20 Greatest Female Vocalists (16-20)

In recent years, I've spent much times reading about music and its history. That's why now I come up with this list of 20 greatest female vocalists in the music recording era. Perhaps some people will argue with me over this list, especially since I made it in the form of charts, but I guess it will open doors of lots of new discussion. I, myself, am not a musician or singer of any sort, but truly I am a music lovers. I have set some criteria in judging who should be put into the list:
  • Vocal ability. A good singer is a singer with a technically good vocal. The greatest singers must be the singers with above average vocal ability.
  • Star quality. You cannot be a greatest singer if you are not a star by yourself. You must have the ability that will make people worship you.
  • Legacy. It's about influence, baby. You are measured by the influence you give to other singers.
  • Fame. Even if you have the greatest vocal of all, it would be useless if nobody knows you. That's why I don't put any Asian or Hispanics in this list [not because of racism since I'm an Asian myself) because none of the them are known enough to be able to be called as the greatest vocalists.
Without further ado, let's start the countdown:

20. Whitney Houston (born 1963)

Nickname: The Voice
Genre: R&B
Most memorable recording: "I Will Always Love You"
Followers : Toni Braxton, Jessica Simpson, Antonella Bucci, Beyoncé, Arianna, Myra, Eden's Crush, Rhona Bennett, Canela, Maiko Watson, Soluna, Yohany, Tamyra Gray, Lisa Andreas, Paris Bennett, Katharine McPhee, Bianca Ryan, Jennifer Hudson, Leona Lewis, April Start, and many more.

Whitney Houston is inarguably one of the of the biggest female pop stars of all time. Her accomplishments as a hitmaker are extraordinary; just to scratch the surface, she became the first artist ever to have seven consecutive singles hit number one, and her 1993 Dolly Parton cover "I Will Always Love You" became nothing less than the biggest hit single in rock history. Houston was able to handle big adult contemporary ballads, effervescent, stylish dance-pop, and slick urban contemporary soul with equal dexterity; the result was an across-the-board appeal that was matched by scant few artists of her era, and helped her become one of the first black artists to find success on MTV in Michael Jackson's wake. Like many of the original soul singers, Houston was trained in gospel before moving into secular music; over time, she developed a virtuosic singing style given over to swooping, flashy melodic embellishments. The shadow of Houston's prodigious technique still looms large over nearly every pop diva and smooth urban soul singer -- male or female -- in her wake, and spawned a legion of imitators (despite some critics' complaints about over-singing). by Steve Huey

19. Mariah Carey (born: 1970)
Nickname: The Pop Diva
Genre: R&B
Most Memorable Recording: "Hero"
Followers: Debelah Morgan, Jessica Simpson, Beyoncé, 3LW, Tarralyn Ramsey, Tonya Mitchell, Kortney Kayle, Amanda, Soluna, Cassie, Paris Bennett, The Slumber Party Girls, Alejandra Alberti, Karina Pasian, and many more.
Mariah Carey has displayed each of the characteristics that commonly describe a diva. She possesses both a five-octave vocal range and award-winning music business skills. She co-wrote all but one of her No.1 songs (which was a cover of a Jackson 5 song) and co-produced of all of her chart-topping hits. She was named the world's top selling female artist of the millennium. By the summer of 2001, the talented, classically trained, and hardworking singer had come full circle and reached a breaking point, but quickly rebounded. by Ashyia Henderson, Leslie Rochelle, and Sara Pendergast.

18. Patti Smith (born 1946)

Nickname: Godmother of Punk
Genre: Rock
Most Memorable Recording: "Because The Night"
Followers: Babes in Toyland, Jim Carroll, Concrete Blonde, Talking Heads, Têtes Noires, Felt, Liz Phair, Heather Nova, The Go-Go's, Kim Gordon, R.E.M., Spacemaid, Scout, Lisa Hayes, Life Without Buildings, The Fiery Furnaces, KT Tunstall, The Happy Hollows, Caroline af Ugglas, Swallows, and many more.

Punk rock's poet laureate, Patti Smith ranks among the most influential female rock & rollers of all time. Ambitious, unconventional, and challenging, Smith's music was hailed as the most exciting fusion of rock and poetry since Bob Dylan's heyday. If that hybrid remained distinctly uncommercial for much of her career, it wasn't a statement against accessibility so much as the simple fact that Smith followed her own muse wherever it took her -- from structured rock songs to free-form experimentalism, or even completely out of music at times. Her most avant-garde outings drew a sense of improvisation and interplay from free jazz, though they remained firmly rooted in noisy, primitive three-chord rock & roll. She was a powerful concert presence, singing and chanting her lyrics in an untrained but expressive voice, whirling around the stage like an ecstatic shaman delivering incantations. by Steve Huey
17. Reba McEntire (born 1955)
Nickname: The Queen of Country
Genre: Country
Most Memorable Recording: "Somebody Should Leave"
Followers: Linda Davis, Faith Hill, Kathie Baillie, Stephanie Bentley, Terri Clark, Lila McCann, Danni Leigh, Meredith Edwards, The Wreckers, Erika Jo, Danielle Peck, and many more.
Reba McEntire was the most successful female recording artist in country music in the 1980s and 1990s, during which time she scored 22 number one hits and released five gold albums, six platinum albums, two double-platinum albums, four triple-platinum albums, a quadruple-platinum album, and a quintuple-platinum album, for certified album sales of 33.5 million over the 20-year period. While she continued to sell records in healthy numbers into the 21st century, she expanded her activities as an actress in film and on the legitimate stage, and particularly on television, where she starred in a long-running situation comedy. Such diversification made her the greatest crossover star to emerge from country music since Dolly Parton. by William Ruhlmann.

16. Bessie Smith (1894-1937)
Nickname: The Empress of The Blues
Genre: Blues
Most Memorable Recording: "Back Water Blues"
Followers: Rory BlockLucille Bogan, Odetta, Victoria Spivey, Big Mama Thornton, Mahalia Jackson, Janis Joplin, Tracy Nelson, Pamela Polland, Billie Holiday, Queen Latifah, Dolores Parker, Irene Scruggs, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Jean Kittrell, Virginia Rodrigues, Alex Pangman, Floyd Campbell, Billie Hayes, Eilen Jewell, and many more.
Bessie Smith (ca. 1894-1937) was called "The Empress of the Blues." Her magnificent voice, sense of the dramatic, clarity of diction (you never missed a word of what she sang) and incomparable time and phrasing set her apart from the competition and made her appeal as much to jazz lovers as to lovers of the blues.Born into poverty in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Bessie Smith began singing for money on street corners and eventually rose to become the largest-selling recording artist of her day. So mesmerizing was her vocal style - reinforced by her underrated acting and comedic skills - that near-riots frequently errupted when she appeared. Those outside the theaters clamored to get in; those inside refused to leave without hearing more of Smith. Twice she was instrumental in helping save Columbia Records from bankruptcy.

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Anonymous said…
sayang ya.. pada akhirnya ada yang nggak bisa jaga reputasi sebagai penyanyi terbaik.. dulu q suka banget ma mariah carey.. but then.. jadi ilfil.. ^^