These are the most powerful/iconic singing voices from the 20th Century.
The Top Ten
1Aretha FranklinAretha Louise Franklin (March 25, 1942 - August 16, 2018) was an American singer, songwriter and pianist. She began her career as a child singing gospel at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, Michigan, where her father, C. L. Franklin, was minister.
2Freddie MercuryFreddie Mercury (born Farrokh Bulsara, 5th September 1946 - 24th November 1991) was a Zanzibari-born British singer of Indian descent, songwriter and record producer, known as the lead vocalist and songwriter of the British rock band Queen. He also became known for his flamboyant stage persona and four-octave ...read more.
Massive, massive talent. Never can be surpassed.
The best voice in music history.
3Whitney HoustonWhitney Elizabeth Houston (August 9, 1963 – February 11, 2012) was an American singer, actress, producer, and model. In 2009, Guinness World Records cited her as the most awarded female act of all time. Houston is one of pop music's best-selling music artists of all-time, with an estimated 170–200 ...read more.
4Luciano PavarottiLuciano Pavarotti, Cavaliere di Gran Croce was an Italian operatic tenor who also crossed over into popular music, eventually becoming one of the most commercially successful tenors of all time.
5Michael JacksonMichael Joseph Jackson was an American singer, dancer, and songwriter born on August 29, 1958 in Gary, Indiana and passed away on June 25, 2009. He donated (at least) a remarkable 500,000,000 dollars to charity. Michael is also known as The King of Pop (a title given to him by Elizabeth Taylor) or under ...read more.
6Mariah CareyMariah Carey, born March 27, 1970, is an American singer, songwriter and actress. She is one of the biggest best-selling women in the music industry, with 18 number 1 records to her name. She is regarded as a sex symbol through her songs and music videos, and she is "well known" for her over-the-top ...read more.
7Enrico CarusoEnrico Caruso was an Italian operatic tenor. He sang to great acclaim at the major opera houses of Europe and the Americas, appearing in a wide variety of roles from the Italian and French repertoires that ranged from the lyric to the dramatic.
Only primitive recordings exist, but his was the only voice that could rival Pavarotti's. Makes Freddie Mercury and every other rock or pop singer sound like an amateur.
8Etta JamesEtta James was an American singer who spanned a variety of music genres including blues, R&B, soul, rock and roll, jazz and gospel.
9Barbra StreisandBarbara Joan Streisand, known professionally as Barbra Streisand, is an American singer, songwriter, actress, and filmmaker.
She sings some of the most beautiful love songs. - Britgirl
10Frank SinatraFrancis Albert "Frank" Sinatra was an American singer, actor, and producer who was one of the most popular and influential musical artists of the 20th century.
11Judy GarlandJudy Garland, born Frances Ethel Gumm (June 10, 1922 – June 22, 1969) was an American singer, actress, and vaudevillian. The American Film Institute named her 8th greatest female star of classic American cinema. She's also the mother of actress and singer Liza Minnelli.
12Ella FitzgeraldElla Jane Fitzgerald was an American jazz singer often referred to as the First Lady of Song, Queen of Jazz and Lady Ella.
A truly wonderful lady and singer. I've loved her all my life. - Britgirl
13Maria CallasMaria Callas, Commendatore OMRI, was a Greek-American soprano, and one of the most renowned and influential opera singers of the 20th century. Many critics praised her bel canto technique, wide-ranging voice and dramatic interpretations.
14Sarah BrightmanSarah Brightman is an English classical crossover soprano, actress, musician, songwriter, conductor, and dancer.
15Robert PlantRobert Anthony Plant is an English musician, singer, and songwriter best known as the lead singer and lyricist of the rock band Led Zeppelin.
16Matt MonroMatt Monro, known as The Man with the Golden Voice, was an English singer who became one of the most popular entertainers on the international music scene during the 1960s and 1970s.
17Bing CrosbyHarry Lillis "Bing" Crosby, Jr. was an American singer and actor. Crosby's trademark warm bass-baritone voice made him the best-selling recording artist of the 20th century, having sold over one billion records, tapes, compact discs and digital downloads around the world.
18Karen CarpenterKaren Anne Carpenter was an American singer and drummer. She and her brother, Richard Carpenter, formed the 1970s duo Carpenters.
19Billie HolidayEleanora Fagan, professionally known as Billie Holiday, was an American jazz musician and singer-songwriter with a career spanning nearly thirty years.
20Patsy ClinePatsy Cline was born Virginia Patterson Hensley on September 8, 1932, in Winchester, Virginia. She became a professional country singer in the 1950s, and became one of the most important artists in American music history. Patsy died on March 5, 1963, in a plane crash in Camden, Tennessee. She was inducted ...read more.
21Kurt CobainKurt Cobain was born February 20, 1967, in Aberdeen, Washington. In 1987, he started the grunge band Nirvana, which became one of the most successful bands ever. He was a talented yet troubled grunge performer. Kurt Cobain became a rock legend in the 1990s with his band. He committed suicide at his ...read more.
22CherCher is an American singer and actress. Described as embodying female autonomy in a male-dominated industry, she is known for her distinctive contralto singing voice and for having worked in numerous areas of entertainment, as well as adopting a variety of styles and appearances during her five-decade-long ...read more.
23Celine DionCéline Marie Claudette Dion is a Canadian singer and businesswoman. She is best known for her song "My Heart Will Go On", which is the main theme of the 1997 film Titanic, which was the first film to gross $1 billion at the box office.
24Linda RonstadtLinda Maria Ronstadt is an American popular music singer. She has earned 11 Grammy Awards, three American Music Awards, two Academy of Country Music awards, an Emmy Award, an ALMA Award, and numerous United States and internationally certified gold, platinum and multiplatinum albums.
25Buddy HollyBuddy Holly, born Charles Hardin Holley (September 7, 1936 – February 3, 1959) was an American musician and singer-songwriter who was a central figure of mid-1950s rock and roll. He was a rising star when a tragic plane crash struck him down at age 22. ...read more.
26Elvis PresleyElvis Presley was an American musician and actor. Known as "The King" He was mostly known for his number 1 singles including "Heartbreak Hotel" "Hound Dog" "Jailhouse Rock" "Love me Tender" Elvis debuted in the movie "Love me Tender" and focused less on his music and continued that way. ...read more.
28Jimi HendrixJimi Hendrix (born November 27, 1942 - September 18, 1970) was an American rock guitarist, singer, and songwriter . Although his mainstream career spanned only four years, he is widely regarded as one of the most influential electric guitarists in the history of popular music, and one of the most celebrated ...read more.
29Janis JoplinJanis Joplin (1943-1970) was an American singer who rose to fame as the main singer of acid band Big Brother and the Holding Company. She was known for her eccentric hippie style and psychedelic rock music.
30Jim MorrisonJames Douglas "Jim" Morrison was an American singer, songwriter, and poet best remembered as the lead singer of the Doors.
31Dusty SpringfieldMary Isobel Catherine Bernadette O'Brien, known professionally as Dusty Springfield, was an English pop singer and record producer whose career extended from the late 1950s to the 1990s.
32John LennonJohn Winston Ono Lennon, MBE was an English singer and songwriter who rose to worldwide fame as a co-founder of the Beatles, the most commercially successful band in the history of popular music. He was assassinated by Mark David Chapman on December 8, 1980 at age 40.
33Paul McCartneySir James Paul McCartney is an English singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and composer . With John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr, he gained worldwide fame with the rock band the Beatles, one of the most popular and influential groups in the history of pop and rock music .
34Dolly PartonDolly Rebecca Parton is an American singer-songwriter, actress, author, businesswoman, and humanitarian, known primarily for her work in country music.
35Stevie NicksStephanie Lynn "Stevie" Nicks is an American singer and songwriter, best known for her work with Fleetwood Mac and an extensive solo career, which collectively have produced over forty Top 50 hits and sold over 140 million albums.
36Joni MitchellRoberta Joan Mitchell, professionally known as Joni Mitchell, is a Canadian singer-songwriter. Drawing from folk, pop, rock, and jazz, Mitchell's songs often reflect social and environmental ideals as well as her feelings about romance, confusion, disillusionment, and joy.
38Anne MurrayMorna Anne Murray known professionally as Anne Murray, is a Canadian singer in pop, country, and adult contemporary music whose albums have sold over 55 million copies worldwide.
39Tina TurnerTina Turner, née Anna Mae Bullock, is a singer, dancer, actress and author, whose career has spanned more than half a century, earning her widespread recognition and numerous awards.
40Johnny CashJohn R. "Johnny" Cash (1932-2003) was an American singer-songwriter, guitarist, actor, and author, who was widely considered one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century and one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold more than 90 million records worldwide. He died of ...read more.
41Roy OrbisonRoy Kelton Orbison, professionally known as Roy Orbison, nicknamed Big O, was an American singer, songwriter, guitarist, and musician, mostly known for his complex voice and for hits such as, "Oh, Pretty Woman".
42Diana RossDiana Ernestine Earle Ross is an American singer, actress, and record producer. Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, Ross rose to fame as the lead singer of the vocal group the Supremes.
43Otis ReddingOtis Ray Redding, Jr. was an American singer, songwriter, record producer, arranger, and talent scout.
44Donna SummerLaDonna Adrian Gaines, known by her stage name Donna Summer, was an American singer, songwriter, and painter.
45Dionne WarwickMarie Dionne Warrick is an American singer, actress and TV-show host, who became a United Nations Global Ambassador for the Food and Agriculture Organization, and a United States Ambassador of Health.
46Louis ArmstrongLouis Armstrong, nicknamed Satchmo or Pops, was an American trumpeter, composer and singer who was one of the most influential figures in jazz.
47Nat King ColeNathaniel Adams Coles, known professionally as Nat King Cole, was an American singer who first came to prominence as a leading jazz pianist.
49Edith PiafÉdith Piaf was a French cabaret singer, songwriter and actress who became widely regarded as France's national chanteuse, as well as being one of France's greatest international stars.