Move the nee­dle into a new groove

Aim­ing to strike a bet­ter gen­der bal­ance at Ir­ish clubs and mu­sic fes­ti­vals, Gash Col­lec­tive are run­ning free DJ work­shops for women over the sum­mer

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - NEWS - Louise Bru­ton

The lack of women on fes­ti­val line-ups is caus­ing plenty of heated de­bate on so­cial me­dia, with those against the idea of equal­ity re­spond­ing with “women ar­ent gud enuf!!!1!!!” or “women just aren’t into mu­sic”, ex­cept with more spell­ing mis­takes.

This, we know, isn’t true and the Gash Col­lec­tive, to­gether with Smirnoff, are run­ning free DJ and pro­duc­tion skills work­shops for women over the sum­mer around the coun­try. Here women can learn how to use soft­ware such as Able­ton, equip­ment such as CDJs and turnta­bles, and find out how to make beats that will make a crowd go pure men­tal. It’s all aimed at help­ing women break into an in­dus­try that can feel over­whelm­ingly male at times.

“You need to be more aware of the dis­crep­an­cies that are in line ups at the mo­ment, with gen­der and people of colour and ev­ery­thing else,” says Cork DJ, pro­ducer and Gash Col­lec­tive mem­ber Ellen King, aka ELLLL. “They just keep book­ing the same top 10. I know it’s not in­ten­tional but I do think pro­mot­ers need to be more aware. Es­pe­cially if they’ve got a bit more money be­hind them, [and when pro­mot­ing] the big­ger con­certs.”

Along with other Gash Col­lec­tive mem­bers, Eve, Lolz, Mar­ion Hawkes and Aoife Nic Canna, King will be lead­ing these work­shops, and she says they are a real chance for any woman over the age of 18 (there’s that drinks spon­sor­ship for you) who pre­vi­ously felt like they could never make mu­sic.

“The main thing is that no ex­pe­ri­ence is nec­es­sary, be­cause I think a lot of people could feel re­ally self-con­scious about it and it is re­ally about just hav­ing a go in an in­for­mal set­ting,” she says. “I think the big thing, es­pe­cially with CDJs and decks, is they’re very ex­pen­sive equip­ment and a lot of people don’t have ac­cess to them, un­less they know some­one who owns a bar or some­thing.”

All of the equip­ment is pro­vided on the day, in­clud­ing lap­tops and records, and whether you love house mu­sic or pop, the work­shops are open to you.

“It’s a re­ally good op­por­tu­nity to just get stuck in, in a com­pletely non-judge­men­tal at­mos­phere,” King says, “where you can make loads of mis­takes – no­body cares, totally fine –

Cork DJ Ellen King: “It’s a re­ally good op­por­tu­nity to just get stuck in, in a com­pletely non-judge­men­tal at­mos­phere”

have a bit of fun, maybe make some friends out of it, maybe go away a lit­tle bit in­spired to do your own thing, what­ever that may be.”

One work­shop has al­ready taken place in Galway. The re­mained are in Cat­a­lyst Arts in Belfast on July 15th: the Wan­des­ford Quay Gallery, Cork, on July 22nd, and the Tara Build­ing, Dublin, on Au­gust 12th. See this­greedypig.com/ move the nee­dle for de­tails.

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