Pink, Katy Perry and Charli XCX slam Grammys president for telling women to “step up”

"Women owned music this year"

Pink, Katy Perry and Charli XCX have led the charge of criticism against the Recording Academy President for telling women to “step up” after the lack of female winners at the 2018 Grammys.

Out of all 899 Grammy nominees, only 9% were women – with only one winning a major award. Alessia Cara took home Best New Artist.

After much backlash from the music world and beyond, Recording Academy President Neil Portnow responded: “It has to begin with… women who have the creativity in their hearts and souls, who want to be musicians, who want to be engineers, producers, and want to be part of the industry on the executive level… [They need] to step up because I think they would be welcome.”


Now, Pink has hit back with a handwritten message – arguing that “women owned music this year”.

“Women in music don’t need to ‘step up’,” she wrote. “Women have been stepping since the beginning of time. Stepping up, and also stepping aside, women owned music this year. They’ve been killing it. And every year before this.”

Pink continued: “When we celebrate and honour the talent and accomplishments of women, and how much women step up every year, against all the odds, we show the next generation of women and girls and boys and men what it means to be equal, and what it looks like to be fair.”

Responding to her message, Katy Perry wrote: “Another powerful woman, leading by example. We all have a responsibility to call out the absurd lack of equality everywhere we see it.

“I’m proud of all the women making incredible art in the fact of continual resistance.”


Charli XCX also added her voice to the discussion, telling Portnow: “Ugh bout 2 step up on 2 ur face. Women are making AMAZING music right now wtf is this dude talking about ?????”

Meanwhile, many stars gave dedications to the ‘Time’s Up’ and #MeToo movements. A large number of guests to wear white roses as a mark of support for victims of sexual harassment and assault.

The Grammys took place in New York at the weekend, and were largely dominated by Bruno Mars who scooped all six prizes that he was nominated for –  including Best Album, Best Song, Record Of The Year and Best R&B song (much to the irritation of Bon Iver and Fleet Foxes’ Robin Pecknold).