Women circles and so-called women’s (empowerment) work keep circling back to my attention. It doesn’t matter how hard I try to hide and stay small, the calling keeps coming up. The Feminine is rising and asks of me to rise with her. And what better way to rise than to let yourself being carried by high vibe music?! There you go, my introduction to this post full of heartfelt and empowering music sang and created by women! These are songs that help you to connect with your heart, your roots, your self.
Women circles & sacred spaces
So here I’ll share music that is perfect for women circles. But firstly, a brief note on women circles: I have been planning on writing about this phenomenon, but I haven’t come to that yet. In short: women circles are safe spaces that women create together, very intentionally, and in which they can come together as themselves, where they can be real together, where they can let go of layers that are normally in the way of connection. These gatherings often include rituals, meditations and moments of sharing openly how we feel. I use the term ‘women circles’ very broadly here; it can also include movement and dance, and of course using the right music can help with that! Music can also help to create the sacred space, the container in which the magic happens.
If you wish to get more of a sense of what it is or could be, you may watch the documentary The Goddess Project (the last time I checked it was available for free!). Or you can check out some of the resources I mention in the end of this post. Or use your favorite search engine.
Or you can skip all that and just listen to the music that is listed here! Maybe that through listening to the music we can share a sacred space and vibe together through space and time.
Stillness & movement
Women circles and every sort of inner work are both about going inward as well as turning outward. I am personally most familiar with slowing down, deep listening, stillness. And maybe in this stillness you van invite the presence of feminine energy, or the Feminine, and allow her to move in the way she wants to. Encouraging her, welcoming her. Nourishing her. And then, when she feels safe, maybe the Wild woman can come out and be her wild self!
I mean to say that ‘music for the rising of the Feminine’ can be about stillness and/or about being loud and moving a whole lot. There’s stillness vs. movement. Going inward vs. turning outwards. Slow and soft vs. energetic and loud. There are slow songs that allow for slowing down, and there are energetic songs that invite to come out and play! Lastly there are songs that contain both.
The list of female artists & their music
Intuitively I tried to order the list on this scale of quiet to loud, but of course every song is its own world so it’s impossible to order. So I didn’t try too hard. Therefore I suggest you listen to it all and/or you follow your own preferences! Whenever it feels right to you.
And, I haven’t mentioned it yet, but all listed artists are women! The list now includes 10 artists and 10+ women since we have some duos and groups too. I like this, because I still feel like women are somewhat underrepresented in all kinds of media. At least, I personally can use some more female voices in my life! Also, there’s a few bonuses at the end.
Here comes the list of female music artists!
Check out Ajeet her music and especially her beautiful Lunar EP. I also really love this live version of Kiss the Earth (La Luna). Other beautiful songs in English are The Waters, Indigo Sea feat. Rising Appalachia (see below in the list), Akaal – feat. Trevor Hall, and Haseya – feat. Peia (also in the list of this post). She also has made many songs with mantras in other languages.
Ajeet is first on the list, because I love the mentioned songs so much (not just because of the A in the name!). She has a very minimal – read: absent – bio on her website, but I hear – read: read 😉 – that her music inspired by traditions and stories of Ireland, where she comes from. Her music is also inspired by other traditions and folklore.
You may know Ajeet as Ajeet Kaur which is her old name, following the kundalini yoga culture which she grew up in. She also made albums with ‘kundalini yoga mantras’. The songs I recommend here aren’t related to these mantras, but I would say that they do have a similar ‘clean’, ‘polished’ or ‘yogic’ vibe (as opposed to wildness or rawness, for example).
Also, it seems that Ajeet to some extent broke with this culture that she grew up in and that’s why she changed her name. I don’t know exactly which part of her music is kundalini yoga related and how she herself feels about it now, I cannot find it on her pages. (I don’t know her exact story, but I do know mine. I personally broke with the kundalini yoga culture or cult too, and with its [partly stolen] mantras. I haven’t listened to these mantras ever since and I don’t want to. So I prefer Ajeet’s other songs!)
Woven Kin is a collaboration of Ash and Siobhán (another name of Ajeet!), who together produced the song When She Rises that’s part of the aforementioned Lunar EP, and the album Hibernate. I myself haven’t listened to the album yet.
Their website reads: ‘Based out of Co. Kerry, Ireland and New Hampshire, USA, Ash and Siobhán come together for the harmony-centered melodies of Woven Kin. Their songs are dreamscapes and journeys, tradition and new ground.‘
Scarlet Crow is the ‘witch folk-duo’ of Marya Stark and Mama Crow. I love their album Remembrance and also the remix album! I actually wrote about their album before, in a blog post that is no longer online. Here’s what I wrote:
‘Since I listened to Scarlet Crow’s debut album Remembrance for the first time, I have been playing it endlessly. Scarlet Crow is a collaboration of Marya Stark and Carmen Crow who ‘delve into the wounding and healing of the magical feminine, interspersed with storytelling, prayer, and future dreaming’. You can hear all of that in Remembrance! Due to the themes they address and their amazingly beautiful voices. Over all, I find their music very soothing and empowering.
Listen to the full album on Soundcloud and look up Scarlet Crow on their website. It’s hard to pick favorite songs, but for me these may be: It’s Easier, In My Womb, All Or Nothing, and Space Grace Freedom. These songs all have amazingly encouraging lines. Though, it’s definitely best to listen the whole thing through!’
And then there’s Marya Stark under her own name, with the album Lineage, about whom I earlier wrote: ‘Marya is not only a songwriter, but a mentor in the art of voice and archetypal embodiment. I absolutely love her beautiful voice and the lyrics she sings.’
I love this line: ‘where do I go to find images of women women made’, from Awaken To Your Power. For a long time we didn’t have many of these images easily available, did we? Maybe now is the time to create them!
I’d like to add now that Lineage is very repetitive, so you have to be in the mood for that. And you may be stuck with the words and rhythms for a long time after the songs have ended. Just so you know! I personally have listened to it over and over for a period of time. I’d say the repetitiveness makes the music really circular – that’s a funny way to look at it.
In 2020 she released the album Sapphire, which I haven’t listened to very intently yet, so that’s still something to discover!
Peia‘s bio reads: ‘Peia Luzzi is a song collector & writer, drawing inspiration from her ancestral roots of Celtic and Old World European music, and folklore. With a soaring soprano voice, she dances nimbly between Child Ballads and 17th C. Gaelic laments, to Waulking Songs from Scotland, and old Bulgarian mountain wails. Her timeless originals speak to the heart of the human condition.‘
Currently my favorite is Blessed We Are: ‘remember why you came here, remember your life is sacred‘. This song alone is worth the mention here.
Rising Appalachia consists of sisters Leah and Chloe Smith, and they ‘have merged multiple global music influences with their own southern roots to create the inviting new folk album, Leylines. Remarkably the band has built its legion of listeners independently — a self-made success story that has led to major festival appearances and sold-out shows at venues across the country.‘ (You may continue reading here!)
They produced seven albums already, with Leylines being the latest, of May 2021. I definitely like Wider Circles (2015) and The Sails of Self (2010), but listening to individual songs on the internet works fine too! (Not all my favorites are on the mentioned albums. 🙂 ) I recommend you listen to Find Your Way, Scale Down (acoustic), and Medicine. Rising Appalachia also made a song together with Peia: Handsome Molly!
Now, I am so happy that I found the artist behind this specific song I’m about to mention! I have heard this song in many remixes, but now I found its artist: Nalini Blossom! I am talking about the song Prophecy, mixed by Mose, and then also about the song Soul Flight mixed by Mose and Estray.
I also just listened to Circle of Women, which is very suitable for using in women circles. It includes repetitive lyrics and drums. Moreover I suggest you listen to them all to find your favorites. That’s easy because of the Soundcloud playlist with her music on the bottom of this page on her website.
Another song I’ve been wanting to find is Raise your Voice by Mose and Suyana! This one is used in one of my favorite mixes: Live at Heart Culture by Mose and Suyana. Until now I hadn’t found this song itself, isolated from the mix. It is so powerful! With beautiful lyrics too:
‘In this sacred space where I open up I become one
in this sacred space where I open my heart I feel the love
in this sacred space where I open my eyes I see the light‘
– from Raise your Voice by Mose and Suyana
Here are three of the last-mentioned songs, Prophecy by Nalini Blossom and Mose and the two of Suyana and Mose, together in an album on Bandcamp: Medicine Women. Highly recommended. 😉 Such good examples of the female voices that I want to welcome in my life.
And you, be sure to check out Mose’s remixes if you haven’t already! It’s the best music I’ve ever heard. It’s an odd one in this list, but totally worth the special mention!
A few years ago I watched and listened to Laboratorium Pieśni on a music festival. That was an amazing experience, what a wall of sound these women create.
From their website: ‘Laboratorium Pieśni – Song Laboratory (world/ethno/spiritual/mystic folk music) is a group of female singers from Poland, created in 2013. Using traditional, polyphonic singing they perform songs from all over the world, mainly: Ukraine, Balkans, Poland, Belarus, Georgia, Scandinavia and many other places. They sing a capella as well as with shaman drums and other ethnic instruments (shruti box, kalimba, flute, gong, zaphir and koshi chimes, singing bowls, rattles etc.), creating a new space in a traditional song, adding voice improvisations, inspired by sounds of nature, often intuitive, wild and feminine.’
You can start listening here, for example.
I recently found Lizzy Jeff and especially her song Drip through a free class with Layla Martin. Love this song! It feels really empowering, and just chill too. It definitely has a certain vibe that I can’t describe well yet. You’ll know it when you hear it.
Her Bandcamp reads: ‘Let Lizzy Jeff be your cosmic guide to higher vibrations. A true Medicine Woman w/ goddess flow, serving enlightenined bars over slappin beats. Sit back, inhale the damiana and enjoy the vibe’. If that’s your vibe, go check her music out. It’s worth it.
I already mentioned the music of Mose, whose mixes are amazing! I mention it again here in the ‘bonus section’ because as far as I understand he mostly makes mixes (in collaboration with other artists), as opposed to original music (on his own) as the artists above seem to do. And as far as I know Mose is a man, and the other artists are women. So he stands out a little here.
Another thing worth mentioning is the following women circle-friendly list of artists and songs, curated by Sistership Circle which is founded by circle leader Tanya Lynn. The list belongs to the free The Art of Leading Circle Startup Kit. I have this startup kit booklet, that’s why I know the link. 😉 If you’re interested in women circles, I can definitely recommend checking out Sistership Circle!
Looking for more music to add to the collection in this post, I just found a few more pages on the web that are worth checking out too:
Women circle organization Goddess Ceremony demonstrates three small songs to sing together during women circles – beware, they are very repetitive, so you may be stuck with them for
ever a long time.
While I wasn’t searching for great feminist songs per se, I did find them over here at Harpers Bazaar’s recent article with 49 ’empowering songs’ by women. I love it! And even if you don’t love most of it, there’s a lot to check out so there must be at least one song that’s for you! And it’s made easy: all the videos are embedded, so you can just click and play (as opposed to people like me who let you do the work!). I’m just really glad I found it, I need more female voices in my life, I’m sure.
What do you listen to?
Now it’s your turn! What do you listen to over and over? During women circles? Dance ceremonies? What’s your favorite music to let go to, to feel empowered, to feel like your self?
Let me know in a comment so we can build up this little beautiful music library that we can all enjoy! If I find more music that fits well with the list, I may add it to this post too. Of course you are also welcome to share this post with others who may enjoy some beautiful music.
A final note: I am totally pro man circles and mixed circles too, and pro finding music for that. If you know of music that would be perfect for those and wish to share, you’re very welcome to! Also, my women circles would be open to including LGBT+. I am not here to judge, only to include. I do think there’s value in creating safe spaces for specific groups of people, but the aim is not to exclude others. I’ll probably get back to that in the general women circle blog post, whenever I write that. 🙂