11 DJs to follow in honor of International Women’s Day
11 DJs to follow in honor of International Women's Day
In celebration of International Women’s Day, we are highlighting some of the best and brightest women DJs and producers from around the world. From mainstage headliners, to queens of the underground and tastemaking icons, these women continue to exemplify some of the most-talented, forward-thinking, and exciting artists in the industry today.
Last year, we spotlighted the likes of Nicole Moudaber, Nina Kraviz, Maya Jane Coles, Nervo and more — this year, we turn our attention to another class of standout acts. Here are 11 leading ladies that should be on your radar.
ANNA’s career began at her father’s nightclub in her native country, Brazil, where she realized at just 14 years old that her purpose in life was to live behind the decks bringing quality music to the masses. Having been picked up by Christian Smith for her debut release on Tronic in 2011, her sensual brand of techno and tech house has been supported by multiple DJs and labels while her name consistently appears at the top of Beatport charts, most recently with her #1 debut single on Diynamic “Odd Concept.” ANNA is definitely someone to keep your eye on as she continues to blaze a path towards the upper echelons of electronic music.
Since her first release “Gremlin” in late 2013, self-taught Canadian producer REZZ has shed the ubiquitous Gesaffelstein comparisons and amassed a dedicated following of her own through her unique style of industrial techno. She’s received industry approval from the outset, signing to Skrillex’s OWSLA imprint for her inaugural EP and recently moving to mau5trap. Along the way, the 20-year old has sharpened her performance chops in the big leagues, alongside Destructo and Justin Martin on the Ship2Ship tour and traveling with her label boss deadmau5 and ATTLAS on the Mau5hax bus tour. Her age belies her prodigious catalog and touring pedigree — ultimately, REZZ has proven that she’s much more than a newcomer to watch.
Arguably the Queen of French techno, Louis Pillot crafts compositions so caustic and ominous that even Gesaffelstein may quake in the presence of her musical furor. Though the warehouse sorceress’ breakthrough occurred largely through Brodinski’s manly-named Bromance imprint, her artistic pseudonym proclaims her presence, refusing to allow any of her male counterparts to overshadow her; Within any collaboration, Louisahhh!!! assumes her role as the primary focal point. While the stylization of both her stage name and label suggest, Madame Pillot’s voice is a force to be reckoned with, but neither of these facets roar as loudly as her music itself. We are eternally grateful to Louisahhh!!! for being one of the most fierce and formidable players in the genre.
Since her b2b sunrise set with Skrillex during Bonnaroo 2014, Mija has quickly fallen in with OWSLA’s crew and also is an active participant in the dance music industry’s gender equality movement, Nap Girls. Mija’s incredible ability to transcend genres, flitting from happy hardcore to dubstep and everything in between, has allowed her to establish quite the name for herself as one of dance music’s rising stars. Her signature teal hair and humble, yet infectiously positive attitude have garnered attention from some unlikely areas — last month, for example, she was featured by Playboy as a rising artist in their Social Media Star series.
Magda is a multifaceted artist that excels at whatever she thinks feels right. Her influence is felt throughout every corner of nightlife: she promotes highquality tequila (she has her own brand, Maria Pascuala), tech collaborations, fashion and art, in addition to producing original tracks and a DJ booked on some of the most sought after festival lineups. Born in Poland, raised in Detroit, and a citizen of the world, she began her DJ career in 1998 as a teenager and hasn’t stopped swimming in the deep end of music since. She started touring with Richie Hawtin’s Minus imprint, and was a part of Solomun’s inaugural +1 party outside of Ibiza at BPM 2015. In addition to her musical collaborations, she’s a label boss of Items & Things, which has seen many successful releases from the offkilter and uncommon sounds of up and coming artists, like Jimmy Edgar and Rework.
Kim Ann Foxman (US)
You know Kim Ann Foxman best as the voice mingling with Maya Jane Cole’s intoxicating dark rhythms on the track “Creature,” but you may not know her as a successful DJ in her own right. She’s dance music’s Grace Jones: quirky, unabashedly herself, and full of passionate vibes. All of these qualities translate into her music, and her sets. She’s also a label boss. Firehouse Recordings, in association with London based arts label, The Vinyl Factory, is inspired by her New York residence. Like her, and the city she calls home, her music, and Firehouse’s releases, are full of “superdynamic, gorgeous and weird” sounds that will keep the listener searching for more of the same boundary-pushing creativity long after they turn off the volume.
Lee K (US)
The California resident of FNGRS CRSSD (hosts of CRSSD festival) is quickly becoming the new face of minimal tech and tech house. She keeps to herself, shying away from self- promotion, and putting all focus into the music, and events she associates herself with. Lee K no stranger to the underground scene, and she shows her veteran status with her track selection from the depths of house and techno archives, and strange corners of new release land. Her enigmatic and mysterious presence shows through in each set as she weaves together grooving, dynamic percussion and driving basslines.
Nina Las Vegas (Australia)
It’s a rare individual who can make the jump from tastemaker to hit-maker, but Australia’s own Nina Las Vegas has managed to do just that. Getting her start on Triple J radio, she helped to give local talents like Flume, What So Not, Flight Facilities, and Wave Racer some of their first exposure before they blew up on the international scene. Since then, she’s released EPs with fellow Aussie Swick on Skrillex’s NEST HQ, Don’t Send, and A-Trak’s Fool’s Gold Records, Cool Sports. She’s also been a vocal opponent to her home-state of New South Wales’ “lockout laws,” which seek to curb the late night club-culture in the region. Nina’s since left Triple J to pursue her own productions and record label, NLV Records, but signed off with a final mix featuring heavyweights such as Diplo, Anna Lunoe, Cashmere Cat, RL Grime, Flume, and more.
Gina Turner (US)
More than just the epitome of #RelationshipGoals with husband Laidback Luke, Gina Turner is proof that women in music can have it all: the career, motherhood, varied interests, and strong interpersonal relationships. Connecting mindbodysoul, with everything she does, she is a mother to toddler EvaLina, label boss for Turn It Records, and yoga master (she even has a clothing line in the works), she still maintains a heavy touring schedule and a steady stream of new productions, all while playing her unique blend of New York City house music and hosting yoga sessions wherever she may be touring.
Lauren Ritter (US)
If you’re familiar with the New York city underground scene, Lauren Ritter is most likely on your radar, but if not, meet the powerhouse Brooklyn DJ redefining how after hours sound, even in the middle of the day. Resident DJ at Brooklyn’s popular Resolute parties, and with All Day I Dream, Ritter can conjure movements out of even the most stubborn and exhausted dance floor dwellers.
Kate Simko (UK/US)
Electronic music producer, film composer, live performer and DJ, Kate Simko is a product of Chicago and London, with degrees from Northwestern and a masters in Composition for the screen from The Royal College of Music. Simko is the proof that electronic music is about so much more than the traditional four on the floor beat; it has melody, soul, passion, and a story to tell. Throughout the future avenues of her career, one thing is certain: Simko will be mesmerizing audiences wherever she goes.