With the upwards trend of women supporting women in music, we have our fingers crossed with these dream female collabs
When Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak dropped Leave the Door Open out of nowhere a few weeks ago, little did we know we were in for a smooth and sexy chart-topping surprise. With their years of experience and friendship, you come to wonder how their super-duo hadn’t happened earlier. It’s not just Silk Sonic that’s dominating charts right now, though. The worst year in recent history still saw the release of iconic collaborations by women, with the Savage Remix from Megan Thee Stallion and Beyonce, Say So from Doja Cat and Nicki Minaj, Rain on Me from Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande, and even Ice Cream from BLACKPINK and Selena Gomez, among others.
These collabs couldn’t come at a better time, as women all over the world continue to seek representation in the media and strive to lift each other’s voices amidst centuries of being silenced. By teaming up with each other, they’re already harnessing so much power. These songs not only celebrate women empowerment, self-love, and body and sex positivity, but these artists just wanna have fun making music, too.
While we already treasure these existing collabs, they def have us craving for more. We know we can’t just put two or more of our faves together and expect a mind-blowing outcome off the bat. There are going to be numerous variables at play, individual energies bouncing off each other—a fruitful exchange, if you will. We’ve got some wishful thinking ahead of us with this rundown of all-female collabs the universe has yet to manifest.
Phoebe Bridgers & Taylor Swift
Here are things Phoebe Bridgers and Taylor Swift have in common: they’ve both collaborated with members of The National as well as Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon, they both released two of the best albums of 2020 (Punisher and Folklore), and they’re both genius songwriters. You just know they’re degrees apart from being introduced to each other, if they haven’t been already. All that said, it might sound like an odd pairing given Phoebe’s alternative rock origins and Taylor’s country and pop leanings. If we met these two in high school, Taylor would probably be the goody-two-shoes to Phoebe’s emo punk princess, and that’s exactly why it could work. They both have the power of turning such specific experiences into something so visceral and relatable, with the added whimsy and vulnerability that only they can deliver.
Jessi & Chung Ha
These two K-pop soloists might have an 8-year gap, but they both carry spunk like no other. Both are excellent performers, for one. While Jessi has always had this brazenness to her on and off stage, Chung Ha inevitably exudes this duality: her shy demeanor in real life constantly washed over by her hypnotic performances on stage. As evidenced by Chung Ha’s recent appearance on Jessi’s Show!terview and their subsequent TikTok challenges, the older of the two definitely has the power to coax Chung Ha out of her shell a little more. A collab taking hints from Chung Ha’s Latin and Spanish pop influences paired with Jessi’s no-holds-barred rap, all topped with high-energy choreo? We needed it yesterday!
Leila Alcasid & Kiana V
A collab from the daughters of two of the country’s most influential singers coming into their own, embracing vulnerability and carrying this desire to bridge Filipino talent to the rest over the world? Yes, please. These two PARADISE RISING acts both possess a soft sultriness to their voices. Leila’s is lofty where Kiana’s feels more grounded, but both exuding this quiet confidence and self-assurance that took years to achieve, as they dealt with the pressures that came with their respective upbringings. Their voices already lend themselves well to easy, soulful R&B listens but we’d love to see them play around with more genres—maybe dip their toes in more sultry jazz—with the help of their fellow-PARADISE RISING artists, of course.
NIKI & Ylona
Speaking of PARADISE RISING, the 88rising sub-label recently took Ylona Garcia under their wing, making a collab between her and NIKI all the more feasible. While Kiana and Leila gently ride the waves, NIKI and Ylona’s respective music packs more of a punch and an oomph, lending themselves to more grandiose arrangements. I mean, Ylona’s All That could definitely sit at the same table as NIKI’s Selene, don’t you think? With NIKI’s penchant for storytelling and both of their fearless deliveries, there’s no question about the power this potential collab could hold.
Caroline Polachek & Carly Rae Jepsen
Bring on the sad dance floor bangers with these underrated pop queens! I didn’t think I needed this collab until I heard a mash-up of Caroline’s So Hot You’re Hurting My Feelings and Carly Rae’s I Didn’t Just Come Here to Dance. Caroline’s angelic realms-transcending voice punctuated by Carly Rae’s bouncy pop vocals makes me wanna transform my bedroom into a disco. Both artists have a way of communicating deep emotional wounds through up-tempo bangers. More than creating dissonance, the experience almost feels cathartic. A collab between these two would no doubt stir all those deep-seated unresolved feelings we have about being loved and getting hurt, culminating in a much-needed release.
Beyonce & Chloe x Halle
Oh, what we would give for the mentor to collaborate with her mentees! Sisters Chloe and Halle Bailey have been under Queen Bey’s wing since 2015, giving the young sisters a seat at the table, if you will. Last year’s Ungodly Hour allowed the sisters to showcase a maturity and sophistication far beyond their years—just 22 and 20—and Beyoncé's own legacy goes without saying. To be able to see these three black women collaborating and navigating the world with such grace, transcending generations and carving spaces long-deserved and reserved for them could usher in a new generation of powerful black artists and musicians.
Come on now, we know you’ve got could-be collabs you’re wishing for, too. Sound off with your dream female collabs in the comments!
Words Bea Mata
Art Matthew Ian Fetalver