“We are not in the ‘shut up and sing’ business”: Music execs on how the industry can channel rage into action after Roe V. Wade ruling

“If you have a platform, use it.”

Protest

Image: Xavier Lorenzo / Getty Images

Music leaders have spoken up on how the industry can contribute to the fight for reproduction rights after the landmark Roe V. Wade was overturned this June, ending abortion access for millions of Americans.

Speaking to Billboard in a recent interview, Chair and CEO of Capitol Music Group Michelle Jubelirer emphasised the importance of taking a stand against the ruling that has set women’s rights in the country back several decades: “You can’t plan an education, a career, a life without planning your family. In the United States — where employers are not required to provide paid family leave and the maternal mortality rate is higher than any other wealthy country, especially for Black women — forcing parenthood on people is an unspeakable cruelty.”

Discussing how those in positions of influence can make use of their platform to support the cause, Jubelirer says, “We are not in the ‘shut up and sing’ business. Many of us run social media accounts that have genuine impact.”

“From the upcoming midterms to funding organisations providing sexual and reproductive health care, there is a lot of crucial, urgent work to be done triaging the confusion on the ground and helping to put sane leaders in key positions of resistance moving forward. If you have a platform, use it.”

Emily Bowman, music growth strategist at TikTok, echoed the sentiment, saying “I have personally seen videos [on TikTok about] where to volunteer in my community, how to make my voice be heard and educational election content, and in real-time reporting footage. Please post and tell everyone you know about resources that you locate — you never know who may see it and pass along to someone who may need it.”

As for those who prefer a more hands-on approach, offering financial support (e.g. via donations, benefit concerts and songs) to organisations that provide access to safe, legal abortion and reproductive health services is one way you can contribute. Companies can also work with their artists to amplify the impact of their activism.

Founder of Cosmica Management & Records, Gil Gastelum says, “We just can’t let the artists sing or take action on their own. Organise a benefit to raise funds for the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice, Planned Parenthood, et cetera. Reach out to them: In many cases, they can help get you organised and spread the word for a benefit that can really pinpoint your community/location.”

“They need our financial support to continue to provide and to operate. Talk to a local music venue or community centre to see if they can donate a night.”