Cool, California rock trio Haim spent most of their early career making a splash on the international festival circuit but they've now revealed how the sexism in the music industry saw them falling prey to unfair pay disparities between themselves and male artists.
In a recent interview with Grazia the sisters, who once upon a time got their break supporting Taylor Swift, opened up about firing a booking agent after discovering they were being paid 10 TIMES LESS than a male act performing at the same festival.
While the all-female band, made up of Este, Danielle and Alana Haim, did not disclose the name of the festival, they said they "didn't think twice" about questioning the money they were getting because they hoped the tours would help them get noticed on the radio.
"We later found out that someone was getting paid 10 times more than us," singer Danielle told Grazia. "And because of that we fired our agent."
While the incident was a few years ago, the gals still seem furious—and rightly so.
The band, who is currently booked by CAA (whom they signed with in 2017) are on their Sister Sister Sister Tour and say they're now going to lengths to question things so they don't get underpaid again. But it's not easy because the pay-gap problem is pretty endemic within the arts.
Social science research from 2016, published in the journal Social Currents, showed that women in the arts earn significantly less than men across the board.
Lehigh University sociologist Danielle J. Lindemann, who led the study which surveyed 33,801 people and revealed that, on average, women make $20,000 USD less than men, told NPR:
Of their situation, Danielle says making sure pay stacks up in the music biz is "so hard to check." Adding, "Everything's so secretive about how much people are getting paid, and that's bullshit."
However, the sisters say no matter what they're up against, they've got each other's backs.
"That's why I love my sisters so much. I trust them with my fucking life. We're all in this together," Alana said. "But it's scary out there and it's fucked up. It's fucked up not even to be paid half the same amount. But to be paid a tenth of that amount of money? It was insane."
According to the interview, the group's collective dream "would be to headline Glastonbury"; let's just hope that if they do, their pay will match the men who've also had the honour.