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Girl Group

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And you thought the Archies were the only real rock band in Riverdale...

Girl groups are the Distaff Counterpart of Boy Bands. Naturally, they'll be a group of attractive young girls who sing and dance in Stripperiffic outfits - usually with songs about sex. Videos will be full of Fanservice and expect at least one member to make it into a lads' mag.

Unlike Boy Bands, there are no set roles for each member of the Girl Group. If there are three members, they'll usually correspond to Beauty, Brains, and Brawn or The Three Faces of Eve. If it's four, then likely the Four-Girl Ensemble. And if it's five, of course the Five-Man Band.

The quintessential Girl Group was The Andrews Sisters way back in the 40s (see below) but the concept of one really exploded in the late 90s. The cause? The Spice Girls.

This British quintet turned into an overnight sensation, achieving worldwide fame and cementing their status in pop culture. Any groups formed in the 90s and 2000s were following their lead. While the boy band craze died down in the early 2000s, girl groups remained around for the rest of the decade. While not as prominent as before, there are still a few.

In South Korea, there are loads of girl bands active, with some of them being insanely popular. This has been going on for a while, with Girls' Generation being most famous in the early 2010's. Now, it's Blackpink and TWICE that are most popular, with Red Velvet, GFRIEND (though no longer a group as of 2021), Mamamoo and A Pink also being quite renowned. Even unknown bands usually have loyal fans, including bands that haven't even debuted yet.

Some ex-girl group singers have eclipsed their bands, such as Diana Ross, Beyoncé, Cheryl and Camila Cabello.

Compare Idol Singer. Sub-trope to Teen Pop.

Real examples:

  • The late 80s featured a new breed of girl groups who specialized in freestyle dance music. Such groups included Expose, the Cover Girls, Pajama Party, Seduction, Sweet Sensation, and Company B.
  • 2NE1
  • Probably the most straightforward example in Country Music was 3 of Hearts, composed of 3 young-adult women who sang with a heavy pop influence. They went absolutely nowhere. The next closest would probably be SHeDAISY, who had more mainstream success in the early 2000s but was still less sexually driven than most examples.
  • aespa, a K-Pop group with an ongoing sci-fi narrative.
  • AKB48 (with a whopping 140 total members)
  • All Saints, who had a more R&B tinge to their sound. When the group broke up, sisters Nicole and Natalie Appleton created their own short-lived project Appleton, before reforming All Saints in sporadic bursts.
  • The Andrews Sisters, back in The '40s. The American Bombshells are their Spiritual Successor - a trio of singers that perform for American soldiers.
  • The Angels, who are best known for their 1963 hit "My Boyfriend's Back".
  • Atomic Kitten. A British trio who weren't exactly stars but were reasonably successful - with three number one singles in the UK. Sort of a Token Wholesome amongst the various Stripperiffic girl groups of the day, their music leaning more towards Sweet Dreams Fuel. A pre-scandal Kerry Katona was a member briefly.
  • BABYMETAL is a weird example. They're a Heavy Metal idol group from Japan. Yeah, Quirky Work indeed. They're the source of much Memetic Mutation among metalheads. Their success was also instrumental in the 2010s and 2020s all-girl metal band boom in Japan.
  • Bananarama - a British trio who got a listing in The Guinness Book of World Records as this with the most chart entries in the world.
  • Blackpink are popular all over the world, but in South East Asia especially.
  • B*Witched, an Irish group of four (consisting of twins Edele and Keavy Lynch, Sinead O'Carrol, and half-Greek Lindsay Armau), famous for setting a world record of 4 #1 singles in a row by an Irish group (a record later broken by Westlife), and the fact that the twins were sisters of Boyzone's Shane Lynch. Some time after the group broke up, the twins launched a new career as MsLynch.
  • The Chantelles, the most famous female doo-wop group ("Maybe").
  • The Cheetah Girls, the Disney Channel's girl group.
    • Which got two of its members from the original group 3LW.
    • Adrienne Bailon, one of the members of the original group, 3LW, also appeared in Elle A Modern Cinderella Tale, assisting Elle Daniels to uncover the secrets of her rival band's evil plot of ruining her songs, in which they will be broken up once and for all, according to the IMDB, Seventeen, Teen and Screen Media Films websites.
  • Cherish, a group consisting of four sisters (two of which are twins).
  • Chloe x Halle
  • Cimorelli, which started on YouTube. They do covers mostly, but recently they have been branching in doing original songs. They recently released their first album in May 2016, called "Up At Night", with a little help in some parts of the album as well as a second one a year after, "Alive", making it also their first Gospel Music album. Not bad for a girl group that went indie in 2015.
  • Cleopatra (Comin' Atcha!)
  • The Chiffons ("He's So Fine," "One Fine Day")
  • Danity Kane, formed by the MTV show Making the Band 3. Both their albums went straight to US no 1, a feat that at the time had only been accomplished by Eminem's rap group D12 and would later be eclipsed by Boy Bands One Direction and 5 Seconds of Summer. No girl group would even enter the top 5 in the states with its debut album for seven years.
  • Destiny's Child, best known for being Beyonce's old band.
  • Doce, a group from Portugal, considered one of Europe's first ever girl bands.
  • Dream, who preceded Danity Kane's signing to Bad Boy Records by four years. They were popular at the beginning of the millennium thanks to TRL, but only managed become a Two-Hit Wonder on MTV before fading into obscurity.
  • The Chicks (formerly Dixie Chicks), the most successful girl group in Country music history and one of the most successful girl groups of all time.
  • E-Girls, an idol group in Japan that was comprised of several smaller idol groups (Dream, Flower, and Happiness).
  • En Vogue, best known for their songs "My Lovin' (You're Never Gonna Get It)" and "Free Your Mind". They were contemporaries of TLC and Salt-N-Pepa, and were the major standouts of the R&B girl groups in the 1990s, especially for their harmonies.
  • All-Girl Boy Band Fanxy Red, originally formed in China as FCC-Acrush. One might question whether they belong here or under Boy Band. However, they don't quite satisfy the precise Five Man Band definition of Boy Bands.
  • Fifth Harmony, akin to Little Mix, but on the American version of X Factor. Like the British 4-piece, this 5 member girl group was formed by producers, encountered name changes (originally LYLAS and 1432), and also love doing acoustic covers like Cimorelli above. Unlike LM, however, 5H faced the bottom 2 twice on their way to the final, and finished 3rd. Their debut album (the EP titled Better Together) debuted at #6 on the Billboard charts, becoming the highest charting debut by an act from the X Factor US. Much like their Transatlantic Equivalent Spear Counterpart, One Direction are in the UK, they're easily the most successful act produced by the US version of that show, and, like with 1D, lost a member abruptlynote , released an album as a quartet with less successnote , and then went on hiatus.
  • Girl Thing, a short-lived Simon Cowell creation specifically made to rival the Spice Girls (who had just disbanded). They were given an extensive promotional campaign ahead of their debut single "Last One Standing", which was expected to top the UK charts with ease. It ended up peaking at a respectable Number 8, but their second single "Girls on Top" flopped and led to their album being cancelled altogether. Member Michelle Barber enjoyed some success as a presenter on Nickelodeon, Jodi Albert starred in Hollyoaks and later married Westlife member Kian Egan, Anika Bostelaar released a solo single before forming another group called Hello August in her native Netherlands.
  • Girls Aloud, created by a British Talent Show. They're one of the most successful groups to spring from a reality show (in terms of UK chart performance), having earned 20 top 10 hits in the UK alone. They did have a few international singles, but remained solely in the U.K.
  • Girls' Generation was the popular Korean band in the early 2010's.
  • Hanabie is a rare Death Core act where all the members are female. They play an unorthodox style of deathcore that blends in Japanese Pop Music.
  • Hello! Project's various groups like Morning Musume.
  • Indica, a Finnish rock girl group.
  • Ive, a six member K-pop group.
  • KARA
  • Le Sserafim
  • Little Mix, winners of the 8th series of The X Factor (not to mention the first group to ever win the show). They later became the first UK Girl-group "ever" to debut in the top 5 in the US with its debut album (even higher than the Spice Girls' first week!) and second only to One Direction among all UK groups. They were the first girl group ever to be in the top 5 with its debut album since 2006. They have continued to release million selling albums without looking like splitting in over 7 years together.
  • LOONA, an originally twelve member K-Pop group (they're down to 10 members as of 2023).
  • All members of heavy metal band Lovebites are female, although they don't define themselves as a "girl band", and when original bassist Miho quit the band, auditions were open to any gender (the new bassist ended up being another woman, Fami, but men are shown auditioning in videos of the selection process).
  • Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, another great Motown group.
  • The Marvelettes, who scored Motown's first number one hit.
  • Millionaires, in that while they had some success, they were largely despised for their grating voices and sound. They claim they're actually a Stealth Parody of "scene queens", but who knows for sure.
  • Mis-Teeq, a British R&B group. They started out with four but one of the girls left after the first single. Their best known song "Scandalous" was used in the Catwoman (2004) movie. Member Alesha Dixon later found success as a winner and eventual judge on Strictly Come Dancing, and then Britain's Got Talent.
  • M-Kids
  • Momoiro Clover Z
  • Negicco, an idol group put together for a PR stunt to promote locally grown spring onions from the Niigata prefecture.
  • No Angels, a German girl group formed in 2000 on the country's version of Popstars, preceding many of the reality show acts by a few years. They did pretty well for themselves across Europe, even representing Germany in the 2008 Eurovision contest, though that didn't go well.
  • No Secrets - an American tandem of five who mainly got known for recording covers of classic Disney songs. After one member left, none other than a pre-stardom Lady Gaga was slated to replace her - but her manager backed out of the deal.
  • Perfume
  • The Pipettes, formed in 2006, went for a Retraux 1960s girl group style.
  • Play, a Swedish girl group best known for their song "Us Against the World" and being attached the everGirl line.
  • The Puppini Sisters are big (but not slavish) fans of the Andrews.
  • The Pussycat Dolls, a former burlesque troupe that takes Stripperiffic to the next level. Also their reality-TV-born offshoot, Girlicious. Pussycat Dolls' lead singer, Nicole Scherzinger was originally part of another girl group, a pop group created for the show Popstars called Eden's Crush. After their disbandment, Nicole Scherzinger went solo for unknown reasons but has yet to ever achieve any success she had with PCD.
  • Red Velvet
  • Ranetki, a Russian girl group best known outside of Russia for their song "O Tebye", which was used on one of the radio stations in the game Grand Theft Auto IV.
  • The Ronettes, who emerged in the early 1960s and served as a Trope Codifier in both their sound and image. They are one of the most influential and celebrated despite their short career.
  • Salt-N-Pepa, a Grammy-award-winning rap group that gave the world "Push It" and the controversial pop song "Let's Talk about Sex".
  • The Saturdays, who had 10 top 10 hits without a number 1, before, with the help of a reality TV series in the US, got their first UK no 1 with "What About Us".
  • The Shangri-Las, best known for their "tough girl" image in comparison to the more wholesome images of their contemporaries. Their best known single "Leader of the Pack" was an song about All Girls Want Bad Boys.
  • Many vocal groups produced by Phil Spector, including The Ronettes and The Crystals.
  • Spice Girls. Their shocking popularity led to several other girl groups being manufactured. Most examples from the late 90s and early 2000s were created to cash in on the craze. Each girl was given her own distinct nickname and identity - Scary Spice (Mel B), Posh Spice (Victoria), Baby Spice (Emma), Sporty Spice (Mel C) and Ginger Spice (Geri)note . Also got a movie - Spice World.
  • Stooshe, who had 3 UK top 20 hits in 2012-13. Originally intended to be risque, they instead went for a radio-friendly, Diana Ross-like sound for "Love Me", "Black Heart" and "Slip".
  • The Stunners
  • The Sugababes, also briefly known as Mutya Keisha Siobhan (it's complicated).
  • The Supremes. They were the breakthrough R&B act, and helped put Motown Records on the map in The '60s. Their most famous singer, Diana Ross, went on to have a lengthy and successful solo career.
  • Sweet California from Spain.
  • T-ara
  • t.A.T.u., a Russian girl duo that was sold as being lesbian lovers (they weren't).
  • Tiktak, a Finnish girl group popular in the early 2000s.
  • TLC, the biggest-selling girl group in America (over forty million albums — keeping in mind that they released only six albums, including two greatest hits collections). Their second album, 1994's CrazySexyCool, was the first album by a girl group to go diamond (ten million sold — the album ultimately reached 11 million). They released their last album of original material in 2002 after one of their members, Lisa "Left-Eye" Lopes, died in a car crash in Honduras.
  • Toto Coelho, of "I Eat Cannibals" fame.
  • TWICE is not just popular in Korea, but also in Japan.
  • The Veronicas, twin sisters from Australia who took their name from the Archie character.
  • VIA Gra (also known as Nu Virgos) is a Ukrainian-Russian group created by Konstantin Meladze (songwriter and brother of a famous Russian singer), which is famous for being one of the most famous pop groups in former USSR countries and infamous for constant lineup changes. It was reformed via Talent Show in 2013.
  • Wild Orchid, best known for being the former band of Stacy Ferguson before she joined the Black Eyed Peas.
  • Wonder Girls

Fictional ones:

Anime and Manga
  • Girls Dead Monster (GirlDeMo for short) from Angel Beats!.
  • Macross Delta has Walküre. This being Macross, their singing is central to the plot; specifically, it's able to cure people of "Var Syndrome". Now Defictionalized, with Minori Suzuki and JUNNA (Freyja and the singing voice of Mikumo respectively) as its lead singers, with Kiyono Yasuno, Nozomi Nishida and Nao Touyama (Kaname, Makina and Reina respectively) also part of the group.
  • Lilpri from Spellbound! Magical Princess Lil'Pri. It helps that they're voiced by three of the four members of the real version of this, S/mileage.

Comic Books


Live-Action TV

  • Burnistoun: Kelly and the Sloppy Seconds, an all-female band who sing somewhat sexually-charged songs and wear risque rocker outfits.
  • As Empreguetes ("The Maidettes") from the Brazilian Soap Opera Cheias de Charme.
  • In probably the strangest example, Mike and the Bots play a girl group for the song "Where Oh Werewolf".
  • G3 Princess from Engine Sentai Go-onger.
  • Star, Simone, and Alexandra from STAR. The girls changed their group name from Big Trouble to Take 3.
  • In the live action, Sabrina did this as well. She, Roxie and Morgan enter a talent show in the seventh season as 'Gal Palz' - with help from some magic lozenges. It's quite obviously not them singing when they perform.
    • Libby formed one back in season 2 - of which the above mentioned episode is a Recycled Script - with the rest of the cheerleading squad. She named them The Libby Chessler Generation.
  • Girls5eva is about a Y2K-era group that tries to make a comeback 20 years later after their single hit song gets sampled by a popular rapper.


Video Games

Western Animation

The term "girl group" has also been used to describe rock bands that are composed entirely or mostly of women. Most of these "girl groups" resent this name, due to its connections with pop music and the inherent Double Standard involving rock bands composed of men rarely being called the even more detested label of Boy Band (and then only as an explicit insult).


  • Afterschool Tea Time, the light rock band formed by the main character of K-On!.
  • The Bangles
  • Band-Maid, a heavy metal/hard rock band from Japan where the member dress as maids. Their music is a very accessible kind of metal, but it's still not exactly what you'd expect upon seeing them at first glance.
  • Conquer Divide is an all-female Metalcore band
  • Destrose was an all-girl Visual Kei band and pioneer in the all-girl metal band boom that became important for the bands that former members would make such as Mary's Blood, Lovebites, Disqualia and Fate Gear.
  • Doll Skin, an all-female punk rock band from Arizona.
  • The Donnas
  • exist†trace
  • The Faders, a pop-punk trio of girls that played their own instruments but blurred the lines between rock band and girl group.
  • Girlfriend, a pop-rock foursome from Japan (the country practically grows girl bands on a vine, with how many there are) who are notable for coming from the same performance school as Scandal. Girlfriend had at least 5 years together before breaking up in 2021, bassist Mina has a thriving career on YouTube doing bass tutorials and song requests.
  • Girlschool, one of the few NWOBHM examples.
  • The Go-Go's. Originally a punk band, they switched to a Power Pop sound once they put together their main lineup. In 1981, they became the first all-female rock band to top the Billboard album charts.
  • Haim. Three Californian sisters, whose music is somewhere between country, rock, folk and R&B, were named as sound of 2013 by the BBC, an accolade won by 50 Cent, Adele, Ellie Goulding and Jessie J in the past and by Sam Smith in the future. Their most recent album from 2020, Women in Music Part III, received critical acclaim.
  • Hey Violet used to be this before Julia was replaced with Casey.
  • The Finnish band Indica
  • The Like
  • The Linda Lindas
  • Lovebites, a Japanese Power Metal band.
  • Nemophila, a Japanese metal Supergroup that formed when vocalist Mayu (a.k.a Sindy of Lipstick) had left Lipstick and got together with her high school friend Haraguchi, bassist from Holderlins as well as Tamu Murata, formerly of Soramimi and a top-tier session drummer for a side project. Tamu would then call in a favour and get guitarist Saki from Mary's Blood and ex-Destrose member. Saki in turn would get guitarist Hazuki from Disqualia and the Lisa-X Band. The group decided there was too much talent to be a one-time thing and officially declared themselves a band.
  • Princess Princess, a Japanese band big in the late '80s - their leader and bassist Atsuko Watanabe would go on to be the vice principal of the Tokyo School of Music that Band-Maid's Akane Hirose and MISA came from.
  • The Riot Grrrl movement in The '90s was an offshoot of Punk Rock that was defined by its staunch feminist messages and lyrics. Bands included Bikini Kill, Sleater-Kinney, Heavens to Betsy, Huggy Bear (a British group who actually had a mixed-gender line-up) and Bratmobile. Only Sleater-Kinney survived the scene, and they did so by drastically changing their sound around the 1997 release of Dig Me Out and arguably got better because of it.
  • Many '90s rock bands were mistakenly associated with riot grrrl just because they had female lead singers: Hole, L7, Babes in Toyland, Sonic Youth, etc. In L7 and Babes in Toyland's cases, they were all-girl bands.
  • The Runaways. While there were female rock singers before them (Grace Slick, Janis Joplin, Suzi Quatro), they are one of the most well known all-female rock bands.Genre-Busting indie noise-pop,]] not unlike The Ramones if you take away the Y chromosome.
  • Scandal, a quartet that came out from Osaka vocal and dance school Caless and started performing at Osaka Castle park in their teens. They're noted for their anime theme songs and being important to the 2000s all-female band rise in Japan.
  • Splendora, an alt-rock band active from 1993–2002, recorded only one album and had no hits, but was cemented in 1990s pop culture with "You're Standing on My Neck", the theme to MTV's series Daria.
  • The Stunners
  • There are also plenty of examples of tribute bands whose members are all girls, like Lez Zeppelin, The Iron Maidens or ThundHerStruck (whose singer does alternate between Bon Scott and Brian Johnson modes, to boot).
  • Tiktak, another Finnish band
  • Vivian Girls, indie noise-pop, not unlike The Ramones if you take away the Y chromosome.
  • Vixen, a Hair Metal band.