But there's always a story behind the headlines and M wanted to hear first hand from some of the industry’s leading women about the current state of play. So we organised a roundtable to mull over the big issues currently facing women in music. It was attended by songwriter Shelley McErlaine, producer Adrienne Aiken, PRS deputy chairman Paulette Long, publisher Mandy Oates, Sarah Richardson from Anorak PR, the Musicians' Union's Kelly Wood and Helienne Lindvall.
Helienne is an award-winning songwriter, musician and newspaper columnist. Born and raised in Sweden, she lived and worked as a musician in New York before relocating to London and signing with BMG Publishing Scandinavia. In her weekly blog for the The Guardian online, she deals with the issues facing musicians today and the rapidly changing music industry.
Here she reveals the female songwriter she's most inspired by and offers tips for other women aspiring to make a career in music.