American Female Folk Singers

Vote for Your Favourite American Female Folk Singers

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 1 
Joni Mitchell
(Famous for Her Studio Album 'Blue')
Joni Mitchell
17
Birthdate: November 7, 1943
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Fort Macleod, Canada

Joni Mitchell is one of the most popular Canadian singer-songwriters. Widely regarded as one of the greatest songwriters of all time, her songs reflect her feelings about joy, romance, disillusionment, and confusion. Apart from being a musician, Joni is also a visual artist who designs most of her album covers. In fact, she calls herself a painter derailed by circumstance.  

 2 
Tracy Chapman
(Known for Her Hit Singles 'Fast Car', 'Talkin' 'bout a Revolution' and 'Baby Can I Hold You')
Tracy Chapman
12
Birthdate: March 30, 1964
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Cleveland, Ohio, United States

A four-time Grammy Award-winning artist, singer Tracy Chapman is best known for her hit single, Give Me One Reason. Interested in music from a young age, she learned to play multiple instruments as a child. She made her major-stage debut in 1985 and soon became a sensational hit. She is also known for her social activism.

 3 
Joan Chandos Baez
(Best Known for Her Songs "Diamonds & Rust," "We Shall Overcome" and "Joe Hill")
Joan Chandos Baez
7
Birthdate: January 9, 1941
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Staten Island, New York, United States

Singer, songwriter, musician, and activist Joan Baez has been active in the music world for over six decades. She emerged as a major musical figure in the counterculture era of the 1960s. Her music encompasses various genres like pop, folk-rock, country, and gospel music. She is involved in civil rights, human rights, and environmental activism as well.

 4 
Joanna Newsom
(Keyboardist in the San Francisco–based Indie Band “The Pleased”)
Joanna Newsom
11
Birthdate: January 18, 1982
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Grass Valley, California, United States

Joanna Newsom is an American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and actress. Noted for her unique musical style, Newsom's early work was influenced by polyrhythms. She is one of the most important members of the modern freak folk and psychedelic folk movement. Newsom is also noted for her songwriting, which incorporates elements of avant-garde modernism and Appalachian music.

 5 
Roberta Flack
5
Birthdate: February 10, 1939
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Black Mountain, North Carolina, United States
Height: 5'4" (163 cm)
 6 
Jewel
(Singer-Songwriter)
Jewel
17
Birthdate: May 23, 1974
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Payson, Utah, United States
Height: 5'6" (168 cm)
 7 
Judy Collins
(Singer-songwriter)
Judy Collins
13
Birthdate: May 1, 1939
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Seattle, Washington, United States
Height: 5'6" (168 cm)
 8 
Janis Ian
(Singer, Songwriter, Musician & Author)
Janis Ian
4
Birthdate: April 7, 1951
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Farmingdale, New Jersey, United States
 9 
Colbie Caillat
(Singer-songwriter)
Colbie Caillat
7
Birthdate: May 28, 1985
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Malibu, California, United States
Height: 5'9" (175 cm)
 10 
Regina Spektor
(Singer-Songwriter)
Regina Spektor
5
Birthdate: February 18, 1980
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Height: 5'2" (157 cm)
 11 
Sharon Van Etten
(Singer)
Sharon Van Etten
5
Birthdate: February 26, 1981
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Belleville, New Jersey, USA
 12 
Maddie Poppe
(Singer)
Maddie Poppe
5
Birthdate: December 5, 1997
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Clarksville, Iowa, United States
Height: 5'4" (163 cm)
 13 
Kim Carnes
(Singer)
Kim Carnes
13
Birthdate: July 20, 1945
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Pasadena, California, USA
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 14 
Gillian Welch
(Singer-songwriter, Singer, Guitarist, Composer)
Gillian Welch
7
Birthdate: October 2, 1967
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Manhattan, New York, United States
 15 
Ashe
(Singer)
Ashe
5
Birthdate: April 24, 1993
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: San Jose, California, United States
Height: 5'6" (168 cm)
 16 
Suzanne Vega
(Singer-songwriter, Musician)
Suzanne Vega
7
Birthdate: July 11, 1959
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Santa Monica, California, United States
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
 17 
Nanci Griffith
(Singer-songwriter)
Nanci Griffith
3
Birthdate: July 6, 1953
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Seguin, Texas, U.S.
 18 
Deborah Falconer
(Singer-songwriter and Ex-Wife of Robert Downey Jr.)
Deborah Falconer
11
Birthdate: August 13, 1965
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Sacramento, California, United States
Deborah Falconer has appeared in quite a few films, such as the comedy Pyrates and the biographical film The Doors. She also released music albums such as Untangle and Brave Like Me. She was previously married to actor Robert Downey Jr. and also had a son with him.
 19 
Sasha Spielberg
(Actress)
Sasha Spielberg
6
Birthdate: May 14, 1990
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, USA
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 20 
Exene Cervenka
(Punk and Folk Singer & Member of the California Punk Rock Band 'X')
Exene Cervenka
7
Birthdate: February 1, 1956
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, USA

Exene Cervenka soared to fame as a singer of the punk rock band X. She has also held exhibitions for her mixed media art, published books, and released a spoken word album. She has also expressed her views as a conspiracy theorist named Christine Notmyrealname, on social media.

 21 
Kathy Mattea
(Singer-songwriter)
Kathy Mattea
5
Birthdate: June 21, 1959
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: South Charleston, West Virginia, United States
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
 22 
Maria Muldaur
(Singer)
Maria Muldaur
4
Birthdate: September 12, 1943
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Greenwich Village, New York City New York, U.S.
 23 
Joy Williams
(American Singer-Songwriter)
Joy Williams
3
Birthdate: November 14, 1982
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: West Branch, Michigan, United States

Joy Williams established herself as a talented contemporary Christian artist before forming the Grammy-winning folk duo The Civil Wars with John Paul White. She had apparently rejected a recording offer at 14 to enjoy her childhood. She is best known for her chartbusting tracks such as From This Valley.

 24 
Iris DeMent
(Singer, Songwriter)
Iris DeMent
4
Birthdate: January 5, 1961
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Paragould, Arkansas, United States
 25 
Judee Sill
(Singer-songwriter, Singer, Composer, Pianist)
Judee Sill
6
Birthdate: October 7, 1944
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Oakland
Died: November 23, 1979
 26 
Dana Rosemary Scallon
(Politician)
Dana Rosemary Scallon
3
Birthdate: August 30, 1951
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Islington, London, England
 27 
Jill Gibson
(Painter, Photographer, Singer, Songwriter)
Jill Gibson
4
Birthdate: June 18, 1942
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Los Angeles
 28 
Suzy Bogguss
(Musician)
Suzy Bogguss
3
Birthdate: December 30, 1956
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Aledo, Illinois, U.S.
 29 
Norma Tanega
(Former Folk and Pop singer-songwriter)
Norma Tanega
0
Birthdate: January 30, 1939
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Vallejo, California, United States
Died: December 29, 2019
 30 
Odetta
(American Singer, Actress and Guitarist)
Odetta
4
Birthdate: December 31, 1930
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Birmingham, Alabama, United States
Died: December 2, 2008
 31 
Mimi Fariña
(Singer)
Mimi Fariña
4
Birthdate: April 30, 1945
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Palo Alto, California, United States
Died: July 18, 2001
 32 
Lori McKenna
(Singer-songwriter, Singer, Guitarist)
Lori McKenna
4
Birthdate: December 22, 1968
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Stoughton
 33 
Peggy Seeger
(Singer)
Peggy Seeger
3
Birthdate: June 17, 1935
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: New York City
 34 
Kimya Dawson
(Singer-songwriter)
Kimya Dawson
7
Birthdate: November 17, 1972
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Bedford Hills, New York, United States
 35 
Anais Mitchell
Anais Mitchell
6
Birthdate: March 26, 1981
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Vermont
 36 
Kate Wolf
(Composer, Singer-songwriter)
Kate Wolf
5
Birthdate: January 27, 1942
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: San Francisco
Died: December 10, 1986
 37 
Elizabeth Cotten
(Folk musician, Songwriter)
Elizabeth Cotten
1
Birthdate: January 5, 1893
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Carrboro, North Carolina, United States
Died: June 29, 1987
 38 
Dar Williams
(Singer-songwriter, Musician, Writer, Singer, Composer, Songwriter, Guitarist)
Dar Williams
5
Birthdate: April 19, 1967
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Mount Kisco
 39 
Laura Veirs
(American Singer-Songwriter and Composer)
Laura Veirs
3
Birthdate: October 24, 1973
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States
 40 
Jean Ritchie
(Historian, Singer, Musicologist, Musician, Singer-songwriter)
Jean Ritchie
2
Birthdate: December 8, 1922
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Viper
Died: June 1, 2015
 41 
Ronnie Gilbert
(Musician)
Ronnie Gilbert
2
Birthdate: September 7, 1926
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States
Died: June 6, 2015
 42 
Okay Kaya
(Actress, Singer known for her second full-length album under the moniker Okay Kaya titled Watch This Liquid Pour Itself in 2020)
Okay Kaya
0
Birthdate: August 14, 1990
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: New Jersey, United States

Brooklyn-born Norwegian-origin singer-actor Kaya Wilkins, better known as Okay Kaya, mostly sings about her own mental trauma, sexuality, and mental health. Known for hit tracks such as Psych Ward and Dance Like You, she has also starred in the Norwegian supernatural thriller Thelma. She considers songwriting her therapy.

 43 
Vienna Teng
(Singer-Songwriter known for her fourth album, Inland Territory)
Vienna Teng
0
Birthdate: October 3, 1978
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Saratoga, California, United States
Height: 5'6" (168 cm)
 44 
Leyla McCalla
(Musician)
Leyla McCalla
4
Birthdate: October 3, 1985
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: New York, United States
 45 
Chiwoniso Maraire
(Singer-songwriter)
Chiwoniso Maraire
2
Birthdate: March 5, 1976
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Olympia, Washington, United States
Died: July 24, 2013
 46 
Lydia Mendoza
(Guitarist)
Lydia Mendoza
3
Birthdate: May 31, 1916
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Houston, Texas, United States
Died: December 20, 2007
 47 
Christine Lavin
(Singer-songwriter)
Christine Lavin
2
Birthdate: January 2, 1952
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: New York, United States
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 48 
Susan Reed
(Musician)
Susan Reed
2
Birthdate: January 11, 1926
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Columbia, South Carolina, United States
Died: April 25, 2010
 49 
Meklit Hadero
(Ethiopian-Born American Singer and Songwriter)
Meklit Hadero
1
Birthplace: Ethiopia
 50 
Anne Hills
(Singer)
Anne Hills
0
Birthdate: October 18, 1953
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Moradabad, India

Anne Hills is an American singer and songwriter. She is credited with co-founding a record label named Hogeye Music. Over the course of her career, Anne Hills has collaborated with several prominent musicians and bands like Bob Gibson and Tom Paxton. In 2002, Anne Hills was honored by the World Folk Music Association with the prestigious Kate Wolf Memorial Award.