The VO5 NME Awards last night saw a range of talented women gain recognition. Out of 25 awards, eight were won by women (we’re counting Pale Waves, who won the Under The Radar Award, because their line up is two women and two men). That’s 32% of NME awards going to female artists.
Although a third is not a huge amount, it’s an improvement on what we’ve seen recently with other awards and festival line ups. Note, in November 2017, the MOBO awards saw just one female winner, Stefflon Don (Best Female); and, as we reported earlier this month, Wireless has just three women in their entire three day line up.
Awards to note
Best New Artist – Stefflon Don
Best Track – Charli XCX, “Boys”
Best Music Video – The Big Moon, “Sucker”
Under The Radar Award – Pale Waves
NME Icon – Shirley Manson
Best International Band – Haim
Best International Solo Artist – Lorde
Hero of the year – Ariana Grande
Shirley Manson, the first ever winner of the NME Icon award, said in her acceptance speech:
‘Any decent person is shocked by the statistics surrounding not only the harassment that women face, not only the violence that we face, but the lack of representation that we enjoy in an industry.
‘The fact that women at my level enjoy under seven per cent representation is unacceptable. I call upon any musician in this room to stand up and really call out festivals for not representing women, in particular women of colour, our black sisters. We need to make a change. It’s vital.’
With the Brit Awards winners set to be announced on 21 February (nominees include 17 all female acts and 26 all male acts), we’ll be keeping a close eye on the results.