3 Artists You Should Know: Women’s History Month edition

1) The Go-Gos

Gaining fame in the early ’80s, The Go-Go’s became an immediate influence to many punk-rock girls. From their catchy hooks in “How Much More” to shredding vocals in “Lust To Love,” their debut album “Beauty And The Beat” peaked at No. 1 on Billboard “Hot 100” Charts for over six weeks. Unlike most of their contemporaries, The Go-Go’s didn’t require a man on guitar or mixing their songs, but instead everything they created came from a genuine place within the group. From their quirky and catchy single “We Got The Beat” to the ’80s jam “Our Lips Are Sealed,” The Go-Go’s created their own bubbly and vivacious tunes that almost anyone could dance to.

Listen for yourself: “Can’t Stop The World” reflects their effervescent sound with their intriguing beat and unforgettable lyrics.

2) Ella Fitzgerald

Nicknamed “First Lady Of Song,” Ella Fitzgerald made her way through the music industry around the 1930s. With her smooth and irresistible voice, Fitzgerald was expected to take over the face of jazz, but as any colored female artist in the 20th century, she was faced with discrimination and backlash. After her debut in the Harlem’s Apollo Theatre, Fitzgerald’s career took off and soon she found herself as the lead vocalist of a jazz collective and recording with acclaimed artists like Louis Jordan, Lou Costello and Duke Ellington. In 1958 Ella Fitzgerald made history as the first African-American female to win two consecutive Grammys. She gained worldwide recognition in the ’70s while performing shows with the renowned artist, Frank Sinatra. Fitzgerald not only helped pave a pathway for female artists, but also for colored performers.

Listen for yourself: In “Dream A Little Dream,” Fitzgerald delivers a riveting set of lyrics with her soothing, jazzy voice.

3) Riot Grrrl

Creating a path for future female punk/rock bands, the ’90s Riot Grrrl’s movement was loud, angsty and extremely unforgiving. Tying up radical political ideas and music, Wolfe, Molly Neuman and Kathleen Hanna stirred up a feminist punk movement that was a result of the third wave of feminism. Tackling topics such as sexual abuse, racism, and patriarchy through powerful and gritty vocals, the Riot Grrrl’s were an unapologetic group of feminists. Bands like Bratmobile and Bikini Kill created zines to accompany the music they created in hopes of spreading their message to reach a wider audience. Hanna, along with the rest of the members of this movement, helped raise awareness to the female punk musicians aspiring to create a name for themselves in the ’90s and in doing so created an everlasting path for future female bands to come.

Listen for yourself: “Rebel Girl” by Bikini Kill emphasizes the overall message that the Riot Grrrl’s intended to spread through the shrill of Kathleen Hanna’s voice.