The Standout Quotes From Face The Music’s White Wash Panel

23 November 2017 | 1:18 pm | Jessica Dale

“Race is a huge issue here in Australia.”

Face The Music’s White Wash panel set out to take an honest look at what role diversity plays in the music industry and why as a culture, Australia still struggles so much with representation.

Panelists Joel Ma, Amrita Hepi, Kish Lal, Yeo, and moderator Monica Tan shared their thoughts and recommendations for what it will take to create a more inclusive industry.

Here are our key takeaways from the panel:

  • “Race is a huge issue here in Australia.” - Monica Tan

  • “We do live in a country where Pauline Hanson has been resurrected.” - MT

  • “I’ve been passed over a lot for bigger acts that are white. It makes me question why they’re bigger and male and white.” - Yeo

  • “Do they consider that there is some sort of unconscious bias built in?” - Yeo, on the triple j hottest 100 only having six artists in the top 10 category since 1993.

  • "Music is just one arm of a giant construct of what we assume someone looks like that does that job." - Joel Ma

  • "Am I only here because they needed to fill the position?" Amrita Hepi, on quotas.

  • "It’s become very trendy to taut how diverse your organization is." - Joel Ma

  • "I’m not a casting agent for you." - Amrita Hepi, on being asked to recommend people for jobs.

  • "People are afraid of change. We all come to everything we do with a cultural bias." - Joel Ma

  • "It’s hard to go into anything and be like ‘I’m the diverse voice’." - Amrita Hepi

  • "Culture is something we’re responsible for." - Amrita Hepi

  • "It’s been stolen by evil white men." - Kish Lal, on the development of the techno scene from its origins.

  • "No decent art festival in Australia would just have art from just Australia, America and England." - Monica Tan, comparing music to art and film festivals.

  • "There is a zeitgeist of movement in it around the world." - Amrita Hepi

  • "Tick that box. Let that white guilt pay for your album." - Joel Ma, on applying for grants.

  • "I complained about a line-up once and they booked me to shut me up." - Kish Lal