Women in the Music Industry: Society’s Uncontrollable Bias


Natalie Abrahantes

Meghan Thee Stallion and Cardi B recently released WAP, immediately going under fire for the explicit lyrics.

Ingrid Moises, Staff Writer

Over the years, the music industry has transformed to portray a very diverse group of artists and genres. The rap industry, in specific, has grown in popularity since the 1970s. Rap music has been an important part of society for a long time and is now a global phenomenon especially popular with adolescents. While it is an industry that accepts all types of people, it does have a barrier within it that impedes women from using their artistic expression without being judged. Since it is a predominantly male industry, women have to face a constant battle to not be made a negative figure in the eyes of society.

In the heavily male-dominated rap industry, with rappers like Drake and Kendrick Lamar amassing millions of followers and many awards, female rappers have yet to make it far. Cardi B  has released many mainstream songs over the past few years and is well known for one of her hits, Bodak Yellow.  She has become one of the most important people in the music industry, and a public figure for rap. Recently, there has been much controversy over her latest song, “WAP” featuring Megan Thee Stallion. The explicit lyrics of the song have divided the internet when discussing whether or not the song is demeaning or empowering towards women.  While people criticized these artists for their music, others realized there was a clear bias between female artists and male artists, as many male rappers have made songs similar to it and were praised for their artistic capabilities. 

Alongside rap, other parts of the music industry have had deep-rooted problems with misogyny. An artist that has faced this issue way before female rappers were more common, has been Taylor Swift, in the country and pop side of music. Gaining a mass following of fans at a young age, she has been a large influencer for years; which has not been easy. Swift has encountered hate over the years and has been labeled as someone who is over-sensitive and has way too many partners. She has spoken about how her male counterparts have written about their partners as well, yet they do not get labeled negatively on social media and gossip news outlets. For example, in 2009, when Swift won an award at the MVA’s for the best music video, Kanye West interrupted her speech to say Beyonce’s was better. Men in music tend to pin female singers against one another, ultimately leads to negative connotations on women being dramatic. For years, Swift was pitted as the crazy ex-girlfriend while Kanye’s reputation was not tarnished. It is safe to say that if the roles were reversed, Swift would have faced ten times the backlash West faced, even over a decade later. She has been a victim of misogyny for many years in the music industry and is just now recognized for her efforts, yet it is still an ongoing problem in the rap industry.

Growing up I have seen that women in the music industry are constantly being made fun of or publicly humiliated. For some reason, it is easier to pick on women and making this extremely normalized.

— junior Kylie Alvarez

“Personally I see no problem with the song because at the end of the day rap artists always use explicit lyrics in their songs. I do not think it is inappropriate or demeaning towards women,” senior Neil Toloza said.

Some people may argue that there is no bias against women in the music industry. This would make more sense if men and women did not sing about the exact same things. It is easy for society to label a woman when they sing about their exes or their bodies. People see women as more fragile and sensitive, so they’re deemed easier to pick on.

As more women enter the realm of music, it is vital to break down the barriers put up against them. The amount of incredibly talented female singers who decide to quit music entirely because of the hatred towards them for purely being female is not acceptable. It is important to stop creating negative or “crazy”  reputations for successful women just because of what they sing on their albums. Currently, the society we live in today is heavily involved in social media, thus everyone should be mindful of what they post and be cautious of anything negative or degrading they say towards people.