Cari Jean resides in North Dakota where she works as a freelance writer and blogs at Faith's Mom's Blog.
Some time ago I wrote an article about My Ten Favorite Female Christian Artists. It seemed at the time, Christian radio was dominated by male artists so I took it upon myself to highlight some of the very talented female Christian artists.
Currently, there seems to be a plethora of new female Christian artists that I've been hearing on the radio and elsewhere. One thing I have noticed is many of them are so young and talented! Here are ten of my new favorites.
Though the judges on American Idol liked her voice during her audition, they weren't too keen on the fact she was a teenage Christian who hadn't even kissed her boyfriend. They told her, "Go out and kiss someone that will make you feel sexy." They thought she needed to have more experiences in life. Despite her frustration, Moriah Peters stayed faithful to God and has since been reaping the rewards as a young and successful female Christian music artist.
At the time, she had taken a five-month break from studying law to prepare for the American Idol auditions. Her original dream had been to be an entertainment lawyer. With a 4.1 grade point average at her high school in Chino, California, she definitely had the smarts to become a lawyer. But she had also felt the pull to pursue a music career. Even after her failed American Idol experience, she felt God was telling her to keep pursuing music. At the age of 17, after putting together a three-song demo three different record labels made her an offer.
At the age of 14, Moriah Peters dedicated her life to God and prayed, "God I just want to be used by you." Besides being an opening act on the Rock and Worship Roadshow, Moriah Peters also played the voice of Vanna Banana in the Veggie Tales movie, The Princess and the Pop Star. The female Christian music artist has toured with Christian bands MercyMe, Kutless and Tenth Avenue North. Some of her songs include: I Choose Jesus, Well Done and You Carry Me.
Despite just beginning her career in the Christian music industry, Francesca Battistelli has already proven to be quite successful. From 2009-2012, she was nominated for 17 Dove Awards, winning five of them. Her song "Free to Be Me" was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2009. Besides being busy with music during these years, she was also busy starting a family. She was married in 2009 and currently has two children.
Through her music, Francesca's goal is to encourage and uplift those who listen. It is also her desire "to bring something authentic to the scene that even non-Christians could listen to." Her music may be so widely accepted because it is about real life and about "faith within struggle. Joy amid chaos."
Francesca Battistelli is a female Christian music artist originally from New York City. Both of her parents were involved in music theater and when she was 15, she was a part of a mainstream all girl band called Bella. After the group called it quits, she learned to play guitar and started writing her own music. Some more of her songs include: Beautiful, Beautiful, I'm Letting Go, This is the Stuff, Angel by Your Side and Write Your Story.
Judging from songwriter Laura Story's recent success, one would see that she has plenty of blessings indeed. Her song, Blessings, won the Dove Award for Song of the Year. Her album, Blessings won the Dove Award for Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year in 2012 and she was also nominated for Female Artist of the Year. But her road getting to this point in her life seems anything but blessed.
In 2006, after being married for just one year, her husband was diagnosed with a brain tumor. At one time, he was on a breathing machine and doctors did not know if he would make it. She supported him through surgery, radiation treatments and intense physical therapy. Through this experience Laura Story says with much conviction, "Though He leads us through valleys, that's when we get to trust Him and draw closer to Him all the more."
Laura is originally from Spartanburg, South Carolina. Her husband, Martin Elvington is her high school sweetheart. Besides her role as a female Christian music artist and songwriter, she also works in the music ministry at Perimeter Church in Atlanta. Laura Story wrote the amazing worship song, "Indescribable" performed by Chris Tomlin. Some more of her songs include Mighty to Save, What a Savior, Friend of Sinners, He Will Not Let Go and Forgiven.
At the age of 20, Atlanta singer, songwriter and rapper Jamie Grace became somewhat of an overnight success as a female Christian music artist. It all began when mega-Christian music star, tobyMac, noticed the young lady on Youtube who then tweeted that he would like to work with her.
Jamie Grace's hit single, Hold Me, which she co-wrote with tobyMac and producer-writer, Christopher Stevens, was nominated for the 2012 Dove Award Song of the Year and was also nominated for a Grammy award. Though her song didn't win either award, she did as she walked away with the Dove Award for New Artist of the Year.
Besides songwriting, performing and touring, Jamie Grace is also busy trying to earn a college degree in childhood ministry at Point University. In pursuing her goals, she has had to learn to manage her Tourette's Syndrome, a condition she was diagnosed with at the age of 11.
During her struggles with the disorder, the female Christian music artist has focused on her music. In doing this, she realized God had a purpose and a plan for her life. It was as though He was telling her, “Hey kid, like I need you to take this message of hope and I need you to share it with other kids so I decided I was going to be a singer, an actress, and a motivational speaker and try to get the message of God’s hope out to anyone that I could."
Some more of her songs include: One Song at a Time, Just Wanna Dance, You Make Us Smile, Beautiful Day and Do Life Big.
Kerrie Roberts is one of those power-house vocalists that you see and wonder how such a powerful voice can come from such a tiny person. So small, in fact, that when she was five years old and sang a her father's church, she had to stand on a milk crate just so the congregation could see her.
While her father is a pastor her mother is a church choir director - something that Kerrie is thankful for. She says, "They consistently taught me to reach out to the broken and to those who need encouragement and hope. That’s something that resonates in me and something I love being a part of.”
Kerrie Roberts is a female Christian music artist who attained her degree in Studio Music and Jazz Vocal Performance from the University of Miami. She pursued her music career after finishing college and was even a backup singer for Engelbert Humperdinck. By teaching in an elementary school and working as an accountant, she was able to finance her music career. But Kerrie didn't want just any music deal - though she had several offers, she was willing to wait for the right one to come along.
In 2010, at the age of 25, she released her debut album, Kerrie Roberts. She is getting ready to launch her second album, Time for the Show this summer. Some of Kerrie Roberts songs include Outcast, No Matter What, Keep Breathing and Beautiful to Me.
Britt Nicole is originally from Kannapolis, North Carolina and even as a young girl had incredible talent for singing and dancing. As a child, she and two of her young family members were featured on a Charlotte TV station as part of her church's daily program. She got her first big break in Christian music when her first album "Say It" was released in 2007 and she was the opening act on the Winter Jam tour with other Christian artists, Sanctus Real, Jeremy Camp and Steven Curtis Chapman.
One of this female Christian music artist's most popular songs is "All This Time." The song talks about how as a seven-year-old, Britt was in her room crying after finding out her parents were getting a divorce. She felt God's presence and she knew right then and there that He was going to be there for her during that difficult time in her life and for the rest of her years to come.
Britt Nicole's music certainly has a pop flavor to it. On that note, Britt Nicole says, "My fans want a pop record. I'm a pop artist and they love fun music. When they come to my concerts, they want to have fun and I love that. That's in my personality to have fun, but the heart of who I am is to worship and to see people's lives changed and to reach those who are hurting. It's what I believe God has called me to do." A calling so great that she even gave up a scholarship from Belmont University in Nashville to pursue her music career.
Her most recent album, Gold was released in March 2012 and contains the number one hit single, All This Time. Other songs by Britt Nicole include Set the World on Fire, The Lost Get Found and Hanging On and Ready or Not which features rap star Lecrae.
Another young lady who is just beginning her career in the Christian music industry is Dara Maclean. You may have heard her unique voice on the radio singing the song "Free." This song is a fun one to jam to but Dara says, "I love making music you can move and groove to, but at the same time, as Christian artists we have a responsibility to speak the truth of the finished work of Christ in love."
Dara Maclean is a female Christian music artist from Fort Worth, Texas. As a young teenager, she lead worship in church. While in high school, she traveled extensively with a singing group who performed at churches, conferences and even the Superdome.
At 18, she felt she knew she was supposed to pursue music and ministry. She recently toured with Christian bands Newsong and Kutless on the One True God Tour and plans to perform at several summer concert festivals around the country.
She is influenced by her parents' love of the Motown sound along the the funk and soul music of the 70's. These sounds can be heard in her debut album You Got My Attention. Other songs on the album include: Suitcases, What Love Looks Like, So Good to Me, Wanted, Set My People Free.
While the music of Kim Walker-Smith cannot be heard on Christian music radio, she is wildly popular on YouTube and in digital music. She is well-known as being a part of Jesus Culture, a global movement that focuses on changing the world through worship music.
Kim Walker-Smith was born in Oregon but moved to Redding, California to attend college. Not happy as a student, she came across a 24-hour house of prayer initiated by Bethel Church. She eventually quit school and instead attended Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry and was later hired as worship pastor for Bethel Church.
She is a passionate worship leader who was a desire to, "bring an entire generation into an encounter with God." She wants people to be transformed by God's love for them. In 2009, she married Skyler Smith and in 2013 they welcomed their first child, Wyatt, into the world.
Kim Walker-Smith's music can be found on many Jesus Culture albums. Her songs include: I Still Believe, Miracle Maker, The King is Here and Spirit Break Out.
Kari Jobe is a female Christian music artist with a true heart for worship - so much so, she is an associate worship pastor at Gateway Church in Southland, Texas. Originally from Waco, Kari has led worship around the world during international missions trips.
The church where she works also has its own worship band called Gateway Worship. Besides music, education is high on Kari Jobe's list as well. She has attended Oral Roberts University, Christ for the Nations Institute and Dallas Baptist University and besides a degree in pastoral studies, she holds a degree in psychology.
Kari Jobe has recently become involved in the A21 Campaign that strives to end human trafficking in the 21st Century. Kari and her sister, Kris, design and sell jewelry and t-shirts and all of the proceeds go to this cause.
Though she makes it all look so easy, Kari says there are times that are very uncomfortable for her. When she goes through such seasons that really stretch her she thinks about how, "We live in this culture of convenience that says we can do everything ourselves and find all the answers on Google, But if we can learn to fall more in love with the Lord and trust Him in the middle of every storm, we build our endurance to keep running the race."
In 2009, Kari released her first album, Kari Jobe, along with a Spanish version of the same album called Le Canto which won a Dove Award for Spanish Language Album of the Year in 2010. That same year, she was also nominated for a Dove Award for Best New Artist of the Year.
Her song, "Love Came Down" became known around the world when performed on American Idol by Angie Miller when contestants performed a song they wish they had written. Other songs by Kari Jobe include I'm Singing, Adore Him, Healer, We Are, Whom Shall I Fear with Lincoln Brewster and Breathe on Us.
Though Mandisa didn't win American Idol during Season 5, she did win the hearts of many and God probably opened more doors for her than if she had won.
Her best moment on American Idol was when she forgave Simon Cowell for making fun of her weight during auditions. She said, "What I want to say to you is that, yes, you hurt me and I cried and it was painful, it really was. But I want you to know that I've forgiven you and that you don't need someone to apologize in order to forgive somebody. I figure that if Jesus could die so that all of my wrongs could be forgiven, I can certainly extend that same grace to you."
Mandisa has become one of the most popular female Christian artists. She has been nominated for Grammy Awards and Dove Awards. After her American Idol experience, she collaborated with tobyMac and Kirk Franklin on tobyMac's album, Portable Sounds. Her first full-length album, True Beauty, debuted in July of 2007.
The 35-year-old Caifornia native is a graduate of American River College in Sacramento where she studied Vocal Jazz and also Fisk University in Tennessee where she received her bachelor's degree in music.
Mandisa says that people mistakenly think that Christians, especially famous ones, got it all together. She says, “A lot of people think we as Christians have to put our masks on and pretend that everything is great. But I was really amazed at the responses I’d get when I’d Tweet that I was struggling, or needed prayer with something, or having a bad day."
Much of Mandisa's struggles have had to do with her weight and addiction to food. She realized that by being open and honsest with others about her struggle, it was going to help her more than keeping silent about it. She has lost over 100 pounds since taking on the challenge to eat better and live healthier. Her music video to her hit song, "Overcomer" features real-life overcomers Robin Givens and Gabrielle Giffords and was shown on Good Morning America, bringing tears to the talk show hosts. Mandisa's other songs include Stronger, Good Morning, Only the World and Back to You.
Watchman on July 22, 2018:
Kim Walker-Smith seems to have the greatest anointing of the ones mentioned.
mary c williams on February 15, 2018:
Who is the Christian female who came up with a salvation rap I saw her on a christian show cant remember her. Someone sent me clip and its so poignant and cool she addresses different sinners choices and asks do they know their creator....
Terri on February 03, 2018:
Don't forget Kathleen Carnali #loveher
Cari Jean (author) from Bismarck, ND on November 19, 2017:
Hi Juan - yes I agree Plumb is great as well. If I came out with a new list she and Lauren Daigle would be on it for sure!
Juan on November 15, 2017:
Plumb is the best period!!
Steve on September 29, 2017:
i think Sinach should have made the list
Cari Jean (author) from Bismarck, ND on May 16, 2016:
favored - Thanks so much for your comment! I too enjoy listening to them over and over - especially Kari Jobe singing Forever!
Fay Favored from USA on May 14, 2016:
Wonderful Christian artists and blessed by the Lord with great talent. Enjoy listening to them ... over and over and over ...
Cari Jean (author) from Bismarck, ND on February 13, 2016:
Thomas - honestly I haven't heard much of her music but I will certainly check her out!
Thomas on February 09, 2016:
Where is the amazing Audrey Assad????
Cari Jean (author) from Bismarck, ND on September 26, 2014:
A belated thank you, virazoza!
Nilesh oza from Mumbai on May 15, 2014:
i love this song...great music
yahooearner on October 25, 2013:
Very well written. Excellent work.
Cari Jean (author) from Bismarck, ND on May 21, 2012:
Hyphenbird - thank you so much for your comment. I didn't know that about Ruth Graham. Francesca truly has a unique voice - as does Dara Maclean.
Brenda Barnes from America-Broken But Still Beautiful on May 21, 2012:
These are indeed some great worship artists. I love the songs you chose for the Hub. I remember that Francesca Battistelli was a favorite of Ruth Graham and I think sang at her funeral. She has a unique voice. Thanks for the great music.
Cari Jean (author) from Bismarck, ND on May 20, 2012:
Dreamsinger - thank you so much for your comment. In writing this hub, I have a few new favorite artists and can't wait to get their cd's!
Erin Bradley from New Zealand on May 20, 2012:
Thoroughly enjoyed reading this and listening to some favourites as well as being introduced to some amazing artists - great hub!
Cari Jean (author) from Bismarck, ND on May 20, 2012:
DS Duby - thank you so much, I really appreciate your comment.
DS Duby from United States, Illinois on May 20, 2012:
This was a very well written tribute, great job.