Dua Lipa discusses some of the challenges women face in the music industry in a recent interview.
The British pop star says women are always fighting to prove themselves in the industry. “That’s just being a woman in the industry,” she confirms. “A lot of people see it, particularly in pop music, that you’re manufactured or whatever, so you have this underlying pressure or anxiety to constantly prove yourself to people, especially when you write your own lyrics.”
Dua Lipa said when she was creating her first record in 2017, she experienced that anxiety.
“I felt like I needed to prove to the people I was going in the room with that I could write and that I do this myself and that I am an artist. That I’m not just going to sit there in the room and wait for somebody to write a song for me,” she said.
She says women must work harder to be taken seriously because of this pressure. She says she has stood her ground on numerous music video shoots. “Someone wants to see the UK’s pop-star in a cute outfit, so the music director says to wear a skirt,” Dua Lipa says. “Well, I’m going to wear trousers because it’s freezing. I know how to stand my ground and hold it down.”
Dua Lipa says she doesn’t care if calling out bad attitudes creates “weird energy.” She says if someone is saying something she doesn’t agree with, she’s not afraid of speaking out.
The sentiment echoed that of Charlotte Church back in 2013. Church entered the music industry as a young teenager. It wasn’t until she matured inside the business that she began speaking out against the injustices she suffered.
“I’d like you to imagine a world in which male musicians are routinely expected to act as submissive sex objects,” Church said. She said the roles for men and women in the music industry are not the same when they should be. “It is a male-dominated industry, with a juvenile perspective on gender and sexuality.”
Church even had a few tropes she considered ‘staples’ of the current state of pop music. They haven’t changed much, either.
Women are allowed to be ‘One of the Girls’ Girls,’ the Victim/Torch Singer, and the Unattainable Sexbot. If you look at modern pop music, you’ll see most singers fit this mold quite well. Curious about those music industry tropes? Check out Church’s original analysis of the problem – from seven years ago.