The Best Singers of All Time

609k votes 41k voters 735k views 915 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Individual singers in any genre. Not bands

Who are the best singers of all time? That's a tough question to ask. This list includes many of the greatest vocalists ever, from all genres of music. Whether it's the incomparable, late, great Whitney Houston with her extraordinary pop and R&B tones or rock icons like Freddie Mercury from Queen, Jim Morrison from The Doors or John Lennon and/or Paul McCartney from The Beatles, this list spans decades of incredible musicians. What singers do you feel are the greatest of all time? What are some of the greatest voices in music? Vote for your favorites, vote down any you don't like and feel free to rerank this list your way.

Vote: The Best Rock Vocalists

Putting together the top singers in music history is a tall order. Everyone has an opinion. Some might lean more toward rock vocalists as their personal favorite (think Ann Wilson, Stevie Nicks and Mick Jagger), while others might prefer excellent pop or R&B vocalists like the late Michael Jackson, Ray Charles, or even Stevie Wonder, James Brown or Aretha Franklin.

Rank: The Top Female Vocalists of the Last Decade

Country musicians could also easily be included on this list. Musicians like Johnny Cash and Keith Whitley gave new meaning to great vocals with outstanding country songs. Female country artists, including modern era vocalists like Carrie Underwood could also be included. If country's your thing, vote and add away!
Collection Photo:  via wikimedia
  • 190 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 12,520
    - 7,704
    Freddie Mercury is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    the people's #1 & most listed
    Freddie Mercury Pop music, Rock music, Rockabilly

  2. 2
    + 7,620
    - 7,683
    Michael Jackson is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Michael Jackson Motown Sound, Rock music, Electronic music

  3. 3
    + 7,216
    - 7,429
    Whitney Houston is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Whitney Houston Pop music, Dance-pop, Contemporary R&B

  4. 4
    + 6,549
    - 7,235
    Elvis Presley is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Christian music, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  5. 5
    + 5,463
    - 6,216
    Frank Sinatra is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Frank Sinatra Swing music, Traditional pop music, Big band

  6. 6
    + 4,391
    - 5,830
    Aretha Franklin is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Pop music, Rock music, Rhythm and blues

    ;
  7. 7
    + 3,581
    - 5,281
    Stevie Wonder is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Stevie Wonder Motown Sound, Psychedelic soul, Pop music

  8. 8
    + 3,748
    - 4,705
    David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    David Bowie Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music

  9. 9
    + 5,019
    - 5,849
    Adele is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Adele Southern soul, Neo soul, Rock music

  10. 10
    + 3,064
    - 4,223
    Marvin Gaye is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Doo-wop, Motown Sound, Rock music

    ;
  11. 11
    + 3,508
    - 4,800
    Elton John is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Elton John Pop music, Rock music, Piano rock

  12. 12
    + 3,450
    - 5,652
    Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    often listed
    Paul McCartney Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

  13. 13
    + 2,192
    - 2,790
    Nat King Cole is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    often listed
    Jump blues, Swing music, Traditional pop music

    ;
  14. 14
    + 4,492
    - 4,598
    Celine Dion is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Celine Dion Adult contemporary music, Pop music, Rock music

  15. 15
    + 2,793
    - 2,964

    ranked low on reranks
    Swing music, Traditional pop music, Vocal jazz

    ;
  16. 16
    + 3,261
    - 4,934
    Robert Plant is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Robert Plant Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk rock

  17. 17
    + 574
    - 245
    Hariharan is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by Kaj Sel
    Hariharan Ghazal, Filmi

  18. 18
    + 3,246
    - 3,694
    Barbra Streisand is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Barbra Streisand Adult contemporary music, Show tune, Traditional pop music

  19. 19
    + 2,982
    - 4,552
    Johnny Cash is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Johnny Cash Outlaw country, Christian music, Americana

  20. 20
    + 2,812
    - 3,893
    Ella Fitzgerald is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Ella Fitzgerald Ballad, Swing music, Traditional pop music

  21. 21
    + 4,216
    - 4,801
    Christina Aguilera is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Christina Aguilera Hip hop music, Bubblegum pop, Rock music

  22. 22
    + 3,714
    - 5,788
    John Lennon is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Blues-rock, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  23. 23
    + 2,937
    - 4,341
    Ray Charles is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Ray Charles Soul blues, Pop music, Rock music

  24. 24
    + 2,139
    - 2,167

    added by mwahahahaha
    Opera

    ;
  25. 25
    + 4,298
    - 5,390
    Mariah Carey is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Mariah Carey Hip hop music, Pop music, Contemporary R&B

  26. 26
    + 1,605
    - 2,166
    Billie Holiday is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Torch song, Ballad, Swing music

    ;
  27. 27
    + 2,380
    - 3,070
    Tina Turner is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Rock music, Dance-pop, Rhythm and blues

    ;
  28. 28
    + 2,239
    - 2,750


    Pop music, Soft rock

    ;
  29. 29
    + 2,494
    - 3,389
    Annie Lennox is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Annie Lennox Blue-eyed soul, New Wave, Pop music

  30. 30
    + 1,655
    - 2,142
    Billy Joel is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Billy Joel Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

  31. 31
    + 1,991
    - 2,446

    added by Coolza
    Doo-wop, Pop music, Neo soul

    ;
  32. 32
    + 1,403
    - 1,913
    Phil Collins is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    added by Coolza
    Phil Collins Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

  33. 33
    + 800
    - 718
    Paul Simon is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by tygreg1996
    Paul Simon Rock music, Folk music, Folk rock

  34. 34
    + 1,414
    - 1,512
    Prince is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Prince Hip hop music, Synthpop, New Wave

  35. 35
    + 1,972
    - 3,158
    Jim Morrison is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Blues-rock, Rock music, Acid rock

    ;
  36. 36
    + 2,034
    - 3,295
    Roy Orbison is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Country pop, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  37. 37
    + 1,773
    - 2,782
    Janis Joplin is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Janis Joplin Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

  38. 38
    + 1,565
    - 2,045
    Stevie Nicks is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Stevie Nicks Classic rock, Pop music, Rock music

  39. 39
    + 1,619
    - 2,494
    Otis Redding is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Otis Redding Southern soul, Soul blues, Rock music

  40. 40
    + 544
    - 488
    Fleetwood Mac is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Fleetwood Mac Blues-rock, Pop music, Rock music

  41. 41
    + 1,823
    - 2,792
    Bob Marley is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Bob Marley Reggae

  42. 42
    + 896
    - 747

    ranked low on reranks
    Crossover Greatest new singer of her generation. 

    ;
  43. 43
    + 1,291
    - 1,545
    Bee Gees is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Bee Gees Adult contemporary music, Blue-eyed soul, Disco

  44. 44
    + 2,410
    - 2,478
    Donna Summer is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Donna Summer New Wave, Disco, Pop music

  45. 45
    + 949
    - 1,129
    Judy Garland is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    added by LeenaPhillips
    Judy Garland

  46. 46
    + 1,036
    - 1,401
    Bing Crosby is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    added by Zaliste
    Bing Crosby Traditional pop music, Easy listening, Jazz

  47. 47
    + 2,326
    - 2,755


    Country pop, Pop music, Soft rock

    ;
  48. 48
    + 3,724
    - 4,502
    Madonna is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    added by malmrphy
    Madonna Pop music, Rock music, Electronic music

  49. 49
    + 1,644
    - 2,344
    Steve Perry is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Singers of All Time


    Pop music, Rock music, Pop rock

    ;
  50. 50
    + 2,405
    - 2,846
    Sade Adu is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Singers of All Time

    added by Coolza
    Sade Adu

916 +

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