FICKLE Friends’ frontwoman Natti Shiner has thrown her support behind a campaign to tackle the music industry’s gender imbalance.

Festival Republic and PRS Foundation have launched ReBalance, which aims to give female musicians and engineers a leg up.

The three-year project, based in Leeds, will provide one week’s studio recording time to a core female band, musician or solo artist each month in 2018, 2019 and 2020. As well as the studio and engineer, they will be provided with accommodation and travel.

At the end of the year, the successful acts will be given a slot at a Festival Republic or Live Nation event. In addition, the programme will support women who want to work in sound engineering and production by offering studio apprenticeships.

Strathallan Times:

Natti, who is part of the selection panel, said: “It’s something that’s close to home for me. I started at music school and started a band, but didn’t think we’d be taken seriously being that we were female fronted. I always had this weird feeling and awareness that we were just super uncool. I know it sounds stupid – but like – where did that feeling stem from?

“I also kinda felt for Reading & Leeds when they got bashed for not enough women on the festival line-up. I know for sure it wasn’t sexism, merely a severe lack of females within the industry itself to choose from.

“I’d never want to get booked out of pity or because it’s mandatory to book more female bands, but instead for my craft, regardless of gender.

“ReBalance looks to invite more women to be involved in music in all capacities. A lot of girls are discouraged by the overwhelming amount of men in bands, producers, the lot. ReBalance is for women, for girls, and aims to give them the confidence and support to develop.”

“I’m just hoping to increase that measly 20 per cent of female songwriters who are registered with PRS to significantly more.”

Strathallan Times:

The Brighton band – Natti along with Jack Wilson (keys), Harry Herrington (bass), Chris Hall (guitar) and Sam Morris (drums) – will be playing at Glasgow’s O2 ABC on Thursday, and they can’t wait.

Natti said: “We’re so stoked. It’s our biggest headline show up in Glasgow yet and our crowd is always proper rowdy – as to be expected from the Scots.

“There’s such a different vibe up North. For one, people seem to drink a lot more ha. It’s also just super nice to be back again. We spend so much time playing festivals further South. I’m sure we’ll be getting into some sort of trouble post-show. Just ask Prides.”

For those that have never seen the indie-popsters in action, the band promise an energetic live show with crowd participation, palm trees and confetti…

Natti added: “You’ll just have to come and find out.

“There’s nothing that can really beat the rush of performing live and bringing songs to life; people singing the lyrics back at you and stuff. But there’s something magical about first writing a song and producing it up.”

Over the next 12 months the band will be releasing an album and hope to hit the road to promote the new material.

Natti added: “Our album is coming first quarter of next year and it’s been such a long time coming so we’re psyched.

“Hopefully we’ll get a nice big album tour off the back of that, followed by the rest of Europe and maybe we’ll actually hit the States for a few first-time shows.”

Fickle Friends will be playing at Glasgow’s O2 ABC on Thursday, October 12. Tickets are £10.15, doors 7pm.

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