Leave it to Margo Price to always use her platform for a greater purpose. Last night, she appeared on Conan and sang about gender wage inequality with a performance of “Pay Gap,” from her sophomore LP All American Made.
Flanked by her ace band and a few guest musicians, Price played a blistering, horn and accordion-drenched version of the song as well as a web-exclusive version of the swinging soul jam “Do Right By Me.” She was decked out in a cream embroidered Nudie Suit that would have made Gram Parsons proud, created by the Los Angeles-based, woman-owned and designed brand Rusty Cuts. The mariachi musicians backing her up were members of the all-female Las Mariachi Lindas Mexicanas, a group of “housewives, students, mothers, and musicians who like to share our Mexican and mariachi culture and traditions to the world.” It was well timed for International Women’s Day today, but part of a battle Price fights year-round.
Price also notably sported a sticker reading “inclusion rider” on her guitar, a reference to the idea presented by Frances McDormand at Sunday’s Academy Awards that would have an actor require gender and racial diversity as part of their work contract. Self-scrawled, it harkened back to the days when Woody Guthrie would write “This Machine Kills Fascists” on his own instrument. And though an inclusion rider is currently being discussed in the context of Hollywood, many, including Dr. Stacy L. Smith, Founder and Director of USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative who introduced the idea in 2014, think it could – and should – be applied to the musical world as well.
“The Inclusion Rider emerged from my expertise in the film and TV space,” Dr. Smith tells Rolling Stone Country. “As our work continues, we are very interested in adapting the rider to address the specific nuances in the recording and touring industries. Inclusion is needed across entertainment and using contract language is one tool that can promote change.”
Price, for one, is ready for that change. “Women are not going to put up with shit anymore,” she told Rolling Stone. “And it’s amazing.”