Pink hit back at Recording Academy President Neil Portnow after he said women “need to step up” in order to be more recognized and involved in the music business — causing major backlash that the CEO later apologized.
Pink posted a handwritten note on Twitter Tuesday saying women “having been stepping since the beginning of time.”
“Women in music don’t need to ‘step up’ – women have been stepping since the beginning of time. Stepping up, and also stepping aside. Women OWNED music this year. They’ve been KILLING IT. And every year before this,” the 38-year-old singer said.
She added, “When we celebrate and honor the talent and accomplishments of women, and how much women STEP UP every year, against all odds, we show the next generation of women and girls and boys and men what it means to be equal, and what it looks like to be fair.”
Portnow was asked by Variety after the Grammys on Sunday why only one female artist, Alessia Cara, won an award that night.
“It has to begin with… women who have the creativity in their hearts and souls, who want to be musicians, who want to be engineers, producers, and want to be part of the industry on the executive level… [They need] to step up because I think they would be welcome,” Portnow responded.
After major backlash for his comment, Portnow issued a separate statement Monday night saying his words were “taken out of context.”
“Regrettably, I used two words, 'step up,' that, when taken out of context, do not convey my beliefs and the point I was trying to make,” Portnow said, according to the statement released by Billboard.
“Our industry must recognize that women who dream of careers in music face barriers that men have never faced. We must actively work to eliminate these barriers and encourage women to live their dreams and express their passion and creativity through music. We must welcome, mentor, and empower them. Our community will be richer for it,” he continued.
He said, “I regret that I wasn't as articulate as I should have been in conveying this thought. I remain committed to doing everything I can to make our music community a better, safer, and more representative place for everyone.”