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Here's what Ireland's 2016 summer festivals would look like without the men

Um… a little bare.

The Cure, performing at Electric Picnic in 2012 Source: Niall Carson

LAST YEAR, AN image of the Reading/Leeds festival lineup without the male-only acts went hugely viral.

In response, we looked at how Ireland’s biggest summer festivals would fare through the same filter. The results… weren’t great, although Electric Picnic fared considerably better than its rivals.

So, has anything changed this year? For International Women’s Day, we decided to take a look.

We eliminated all the male-only acts from the Electric Picnic, Longitude and Forbidden Fruit lineups. Only bands with core female members remain.

(If women sometimes appeared with the band as part of a rotating cast of musicians, they were out. Sorry, Broken Social Scene.)

Here’s the Electric Picnic lineup, without the men:

And the full version:

(A note here: Ezra Furman has spoken publicly about being gender-fluid.)

Here’s the Longitude lineup without men:

And the full version:

And here’s the Forbidden Fruit lineup without men:

And the full version:

Across all three festivals, Lana Del Rey is the only female-fronted headline act. It’s striking too that some of the higher-profile acts still on the list – LCD Soundsystem, Jungle – have only a single female member.

Some smaller Irish festivals, it should be noted, do a bit better in terms of headliners. Body and Soul has Santigold headlining; Castlepalooza has Cat Power.

The last couple of years have seen growing discussion around the lack of female headliners at music festivals. Glastonbury organiser Emily Eavis has promised that the festival will be “strong on women” this year, after a 2014 study showed that just 3.5 per cent of acts were all-female, across six major UK music festivals.

And US megafestival Coachella faced criticism again over its 2016 lineup.

Source: Refinery29

Source: Bustle

Writing for Bustle, Shannon Carlin argues that it’s down to festival organisers to fix the problem. “While there is no easy solution for the gender disparity in the music industry, there is a way to fix it when it comes to music festivals like Coachella: Put a woman at the top of the bill.”

Speaking to DailyEdge last year, Electric Picnic organiser Melvin Benn of Festival Republic appeared to suggest it was his ambition to cater to fans’ tastes with more female artists. “Electric Picnic has got a musical base that, this year [2015], means more female acts will be able to play,” he said.

More: Here’s how Ireland’s festivals fared last year>

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About the author:

Michael Freeman

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