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DJ TIna T. > Should Female DJ’s Be Separated In Competitions?

Should Female DJ’s Be Separated In Competitions?

I read a tweet this morning from @ifelicious  about a new female DJ competition that inspired this blog post:

“The ‘She Can DJ’ Talent Search Is Coming To America


First off, the name of this new show is annoying: “She Can DJ”, implies that women can not DJ. Off to a bad start in my eyes. I also find it ironic that all 4 judges of this competition are men. I DO appreciate the outreach to encourage more women to step up and give them more opportunities. This is definitely needed.

I’ve always had split opinions on female DJ competitions. Part of me wants to support them and the women competing, but at the same time, I think the majority of the female DJ competitions are just another cheesy marketing promotion that exploit the novelty of female DJs. Do they really care about showcasing women’s skills and empowering them or are they looking for a way to make money and get people through the door? It comes down to what the true intentions are behind it…

I remember back in 2007 during my job interview at BPM Magazine in Los Angeles, I totally shoved my foot in my mouth when asked my thoughts on the DJ contest they had done in 2005 called “Beauty and The Beats.” Having no filter, I explained how I thought the contest puts too much focus on looks and not skills simply based on the name. I was quickly put in my place, but luckily still got the job! Later the winner from the contest performed at: “BPM & WMC present: The Women Behind The Wheels.” I like this presentation because it showcases them and their skills in a respectable way working together.

Ironically, there is now a new show coming out on Dutch TV with the same name “Beauty And The Beats” (So creative). Phil Morse from the web site asked a great question in his write up about the show:

Is an all-female DJ talent show judged by men a step forward for either women or DJing? Or is it a sad attempt to cash in on DJ culture / sex by the TV channel confirmed?”

A few years ago I was asked to judge an all female DJ battle in Orange County, CA. It was an honor to support these girls and it was great to see everyone coming together. I just couldn’t help to think how much better it would be to see these girls working together instead of competing against each other.

Two summers ago, I competed in a female DJ battle at Tao Beach in Las Vegas called “Tao Beats.” Since the winner would get a full page spread in the Las Vegas Weekly, I was on a mission to win and use that to promote my DJ summer camp for teens: Camp Spin Off! Unfortunately I lost. Can’t win em all:)

Media already does a great job of pinning women against each other in catty, bitchy roles on television. I wish we could see more examples of women supporting each other and creating a movement together in the DJ scene.

I understand that women still have a way to go in being viewed as an equal competitor by the masses, but will separating ourselves from the boys to have our own competitions really help us towards the goal (or maybe just my personal goal) of being equally respected?

So, basically I am still on the fence with the whole female DJ battle thing. Sports are separated by gender because of physical differences. With DJing, there are no physical advantages, so there is no real reason to separate. Ultimately I want to see women battling with the men on an even playing field.

“Girls compete with each other, women empower one another.” – unknown

These are just my opinions, I would love to hear yours! Please share in the comments…

– Tina T.



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May at 9:37 AM

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