Country music has been changing the game when it comes to females. The genre as a whole has paid closer attention to what females have to offer, and they have to offer a lot. Country music has a whole has some of the most talented female artists right now. They’re raw, empowering, and excellent at their craft. These 10 country girls proved it the most this year. Check out our list of the top 10 females in country below.
It was Cam’s breakout year after she released her debut single ‘Burning House’ to Country radio. She’s a California native, but that never stopped her from dipping her toes in country music, and she does it well. So well that ‘Burning House’ is now a Grammy nominated song. The California girl released her debut album Untamed early December, and peaked at the #4 position on the iTunes Charts during the first week of sales. It’s an album filled with smoldering, intriguing narratives of loss, love, and heartache. 2015 is just the start of her chart topping career.
9. Cassadee Pope
Although she started out in an alternative band Hey Monday is 2008, Cassadee Pope has made a name for herself in the country genre. Since starting her country music solo career in 2011, Pope has soared to new heights. The Florida native won season 3 of NBC’s The Voice in December 2012. Her debut album Frame By Frame debuted at No.9 on the top Billboard 200 chart in 2013, and peaked at No.1 on the Top Country Album chart. She has a new single out called ‘I Am Invincible.’
Katie Armiger is the epitome of beauty. Her stellar looks, and her soul piercing voice are just some of the many attributes that Armiger has that have contributed to who she is today. She’s a Texas native with three albums under her belt with five singles charting on Billboards Hot Country Songs chart. She’s got everything a girl needs to survive in the industry. She’s not only of the best in 2015, but she’s also one to look out for in 2016.
7. Kelleigh Bannen
Kelleigh Bannen is an artist with a kind of raw honesty we all wish we had. Her acclaimed debut single ‘Sorry On The Rocks’ has charted Hot Country Songs Billboard chart, and has received many endorsements from legends such as Billy Duke. Bannen is currently signed with EMI Nashville, and has enthralled many with current singles like ‘Smoke When I Drink,’ being one of the most downloaded songs of 2015. She also keeps fans up to date about her life in Nashville on her blog entitled This Nashville Life. We can’t wait for an album, which is sure to top more charts.
6. Kacey Musgraves
Kacey Musgraves is best known for her hit single, ‘Follow Your Arrow,’ and this year she came back with an exquisite sophomore album Pageant Material. She’s witty with her lyrics, and powerful with her voice. Musgraves is country through and through. The singer took the world by storm as she toured across the nation on her Country and Western Rhinestone Revue tour. Her hit song ‘Biscuits’ from her sophomore release was tied on the tenth most added song on American Country radio, and has been ranked No.1 on Billboard’s ’10 Best Country Songs of 2015’ list.
You can listen to Pageant Material now on Apple Music.
5. Lindsay Ell
Lindsay Ell, a Bobby Bones favorite has been taking the country world by storm with her new hit song ‘By The Way.’ The song has peaked at No.45 on the U.S. Country AirPlay chart. She’s opened up for artists like Keith Urban, Luke Bryan, Buddy Guy, Gretchen Wilson, and Big & Rich.
Ell is well on her way to the top, and we can’t wait to see more in 2016.
You can listen to her new single ‘By The Way’ now on Apple Music
4. Maren Morris
She has cuts on several A-list albums like Tim McGraw’s ‘Last Turn Home, and Kelly Clarkson’s ‘Second Wind.’ Maren Morris is a true marksman with her craft, and it shows flawlessly on her self-titled debut EP. The EP features her latest single ‘My Church,’ and has an electric blanket of country, pop, and soul throughout. Her voice too is powerful, raw, and expansive. We can expect a full length album sometime in 2016.
3. Maddie & Tae
Maddie & Tae broke out in the country music scene when they wrote a hit calling out those in Bro-Country. It didn’t take long for the industry to fall in love with them, and now they are well on their way to the top with their debut album Start Here. ‘Girl In a Country Song’ became the first debut single by a duo to reach No.1 since The Wreckers did in 2006 with ‘Leave the Pieces,’ and only the second in history. The duo also won the CMA award for Vocal Duo of the Year. Start Here was released in August of 2015, and took the No.2 spot on the U.S Country Charts.
You can buy their new single ‘Shut Up and Fish’ now on Apple Music.
2. Carrie Underwood
Carrie Underwood has been one the top females in country music since winning the fourth season of American Idol. She’s the epitome of beauty. Underwood has won 7 Grammy Awards, 16 Billboard Music Awards, 8 American Music Awards, and a nomination for a Golden Globe. The girl from Oklahoma also released her 5th studio album Storyteller earlier this year. The album debuted at No.2 on the Billboard 200 chart. It made Underwood the only country artist in history to have all five albums debut at No.1, and with a No. 1 debut on the Top Country Albums chart.
You can listen to Storyteller on Apple Music now.
1. Kelsea Ballerini
There is no competition when it comes to Kelsea Ballerini and her breakout year. At 19 she signed a deal with Black River Entertainment, and in late 2014 she released her chart topping hit ‘Love Me Like You Mean It.’ The song reached No.1 on the Country AirPlay chart, making Ballerini the first solo country female artist to score a No.1 hit with her debut single since Carrie Underwoods ‘Jesus Take The Wheel’ in 2006, and only the 11th in history to receive the feat. The Tennessee girl released her debut album in May of 2015, which debuted at No.4. She’s won several awards such as CMA’s Female Vocalist of the Year, New Artist of the Year, AMA’s Favorite Female Country Artist, and Billboard’s Rising Star.
You can listen to the chart topping album The First Time on Apple Music now.
Kara Johnson is a writer for Examiner and other social media websites. You can keep up to date with her on Twitter @AlotLikeKara