Top 10 Iconic Female Singers of the 2010s

Script written by Q.V. Hough The upper echelon of female voices in modern music. Join MsMojo as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Female Singers of the 2010s. For this list, we’re counting down the most culturally relevant female artists of the decade. In other words, these are the women that set themselves apart through originality, creativity and perseverance.

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Top 10 Female Singers of the 2010s

The upper echelon of female voices in modern music. Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Female Singers of the 2010s.
For this list, we’re counting down the most culturally relevant female artists of the decade. In other words, these are the women that set themselves apart through originality, creativity and perseverance.

#10: Demi Lovato

Quietly emerging as one of the more formidable talents of the decade, this former Disney star certainly doesn’t lack in vocal range. In fact, upon releasing the megahit “Skyscraper” in July of 2011, Demi Lovato essentially announced her rediscovery while inspiring millions of fans. And with more confidence came a more expansive aesthetic complementing her refined vocals on both her 2013 self-titled released along with the aptly titled Confident in 2015. Effortless and cool, Demi Lovato has a fundamental skill at the heart of the pop star package: she’s got a voice all her own.

#9: Ellie Goulding

In the summer of 2009, this vocalist introduced herself to the world, and not long thereafter…there was Lights. Offering a breath of fresh air into a pop scene of Adele-clones, Ellie Goulding’s unique sound reminds of her femininity, while the albums Halycon and Delirium touched fans with messages of individuality and the experience being young. With a transcendental tone, Ellie was a natural choice for the “Fifty Shades of Grey” soundtrack, and for millennial fans, a track such as “Love Me like You Do” will surely stand the test of time as an iconic love ballad of the decade.

#8: Miley Cyrus

With all of the controversy surrounding her public persona, it can be easy to forget that Miley Cyrus is a true professional when it comes to singing. Upon releasing 2010’s “Can’t Be Tamed”, she teased a bit as to what direction she was heading. But, of course, the monster banger of the decade emerged via the anthemic “Wrecking Ball”, unveiling a new Miley to the world. Time will ultimately reveal how a production like “Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz” fits into the decade as whole, but it’s hard to deny the natural talent of Miley Cyrus and her commanding stage presence.

#7: Nicki Minaj

After a trilogy of mixtapes in the late 2000s, the Harajuku Barbie was ready for a higher stage. And given the commercial success of 2010’s Pink Friday, Nicki Minaj certainly didn’t disappoint, and how could it with singles like “Super Bass” and “Fly”? Nicki emerged as one of pop’s most polarizing figures, all the while embracing the publicity. But regardless of whether or not you’re a fan of Nicki Minaj’s vast array of contrived characters, or her lyrical flow, she’s capitalized on her opportunities while managing to sustain a career with her surrealistic takes on life and love.

#6: Ariana Grande

In the early part of the decade, this Florida native was known primarily for her role on Nickelodeon’s “Victorious”. But like some of her fellow contemporaries, Ariana Grande made a sudden transformation from TV starlet into pop diva, albeit in her own graceful manner. For her first two albums, Yours Truly and My Everything, Ariana mixed up a cutesy persona with some legit vocals. However, with the 2016 release of “Dangerous Woman”, she offered up a telling statement with the album’s lead single. Ariana’s got some of that old-school soul, with a new school vibe, becoming one of the most polished vocalists of her time.

#5: Adele

Arguably the most talented vocalist on our list, this British singer hasn’t been the most prolific. And there’s a reason for that: Adele takes her time when breaking our hearts and lifting our spirits. With deeply personal works such as 2011’s 21 and 2015’s 25, Adele tells a story like no other through, and with a set of pipes like hers, live performances take on another dimension. Just her vocal aesthetic alone has already inspired a world of aspiring artists, as she’s the epitome of powerhouse singing. The tone. The inflections. The range. Give Adele a mic and she can move almost anybody.

#4: Lady Gaga

Already a full-fledged pop star by the turn of the decade, Stefani Germanotta stepped up her game even more with 2011’s Born This Way. For one, Lady Gaga was already anticipating emerging trends and issues in pop culture, and like any lasting artist, she stayed true to herself while building upon her progressive sound. 2013'sArtpop also topped the Billboard charts, but perhaps her biggest statement came in 2014: Cheek to Cheek with Tony Bennett. What other artist today could follow up a #1 pop album with a #1 album of jazz standards? Answer? Very few.

#3: Rihanna

Believe it or not, this Caribbean artist hit the scene in the year of YouTube’s birth. Just as the world has rapidly evolved, Rihanna has transformed into a pop star unwilling to play by conventional rules. Releasing a trio of timely releases to begin the decade, she stepped away for a bit and came back ready to show herself to the world, literally and figuratively. In essence, Rihanna doesn’t shy away from controversy, and she’s certainly embraced a more liberal approach to selling her music. Most importantly, everybody recognizes a Rihanna vocal, and though some millennial artists find it easy to talk that talk, she walks the walk at all times.

#2: Katy Perry

In 2015, this American icon took the stage at the Super Bowl Halftime Show, and it wasn’t to promote a new album. It was because Katy Perry’s an international superstar. After all, she hadn’t released an album since 2013’s “Prism”, and given the vast amount of iconic singles released over just two albums prior to the NFL event, this woman is perhaps one of the most bankable singers of her era. With Katy, you get a little bit of everything: sex appeal, strong vocals, dynamic performances and an innovative mind that understands her audience. Katy may not be THE voice of her generation, but she just may be the most influential one.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.


Florence Welch


Lana Del Rey

Selena Gomez

#1: Taylor Swift

Whereas artists like Rihanna and Katy Perry each influence the music industry in different ways, this crossover phenomenon has forged her own path. Of course we’re talking about Taylor Swift’s willingness to engage with the industry on musician’s rights, but it takes a singer of her magnitude to essentially change the world in which we live. From a musical standpoint, she’s been in the public eye since the spawn of YouTube, and in the 2010s alone, Taylor released three consecutive #1 albums. Given the massive success of the eclectic 1989, she isn’t just the top singer of the decade, she’s one of the most powerful female musicians ever.

So, do you agree with our selections? Who is your favorite female singer of the 2010s? For more mind-blowing Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to MsMojo.

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