Women on a Mission: International Women’s Day 2018

Happy International Women’s Day 2018! For this year’s International Women’s Day, 6/8 Music has pledged to #PressForProgress and celebrate the achievements of women in several areas of the music industry. We are proud to present 10 women who are breaking barriers and working toward closing the gender gap in music. From artists, to artist managers, to full-blown CEOs, these women do incredible work in music every single day, and their outspoken presence in the industry inspires us at 6/8 Music to raise our voices that much louder in celebration for all the incredible ladies who inspire us and are paving the way for more amazing women to make the music industry better.

So, without further adieu, meet our 10 Women On a Mission!

amanda
Photo by Lorraine Ruiz

Amanda Van West   – San Francisco, CA 

Amanda Van West is a self-described “internet-addicted music geek,” but she’s so much more than that. As a woman on a mission, she’s one of many trades. Amanda is Head of Community and Marketing at Sounds App, previously having worked on Band of the Day App, and is relentlessly working on digital platforms such as the aforementioned to connect millions of emerging artists with fans around the world. She’s also founder of Artist Managers Connect, which helps thousands of like-minded music industry folks connect in a forum that celebrates collaboration and sharing knowledge.

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
Being a Woman In Music means working with a fiery passion to help artists connect to the right audiences, as well as building communities of like-minded industry professionals who are willing to support one another and help elevate each other.
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
The women in my life know that they’re badasses. We’re constantly collaborating, celebrating each other’s achievements, and I feel lucky every single day to have such an incredible support network of women. Unfortunately year after year women are overwhelmingly put to the sidelines when it comes to recognition. International Women’s Day is a reminder to celebrate all of our achievements, hard work, and ability to rise above all of the adversity we face for our gender. 
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Madame Gandhi.

Connect with Amanda: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn | Website | Music

eliza
Photo by John Bull

Eliza Neals  – Jersey City, NJ (nominated by Jay Johnson) 

Eliza Neals has won FIVE Detroit Music Awards in Blues–two times for Blues Recording and twice for Songwriter, which more than any other woman (and most men). Additionally, she was nominated last year for the Detroit Black Music Award. She’s a musician, prolific songwriter, confident producer, powerhouse live performer, and the owner of record company E-H Records.

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
I represent women in music because I stand on the shoulders of so many woman who never got the recognition they deserved. I put my best foot forward every day, every show, every note. I show ‘them’ that I am a force to be recognized with cause I go beyond what’s required and create ART that stands the test of time.
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
[There are] so many unsung hard-working women. I know even more have had to sacrifice their dreams to compromise for the future. Both women and men are pushing women’s rights forward through their prayers, thoughts and deeds, particularly right now. I would not be here without the love + help of female musicians, artists, lovers and fighters the world over. International Women’s Day is a day of celebration and struggle as we manifest destiny in the 21st century. I’m honored to be one burning flame among our brightest stars.
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Aretha Franklin.

Connect with Eliza: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn | Website | Music

meghann
Photo by Tyler Lizenby

Meghann Wright – New York, NY

Meghann Wright is another powerhouse in the music industry.  She’s a mom, songwriter, singer, performer, and company owner. In her own words, Meghann says she “started out as a nobody.” She moved to NY with dreams of pursuing a career as a musician and in the meantime, supported herself through hard work as a cook, bartender, housekeeper, nanny, and tons of other odd jobs. It wasn’t long before Meghann started writing and producing her own work, and networking, which eventually paved the way to a national touring agency – United Talent Agency, and landed a label deal with Blacktop Records. A publishing deal with Modern Works soon followed, and Meghann started touring nationally. After touring and releasing several records, Meghann became a mom and started her own company, GrindEthos, where she could put to use her experience and connections to help other indie artists.

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
All women regardless of age, race, creed celebrate each other and are celebrated!
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
As a woman working in the ever-changing music industry, I face new challenges every day. It is imperative that I work hard and smart, am tough and resilient, kind and compassionate, and am always pushing myself to do better. I strive to be a role model for other women (and men) and anyone who grew up poor and downtrodden with big dreams of making something of themselves.
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Dolly Parton is graceful, strong, prolific, and always professional.

Connect with Meghann: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn | Website | Music

shelby
Photo by Ashly Nicole

Shelby Elizabeth – Los Angeles, CA

Shelby Elizabeth is the founder and CEO of her company, Girlsbtrs.com, a.k.a Girls Behind The Rock Show. They run a program called “Roadie For A Day,” where they send eager, smart young women on tour with a band to be a part of the tour and production behind-the-scenes process. Most recently, Girls Behind The Rock Show sent a girl out to each date of the punk band SWMRS’ tour to shadow their crew. This event was fun, educational, and incredibly rewarding for the both the band, and the participants. Shelby’s company continues to create equal opportunities for women in the industry as well as educate and connect a network of aspiring music industry professionals.

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
Being a woman in music is an incredibly enlightened experience. It means seeing women from all walks of life put their best foot forward in a crazy demanding industry and fighting for them all.
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
International Women’s Day means everything to me. It’s a day to recognize all the efforts and contributions women around the world both big and small. For me personally, I specifically run a company that fights for female empowerment and equality in the music industry and it means knowing that our efforts are truly for something bigger than ourselves.
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Lately I’ve been really inspired by Lizzo. Her body confidence and refusal to be quiet had been extremely motivating.

Connect with Shelby: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn | Website

jessica
Photo by Sean McGurn

Jessica DiMari – New York, NY

Jessica DiMari is a talented music composer and multi-genre songwriter specializing in music for live concerts, as well as for film. She had the honor of being featured in the 2018 ASCAP/ Columbia University Film Composer Spotlight. Her website boasts of compositions from Pop, Electro Acoustic, Electropop, Film Soundtracks, to Video Games. We can’t wait to hear what Jessica will whip up next.

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
Being a woman in music is an honor. It is incredibly empowering to know that the music I compose may influence another woman to pursue her passion in the music industry, or inspire someone to find their voice.
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
International Women’s Day to me is a celebration of the powerful, inspiring voices of my collaborators and colleagues.
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Sara Bareilles.

Connect with Jessica: Website | Music

sally
Photo by Becky Yee

Sally Morgan – New York, NY

Sally is a voice trainer who empowers women through song and word. She is the author of Sing Like You Speak™, a book on contemporary vocal training. SLYS™ is specifically designed to “restore the effortless singing that is natural-making your singing powerful, joyful and free.” Her book and technique are so successful in fact, she was invited to speak at this year’s SXSW!  For all those making the trip to SXSW next week, you can catch Sally giving her workshop “Sing Like You Speak” on Friday, March 16, 2018.

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
I love what I do every day. It is an honor to guide women to vocal power and freedom. We are stronger together!
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
It is an opportunity to join with the voices of women worldwide to claim the rights and privileges that have been denied and marginalized since the beginning of time. I have a daughter and 3 granddaughters – their future, the opportunities for being equal citizens – is worth everything to me.
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Lady Gaga – Great vocal technique.

Connect with Sally: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn | Website | Music

rosa
Photo by Audrey Lew

Rose Bartu –  New York, NY

Rose Bartu is a multi-talented singer/songwriter, violinist, and producer.  Her self-produced album DESTINY was accepted in 10 categories of the Grammy ballot, a huge honor, and her latest single “Freedom” has racked up over 200,000 plays on Spotify in less than 6 months. No small feat! Rose is no doubt an indie trailblazer who paved her own path, and inspires so many indie female artists to do the same.

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
[Being a woman in music is] an opportunity to heal the world one song at the time & to build bridges to create intercultural communication to foster peace with my music.
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
A celebration of women around the globe, who stand for a better future for all.
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Sia.

Connect with Rose: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn | Website | Music

carley
Photo by Lauren Moore

Carley N. Jennings – Los Angeles

Carley Jennings is the epitome of strength. She’s an Artist Manager at Dead Room Living Management. Carley is a music business entrepreneur with 10+ years experience focusing on artist development, music marketing, licensing, and talent management. Her story of perseverance is inspiring:

Almost immediately after becoming a mother I was asked to go to Europe with a client and to “ship my breastmilk” back home to my infant daughter. I was discouraged and assumed that being successful in the music business meant not being afforded a home life. I left that job in the interest of investing in my family and assumed that I would never work in music again. But three years later, I returned on my own terms. I am a woman of color, a mother, a wife, and now I am a business owner and an artist manager with a healthy, successful roster. Making the choice to bet on myself is what I am most proud of.”

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
Being a woman in music means courage and resiliency. It means hope and confidence. Being a woman in music means never believing when someone tells you that you can’t or you won’t.
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
A global celebration of the accomplishments of women and woman-identified persons around the world. And more recently a call to arms for everyone to defend and embolden the rights of women and woman-identified persons everywhere.
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Yayoi Kusama.

Connect with Carley: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | LinkedIn | Website

helen
Photo by Pierre Arsenault

Helen O’Shea – Princeton, NJ

Helen O’Shea has the most unlikely of music success stories, which is why she is most definitely a woman on a mission. Originally from Limerick, Ireland, she was spearheading a career in medicine (Obstetrics and Gynecology) that spanned 4 countries: Ireland, UK, Canada, and the U.S.A. Finally in 2014, Helen shifted gears when she worked with two-time Grammy-winning producer Marc Swerksy, and the rest is history. Helen says changing careers was one of her biggest life-altering moments. She says, “My proudest accomplishment is mustering up the courage to follow my music dreams later in life after putting everyone else’s needs ahead of my own – as women often do for parents – partners – children – and releasing my first full CD of original songs Turning Tides… – exploring themes of relationships, motherhood, grief, loss & love.” Helen’s motto? “It’s never too late to dream.”

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
Being a woman in music means that I have an opportunity to write songs from my life experiences about situations that describe women’s dilemmas and how they are different from men – especially in terms of career trajectory in music or otherwise.
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
[It’s] a day to celebrate women worldwide – a time to be reminded of the work done on behalf of women where great advances have been made, as well remembering the considerable amount of work that still remains to be done to improve the lives of women of all ages in all countries.
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Dr. Maya Angelou.

Connect with Helen: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Website | Music

xariii
Photo by Dan Abramovici

X. Ari – Los Angeles

X. Ari is an award-winning singer, songwriter, and activist. She won Best Female Album of the year and Best Pop Female for her debut record Tunnel Vision by Artistic Echoes & Music Fusion in 2017.  She started the “Pain Into Power” campaign for mental health awareness, and is soon to release her newest EP in May of 2018, Dis-Order, to support the cause. Ticket sales of X. Ari’s concerts have also supported Jack.org, a Canadian charity organization that empowers youth and is a national network of young leaders on “transforming the way we think about mental health.” In addition to the release of new music this year, X. Ari  also has some exciting news to share: Journeys shoe stores will be playing a live performance video of her next single along with an interview about her “Pain Into Power” campaign for mental health awareness at 1200 stores across the US in Fall 2018. Now that’s progress! #PressForProgress

6/8: Describe what being a woman in music means to you:
I feel very empowered as a woman in the music industry. It took me time to feel that way since it’s kind of a “boys club”, but I’m proud to be a woman in the music industry and believe that the climate is changing for the better.
6/8: Describe what International Women’s Day means to you:
“International Women’s Day to me is a special day for women all around the world to unite and celebrate their womanhood.
6/8: Who is one female artist who inspires you?
Sia.

Connect with X. ARI: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Website | Music

For an extra International Women’s Day treat, we’ve compiled a Spotify playlist of all these ladies’ favorite girl power tracks. Check out the Girl Power Playlist by clicking here, or listen below.

 

#IWD2018 #PressForProgress #68IWD

Did you like this post?  Leave a comment below + follow us on our new social handles for more!
Twitter:  @68MusicNY
Instagram: @68MusicNY
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/68musicny

Finally, don’t forget to click here to sign up for our monthly newsletter, which includes all the latest happenings from us here at 6/8 Music, wise words from incredible women in music, and more!

6 thoughts on “Women on a Mission: International Women’s Day 2018

  1. What an amazing group of inspiring women! Shelby, I absolutely love your mission at GBTRS!! Empowering young women who are learning the ropes of the music industry now is going to build such a strong future for females in music. I’d love to get involved in anyway possible to support & help out.
    Love & light,
    X. ARI

    Like

  2. Thank you so much for featuring me! It is an honor to be surrounded by such incredible women composers, artists, and producers, and it’s extremely empowering!

    Like

  3. I love X.Ari and her pop electro sound! Especially “Vapors” and “Teachers.” Badass woman with a badass sound, and beautiful voice. I salute her philanthropic work as well. Inspired!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s