Entertainment The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years  

Ranker Music
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116.5k votes 8.9k voters 82.4k views 402 items

List Rules Only singers who have made new music since the late-'80s. Vote on their vocal ability, regardless of the genre.

One of the most debated topics in music is who are the greatest singers of the past 30 years. Whether you're a huge Whitney Houston fan, or you've never missed one of Mariah Carey's live Christmas concerts, the best modern singers of the last 30 years are some of the greatest talents the world has ever seen. From Michael Jackson's perfect performances, to Freddie Mercury's incredible vocal range, music fans have gathered a list of the best singers of the last 30 years for you to rank.   

Who's one of the best singers of the past 30 years? For many, Madonna tops the list. When Madge arrived on the scene in the early '80s, she completely rocked the world of pop music with her third single, "Holiday," and blew everyone away. She followed that up with hit classics like "Lucky Star," "Like a Virgin," and "Material Girl," and the rest was history. Although his time on earth was short, Kurt Cobain revolutionized the grunge music scene with his gravely vocals and unruly guitar sounds. Cobain's unique combination of singing and screaming earned him a spot among the best on this list.  

Other favorite singers on this list include Celine Dion, Prince, Sting, Billy Corgan, and many others. Vote up the best singers of the past 30 years below, and be sure to add any you feel belong in the discussion for the great singers of the past 30 years.
list ordered by

1
1,486 1,626
Freddie Mercury is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Pop music, Rock music, Rockabilly

2
1,195 1,713
Whitney Houston is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Pop music, Dance-pop, Contemporary R&B

3
1,185 1,699
Michael Jackson is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Motown Sound, Rock music, Electronic music

4
1,251 1,445
Celine Dion is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Adult contemporary music, Pop music, Rock music

5
849 1,283
Adele is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Southern soul, Neo soul, Rock music

6
1,167 1,111
George Michael is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Synthpop, New Wave, Dance-pop

7
890 1,027
Barbra Streisand is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Adult contemporary music, Show tune, Traditional pop music

8
944 1,587
Mariah Carey is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Hip hop music, Pop music, Contemporary R&B

9
973 1,366
Christina Aguilera is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Hip hop music, Bubblegum pop, Rock music

10
889 1,281
Madonna is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
DJ Terrible added Pop music, Rock music, Electronic music

11
507 606
Aretha Franklin is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Cohen0816 added Pop music, Rock music, Rhythm and blues

12
398 463
Stevie Wonder is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Cohen0816 added Motown Sound, Psychedelic soul, Pop music

13
755 1,016
David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music

14
474 636
Elton John is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
but chickens double d added Pop music, Rock music, Piano rock

15
410 518
Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

16
451 589
Tina Turner is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
but chickens double d added Rock music, Dance-pop, Rhythm and blues

17
688 1,138
Prince is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Hip hop music, Synthpop, New Wave

18
307 404
Stevie Nicks is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Michael Strutt added Classic rock, Pop music, Rock music

19
268 225
Johnny Cash is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Cohen0816 added Outlaw country, Christian music, Americana

20
358 781
Beyoncé Knowles is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
DJ Terrible added Urban contemporary, Hip hop music, Pop music

21
666 1,056
Annie Lennox is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Blue-eyed soul, New Wave, Pop music

22
260 309
Billy Joel is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Coolza added Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

23
752 688
Ranker Video
Peter Lennodo Rock music, Pop music, Baroque pop/rock

24
652 593
Ranker Video
Peter Lennodo

25
455 702
Alicia Keys is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Hip hop music, Pop music, Neo soul

26
242 277
Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
George Stripling added Blues-rock, Classic rock, Rock music

27
337 660
Amy Winehouse is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Kasir Radojica added Doo-wop, Pop music, Neo soul

28
234 314
Lionel Richie is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Coolza added Adult contemporary music, Pop music, Rock music

29
482 884
Phil Collins is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

30
1,834 2,048
Jackie Evancho is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
bugnutsrunnels added Crossover

31
241 300
Jon Bon Jovi is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Coolza added Glam metal, Classic rock, Rock music

32
309 495
Bruce Springsteen is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Americana, Blues-rock, Heartland rock

33
251 362
Pat Benatar is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
but chickens double d added New Wave, Rock music, Heavy metal

34
267 411
Bruno Mars is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Alternative hip hop, Pop music, Rock music

35
178 242
Diana Ross is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Coolza added Disco, Pop music, Dance music

36
261 449
Steven Tyler is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Blues-rock, Pop music, Heavy metal

37
251 355
Mick Jagger is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
but chickens double d added Blues-rock, Rock music, Dance-rock

38
155 201
Joe Cocker is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Cohen0816 added Blues-rock, Blue-eyed soul, Rock music

39
394 717
Sting is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Medieval music, Classic rock, New Wave

40
202 372
Debbie Harry is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
thebigE added Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, New Wave

41
320 402
P!nk is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Hip hop music, Synthpunk, Pop punk

42
177 316
Chris Cornell is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
jay-dewberry-backroads added Rock music, Grunge, Psychedelic pop

43
181 235
Rod Stewart is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Cohen0816 added New Wave, Rock music, Rhythm and blues

44
191 323
Bob Dylan is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Cohen0816 added Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

45
298 590
Bono is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Rock music, Alternative rock, Post-punk

46
174 277
Shakira is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Coolza added Urban contemporary, Merengue music, Synthpop

47
198 231
Dolly Parton is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Cohen0816 added Ballad, Country pop, Pop music

48
365 602
Luther Vandross is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Hip hop music, Adult contemporary music, Contemporary R&B

49
128 113
Lady Gaga is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Pop music, Rock music, Electronic music

50
351 710
Kurt Cobain is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years
Grunge, Alternative rock, Punk rock