than 4,500 musicians across all genres of music and is free to use.

Bain first uploaded the directory as a sprawling online spreadsheet but after proving popular, she has re-launched it as a fully-searchable, not-for-profit website.

“The problem for women in the UK music industry is they are still in the minority when it comes to professional work,” Bain told BBC Radio 4’s Today.

“Only 20% of musicians signed to record labels are women and about 15% of festival headliners are women. So they don’t have much presence, professionally, even though they consist of nearly half of all music degree students.”

The F-List will launch alongside a concurrent community interest company that will champion equality and diversity in the industry. IQs New Boss Alex Ampofo is among those on the board of directors for the company.

“Only 20% of musicians signed to record labels are women and about 15% of festival headliners are women”

“We are going to raise awareness, we’re going to create initiatives to help facilitate training and development, we are going to increase knowledge about gender inequality,” said Bain. “We want to be a major authority for promoting women in music.”

British-Indian-American sitarist and composer Anoushka Shankar will be the inaugural president of the enterprise.

“The F-List is the first initiative of its kind to give female artists and musicians a platform where they can be discovered,” says Shankar.

“Its breathtaking 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.”

Helvetiarock, a Swiss association and networking platform pushing for gender equality in the live music industry, launched a similar directory earlier this month.

The resource, located at MusicDirectory.ch, will serve as a one-stop shop for women and non-binary professionals, including festivals, promoters, bookers, producers, musicians and more.


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