Heavy metal music was once the domain of men only, it was almost like a gentleman’s club where no ladies were allowed in. Things have certainly changed since the early days of heavy metal, not only are there women playing in bands, there are all female heavy metal bands and female lead singers.
This blog celebrates the ladies of heavy metal and we look at some of the best ever female singers to have fronted heavy metal bands. Heavy metal music these days is littered with ferocious frontwomen that can sing and strut just as well as any man.
Wendy O Williams
Wendy O Williams has quite a tag name as the anti-goddess of shock rock. On stage Wendy adorned a large rhinoceros horn on her head, and her nipples were obscured only by duct tape. In each hand she displayed chainsaws like some western gunslinger.
Her band were called the Plasmatics and they pioneered the early days of punk-metal crossover. Lemmy and Joey Ramone were quick to realize just how powerful Wendy was on stage and often asked her to perform with them on live tours. It is quite tragic that Wendy O Williams committed suicide in 1998.
Lita Ford first came to prominence as a guitar player but was soon found to have an incredible voice that suited heavy metal perfectly. Her voice is almost operatic in style and quite beyond compare. She started with the likes of Cherie Currie and Joan Jett and was the lead guitarist with the Runaways.
When the band split up she started a solo career of her own and slowly built a very loyal and devout fan base. Her 1988 debut album was called Lita and the single Kiss me Deadly crossed over to many pop radio stations in the UK and America.
Her second single was a duet with fellow rocker Ozzy Osbourne, Close My Eyes Forever. The song received rave reviews and will stand out as one of the all-time slow dance rock anthems ever. At heart Lita is a rocker, both with her music and her choice of partners in her private life.
Vixen fans will be more than aware of the talents of Janet Gardner, as she was the lead woman who headed up the band for over five years. The band’s most famous release was Edge of a Broken Heart which was an immediate radio and TV hit. It was constantly played on MTV during the 1980’s and in some respect defined the decade.
Vixen had such a great reputation with hard core rock bands that they often accompanied the big boys on tour, and played numerous gigs with, Bon Jovi, Deep Purple, Scorpions and Ozzy Osbourne. During this period they accumulated a huge following and became major headliners themselves.
In part two of our blog of the greatest female fronted heavy metal bands we look at even more amazing ladies that have taken heavy metal and rock by storm. These leading ladies have proved that heavy metal is not just the domain of men.