EqualizeHer LIVE at the Troubadour Set For Oct. 9 With Performances From Aimee Mann, Paris Jackson, Tinashe & More

Alisha Ballard and Linda Perry, co-founders of EqualizeHer. The duo is pictured in front of West Hollywood’s Troubadour nightclub, which will host the showcase event EqualizeHer LIVE Oct. 9. Photo by Emily Wynne-Hughes

West Hollywood’s Troubadour has been the location for many important moments in live music history from Joni Mitchell making her Los Angeles debut in 1968 to Harry Styles’ solo debut in 2017 with a surprise show featuring special guest Stevie Nicks. On Sunday, the legendary nightclub will host an intimate showcase for the new organization EqualizeHER, co-founded by singer/songwriter/producer Linda Perry and philanthropist Alisha Ballard.

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EqualizeHer LIVE at the Troubadour features Aimee Mann, Paris Jackson and Tinashe, along with performances from young, aspiring female artists. The Oct. 9 lineup includes Ashley Del Cid, a 17-year-old singer/songwriter from Los Angeles who is a participant with The Art Of Giving Back and affiliated with Little Kids Rock; Whesli, a musician, singer and songwriter from Tulsa, Oklahoma, who “blends organic textures and instruments with modern production, accompanied by heartfelt lyrics and melodies;” Audley, a self-taught musician, hip-hop artist and dancer from San Diego; up-and-coming singer/talent Tish Melton who’s better known as the daughter of activist and author Glennon Doyle; and Jasmine Star, a 19-year-old guitar virtuoso.

“I believe, as women, we have the responsibility of amplifying each other’s voices and personal experiences,” Tinashe said in a statement. “I am honored to work alongside EqualizerHer to inspire our youth to develop the confidence and power to disrupt the system, make an impact, and be whoever they want to be. Being surrounded by such incredible women in music has been so special for me and I hope this event makes a difference to all who attend, that it inspires them to pursue their music dreams and achieve success in whatever path they choose.”

The Oct. 9 event is the first in a series of planned events and activations from EqualizeHer, which launched at South by Southwest earlier this year, that will help give women a spot on the stage and in the studio.

A limited number of tickets were available to the public for purchase, with the majority designated as invitation-only for industry VIPs with the aim to raise awareness and funds to address gender inequity in music.

An announcement from EqualizeHer points to dire statistics in the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative’s 20121 Inclusion in the Recording Studio study that found women represent only 21% of artists, 12.6% of songwriters, and 2.6% of producers. 

The organization is committed to working toward equal representation of women across all sectors of the music industry “from recording studios, to stages to board rooms.” 

Perry spoke to Pollstar about how she and Ballard approached booking the event and the significance of giving young performers the chance to take the stage at the Troubadour.  

“I remember when I was a kid, if I went to shows, I wanted to be on that stage. And then once you’re on it, it gives you a whole other motivation,” Perry says. “So Alisha and I really believe in giving experience, giving opportunity, because the possibilities are endless. You know, once you have the hunger, once you have the drive, once you identify what you want, then it’s go-time. So we wanted to be able to put some young creative talent on stage and then let them open up for Aimee Mann, Tinashe, Paris Jackson. How cool is that?  They’re going to go on and open up and be playing at the Troubadour. So we’re hoping to raise the bar of opportunity and possibility in these kids’ minds – and that’s what it’s all about. It’s not really about Paris Jackson and Aimee Mann. It’s about, hey, can you guys help us support these kids? And they are!”

Ballard notes that it was important that the event showcased a variety of genres from the alternative rock / folk stylings of Aimee Mann to Tinashe’s take on R&B. 

 [We were] “very intentional about the different types of music, because we don’t want girls [thinking] ‘Oh, you have to be a pop star.’ … The music that’s in you is what the world needs to hear, whatever that sounds like and whatever genre,” Ballard says. “I think sometimes girls get fast tracked into the lane of ‘OK, you’re a pop star and that’s you,’ because labels want to make money, obviously. A lot of times it’s like, ‘What’s going to make the most money?’ rather than being true to what kind of artist you are.”

Visit https://www.equalizeher.org/ for more information.