Lesbian DJ Tracy Young won Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical at the 2020 Grammys, making her the first woman to ever win the category.
Young won for her Pride radio remix of “I Rise” by Madonna. The historic win took place in a Sunday ceremony before the televised broadcast.
“We made history, ladies,” Young said in her acceptance speech. “I proudly accept this on behalf of all female producers who have been overlooked.” She also expressed gratitude to the LGBTQ community.
Over 80 producers have been nominated in the Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical category at the Grammys since the category began in 1998 — and all of them have been men.
Young has been in the music industry for over 25 years, both remixing and producing. She rose to prominence in the Miami scene and became Madonna’s go-to party DJ, Billboard reports. She has produced over 60 Billboard Club chart-toppers.
After her nomination, Young told Billboard about her experiences as one of the few lesbian women in her industry.
“This field was and still is mostly dominated by men,” Young said. “But it is changing. I’ve definitely seen more women DJs, and hopefully, more women will come forward and start producing. I have hope.”
She also spoke to The Advocate about the specific barriers that female DJs face, including sexism and a lack of mentors. She says she was often told by club representatives that she couldn’t play because “You’re a girl. Girls don’t DJ.”
“It’s just hard for women to break through in this industry,” she explained.
But Young noted that her history-making presence at the Grammys might help send an inspiring message to others.
“I’m just a girl from Virginia with a love for music,” she said. “And to have made history and to be Grammy nominee for a Madonna song [tells the world that] if you have a dream and you go for it, you can do it.”