This week we caught up with Jordan Stewart, founder of local music blog, ‘Braw Gals in Music’ which promotes women working within the Scottish music scene. We discuss how the blog initially started, female inequality within the industry and what plans Jordan has for the future…
1. How did ‘Braw Girls in Music’ come about?
Braw Gals In Music came about as my third year project at University! I knew straight away when our projects were first discussed back in October 2020 that I wanted to do something that promotes and celebrates women working within the Scottish music industries.
The idea came from a place of frustration to be perfectly honest with the lack of representation that as women we still continue to face. In Scotland we are so lucky to be surrounded by a wealth of female talent across all industry sectors on our doorstep and I wanted to help shine a light on these women and help to give them the recognition they deserve!
2. What is your aim for the project?
My aim for the project is to hopefully help further open up the discussion around the treatment of women working within the Scottish music industries in a way that celebrates the work that they have been doing in order to help effect positive change to create a more equal and diverse community within music as well as helping to promote all of the incredible female artists that we have in Scotland!
3. Who are your favourite female musicians within the local scene?
I have so many! Lizzie Reid is amazing! Her new EP ‘Cubicle’ is so beautiful, I’ve been listening on repeat! I am also huge fans of all the amazing women that I’m studying alongside at University such as ASTER and Calorine! It’s so cool and inspiring to be surrounded by such incredible musicians and to get to learn from each other.
I must also say that we have curated a collaborative Spotify playlist where people have been adding in their favourite tracks by or that feature Scottish women, all the music on there is incredible and I highly recommend checking it out!
4. How do you think we can improve the gender inequality within the music scene?
It can be quite difficult to pinpoint one specific answer however I definitely believe that more festivals signing up to the Keychange initiative pledge for a 50/50 gender split would be a step in the right direction. I also feel that including men within this conversation is crucial to helping improve the inequality as there is a large proportion of men in positions of power that can help to influence change within their sectors and companies instead of just leaving it up to the women to create all of the changes that need to happen.
5. Do you think gender inequality in the music scene is improving?
I do feel that we are heading in the right direction to creating a more equal and diverse community within music however we still have a long way to go! In Scotland specifically there are so many incredible organisations that are working tirelessly to improve the scene such as Scottish Women Inventing Music, POWA and Popgirlz and I really admire the work that they are doing and again recommend checking them out to learn more about what they are doing and what we can do to support them within their missions. Organisations like these are definitely helping us to move in the right direction to improve gender inequality and representation within the Scottish music scene!
6. What have you learnt from the project?
So far throughout the duration of this project I think one of the most important things I have learned is the importance of helping to open up the discussion around our experiences as women in music but also the importance of building each other up and supporting others as much as we can and how many women within the local community really are so supportive to their peers and fellow industry workers!
On a more personal level this is the first project like this that I have put together and I have definitely realised just how important being organised and keeping to a schedule actually is haha, which I think I will carry with me for the rest of my working life.
7. What are your aims and ambitions for the future?
My ambition with the project for the future would be to keep growing our community and continue to support and promote as many women and non-binary people working within the Scottish music industries and perhaps eventually the rest of the UK. I think it would also be really cool to eventually branch out one day and do something within the live sector such as put on a couple of Braw Gals gigs as well when it is obviously safe to do so! Braw Gals In Music merch would also be pretty cool as well haha.
8. What advice would you give to young female musicians starting out in the industry?
I think the best piece of advice I could offer is to be yourself as cliche as that sounds and not to compare yourself to others! I know that it’s harder than it sounds and is something that I am still learning myself but you are amazing the way that you are and you don’t have to try and change or be someone else! Believe in yourself!
Keep up to date with Jordan and the blog via the links below...
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/brawgalsinmusic
Twitter – https://twitter.com/in_braw
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/brawgalsinmusic1/
Blog – https://www.brawgalsinmusic.com/