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10 Lesbian singers you must have on your playlist

Robyn Exton

Jan 23, 2023

10 Lesbian singers you must have on your playlist
  • Music is fundamental in the lives of many. We listen to it in the car, while working out, and when we’re happy or sad. Most important of all, we like to relate to the lyrics! And listening to the same “boy loves girl,” and vice versa narrative gets a little tiring. 

    That’s why we want to help you find your next pride anthem of choice with this list of 10 lesbian singers that truly understand your emotions through life, heartache, love, and identity.

    You’ll want them on your favorite queer playlist ASAP!

    Hayley Kiyoko

    Source: Hello Giggles

    Dubbed THE “lesbian Jesus,” Hayley hit the world by storm since her Disney Channel days. Still, her popularity skyrocketed when her single ‘Girls like Girls’ came out in 2015, and she became known for speaking on LGBTQA+ rights and helping normalize lesbian relationships through her music.

    With dream pop and electropop beats, she tackles themes of sexuality and mental health within her lyrics, naming Katy Perry and Tegan and Sara her inspirations to pursue pop music.

    We recommend you add to your playlist:


    Source: Rolling Stone

    Kehlani is a continuously rising star in the world of R&B and neo-soul. Their upbringing in music was a rollercoaster with many ups, downs, and loop-de-loops, until Nick Cannon gave them a well-deserved chance after listening to their SoundCloud single ‘ANTISUMMERLUV.’ This led to their first studio mixtape, which was listed in Complex’s 50 Best Albums of 2014!

    Being very open about their journey through the gender and sexuality spectrum, the 27-year-old singer firmly identifies as a lesbian and goes by she/they pronouns

    They are very involved in the community and even recently guest starred in The L Word: Generation Q (2019 – present) as “Ivy.”

    Some songs you should definitely jam to are:


    Source: The Hype Magazine

    ‘Lost On You’ was an instant hit. Most of us know it and love it! LP has captivated our ears (and hearts) since her debut, but it was this 2015 single that launched her to a mainstream audience and allowed her to become the lesbian icon she is today.

    Her influence in alternative rock music can also be appreciated through other artists, as she’s written songs for Cher, Céline Dion, and even Rihanna. Talk about an industry powerhouse!

    Rock your world with these songs:

    Young M.A.

    Source: Nylon

    Young M.A., says music is her own form of therapy, turning her experiences with sexuality or hardship into art for any of us who might relate to her. She likes touching on topics male rappers are traditionally known for, such as sex, money, or tough upbringings, and breaks industry stereotypes in the process.

    She and her mother created the KWEENZ foundation, helping people in East New York overcome grief since she lost her brother and a young age. Rap was her way to express these emotions, and she knew she wanted to lend her voice to those in the same situation.

    Enjoy the best of Young M.A. with these hits:

    King Princess 

    Source: Vanity Fair

    A queen herself, King Princess is a name every sapphic household has pronounced. 

    Their debut single ‘1950’ was inspired by the first lesbian novel with a happy ending, The Price of Salt. Growing up in the industry, she knew she wanted to be an authentic artist, which included being unapologetically open about their sexuality and gender expression (stating they identify with any pronouns).

    Her indie pop melodies and smooth vocals are the perfect addition to your daily playlist, so bless your ears with these selections:

    Flor Amargo

    Source: Infobae

    The viral Mexican star began playing in the streets of Mexico City, gaining popularity thanks to their participation in this country’s edition of The Voice, and of course, their unique mix of cumbia, folklore and alternative pop that they call “catartic pop.”

    Flor was musically educated in Mexico and Italy, and even with a trajectory like that, they make an effort always to stay true to their roots and advocate for their community through their powerful music, being a significant figure in Latin America’s contemporary feminist movement

    They recently came out as non-binary, keep identifying as lesbian, and fight for LGBTQA+ and reproductive rights.

    You cannot miss these hits:

    Girl in Red

    Source: Cosmopolitan

    ‘We Fell in Love in October’ has been the go-to lesbian love song since it came out, and her Norwegian interpreter got the title of “queer icon” rightfully so,  especially after the popular phrase “Do you listen to Girl in Red” became code for “Do you like women?”.

    Thanks to this and her debut single ‘I Wanna Be Your Girlfriend,’ Girl in Red has gained a platform and the admiration from many LBGTQA+ folk, using her music to open up doors and spaces for queerness in pop.

    If you listen to Girl in Red (wink wink) and actually want to start listening to her, we recommend:

    Julien Baker

    Source: Financial Times

    If you’re into moody melodies, Julien Baker is for you. Her music touches on profound topics, like her relationship with religion clashing with her identity and sexuality, using her academic knowledge and personal experience to create a truly unique sound.

    Capturing inspiration from emo, indie,  and alternative rock, each of her albums hits the right spot when you want to scream your emotions to the top of your lungs but can’t find the voice to do it. 

    Listening to Julien singing is like a warm hug from an old friend.

    Some amazing songs by her are:

    Chavela Vargas

    Source: Le Chat Magazine

    Born in Costa Rica and adopted by Mexico, Chavela was one of the most iconic lesbians in history and a pioneer of rancheras, traditional songs from the early 20th century. 

    She even is rumored to have had affairs with Frida Kahlo and Ava Gardner!

    The singer came out at 81 years old, and even though her real fans were not very surprised, they still offered her unconditional support. She was known for refusing to change the pronouns in the music she covered, always interpreting romantic love letters to women as a result. Plus, she constantly pushed against gender norms in the public eye, and that’s a lot to say for the 1940s.

    If you want to hear more about this legend, listen to:

    Mary Lambert

    Source: Entertainment Weekly

    A gifted poet and musician, Mary became widely known for writing and singing the chorus in Macklemore’s 2012 single “Same Love.” These lyrics were the first encounter for many Millennial and Gen-Z lesbians with a song that openly talked about what’s it like loving women.

    Teaching herself music with the sole purpose of having an outlet for her emotions during difficult times, she became the talented, resilient, and strong inspiration she is for many women.

    You cannot miss these beautiful pieces:

    10 Musicians that every lesbian or queer girl is pining over

    #10. Heather Peace. Who doesn’t love a pensive woman in a leather jacket? Especially when she backs it up with smooth jazz vocals and a guitar. Her wife’s had her off the market for quite some time so we’re happy for Heather. No harm in a dream, or two.

    #9. Skin. Openly bisexual artist, Deborah Anne Dyer (stage name Skin) has been on the scene since 1994 as lead vocalist for English band Skunk Anansie. Her pipes are outrageous. Just check out the collaboration she did with Sevendust on a song called “Licking Cream”. Come on.

    #8. Katy Perry. We all know she kissed a girl and liked it, but we want her to like it, again… Even in this old tiger jacket with her hair a mess, Katy Perry is still the most. Period.

    #7. Missy Higgins. Missy released “Where I Stood” in 2007 and as a result there have been more lesbian tears shed in the past 7 years than ever before (am I kidding?). The Australian singer-songwriter has a knack for crushing a gender-neutral lyric or two, and her own sexual fluidity makes them all the more visceral. Tell me her jams haven’t made their way to your breakup playlist and I’ll know you’re lying.

    #6. KT Tunstall. First off, look at those suspenders. Just look at them. Scottish singer-songwriter KT Tunstall exudes cool and her sound has given us heart-wrenching ballads and uptempo pop hits to round out our personal playlists for the past decade. Bonus – she’s amazing live and looks even better in person.

    #5. Janelle Monáe. When it comes to Janelle Monáe, I can’t. I cannot put into words how psychedelically soulful and adorable she is (at the same time)! There are few people in this world who can rock a suit and a pair of wingtip shoes like she can. Crushworthy? I think yes.

    #4. P!nk. I guarantee you’ve had at least one girlfriend with a poster of P!nk tacked to her bedroom wall. Alecia Beth Moore is an artist whose rock vocals have made their way onto every mix tape you’ve ever made… and whose rock hard abs have been burned into your memory forever.

    #3. Beyoncé. As lesbian-favorite Kate McKinnon once said “Everbody’s a Beyoncé fan, Seth“. Forget about the looks and the dance moves for a minute (if you can); Beyoncé’s voice alone is enough to earn her a spot on every crushworthy list in human history.

    #2. Brandi Carlile. I bet you’ve had a dream that goes a little something like this: Brandi Carlile (and her guitar) shows up in your living room wearing her signature vest singing The Story, and… Brandi’s alternative country vocals have kept us swooning for over ten years and four albums. We’re so glad she came out in 2002. We’re so glad she married the woman she loves. We’re so jealous.

    #1. Tegan and Sara. What’s not to love about openly gay identical twins from Canada? Tegan and Sara make up both halves of an indie rock/pop duo that’s been bringing us great music since their first album release in 1999. True fans have every lesbian lyric memorized while the rest of us sit back to admire their never-aging, andro-cuteness and wonder if they’re single.

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    We’re all about helping you foster the relationships you’re after. 

    Robyn Exton

    Robyn is the CEO & Founder of HER. Find her on Twitter.

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