British Female Artists Received Just 19% of Top 100 Radio Airplay in 2020

British Female Artists Received Just 19% of Top 100 Radio Airplay in 2020

New gender disparity survey follows research carried out on Irish radio stations and published earlier this summer.

A new report carried out by music publicist Linda Coogan Byrne of Good Seed PR and British organisation Women in CTRL has revealed that female British artists received just 19% of radio coverage in the top 100 of UK radio airplay this year so far. 

The report follows Coogan Byrne’s gender disparity report on Irish radio stations, published in June, which revealed that Irish female artists were receiving only 8% of the top 20 airplay across twenty-seven stations. 

The UK report is presented in two sections. The first analyses the gender breakdown of the featured artists in the top twenty most played radio songs from 1 June 2019 to 1 June 2020. The second section focuses on the gender breakdown of the artists in the top 100 radio airplay songs from 1 January to 15 August 2020. The data, which was provided by music airplay monitoring service Radiomonitor, is based on British domestic artists only. 

Out of the top 100 radio airplay songs this year, just 19% were by female artists, 30% were collaborations of male and female artists and 55% were male. Across the individual radio stations examined in section one, the representation of female artists ranged from 0% to 40%. BBC Radio 2 featured 40% female artists in its top twenty most played songs, while BBC Radio 1, BBC Radio 6 Music and Capital XTRA featured 10% female artists. Kerrang! Radio, Absolute Radio and Radio X featured 0% female artists in their top twenty. 



The findings in the analysis of the Top 100 Airplay Chart also show that only 18% of credited songwriters were female and just 3% of producers were female. 

In an article in The Guardian following the report, spokespeople for the BBC and Bauer Media (which owns Absolute Radio and Kerrang!) said they were committed to doing more to improve gender diversity on air.

The spokesperson for Bauer Media said: 

We are committed to working with labels and the wider music industry to improve female representation – particularly within rock and indie, which are both genres that are historically male-dominated. We agree there is more to be done and we will continue to improve the variety of music we play in order to rightfully reflect the audiences that we serve.

Download the full report below. 

Published on 26 August 2020

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