It’s been a decade where women were told to "step up" by the (now former) president and CEO of the Recording Academy after the Grammys; where widespread alleged abuse by figures in the music industry including R. Kelly, Russell Simmons, and Charlie Walk was exposed; and where women got nowhere near equal time in the headlining slots on festivals, in Billboard's Hot 100, or in the studio. We finally started talking about the failure of the industry to support, promote, and make women visible in all aspects, both in front of and behind the microphone. We finally started talking, thanks to #MeToo, about how the music industry doesn’t protect women and allows predators to flourish. And we finally started talking about how online harassment and overall objectification of women in music is not something we should accept.
We also landed in the age of streaming music, where money from streams became the dominant force. The way artists do business, the way they promote and release albums, and how consumers listen to them, has changed dramatically in this decade, and women have been a driving force in innovating.
Ahead we look at seven women who absolutely changed the game in music in the 2010s. They did it by fighting the system, by blowing everything up and doing it their own way, and by speaking out when they saw injustice.