Black Lives in Music appoints new board and task force to drive industry change

Black Lives in Music (BLiM), an organisation dedicated to addressing racial inequality in the music industry and fostering opportunities for Black, Asian and ethnically diverse musicians and professionals, has announced the appointment of a new board and taskforce.

The new line-up represents some of the leading music executives in the UK, appointments that founders Charisse Beaumont (Chief Executive) and Roger Wilson (Director of Operations) hope will support BLiM’s aims to make the UK music industry a safe and equitable environment for all.

Beaumont shared her enthusiasm about the appointments and sees their collective experience as being “invaluable” to expanding BLiM’s influence across the music sector through initiatives such as the Anti-Racism Code Of Conduct, 10 Point Orchestral Plan and an upcoming Bullying and Harassment Survey.

Since its founding in 2020, BLiM has been instrumental in driving change within the industry. Its ground-breaking research, including the 2021 “Being Black in the Music Industry” survey, revealed systemic racism and discrimination, particularly affecting Black women and individuals with disabilities. BLiM has partnered with over 100 organisations to implement tangible solutions based on their findings.

BLiM’s recent involvement in the Women and Equalities select committee’s Misogyny In Music Inquiry led to key recommendations for addressing discrimination and harassment. They advocate for greater transparency in diversity reporting and mandatory equality, diversity and inclusion training across the industry.

Looking ahead, BLiM has announced initiatives such as the 10 Point Orchestra Plan to promote diversity in orchestras by giving more opportunities to Global Majority players and a Bullying and Harassment Survey to address workplace issues.

Black Lives in Music (BLiM) board members: 

James Joseph – Chair (founder of James Joseph artist management); Moses Oyediwura – Vice Chair (Sumaya Group investors); Janeace Thompson (Director of Talent & Culture and Experience at PRS for Music); Dr Kienda Hoji (music industry lawyer, artist manager, lecturer); Orphy Robinson MBE (multi-instrumentalist and composer); Alex Spofforth (Chartered Accountant)

Black Lives in Music (BLiM) taskforce:Paulette Long OBE (music publisher, Chair of Music Publishers Association); Dr Mykaell Riley (Senior Lecturer at the University of Westminster, Director of the Black Music Research Unit, founder member of the band Steel Pulse); Yvette Griffith OBE (Chief Executive and Executive Director of Jazz: Refreshed); Kate Miguda (violinist, board member of National Youth Orchestra of Scotland); Richard Henry (trombonist); Shabaka Hutchings (jazz musician, Sons Of Kemet); Adem Holness FRSA (Head of Contemporary Music, Southbank Centre); Faryal Khan-Thompson (SVP of Marketing and Community Engagement at CD Baby); Robert Mitchell (jazz musician and composer); Victor Redwood-Sawyerr (Founder of Red 1 Arts music consultancy); Jamil Sheriff (jazz musician and lecturer); Cleveland Watkiss MBE (vocalist, composer, actor)