We were just as horrified as you when the Annenberg Inclusion Initiative released their annual stats about inclusion in the music industry at the start of the year.
The USC think tank's findings were unfortunate; in 2017, the research showed that men were dominating pop music, with women representing only 16.8% of popular artists on the top charts. It was a six-year low, showcasing how "women are pushed to the margins or excluded from the creative process" in music-making.
To combat this bleak statistic, we found we actually didn't have to look far at all for strong examples of women in the pop sphere — encompassing stylistic diversity that includes genres like R&B, hip-hop, and electronic — who were pushing boundaries and shaking things up with their virtuosic art.
Below, 100 women across all spectrums who are revolutionizing pop, and the face of music as we know it for the better, this year and beyond. Click through and listen to a special playlist curated by PAPER editors, featuring all 100 pop stars.
Uffie, the MySpace queen who stunned the Internet and revolutionized music and pop culture with "Pop the Glock" nearly 15 years ago, is back. Her debut album Sex Dreams and Denim Jeans, came out in 2010, and it further capitalized on what makes Uffie so singular: she's a rapping and singing artist who loves hip-hop, innately understands the mechanics of pop, and almost goofily plays within the genres without ever taking herself too seriously. She's since become a mother of two, but has returned this year with new singles "Drugs," "Spaceship" with Galantis, and "Your Hood." All songs, while stylistically different from one another, feel like "Uffie circa 2018": still tres chic, still trendy, always on her own terms. Uffie is once again proving that she's unlike anyone else because she's so committed to being herself. — Michael Love Michael (Photo via Uffie)
Story by Michael Love Michael, Vrinda Jagota, Justin Moran, Jael Goldfine, Katie Skinner, Talia Smith