9 Female Producers and DJs Leading The Charge

Behind the decks, it’s no secret that the world of electronic dance music is dominated by men (and we use that term loosely).

According to USA Today, only 5 percent of the 250 artists at this year’s Ultra Music Festival in Miami were women.  In the DJ Mag Top 100 list, only 3 women placed in 2013 and this year’s polls still exhibits an overwhelming lack of female presence.

On the plus side, we can’t say that the ladies aren’t making their mark in the scene. Pasquale Rotella, Insomniac Events CEO, recognizes that women play a huge part in the behind-the-scenes of it all.

‘If this industry was run by men, then I might think that gender is a reason, but the biggest agents and managers in EDM are women — there’s no shortage of women running things,’ says Rotella.

While experts may never be able to pinpoint exactly why female DJs are so scarce in the industry, the talent among the women we do have falls nothing short of phenomenal.

Check out our list of the top 10 females you need to know.

Louisahhh!!!

Photo via THUMP
Photo via THUMP

As a relatively new face in the mainstream scene, releasing her debut solo EP via Bromance Records in 2013, Louisahhh!!! has been killing it in the NYC nightlife scene for quite some time now.

The vocalist/producer combo launched her career as one half of NYCPARTYINFO. It was her leading vocals on a Danny Daze track that put her a step above the rest.  Now, you can catch her windpipes on Brodinski’s epic “Control Movement” release, among others.

Since then, she’s kicked it into high gear and has decided to drop her own vocals on her very own productions.  Talk about a one man (err…woman) band. This chick does it all.

Tokimonsta

Photo via Tumblr
Photo via Tumblr

Not just anyone can collaborate with Flying Lotus.  That’s a career move that takes skill, experience, and finesse. Previously dubbed as the #1 female DJ in the Los Angeles area, she’s got quite the resume under her belt.

With her classical piano background, Tokimonsta infuses the sophisticated instrument into her meticulously composed tracks for a truly unique and personalized sound.

As one of the leading ladies of the Alpha Girls series, Tokimonsta gets to display her presence and dominance in an industry primarily comprised of men.

“I hope girls can watch this show and see us all doing our thing and know that they can succeed at whatever they want to,” says Tokimonsta.

Anna Lunoe

Photo via Resident Advisor
Photo via Resident Advisor

With the opportunity to DJ at The Women’s Leadership Day event hosted by Sheryl Sandberg, you could say this chick oozes girl power.  LA-via-Sydney DJ/producer Anna Lunoe has proven to be a master behind the decks.  Dabbling with genres of all backgrounds, this woman has mastered the foundation of music and the feel good vibes.

“There aren’t many DJs who sing, and not many who are girls, and not many that release four different genres in one month in order to weird everyone out. I feel it now, that people understand what I’m all about.” says Lunoe.

Having teamed up with Chromeo, Daft Punk, Diplo, Soulwax, A-Trak, and many more, this woman’s vibe appeals to those across the board.

Reid Speed

Photo via Daily Dose Of Bass
Photo via Daily Dose Of Bass

Reid Speed (aka Reid Margolis), a true bass-music beauty, is not only a killer DJ but a dope-beat producer as well. Based out of Santa Monica, CA, this chick rounded up her husband Alexander Rosson and co-founded Play Me Records back in 2009 and its sister label Play Me Too Records later in 2010.  Her mixture of light, airy beauty and her downright nasty bass drops gives her the perfect appeal to the music lover in all of us.

“The DJ industry is a very competitive boys’ club for the most part,” explains Speed. Since I’m not a guy but I play hard music, I’ve always had to make my own path to success. In some ways being a girl is an advantage, because promoters love the idea of female DJs.”

Maya Jane Coles

Photo via Resident Advisor
Photo via Resident Advisor

This woman has been on the rise over the last few years, and there appears to be no end in sight.  For just 25 years of age, London-raised Maya Jane Coles.  In the last few years, she has graced the cover of Mixmag, Groove, Vogue, Rolling Stone, Men’s Health, Village Voice, and many more.

Last year, she landed her own hour on BBC Radio 1’s weekly radio show ‘Essential Mix’.  BBC’s own Pete Tong has even repped her hard for being “DJ Mag’s best producer, mix mag’s best breakthrough producer, and the best newcomer at the Ibiza newcomer awards in 2011.”

Not only has she placed on Resident Advisor’s top 10 list, but Rolling Stone has named her as one of The 25 DJs That Rule The Earth.

Heck, Mr. Tong said it better than we ever could have.  This girl is on fire.

Gina Turner

Photo via Do Androids Dance
Photo via Do Androids Dance

In her third trimester, this woman stood by her man, Laidback Luke, to throw down a b2b aboard Holy Ship at 4:45 in the morning.  If that doesn’t make Gina Turner Super Woman, we don’t know what does.  Aside from her husband, she’s worked alongside Chromeo, Diplo, Justice, Soulwax, and many others.  Did we mention she teaches Vinyasa Yoga, too? Is there anything she can’t do?

Turner has not only performed at some of the hottest nightclubs and venues alongside some of the biggest names, but she has also released tracks on Ministry of Sound, Ultra Records, Sound Pellegrino, and many more.

Her spinning skills are impeccable, her family life is one to envy and her physique is on point.  Talk about the epitome of a role model.

Nervo

Photo via Frederik Jaeger
Photo via Frederik Jaeger

Australian sisters Miriam and Liv Nervo launched their career back in the mid-2000’s. They’ve been working diligently to the top and it’s been a successful trip thus far.  The two Aussie gals started out writing hits for artists like Kylie Minogue and Ke$sha, as well we producing hits for the likes of Thirty Seconds to Mars and Katy Perry.  Before taking off on their own, they even co-wrote “When Love Takes Over,” the Grammy-winning track with David Guetta. Building on that success, the two started releasing progressive and electro-house tracks under their own identity, NERVO.

With major residencies in Ibiza, an abundance of big-name festival experience under their belt, and some pretty gnarly collaborations with names like Steve Aoki and Afrojack, these girls are taking the mainstream scene by storm.

‘Since we’re not spending all our time in the studio anymore, we get to play our records when we DJ and instantly see how the crowd reacts,’ states Miriam. ‘We’re always educating ourselves with that feedback. And those moments when people have their hands in the air and they’re loving the tunes—it’s one of the best rushes you can experience. It means everything to us.’

Nicole Moudaber

Photo via Unified Funk Option
Photo via Unified Funk Option

London techno queen Nicole Moudaber started from the bottom and worked her talents to rise her name to equate and underground sensation.  Close friend and mentor Carl Cox revealed Moudaber as “the most underrated DJ” in 2009 to DJ Mag.

Playing sold-out shows across the globe, locking in collaborations with Adam Beyer, Danny Tenaglia, Carl Cox, Victor Calderone, and more, and throwing down for the unforgettable Space Closing 2013, there isn’t anything that this woman won’t rock with class a sophistication.

In 2013, Moudaber spoke of her native genre saying, “the underground is stronger than ever.” And we have her to thank for it.  As she continues to warp and personalize an ever-changing genre, she continues to display the “loving, amazing, ritualistic vibe” of dance music that we all love.

Annie Mac

Photo via Suck My Disco
Photo via Suck My Disco

Annie Mac (Annie MacManus) has been killing the scene on her BBC Radio 1 show since 2004. In addition, she’s been releasing a monthly mix series with Jay-Z’s Life+Times. What’s even better is her feminist attitude towards the male-dominated industry of DJing.

“Women need role models, they need to see other women DJing. If I could inspire 18-year-old girls, that would be amazing,” says Mac to the London Evening Standard.

She’s more than just a DJ though, running her own club nights, DJ documentaries, and a load of compilation CDs with equally as impressive peers.

‘As long as you can prove you’re capable, then you can do it and that’s the way it should be. I don’t think gender determines what kind of DJ sets you’re going to do,’ adds Mac.

Who are some of your favorite female DJs and producers? Be sure to leave us a comment and let us know!

 

4 Responses to "9 Female Producers and DJs Leading The Charge"
  1. Reid speed changed my perception of music completely thank you so much she showed me what edm is about

  2. Thanks for the list, I just discovered a lot of these in the past few months! Maybe worth a mention is Peaches who is working on some new music and has kept things strong, Miss Kitten who just put out an amazing track with Dubfire and someone new I found online is Virgo with a song called ISS. Discovered her on Indie Shuffle/Hypem. She’s amazing. It’s kind of two sided calling them “Female Producers”, but I am okay with it as long as they’re getting good recognition.

  3. These ladies definitely throw down. My personal favorite is Anna Lunoe. Saw her multiple times, both at festivals and in intimate settings during her All Out Fall Out Tour. Couldn’t stop dancing the entire time.

    Definitely agree about the “Female Producers” moniker. They throw down regardless of gender and are right up there with the best of them but it’s always good to give props to what they are doing!