Empresses + Queens: Etana on Being a Woman in Reggae


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The mission with [Etana’s original record label] 5th Element was: We were gonna teach people in the industry how to deal with female artists. Though there were female artists like Lady Saw and Lady G out there, it was still hard for other females to come up. It seemed like females were never dealt with fairly. They were still paid less than the men, or disregarded as not being important on the flyer… If you look at billboards from the past five years, you will see females as headliners. Which was not the case a while back. People are now attempting to do all-female lineups, which nobody has ever done before in reggae. I think females are being taken a lot more seriously. There has been progress and change but we have a long way to go.