11 Best 80s Female Rock Singers

11 Best 80s Female Rock Singers
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This 80s female rock singers list contains some real vocal talent. Not only that, but these 80s female singers were, in many cases, more than simply vocalists. Many of course are also songwriters, and/or they play various musical instruments.

But also among their number are committed philanthropists, actresses, a political activist and even a poet. What these 80s female rock stars tend to have in common is big hair and powerful voices. They’ve also made significant contributions to the music of the decade, either as solo artists or with their respective bands. Or both.

Interestingly, a number of these 80s rock women were so committed to their careers that they never got married or had children. They’ve certainly made their mark on the world, though, whether as solo female vocalists of the 80s or for fronting 80s bands with female lead singers.

Here are 11 of the finest 80s female rockers around.

11 of the Best 80s Female Rock Singers

Debbie Harry

The lead singer of Blondie had four rock songs with the band that reached number one in the US. Formerly known as Angela Trimble, she was adopted at three months. She was once in a relationship with Chris Stein, also of Blondie, and is godmother to his daughters.

Harry is now a keen philanthropist, and supports a range of causes including environmental concerns and health charities. During her career, she’s had musical success with Blondie and as a solo artist, and has also acted in numerous film and TV roles.

Joan Jett

Joan Jett and the Blackhearts are most famous for the song I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll. This multi-talented musician is also a producer, songwriter and actress. With her jet black mane and dark outfits, she’s the epitome of 80s rock women.

Jett was born as Joan Marie Larkin, and has never married or had children.

Stevie Nicks

Possibly the best known of all the blonde 80s female rock singers, Stevie Nicks is famous for fronting Fleetwood Mac – whose biggest hit was Dreams – as well as her solo work.

Though married once, the union was brief and like Joan Jett, Stevie Nicks never had any children. She’s also worked as a producer and songwriter, in addition to singing.

Ann Wilson

Along with her younger sister Nancy, Ann Wilson belongs to the American rock band Heart. One of the best female rock singers of the 80s really showed off her vocal talents on Alone, which was among Heart’s biggest hits.

The song was also one of the 80s’ biggest power ballads.

Chrissie Hynde

British-American singer Chrissie Hynde was, during the latter half of the 80s, part of one of the decade’s power couples, due to her marriage to Jim Kerr of Simple Minds. She remains one of The Pretenders‘ original members, and is a songwriter and guitarist as well as a singer.

Incidentally, Hynde duetted with Michael Hutchence of INXS on the title track for their 1993 album Full Moon, Dirty Hearts.

Linda Ronstadt

Though Linda Ronstadt’s biggest hit You’re No Good charted during the 70s, the American singer was active throughout the 80s. She’s known for recording in a variety of musical styles, and was inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in 2014.

Like some other famous 80s female singers from the rock genre, Ronstadt has also never married, but she did adopt two children during the 90s.

Pat Benatar

Love Is a Battlefield is one of Pat Benatar’s greatest hits, and like other 80s hits it’s been featured in the Stranger Things series.

Benatar has been married twice, has two children and has sold more than 35 million albums during her career. One of the best 80s female singers in the rock genre is wed to Neil Giraldo, a fellow musician who’s the father of her children.

Courtney Love

The frontwoman of alternative rock band Hole might well be one of the most famous 80s female rock singers due to her marriage. Kurt Cobain’s wife is a singer, songwriter and guitarist, and actually began her career as an actress. She was in rehab when Cobain committed suicide in 1994.

The couple had one child, Frances Bean Cobain, who is an artist and model.

Patti Smith

Patti Smith is among the best known female rock singers of the 70s and 80s, and was also one of the key players within the punk rock movement in New York City during the 1970s. As with various contemporaries, such as Linda Ronstadt, her success continued into the 80s.

The singer songwriter is also a writer, poet and painter, and was referred to as the punk poet laureate for combining poetry with punk. The influential recording Horses was her debut album, and was released in 1975.

Tina Turner

The Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll first shot to fame as one half of Ike and Tina Turner. Her powerful voice lent itself to a range of tracks, and she was famous for her on-stage struts. And of course those legs in miniskirts.

In Tina’s 1986 autobiography, she revealed that Ike had been abusive throughout their union. He died of a drug overdose in 2007, and she passed away in 2023 in Switzerland.

Annie Lennox

One half of British duo Eurythmics, Annie Lennox is a philanthropist and political activist as well as a singer songwriter. Born in Aberdeen, Scotland, she’s been married three times, and also had a relationship with Dave Stewart of Eurythmics. Her two daughters are both models. Lola is also a singer songwriter, while Tali is also an actress and artist.

Annie Lennox was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2020, and Eurythmics entered the Rock ‘n’ Roll hall in 2022. Few female vocalists of the 80s are as respected: both VH1 and Rolling Stone have named Lennox as one of the finest singers ever.

Which 80s Female Rock Singers Do You Rate?

These 80s women of rock are still going strong today – even in the case of Tina Turner, whose legacy will live on. Whether as solo artists or when fronting a band, these female rock stars of the 80s were attractive, smart women with a multitude of talents. My favourite would be a toss-up between Chrissie Hynde and Debbie Harry, with a dose of Tina Turner thrown in for good measure.

Marcy x

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Note – This post may contain affiliate links. If you buy via these, I may earn a small fee. This does not affect the price you pay in any way. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

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