During Bon Iver's Coachella performance this weekend, frontman Justin Vernon gave a deserving shoutout to Discwoman, the New York-based collective that actively creates spaces for marginalized groups in dance music. Founded by Frankie Hutchinson, UMFANG and Christine Tran, Discwoman focuses on female-identifying DJs, representing and showcasing "cis women, trans women and genderqueer talent in electronic music," according to their website.
Vernon's decision to wear the merch on Coachella's globally livestreamed stage was an important, effect move that visibly empowered women who're fighting the EDM industry's longtime patriachy--especially one that's traditionally straight, white and cisgender.
While female producers and DJs are becoming more visible, there's still a pressing gender imbalance, especially at Coachella. In 2016, Thumpreported the California festival booked only 56 female acts compared to its 176 male acts--that's only 24.1%, which was a higher percentage in comparison to similar EDM fests, like Ultra and Electric Forest. Lady Gaga was Coachella's first female headliner in more than 10 years, following Bjork in 2007.
"Right now the majority of big EDM executives are white males," Tran told Huffington Postlast year. "By offering more perspectives within the business side of the industry this engrained sexism can change."
As one Twitter user wrote of Vernon, we too "did not see patriarchy smashing club bangers as his bag," but we've happily been proven wrong. Though wearing a Discwoman tee should not be the beginning and end of your personal fight against male-dominated culture, it's certainly a worthy first step. You can purchase one, here.