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5 Female Guitarists You Should Listen to Right Now

5 Female Guitarists You Should Listen to Right Now

From pioneer Mary Kaye and her translucent Fender Stratocaster, to Jennifer Batten sashaying on stage with the King of Pop, to Bonnie Raitt’s gut wrenching slide work—these are just some of the biggest names to blaze a trail for women in the guitar arena. The good news is they are far from the only female guitarists out there. In fact, there are too many to fit in this very short list of five. So if you’re wondering what women have to say on a six-string, here are our top five female guitarists that deserve your ears and attention.

Nita Strauss

Arguably the rockingest female guitarist in the world today, Nita Strauss is a prolific musician who has managed to work with some of the biggest names in rock while also forging her own career path. How she navigates a busy schedule is another talent aside from her fretboard wizardry that deserves mention—between 2017 and 2022, she was able to juggle touring with Alice Cooper, releasing her debut album, collaborating with other artists, and doing guitar clinics all over the world, simultaneously!

Nita Strauss’s Top 3 Songs

The Wolf You Feed (feat. Alissa White-Gluz) – Call of the Void (2022)

Dead Inside (feat. David Draiman) – Dead Inside (2021)

Winner Takes All (feat. Alice Cooper) – Call of the Void (2022)

Listen to Nita Strauss on Spotify


The chosen heir to Jennifer Batten’s throne was all set to accompany Michael Jackson in his farewell tour. Unfortunately, tragedy struck, and she lost the coveted gig with The Gloved One’s untimely death. Not that this Australian-born six-string slinger needed the prestige—her playing has already earned the nods of guitar luminaries like Carlos Santana, Steve Vai, and Ritchie Sambora way before her association with the King of Pop. And her success is all but guaranteed, considering she can practically play anything, from rock to pop and even country!

Orianthi’s Top 3 Songs

Highly Strung (feat. Steve Vai) – Believe (2009)

Sadda Haq (feat.Mohit Chauhan) – Rockstar OST (2011)

Where Did Your Heart Go – Rock Candy (2022)

Listen to Orianthi on Spotify

St. Vincent

St. Vincent—Annie Clark in real life—has sought to redefine pop music as we know it since she released her first album in 2007, but it wasn’t until 2014’s self-titled, Grammy-winning fourth album that she finally made a breakthrough. Recognized as one of the most innovative tone chasers in the industry today, her playing is improvisational and melodic as it is effortless. And it doesn’t hurt that she also has one of the most-instantly recognizable signature guitars available today.

St. Vincent’s Top 3 Songs

Rattlesnake – St. Vincent (2014)

Daddy’s Home – Daddy’s Home (2021)

Surgeon – Strange Mercy (2011)

Listen to St. Vincent on Spotify

Susan Tedeschi

Though Susan Tedeschi’s bluesy guitar playing and expressive singing drew comparisons to Bonnie Raitt early in her career, she has managed to develop her own distinctive voice over the years. Together with husband Derek Trucks, she has created one of the most recognizable jam bands since The Allman Brothers. She also steps out as a solo artist from time to time, playing gigs and guest spots with music icons such as Dave Matthews, Johnny Winter, Herbie Hancock, and Los Lobos. Primarily known as a blueswoman, she seamlessly injects a lot of other types of music in her guitar work, playing with a conviction and musical sensibility rarely found in many of her peers, whether female or not.

Susan Tedeschi’s Top 3 Songs

Talking About – Back to the River (2008)

Just Won’t Burn – Just Won’t Burn (1998) 

I Pity the Fool (with Tedeschi Trucks Band) – Let Me Get By (2016)

Listen to Susan Tedeschi on Spotify

Kaki King

If you’ve seen the movie “August Rush”, then you’ve already heard of Kaki King’s guitar virtuosity. Employing a truly unique and unusual fingerstyle and tapping technique honed from her lengthy stint as a New York subway busker, Ms. King has an uncanny ability to make her compositions sound like she’s playing with a full backing band, even if it’s just her and her acoustic guitar. Not one to be satisfied with simply wowing crowds with her fancy tricks, Ms. King is determined to push the boundaries of her technique, and this is evident with every new music she releases.

Kaki King’s Top 3 Songs

Bari Improv – August Rush OST (2007)

Surface Changes – The Neck Is a Bridge to the Body (2015)

Teek – Modern Yesterdays (2020)

Listen to Kaki King on Spotify

Check out the songs from these fine ladies and see if you agree with our list. Smart lets you charge your Spotify subscription to your Smart postpaid bill so you don’t have to worry about missing your Spotify payments.

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