A year after Bassnectar was sued by four women who accused him of sexual abuse, grooming and human trafficking, a former producer employee has launched a project to curb sexual violence against female professionals and fans in the music industry.
Launched by Mimi Page, Dancesafe and Good Night Out Vancouver, this initiative, Healing Is Power, is an eight-week campaign focused on expanding the knowledge and skills of fans, artists, management, venues and event producers, to prevent and address sexual violence support healing. A new information module will be released online and via social media every Tuesday through May 17, with the goal, according to organizers, to “present knowledge and skills to dismantle rape culture and build a culture of consensus within music and nightlife communities.”
The third session of Healing Is Power, starting Tuesday (April 12), will explore ideas related to the integrity and accountability of public figures. Topics for upcoming sessions include nurturing, bystander intervention, survivor support, and societal healing. Materials from the first two Healing Is Power sessions are available here.
“While I’m still traumatized by my own experiences, I’m incredibly committed to bringing healing to the music industry, and I believe education is a big part of that healing process,” says Page billboard. “This particular campaign is not aimed at any specific person or situation, it is aimed at the collective toxicity that will continue unless we continue to shed light on these issues and advance our understanding of what respect and healing look like.”
In July 2020 — as countless allegations of sexual misconduct, emotional manipulation, and other charges against artist-born Lorin Ashton came to light — Page released a rambling open letter to the producer. It states, among other things, that Ashton persuaded her to request a one-time payment of $3,000 for her work on the 2012 song “Butterfly,” rather than offering a portion of the song’s royalties. (The song has nearly 9 million Spotify streams.) The letter also targets the manipulation side, and many other women who have made allegations against Ashton say they have had experiences with him in both professional and sexual relationships.
“As a co-worker of his who was covertly subjected to sexually inappropriate emails, emotional manipulation, and creative and financial abuse at his hands for many years, I have personally experienced a darker side of this person that is in stark contrast to the ‘feminist’ and ‘social justice activist,’ who he projected into the public eye,” says Page. “As a lesser-known, independent artist, given the power dynamics ingrained in the music industry, I felt powerless in the face of his professional treatment, and I’ve been conditioned to believe that this work environment is normal and inevitable when working with an artist of his caliber in the music industry.”
With Healing Is Power, Page works to change this dynamic through education. After the situation, Page felt inspired to reach out to DanceSafe, a long-standing harm reduction agency in the dance music scene, and British Columbia-based Good Night Out Vancouver, a nonprofit focused on stopping harassment in bars break up. Clubs, festivals and other spaces. Since then, Page says, the three companies have “spent countless hours designing this campaign from scratch and I have never been more inspired by the work of these amazing people… Based on their knowledge, passion and dedication, I don’t think so only to a brighter and safer future for our collective industry, but also for the next generation of creators and fans.”
The trailer for the campaign features Page’s ethereal vocals along with a butterfly symbol, a direct nod to Page’s collaboration with Bassnectar.
“Many of his fans were traumatized by what happened and removed his tattoos … and I’ve had many female fans with butterfly tattoos who have reached out to me and told me it meant a lot to them that I stood, though.” traumatized by their tattoos for survivors and for collective healing,” Page says. “Using the butterfly in this campaign allows me to reclaim the love, light and beauty I intended and for all who need a symbol of hope in these dark times.”