I'm Tracking Summer Music Festivals with the GA Tally

by Ian T. McFarland [ CC BY-SA 2.0 ],  via Wikimedia Commons

by Ian T. McFarland [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

What will you find when you use the GA Tally to chart your passions?

I’m a frequent GA Tally user. When I dig into publications or events that I care about, I crave some good news, and I almost always get a mixed bag. It feels much more important to find some equality in a space that I love. It’s next-level rewarding when I find that some of that balance is already there, and it's even more disappointing when gender balance is missing.

My passion is music festivals. I am an avid devourer of music with a treasure trove of fond live music memories. I started going to concerts with my music-obsessed parents when I was barely out of diapers, and I've never stopped. Summer concerts are the best — there's nothing like standing in a crowd or lying on a blanket as a steamy summer day barely cools into night just a few feet away from your new favorite band, in a sea of dancing raucous strangers.

I’m not sure I ever noticed the gender balance of these events until I started working with GenderAvenger and using the GA Tally. My first eye-opener was the appalling gender ratio at the Reeding Leeds festival illustrated on Twitter.

Since then I've seen profoundly disappointing gender ratios at major festivals, with this year's Coachella offering 16% female fronted acts and an only slightly better 20% at Bonnaroo. There was the recent #Saladgate controversy, where a country music consultant recommended that stations give less air-time to female artists if they want higher ratings. There was the publication of my favorite music critic's new book, The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic, a title that is both true and depressing. And there were these past two weeks, when I used the GA Tally over and over again in the hopes of finding a music festival with a Hall of Fame gender ratio and kept failing. (Shoutout to A Capitol Fourth! Thanks for showing that it can be done.)

What’s your passion? We want to see what you’re interested in, what you’re noticing, and what you discover.

Spending your summer with a large popcorn and a list of summer blockbusters? Use the GA Tally to breakdown casts and genres, or to take a closer look at a studio.

Have a favorite magazine or website? Find out if women’s voices are being adequately represented. (Get inspired by Avenger Jessica Esch, who tallied up each week’s cartoonists, illustrators, writers and contributors.)

In love with a local gallery or museum? Check out the artists they’re featuring and break down exhibits in the GA Tally.

The GA Tally shines a glaring light on places where women’s voices are missing and cheers on those who get it right. You can download the new mobile GA Tally app and add the numbers to create a powerful pie chart that you can share online.

Women belong in the public dialogue. That includes on stage, in festival lineups, and as headlining acts. I'm tackling one of my passions with the GA Tally, and I hope you do too.

We can’t wait to see what you find. Click here to download the mobile app. It’s super easy to use. Don’t forget to send us your tallies (you can even send them anonymously!). Good news, bad news, we want to hear it all.

Do you have a festival you want highlighted? Are you a festival organizer doing an awesome job getting women on your lineup? Send me a tweet at @GenderAvenger on Twitter.