Music News

Girls Make Beats: Workshop Teaches Girls to Write Songs

When Tiffany Miranda started out as a recording artist, she looked around the studio and quickly noticed she was in the midst of a male-dominated industry. "Women are known to be vocalists or songwriters, but they rarely are in the position of creative control of a producer or engineer," she notes.

Miranda sought to break through the glass ceiling and studied to become a music producer and audio engineer. She found great success working with local music titans like Rick Ross and DJ Khaled but still felt like an extreme minority. "People would mistake me for the intern or the coffee girl."

There were very few female mentors that Miranda could look to for advice or inspiration. "Alicia Keys produces her own music, but people look at her more as an artist," she explains. "Missy Elliott is kind of the only female music producer I could look up to in the industry and who had a huge impact on me."

Miranda decided enough was enough and founded the nonprofit organization Girls Make Beats to inspire and train the next generation of young women to become music producers, audio engineers, and DJs.

Over the last few years around Miami-Dade and Broward libraries and schools, Girls Make Beats has taught girls ages 8 and up how to work behind the scenes in the music industry. From June 13 to 17, Miranda will be teaching girls ages 8 through 12 in a weeklong class at Ali Cultural Arts in Pompano Beach.

The class, which will meet every night from 6 to 7:30 p.m. and costs $100, is an intensive one-week workshop that will provide hands-on lessons with user-friendly hardware, teaching the students how to both arrange songs and create their own. "They are going to learn how to DJ and use music production equipment," Miranda says. "At the end of the week, we'll have a showcase night for their parents and friends to see what they've learned."

Miranda is excited to have another woman professional on board for the program. "Mariela Araica is a local audio engineer. It's funny — anytime I work, they ask if I know her, since she's the one other girl who does this." She's hopeful that seeing a woman behind a soundboard will soon no longer be a novelty.

She states simply, "Our mission is to empower young girls."  And to make dope beats, too. 

Interested parties can sign up here.

Girls Make Beats Summer Camp 
June 13 to 17, at Ali Cultural Arts Center, 353 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Pompano Beach ; 954-786-7876;
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David Rolland is a freelance writer for New Times Broward-Palm Beach and Miami New Times. His novel, The End of the Century, published by Jitney Books, is available at many fine booksellers.
Contact: David Rolland