Elkka is a Champion For Equality in Music

May 11, 2023

Harry Levin

3 min read

When it comes to equality in dance music, Elkka puts her money where her mouth is. As a queer female artist, she has had to push against the male-dominated industry for many years, from her early days coming up in London writing pop songs for other artists to pursuing a career as a solo act. But that never stopped her. Elkka has always looked to strong female role models in music like Joni Mitchell and Laurie Anderson, who have shaped her perspective on what it means to be an artist.

“Laurie Anderson does whatever the fuck she wants,” Elkka explained to DJ Mag in 2019. “I’ve always been obsessed with strong, charismatic women who fight for what they want and push the boundaries. I cared for so long about what people thought about me — is the music cool? Are people going to judge me for what I’ve done in the past? So that statement — ‘who cares?’ — was so important for me.”

With this inspiration driving her forward, Elkka started femme culture in 2016. femme culture is a label, event series, and artist collective highlighting nonmale and LGBTQIA+ artists.

In a short time, the label started to receive impressive recognition, including a win for Breakthrough Label at DJ Mag’s Best Of British awards in 2018. Since launch, they have also shared four fundraiser compilations in collaboration with UN Women and HeForShe.

Numerous recognized artists have contributed music to the compilations, including Nicola Cruz, QRTR, Bklava, and DJ Python.

On the event side, Elkka and femme culture have hosted parties all over London, booking artists like Melle Brown, India Jordan, and Badsista, and hosting a Boiler Room in 2018.

The label and the events are on pause as Elkka tours the world and prepares for the release of her debut album. However, she still credits femme culture as the launch of her solo career:

“It’s something that will always be a part of what I do because I grew up setting up that label,” Elkka said to Beatportal in 2023.

And so, while she continues to grow as a solo artist, it was her intention to lift up her fellow queer and female creators that set her on the path.

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