I decided to elaborate a list of ten excellent French female singers (To me). Most of the artists on the list are solo singers, and the majority are French pop singers. You will learn about their career path and sometimes about their personal life. If you want to discover more French artists, I recommend you to read one of my previous articles about it: 10 French Music Artists that You Need to Listen to Now.
1 – Izïa
Izïa or Izïa Higelin is a French female singer and actress born in 1990 in Paris. She mostly sings in French but has been singing in English for some songs. She is the daughter of a famous French musician named Jacques Higelin. Izïa is a super-energetic and positive person always with a big smile on her face. The singer released four albums until now from a career starting at the youngest age (19 years old).
She went through two important events recently, her dad passed away in April 2018. He always took her to his concert on the stage and backstage. Her album from 2019 “Citadelle” is a tribute to her dad that played a central role in her personal and professional life development. At the same time, this album is here to celebrate another important life event, the birth of her kid in August 2018, four months after the loss of her dad.
La vague – Izïa (2015)
2 – Poupie
Young French female singer born in 1999, in Lyon. She participated in one of the most famous television singing contests: The Voice (on TF1). She covers modern topics as love (classic) or finding her way. Recently, she managed to collaborate with many French artists as Ben Mazué or with the biggest French rapper album seller of all time: Jul.
She released her first album in 2021 named “Enfant roi” (=king kid). She puts a lot of creative effort into her different video clips. She is definitely a pop artist but some of the instrumentals used are dub melodies. She is a person full of energy singing most of the time in French but sometimes in English or in Spanish. For her, music was always a way to express herself, allowing her to “go in all directions while remaining organized”. Here is probably my favorite music from Poupie.
Thelma et Louise – Poupie (2021)
3 – Jain
What a surprise? Even though Jain only sings in English, she is a French female artist. Jeanne Galice from her real name was born in 1992 in the beautiful city of Toulouse. She was spotted by the French band Yodelice and released her first album in 2015 named “Zanaka”. From this album, she became internationally famous thanks to one of her big music hits “Come”. She had another big hit a year after with “Makeba” that surpassed the 100 million views on YouTube (as Come). The international vibes that you get from her songs are actually linked to her personal life.
From the age of 9 to 12 she moved with her parents to Dubai where she discovered the local music culture. Later, she moved again with her parents to the Republic Democratic of Congo until the age of 16. She will take the opportunity to learn how to play guitar. After that, she decided to go to prepare and pass her baccalaureate in Abu Dhabi where she is going to form her first band “The Macumbaz”. Finally, when she turned 18, she went to Paris and from there, her career took off. In 2017 she won, at the Victoire de la musique, the award of the best music video clip with “Makeba”, and the award of the Best French female artist, not bad at all right?
Makeba – Jain (2016)
4 – Alice et Moi
I mentioned her already in my list of French pop music artists. Translated into English the name is “Alice and me”, two artists then? No, it’s just Alice (Alice Vannoorenberghe) a solo electro-pop musician. The name is referring to the duality of his personality with one side a woman with some doubts and another side with a woman full of energy and confidence. Besides the duality, the name helps to create a closer relationship with her fans, with more intimacy.
Everything started in 2017 with the EP “Film Moi”, released after a gap year. She finally released her first album “Drama” in May 2021. You will find, for example, the EP “Je suis fan” released the same year. Alice has always been immersed in music, her father was a member of a punk band in his youth. Besides writing and singing her own songs, she is producing her video clips. She co-produced the video clip “Film moi”, “J’en ai rien à faire” ou “L’amour à la plage”. She produced “Les gens sont cools” and “Le pire de nous deux”. To summarize, she has many talented skills!
5 – Zaz
Can I be honest? I do not like Zaz at all, I do not like the type of music, her lyrics even though she is singing about happiness and being down to earth. I had to mention her since she is one of the biggest album sellers outside of France (Out of the 4 million albums sold 2 million albums were sold abroad) and many French people love her music. To make it short, she is a French female pop music artist with a gypsy jazz-influenced style. She is sometimes compared to the famous old French star Edith Piaf. Zaz was born in 1980 in Tours (medium size countryside French city).
She started with music in 2001 as an orchestra singer but her career really took off in 2010 after signing an important contract with Caramba the editor of Sony ATV. She appeared in a famous music TV show (I guess famous only in France) called Taratata and this is how the general public started to discover her. From there she released many albums and became one of the most important French artists after her huge success with the music hit “Je veux” released in 2010. in the 2010s, she managed to be consistent by releasing a total of four albums “Zaz” in 2010, “Recto Verso” in 2013, “Paris” in 2014, and “Effet Miroir” in 2018. If there is a song I like from Zaz, it’s probably “Éblouie par la nuit”.
6 – Cléa Vincent
This French female singer was spotted in 2014 with her first EP “Non mais oui”. Later, her video clip “Château perdu” met its audience on YouTube and one of the most important French TV channels named M6 decided to air it on French television. She released in 2016 her first album “Retiens mon désir” and received good criticism from the press and the fans. The same year she had the chance to play at the French program Quotidien (a kind of French late-night show but not really), this gave her a big exposure to the French general audience.
In 2019, she released her second album “Nuit sans sommeil”, she walked away from her disco universe to a more pop universe. She came back with a peaceful and poetic EP “Gens de la nuit” about the Parisian nightlife. Besides the song “Jmy attendais pas”, I do enjoy “Seul sous la lune” featuring the singer Baptiste W.Hamon.
Château Perdu – Cléa Vincent (2014)
7 – Clara Luciani
From the regulars of French Iceberg, I know, I keep mentioning her in different articles. It is actually the third time and I swear the last time. She was born in July 1992 in a suburb of Marseille. She started pretty young with the music and ended up stopping her studies at the age of 19 after passing her final high school exam, the baccalaureate. She decided to give it a try in Paris. In order to finance her dream, she worked as a babysitter and had other small jobs in the capital. Everything changed for her the day she met the French rock band La Femme. She did a featuring in two songs of the first album from the band intituled “Psycho Tropical Berlin” in 2014 with “It’s Time To Wake Up (2023)” and “La Femme”. She did a feature with one of the most famous French rappers Nekfeu with the song “Avant tu riais” (2016).
After that, she had other connections and associated herself with Maxime Sokolinski to create the duo Hologram. Later, the singer Raphaël took her on his music tour named “Somnambules”, and in 2017 she was playing the first part of the tour of the singer Benjamin Biolay.
All those collaborations pushed her to release her first EP “Monstre d’amour”. Since this single was a success, she released 2018, her first album “Sainte-Victoire ” which received many awards in France. From there, she has been releasing a total of three albums with Saint-Victoire (2018), Saint-Victoire Super Reddition (2019), and Coeur (2021). Here is a new super visual video clip from one of her many hits “La Baie”.
8 – Yelle
Julie Budet as known as Yelle sings with a soft voice almost childish with trashy lyrics. Under her bangs and her bobbed haircuts, she was one of few French singers that managed to become “famous” in the USA. She did many tours in North America after her first album “Pop Up” in 2007, she ended up performing at the famous music festival of Coachella. She is a pop-electro singer and she is one of the first female artists to be uncomplexed about man and sex. She released in 2007 the single “Je veux te voir” where she innovated in the French music scene by singing provocating lyrics (with the mindset of the American series “Sex in the city”). At that time, this song was a counter answer to a very masculine and provoking French song “Girlfriend” from the French band TTC.
A weird fact for Yelle, she admitted having different types of fans. In North America, Spain and Scandinavia, she is seen as an underground alternative musician. Whereas in France, she is seen as a commercial singer. This is probably linked to the fact that at the beginning of her career she collaborated on a song with Michaêl Youn (the French Jackass but in a softer version). The feature was for the band Fatal Bazooka with the hilarious song “Parle à ma main”(‘=talk to my hand) in 2007. I think as time went by, she became less aggressive in her lyrics. There is one French love song (an article about it) that I enjoy from Yelle. It was released in 2020, “Je t’aime encore” is a more peaceful song compared to the songs at the beginning of her career. Other great songs from Yelle would be “A cause de garçon” (Tepr Remix), “Ce jeu” but my favorite so far is the featuring with the French artist Voyou with the joyful French song “Les bruits de la ville” in 2019.
9 – Silly Blue Boy
From a real name Ana Benabdelkarim, Silly Blue Boy is a young French woman singer (born in 1996) singing in English as the French singer Jain. Why in English? Simply, she admitted that she was hugely influenced by English and American music even though she is listening to French music like Clara Luciani, Requin Chagrin, or older ones like Barbara and Françoise Hardy. The French artist with Moroccan origins released her first EP in 2018 “But You Will” making reference to a powerful dialogue in the movie “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” from Michel Gondry (Kate Winslet telling Jim Carrey he will find something not to love from her).
Silly Boy Blue is not her first music experience, she was playing in a band named Pegase in 2015, after that, she decided to write her own texts and start a solo career. She has a poetic and peaceful style with some melancholic vibes that you will easily enjoy listening to. Actually, she describes her style as melancholic pop. She is one of the new trending artists on the French music scene. I randomly discovered her with the song “The Fight” and then with the amazing collaboration with the French duo electro-pop artists Isaac Delusion (Loîc Fleury and Jules Pacotte) with the song “Make It”. They made an impressive performance for the German music YouTube channel “Colors” with this song. For summer 2021, she was performing at the first part of the concert of Woodkid in Lyon, lucky the ones that had the chance to see both in one night.
Fun fact, I had no clue she was a French artist before writing this article, I guess her stage name got me wrong. The name was taken from a song by David Bowie, an artist that she has been devoted to since childhood. This admiration goes from being a kid at her parents listening to the Best Of (of David Bowie) to her university thesis on the androgynous bodies in music from David Bowie. Definitely, you can see the influence of the British artist on her music career from the video clips to her songs.
Make It – Silly Boy Blue and Isaac Delusion (2020)
10 – Corine
Corine is coming straight from the eighties, she is a French disco-pop woman musician, bringing something original to the French music scene. With her fluffy blond and curly hair and her glittery eyelids, she shares the same values as Simone de Beauvoir and Michelle Obama by pushing to empower women, including herself. Her disco vintage style and more specifically her hairstyle might remind the French of a famous French artist from the eighties, Michel Polnareff. She is the Philippe Katerine woman version (It is an eccentric French singer). The trendy French band Polo and Pan made a remix of one of her songs that end up being the most streamed music on Spotify. Besides this remix, I like the song “Pourquoi pourquoi” released in 2018.
I hope that you discover some French female singers that you will enjoy listening to from now on. I could have mentioned many other artists such as Hoshi, Emma Peters, Aloïse Sauvage, or the Female French band LEJ (I don’t like this band) but feel free to listen to those artists too. As usual, if you think that there is an artist that you would like me to know, leave a comment on this article. I will be happy to answer you 🙂