I’m not going to limit this to “female-fronted” bands for two reasons: 1. That term assumes that male leads are some kind of default, and 2. Female musicians are awesome and definitely deserve more exposure. They inspire and entertain as well as having to carry the burden of their gender in a male-dominated scene.
Right, so to cut it down to ten I focused on bands I really like. Not to say I dislike bands such as The Summer Set or Crystalyne, I just don’t listen to them as often. This list is also in no particular order.
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Courage My Love
This Canadian trio have been one of my favourites ever since I came across them on YouTube several years ago. Comprised of twins, guitarist and drummer Mercedes and Phoenix Arn-Horn, and bassist Brandon Lockwood, the pop punk/alt rock band often takes a walk on the heavier side. From beautiful covers and (un)reality shows to absolute jams, Courage My Love never disappoint. They are one of the bands proving women can be just as good (if not better) as all-male bands.
Another trio, this band’s music is reminiscent of Versa’s work (they are produced by Blake Harnage, after all). Their newer stuff is more dreamy than their rockier past, but Lynn Gunn’s soaring voice and rhythm guitar teamed with Alex Babinski’s lead guitar and Brian MacDonald’s bass (with both on keyboards) should be enough to win you over. On top of being an awesome woman in rock music, Lynn also aims to empower people of all sexualities to be themselves. The band have cultivated a fanbase with immense respect and kindness for each other, which is an admirable feat.
One of the more well-known bands on this list, Paramore have been around since 2004 with their pop punk rock. Currently made up of singer Hayley Williams and guitarist Taylor York, the band are working on their new album. Hayley is a proud feminist and a great role model to young women.
Specialising in eerie, atmospheric alt rock/synthpop, VersaEmerge (later Versa) consisted of singer Sierra Kusterbeck and guitarist, programmer and occasional singer Blake Harnage. Sierra’s powerful voice blends perfectly with the music created by Blake. Basically the whole thing was a wonderful musical experience and I urge you to go have a listen.
Now defunct alt rock band Love, Robot have more hardcore roots than most bands on this list, but that only helps their music rather than hinders them. The songs are deeply personal and highly meaningful, and you can’t help but sing along. The last members of the band were Anthony Rega (drums), Alexa San Román (vocals, guitar), Nicholas Starrantino (bass), and Dane Petersen (guitar). If you’re looking for something a little bit different, this band could be for you.
This Australian pop punk band has five members: Jenna McDougall, singer; Whakaio Taahi, lead guitarist; Matt Best, drummer; Cameron Adler, bassist; and Jake Hardy, rhythm guitarist. Their music is energetic, powerful, and from the heart, as well as brilliantly translated into acoustic versions. They even achieved a spot on the soundtrack of The Amazing Spiderman 2.
Led by Mariel Loveland (vocals/guitar), this three piece band create catchy, relatable pop punk jams. With Matt Ferraro on drums and John Clifford on bass, they make a great, fun band to listen to that make me smile. Mariel is also vocal about many societal issues, particularly those involving women, such as sexist treatment of women in bands.
We Are The In Crowd
I have been a fan of this band ever since their full-length debut, Best Intentions, was released. I love the back-and-forth of singer/keyboardist Tay Jardine and rhythm guitarist Jordan Eckes’ vocals, as well as the music – played by Mike Ferri (bass), Rob Chianelli (drums), and Cameron Hurley (lead guitar) – which, while pop punk, often borders on rock. WATIC changed its sound quite dramatically between its two album releases, with The Best Thing being the song I never knew I needed. Following its more powerful evolution, the band is currently on hold while four of its members pursue other musical interests.
Proof that online marketing is increasingly important, Altered Sky have gained a massive following from their clever use of social media. The reason behind that is, of course, their infectious pop-rock, which they often display in high schools as part of their innovative school tours. Much like Courage My Love, both the singer (Ana Nowosielska) and drummer/singer (Amy Blair) are women. The remaining members of the band are Ross Archibald on bass, and Richard Passe and Ryan Zdrojewski on guitar. The band is clearly very passionate about what they do, and it definitely comes through in their performances. And you just might see one of my pictures in the lyric video for Bury It All.
The Hush Sound
One of my all-time favourite bands ever, The Hush Sound mix rock music with peaceful vibes and pretty sounds and created wonderful songs that I never get sick of. Half of their lyrics I want to tattoo on myself. Even some of the melodies, too. There’s a nice divide between female and male vocals as well as between piano-led and guitar-dominated songs. Members: Greta Morgan (originally Salpeter) on vocals and keyboard, Bob Morris on vocals and guitar, Darren Wilson on drums and percussion, and Mike LeBlanc on bass. Greta is also a multi-instrumentalist, having in the past played drums, guitar, and bass guitar. Which is very, very cool.
Got a favourite female musician that I haven’t mentioned? Please share in the comments ♥ I love music recommendations!