Shout-out to these fierce women musicians who made festival history!
1. Janis Joplin at Monterey Pop – 1967
Back when Janis Joplin sang with Big Brother & The Holding Company at this California pop music festival is when she transformed from girl with the salty voice to the inimitably voiced frontwoman and star that she is known as today!
Watch the six minute closing track at the Monterey Pop set, “Ball And Chain”, make jaws drop:
2. Suzanne Vega at Glastonbury – 1989
After being at the receiving end of death threats, the folk -revivalist pop star put on a brave front by playing Glastonbury’s Pyramid Stage, attired in a bullet proof vest.
Watch her strum away calmly at what is now one of the most iconic Glastonbury sets:
3. L7 at Reading – 1992
The grunge rock female band’s performance at the Reading Festival in 1992 has gone down in history as a masterclass on dealing with hecklers! After their breakthrough album Bricks Are Heavy, L7 chose to retort to rude crowd members with a “Eat my used tampon, f***ers!” and throwing said sanitary product at the appalled audience.
4. Yeah Yeah Yeahs at Reading & Leeds – 2006
The indie rock band’s frontwoman donned a sparkly green dress as she stepped down into the photography pit, right in the front of the audience. Watch Karen O belt out the Yeah Yeah Yeah’s biggest hits from “Heads Will Roll” to “Gold Lion”.
5. Björk at Coachella – 2007
The only woman till date to have headlined Coachella, the avant-garde music-maker came through on headlining duties for the second time in 2007 with a vibrant and precisely calculated set. Watch her raw and powerfully gripping set in its entirety below:
6. Grace Jones at Latitude – 2009
The sexagenarian Jamaican model, singer and actor adds another talent to her credit with her hula hooping for over 8 minutes to “Slave To The Rhythm”.
Ms. Jones goes on our #PerformanceGoals list for when we’re in our sixties as well!
7. Beyoncé at Glastonbury – 2011
Beyoncé made history with being the first woman to headline Glastonbury in 2011! Performing while 3 months pregnant, Queen Bey broke into biggest hits, “Crazy In Love” and “Single Ladies”. Watch her slay the headlining set below:
8. Dolly Parton at Glastonbury – 2014
The Country legend drew the biggest Glastonbury crowd of all time for her Sunday afternoon set – popularly considered as the ‘legend’ slot – with her classic list of best country hits. Watch an outstanding rendition of “Jolene” at the 2014 festival:
9. Florence + The Machine at BST Hyde Park – 2016
You can’t make an iconic performances list without including Florence Welch. The maverick frontwoman is a sight to behold with her arresting stage presence and flawless vocalizing. A stunning light game and competent backing band comprising of vocalists, a harpist, two percussionists and a keys/synth player, in addition to the traditional rock band set-up, make this English act a bucket list event.
10. Rihanna at Global Citizen – 2016
Rihanna performed a career spanning set with “Work” to “Umbrella” closing with the soul/ RnB ballad “Love On The Brain” off latest album Anti, showcasing her vocal agility.
Watch what is undoubtedly Global Citizen 2016’s standout set below: