“The music industry sees social media as an inherently feminine thing”
Rebecca Lucy Taylor aka Self Esteem wrote an essay about the pressure she thinks female artists are under to provide TikTok content.
The article follows a number of artists speaking publicly about their experiences with their labels and management, pushing them to post on the social media platform.
They include FKA Twigs, who said “It’s true that all record companies ask are TikToks and I was reprimanded today for not trying hard enough” and has since deleted his TikTok account. Charli XCX, Florence Welch and others also expressed similar sentiments.
Halsey, meanwhile, said earlier this month: “I have a song that I love and want to get out as soon as possible, but my record company won’t let me… my record company says that I can’t release her unless they can fake a viral moment on TikTok. I just wanna release the music man, and I deserve better tbh. I’m tired.”
write in The GuardianTaylor said, “I think it’s no coincidence that the recent examples of artists saying their labels forced them onto TikTok are all women.
“My theory as a pub psychologist is that the music industry sees social media as an inherently feminine thing – it’s just another patriarchal idea that women and gay men are interested in the details of other women, while men are just too busy and important to be. interested in that kind of stuff.
She added: “There is something darker and more invasive about the way women are encouraged to use it. It only reinforces the nagging feeling that as a female artist, your music and your art are not taken seriously.
Taylor spoke of the positive side of her relationship with social media, which she considers an “extra arm to my art”, but asked the question: “What do you do if sharing parts of yourself is not not for you ?”
She argued that “it still seems too early to know if throwing shit on a wall and hoping something goes viral actually translates to a lasting and engaged fan base; and following that, a space for the artist to create and experiment. (It’s the dream we’re all chasing, by the way, not fame.)
“All creative industries must be able to adapt. In my opinion, what really engages consumers across a broad demographic are great songs, and artists need to have a space to write them and then share them in a way that’s true to their art.
Taylor will be taking Self Esteem’s recent acclaimed album “Prioritise Pleasure” back on the road in 2023, with a new “I Tour This All The Time” tour of the UK and Ireland. She will also be performing in London this summer as part of the All Points East festival spin-off shows.