Five A Side is a blog series that spotlights exceptional women in the music industry through a five-question interview.
In part three of our series, we interview Gemma Pike, triple j presenter, producer and music programmer.
Tell us a bit about what you do day-to-day. What would people be most surprised to learn about your job?
I work at triple j! I present Weekend Lunch (Saturday & Sunday 10am – 2pm), but people may be surprised to learn I work behind the scenes as a Music Programmer, and I produce Richard Kingsmill’s new releases show (2016).
Who is someone you draw inspiration from, male or female?
There is certainly no shortage of inspiring women within triple j and even the ABC. From the incredible Zan Rowe who provides a masterclass in broadcasting each weekday morning, through to Michelle Guthrie who is taking on the patriarchy at the top. And then there is the mind blowing fact I get to work with Richard Kingsmill each day who is the greatest music mind I’ve ever met, and also an incredibly measured and supportive manager. I really am so lucky to be surrounded by so many aspirational and supportive people.
What obstacles do you think face women in the industry today, and in what ways do you think things are changing?
Pay discrepancy and lack of women in senior roles are still obvious concerns. But I’d really love to see more women making music. Currently only 21.5% registered members with APRA in Australia are female – hopefully this starts to increase.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to start a career in radio?
Find your local community radio station and start volunteering. Most of us at triple j had a start at a community station, mine was at RTRfm in Perth. They are incredible platforms to get experience in fully functional radio stations, getting to hone skills both behind the scenes and in front of the microphone. Go, get stuck in, try everything, and in no time you’ll have all of this real-world experience that (in my opinion) means so much more than a piece of paper from a degree or course.
Who would you like to pick for the next Five A Side and why?
Eva Trifonas. I first met Eva when she was working for the record company Inertia, but this year she’s decided to take a leap of faith and start her own management company called incgnto. Her first client is the incredible Kučka, who with the help of Eva is totally smashing it all around the world, most notably with her work with Flume. The belief Eva had in herself and the quick success she’s has is awe-inspiring!