Founded in 2015, Bristol Women in Music (BWiM) is a Bristol-based nonprofit committed to tackling gender imbalance in the music industry. Its aim is to use a music conference to raise awareness of the roles, problems and successes of women in the music industry Clay industry, launched 2017 and networking events for Bristol women working in music.BWiM, in partnership with Saffron records, also use their community to empower aspiring female and female DJs through their eight-week DJ course Mix nights, launched over 2 years ago with the help of DJ Shanti Celeste. The project provides aspiring and budding DJs with the skills, confidence, and business expertise to gain an in-depth understanding of the music industry as a whole.
On one evening a week, the participants work together and learn everything from beat matching to promotion under the watchful eye of three BWiM mentors, DJs in Williams, Danielle Doobay and Daisy moon. The course ends with a final show at The Love Inn in Bristol. Here, students are challenged to impress a crowd of music industry minds – including representatives from Glastonbury, as well as the city’s Motion Club and Love Saves The Day festival – with their 30-minute set.
The Mix Nights is undoubtedly a success – since almost all participants continued to play, hosted radio programs or organized their own nights, the waiting list for the next one is currently 300 people.
Meet five women who honed their skills at Mix Nights and find out how that helped them below.
“I didn’t DJ until I moved to Bristol. I was new to town and got to meet like-minded women, learn DJs, and start a community. I would describe Mix Nights as a comprehensive introduction to DJing. It’s a bonus that Mix Nights is for women, but nothing about it is gender specific; The real bonus is the community aspect that is run by women for women.
“There was so much solidarity between everyone I met on the course that when gigs showed up they were offered and shared. It was a blessing and I didn’t have to go to every club and say, ‘Hi, I’m a’ DJ! I’m a DJ! ‘ After the course it was really smooth as I was lucky enough to have met the right people. “
Mix Nights is really liberating. You can be as creative as you want and they give you plenty of space to play and discover yourself as an artist.
“When I started Mix Nights, I had no experience with vinyl. The girls definitely honed my beat matching and EQing skills. Plus, the course helped me put together a mix that helped me get booked. I’ve played Glastonbury, Love Saves the Day, and Love International. I was also involved in directing the Bristol Night Rough Draft, which is where I live. I’m playing the Motion Yard Party that’s coming up this summer – and jumping up in front of some of my heroes! You can also hear me on Noods radio at the monthly Rough Draft residency. Mix Nights was definitely a great platform and gave me the confidence I didn’t have before to do all of these things. “
Mix Nights is great fun! I never felt unsafe or under pressure. The ladies who run it are very talented DJs and producers. Among other things, I’ve made some friends for life.
“Mix Nights generally gave me the basics of how to mix, create a set, and get it flowing. I can confidently beat the match and use EQ effectively. The first week we all wondered, ‘How are we going to end up playing ?!’ But at the end of the term, I can’t believe how confident we were. So far I’ve created a guest mix for the radio and played at the Loves Saves The Night Party on Motion.
“I don’t think there is any other workshop like this where – as a woman – you can go and focus on what you need to learn. In a smaller group, you can just ask questions and you won’t feel silly and you can go at your own pace. The two mentors were great and without them I wouldn’t have understood so quickly. “
Mix Nights is an encouraging and nurturing environment.
“Before the Mix Nights, I was afraid of CDJs. I had to use them when I had my radio show on SWU FM and let’s just say I’m glad I had my chat back on. When I went to the workshops, I learned what all those flashing lights did and how to beat matches – none of those things I had a clue about.
“Since Mix Nights, I’ve set up one night, Booty Bass, in January that has a monthly residence. It’s great for general practice and to see if this is something I would or could do as the right thing. It went really well so now I have “I actually booked every weekend until the end of August which is amazing. I feel really happy. “
Mix Nights is a great place to learn, meet new people, hone new skills, and experiment with new sounds. An invaluable experience.
© Tom Ham
“When I came to Mix Nights, I had already learned to mix with a friend, but during the course I was able to get more specific feedback from the instructors and other participants, which was really nice. I am also very grateful that we could play our first gig!
“I’ve been DJing a lot since I’ve been part of Mix Nights, I’ve been seen a few times on Rinse FM, Reprezent Radio and Sub FM with Who Cares Stage. I also played LUCY in Romania with the other Bristol DJs last month and sepia which was a lot of fun. I also have the radio residency 10wentyradio.com which I started in June 2018. “
Mix Nights is uplifting, inviting, inclusive, supportive!To listen Red Bull Radio for in-depth interviews, exclusive mixes, live broadcasts and more