Popular Female Christian singer-songwriters to Look Out For

The Contemporary Christian music industry can afford to be more welcoming to the female singer/songwriter. Since the launch of Billboard’s Christian Songs chart in 2003, only seven solo female artists have topped the chart: Joy Williams, Nichole Nordeman, Francesca Battistelli, Amy Grant and Leigh Nash (in separate Christmas duets with Matthew West and tobyMac, respectively), Laura Story, and Mandisa. Eight number one hits from seven solo female artists in ten years doesn’t seem like a lot – Mandisa scored two number one hits with “Stronger” & “Overcomer” – but it does go to show that Christian AC could stand to be a little more open to solo female artists singing Christian music.

Thankfully, now, more solo female Christian singer-songwriters are scoring Top 10 hits. Here are five names we can afford to look out for.

Kari Jobe, “Forever”

Kari Jobe. Jobe may be one of the most popular female Christian singers to not have scored a Top 10 hit until recently, when she scored back-to-back Top 10 hits with “Forever” and “I Am Not Alone” from her latest release, “Majestic.” She’s scheduled to release “Majestic Revisited,” acoustic revisitings of the songs on “Majestic,” on iTunes very soon.

Ellie Holcomb, “Broken Beautiful”

Ellie Holcomb. The daughter of Grammy Award and Dove Award-winning Contemporary Christian record producer Brown Bannister (Avalon, Amy Grant, Steven Curtis Chapman), Holcomb has earned accolades on her own, scoring a radio hit with “Broken Beautiful” and earning New Artist of the Year honors at the 2014 GMA Dove Awards.

Jamie Grace, “Beautiful Day”

Jamie Grace. Prior to Jamie Grace, the only solo female African-American singers to score Top 10 hits on Billboard’s Christian Songs chart were Mandisa and Nicole C. Mullen. The 23-year-old has since broken down barriers in an impressive way, scoring the top gospel song of 2014 with “Beautiful Day,” and several other awards in the process, including New Artist of the Year at the 2012 GMA Dove Awards.

Morgan Harper Nichols, “Storyteller”

Morgan Harper Nichols. The older sister of Jamie Grace, Nichols scored her own record deal with Gotee, the record label that so happened to sign Grace on. Grace lends her formidable chops to her older sister’s debut single, “Storyteller,” but Nichols doesn’t really need the help. Her rich alto and mature lyrics are worlds apart from her sister’s younger, more pop-oriented music.

Moriah Peters, “Brave”

Moriah Peters. Peters first came to public attention in 2010 when she auditioned for American Idol and was impressed the judges, who derided her wholesome image. (Peters decided to wait until marriage to have her first kiss.) She signed on to Reunion Records a year later, and released her debut album, “I Choose Jesus.” Since then, she has scored at least three radio hits and married singer Joel Smallbone of Grammy Award-winning Contemporary Christian duo For King and Country.

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