Though popular solo artists like Taylor Swift, Pink, Lady Gaga and Beyoncé tend to dominate the airwaves, there’s still much to be said for the breed of rock bands fronted by ladies who can hang with the best of them.
Much like their impressive predecessors, today’s female-fronted rock groups have spunk, talent, and the impeccable drive to propel bands to stardom. Ever since the days of Janis Joplin and Pat Benatar, female stars have had a knack for delighting fans, and while mainstream rockers like Paramore, Florence and the Machine, and No Doubt have undeniably been the face of the genre, a slew of others have successfully emerged in recent years.
Perhaps boasting one of the most noteworthy talents of all is She & Him, featuring the doe-eyed Zooey Deschanel alongside M. Ward. While working on the 2007 indie, “The Go-Getter,” a chance meeting between Deschanel and Ward eventually led to the realization that they would mesh well together musically and decided to capitalize on the chemistry in the studio and on the road. The duo dropped its fourth studio album, “Volume 3,” on May 7, and is following the release with a North American tour this summer. Check out the band’s latest single, “Never Wanted Your Love,” in the video below.
Rising star Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir is the driving force behind the Icelandic band, Of Monsters and Men, whose success hasn’t been limited by the oceans surrounding the group’s native country. Released in the U.S. in 2012, the band’s debut album, “My Head is an Animal,” garnered worldwide attention and spawned the No. 1 hit, “Little Talks.” Much of the attention surrounding the single can likely be attributed to the presence of Hilmarsdóttir’s crisp, pristine voice. Of Monsters and Men’s popularity has landed the band prime spots at this summer’s hottest music festivals, including the Free Press Summer Festival, Governors Ball, and Bonnaroo.
Female rock stardom also comes in twos in the form of Canadian identical twins, Tegan and Sara, who have been at the helm of their self-titled band for nearly 20 years. After years of touring with the likes of Neil Young, Ryan Adams, Weezer, and The Black Keys, Tegan and Sara have secured a spot on the bill for the Most Nights Summer Tour headlined by the band fun. from July-September. Along the way, they’ll also be performing at events like the Bunbury Music Festival, Osheaga Festival, and Lollapalooza.
Another famed female rocker who perhaps set the stage for the current crop and continues to show her prowess on the stage show after show is singer Stevie Nicks. She’s had successful careers both solo and of course while fronting Fleetwood Mac, and her mystic appearance and style have been said to have influenced fellow artists like Courtney Love, Florence Welch, and Kelly Clarkson.
Other rockers to note include the Janis Joplin-influenced Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, which became a smash hit after the 2012 release of “The Lion, The Beast, The Beat,” while the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Karen O and Metric’s Emily Haines are two other leading ladies that have been capturing hearts and entertaining the masses for over a decade with their eccentric femme stage presence.