Women in music face a number of different challenges, with everyone from Beyoncé to Taylor Swift calling out the unfair treatment they face and the need for equality. And Bethany Cosentino, one half of Best Coast, is no exception to the growing line of musicians who are women looking for change.
On Friday, Bethany took to her Instagram and Twitter accounts to address a concert review that reduced Best Coast's live performance to Bethany's appearance.
"But to do justice to the huge let-down that was Best Coast’s show last Wednesday at the Fillmore, I need to describe the incredible outfit bandleader Bethany Cosentino was wearing,” writer David L. Garcia of the University of San Francisco’s Foghorn paper wrote. “She looked sexier and badder than any rock star I’ve seen in years.” The writer then goes on to describe her outfit in detail while noting than “men swooned.”
Bethany, a musician who writes and crafts all the songs Best Coast releases, was not pleased that this intro to the review focused on her appearance first and not the music. "Sexism is alive and well people!!!!! This literally makes my blood boil," she wrote on Instagram. "If you aren't happy with my show that's perfectly fine, but leave my looks + outfit out of it."
If Bethany's reaction seems fierce, consider how few times you read something that focuses on a male musician's appearance (Justin Bieber and Kanye West are the only ones who truly come to mind). Later, Bethany took to Twitter to expand on her frustrations.
Since then, Bethany has received mixed reactions, with some men perpetuating their sexism and other folks (especially fellow women musicians like Meredith Graves of punk group Perfect Pussy and Katie Crutchfield of indie rock group Waxahatchee) lending their support.
And the newspaper also released a statement, though they refuse to acknowledge any wrongdoing:
Journalism is not a one-way street, and the Foghorn appreciates hearing any feedback or difference of opinion that any of our readers may have.That said, we are not sorry for publishing it. The review was simply a representation of what our critic felt was important to the audience that attended the show. It is unfortunate that it was misunderstood as an act of sexism.
Bethany hasn't formally responded to the paper's letter, but she did post this on Saturday.
What do you think? Do you agree that this concert review was sexist?