The Most Influential Women in Music Today

By Whitney on March 8, 2019

You listen to a song and it inspires you. You hear a voice and it reaches right into your soul and holds on. We all have our favorite musicians and groups. But when it comes to women whose voice and persona have had the most influence in the 21st century, there are artists that hit the top of the list.  Who are they? Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Haley Kiyoko, and Taylor Swift are the top five respectively, according to a poll by NPR’s Turning the Tables.

Each of the top 5 on the list are putting their own unique stamp on the music industry and on American culture. Whether it’s Beyonce’s incomparable business sense, empowering lyrics, and multi-media artistry that has made her one of the best-selling music artists of all time or Lady Gaga’s fearlessness to fight for success, incredible range in music or film, or her encouraging messages of self-acceptance, each artist continues to inspire a generation.

Music and artists continue to change, but its power to change us continues. Because as the game-changing Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, once said “Music does a lot of things for a lot of people. It’s transporting, for sure. It can take you right back, it’s uplifting, it’s encouraging, it’s strengthening.” Number three on the list, Rihanna, says fearless performers that came before her rise to success have had a huge influence on her current success and that she hopes to pay it forward. “That’s all I could ever hope for, to have a positive effect on women. ‘Cos women are powerful, powerful beings. But they’re also the most doubtful beings. They’ll never know- we’ll never know- how powerful we are.”

-Rebecca Cressman

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