FEMINIST FRIDAY: Women In Music Who Are Smashing The Patriarchy & Taking Up Space

Welcome to another Feminist Friday column! That time of the week we take a break from our regular content to showcase a handful of our fave videos right now. This week we’re feeling feisty and smashing the patriarchy with a little help from women in the music world.

First up is a music babe who is taking on the male-dominated music industry with her no-holds-barred attitude. Hailing all the way from Malaysia, Zamaera is an artist who is going to dismantle all the things you know and expect from a “female” rapper.

Initially entering the world of law, Zamaera’s career path changed trajectories after she realized she had an innate gift for poetry and was a skilled wordsmith and singer. Now, she’s preparing to join SZA, LORDE and Vince Staples at the Good Vibes Festival in Malaysia.

More than a singer and rapper, Zamaera is an advocate for young women around the world, with particular emphasis on young girls in Southeast Asia who don’t often get to see themselves in modern day media. In regards to why there aren’t more Asian women in rap, Zamaera said, “Maybe it’s because women are constantly scrutinized by the public, no matter what we do?  It’s rather scary and overwhelming to put yourself out in a “male-dominated industry” only to be objectified and not taken seriously.”

Watch her perform her track ‘Z vs Z’, the first single of her forthcoming EP, with a live orchestra below.

Our second video feature this week is from a super cool contest that we can’t believe we’ve only just discovered. What took us so long?! Hit Like A Girl, now in its 7th year, is an annual global drumming contest for girls. Its purpose is to spotlight female drummers/percussionists and encourage drumming and lifelong musicianship for girls and women, regardless of age or playing level.

David Levine of TRX Cymbals conceived the Hit Like A Girl Contest in 2011. He felt that the music products industry was not serving female drummers and he wanted to support and promote their development. He got together with Mindy Abovitz of Tom Tom Magazine, and Phil Hood and Andy Doerschuk at DRUM! Magazine, and the Hit Like A Girl Contest was born. Since then the contest has attracted 2000+ contestants from 50 countries. It has generated tens of millions of page views and fan votes around the world. And it has raised the visibility of female drummers and spotlighted the efforts of girls and women.

If this contest sounds like your jam (pun intended!) and you want to enter in the 2019 contest, you will need to upload a 3 minute video telling your drumming story, and include a video or a clip of you behind the drum kit. Entry videos are scored on 3 criteria by a panel of judges: performance, presentation, and story. There are two contests within the competition, one for under 18’s, the other for 18 and over. And as the website says, “sorry boys, Ladies only”!

The 2018 winners were announced on June 5, and a series of videos have now been posted on the website as well as the Youtube channel. We LOVE the sound of this competition and the way that it is literally smashing stereotypes in what is definitely a male-dominated profession. Be sure to check out the website to get familiar with the 2018 winners, and catch a snippet of what the future of drumming looks like, below:

Finally this week we’re gonna bow out with some feminist music video goodness with the latest from teen recording artist Mozart and her track ‘Push You Harder’ which is an obvious ode to female empowerment and the various waves of feminism.

If you aren’t familiar with this young dynamo, you’re about to. The California-native has quite the global experience, having lived in 48 countries around the world with her family known as the “digital nomads” who made global headlines for traveling the planet non-stop for 10 years together across 5 continents on $23 a day. She is also a prolific musician being able to play 5 instruments, and aside from English she is also fluent in Chinese and Spanish.

Mozart has also recently given a TED Talk, won a Best Actress award for playing the lead role in the film ‘Rose’, and also appeared alongside Ariana Grande in her music video for ‘God Is A Woman’. Having just finished a 10-city solo tour across Europe, there is no stopping this talented artist!

In the video below you can see her paying homage to Rosie the Riveter, Wonder Woman, Maya Angelou Frida Kahlo, Lady Justice, and even the Women’s March. Feeling ready for the weekend with this female empowerment high from Mozart:


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