35 Best Singers Of The 2010s

The 2010s were a transitional period in the music world, with artists shifting genres and new stars rising to widespread acclaim. It marked the decade where the hip hop and pop worlds became one, we saw country music move into and out of the bro-country era, and the alternative rock world continued to evolve. In this article, we’ll take a look at the 35 best vocalists and most successful artists of the 2010s. 

1. Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift - Blank Space

It’s hard to argue that anyone had a more successful decade than Taylor Swift during the 2010s. She shifted away from her country roots into a full-blown pop star and produced album after album of smash hits. Number-ones like We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together, Blank Space, Bad Blood, and Shake It Off set the world ablaze.

Other hits that didn’t quite reach the same heights were no slouch either, such as Red and I Knew You Were Trouble. Nobody dominated the decade like she did, and no artist ventured into more new territory than her either.

Recommended: Top Taylor Swift songs of all time

2. Adele

Adele - Rolling in the Deep (Official Music Video)

If you’re looking for one of the best vocalists of the 2010s, it’s impossible to not consider Adele. After she rose to prominence in 2008 with her album 19, she released two incredible albums in the 2010s. Both 21 and 25 were impressive albums, with the former becoming a sleeper hit inspired by a failed relationship. It was actually the best-selling album of 2011 and 2012. It also produced the songs she became best known for, such as Rolling In The Deep and Rumour Has It

3. Lorde

Lorde - Royals (US Version)

Lorde established herself in the music world with the song Royals, a chart-topping hit from her EP The Love Club. That same year, her debut album exploded onto the scene to critical and commercial success. She then was everywhere at once, curating the soundtrack for the Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 film in 2014 and then releasing a second album in 2017. On top of her awarded solo work, she has worked as a songwriter for other artists and was one of the most important artists of the 2010s. 

4. Ed Sheeran

Ed Sheeran - Shape of You (Official Music Video)

Ed Sheeran’s popularity exploded in 2010 when he released his Loose Change EP. His single The A Team quickly became a hit and catapulted him to international fame. Thanks to YouTube, this popularity only continued to grow, with him releasing several independent and label projects throughout the decade. Other major hits from him included Photograph and Shape Of You

5. Drake

Drake - God's Plan

One could make a solid argument that Drake was the most successful artist of the 2010s, at least on a commercial and chart level. His breakthrough came with his 2010 debut album Thank Me Later and the rest of the decade was a blazing upward trajectory. God’s Plan, Hotline Bling, and Nice For What were massive hit singles. But his solo works only scratch the surface, as he was featured on or helped produce so many hit songs that it would be impossible to go over in the scope of this entry. 

6. Bruno Mars

Bruno Mars - The Lazy Song (Official Music Video)

Bruno Mars became one of the most impressive singers and producers of the 2010s, capturing listener’s hearts in 2010 with his debut album Doo-Wops & Hooligans and the hit song Just The Way You Are. In an era dominated by incredible female vocalists, he carved out a niche for himself with his own talents. All three of his iconic albums were released during the 2010s, producing other hit singles like 24K Magic, Grenade, and Uptown Funk.

7. Lana Del Rey

Lana Del Rey - Young and Beautiful

Lana Del Rey spent the 2000s working on EPs and an acoustic album, honing her craft in songwriting. Her eponymous debut album finally came to fruition in 2010, and her eclectic pop style earned her an immediate cult following.

She continued releasing albums throughout the decade, from her raw Ultraviolent to the acclaimed Norman Fucking Rockwell! Songs like Summertime Sadness, Sad Girl, and Lust For Life showcased her incredible vocal talent and songwriting abilities, establishing her as one of the decade’s pop icons. 

8. Ariana Grande

Ariana Grande - 7 rings (Official Video)

Ariana Grande got her start on television as a teen idol, acting primarily for Nickelodeon on Victorious. But even while she was acting, she was interested in a music career. It probably helped that her singing talent rivals the likes of Celine Dion and Whitney Houston, but her entrance into the music world made huge waves.

Her debut album ended up being released in 2013 and produced the top-10 hit single The Way. She followed it up with incredible hit songs like God Is A Woman, Thank U, Next, and Side To Side. And since then, the incredible singer has been on nothing but an upward trajectory.

9. Rihanna

Rihanna - Diamonds

Rihanna took the early 2010s by storm, releasing an album each year between 2010 and 2012, Loud, Talk That Talk, and Unapologetic. She also released Anti in 2016 and became a fashion and beauty mogul, eventually turning her into a billionaire thanks to her lucrative side ventures. But those business activities didn’t stop her from producing numerous hit singles. Diamonds, Work, and What’s My Name were all massive hits during that decade. 

10. Harry Styles

Harry Styles - Sign of the Times (Official Video)

Harry Styles had a ridiculously incredible run as a member of One Direction from 2010 until 2016, with the group becoming a worldwide sensation. But after they went on hiatus in 2016, his solo projects established him as one of the preeminent male pop icons of the decade.

His debut single Sign Of The Times topped the UK Singles Charts and broke into the top five of the US Hot 100. Before the end of the decade, he released a second album, Fine Line. Songs like Watermelon Sugar and Kiwi were instant and massive international hits. 

11. Beyoncé

Beyoncé - Love On Top (Official Video)

Beyoncé spent the 2000s establishing herself as one of the preeminent solo acts in the music industry. Though she went on hiatus in 2010, she triumphantly returned to the stage and the studio the following year with her album 4, then again in 2013 with an eponymous album.

By the time Lemonade was released in 2016, she had already become one of the most successful artists of the 2010s. Songs like Formation and Drunk In Love dominated the charts when released to her rabid fanbase, and she would even perform at the Super Bowl in 2013.

12. Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga, Bradley Cooper - Shallow (from A Star Is Born) (Official Music Video)

Lady Gaga broke onto the mainstream stage with her 2008 album Fame, but nobody could have expected her to continue the run of success she was on. In 2011, she released her Born This Way album to widespread acclaim. The title track became an anthem of the LGBTQ community, and songs like The Edge Of Glory and Judas only further established her spot as a pop icon.

Shortly afterward, she released Artpop, an album that produced another major hit titled Applause. For the rest of the decade, she was nothing short of magnanimous, diving into songwriter aesthetics without ever leaving behind the esoteric ways of her earlier music. 

13. The Weeknd

The Weeknd - Starboy ft. Daft Punk (Official Video)

The Weeknd didn’t start his music career by releasing a studio album, he helped found a record label. After releasing music anonymously for years, the world was finally treated to his first album in 2013, Kiss Land. It debuted at number two on Billboard’s album chart and immediately cemented his place among the stars. He then went on to release two other albums during the 2010s, Starboy and Beauty Behind The Madness, producing hit singles like Starboy, Die For You, and Pray For Me.

14. Adam Levine

Adam Levine - Lost Stars (from Begin Again)

Adam Levine’s signature singing style has been the driving force of Maroon 5’s 30-year run in the music industry. Though they almost stopped recording and touring by 2010, some of their best work reaffirmed their place on the charts during the 2010s. Albums like Overexposed, V, and Hands All Over produced hits like Payphone, Animals, and Moves Like Jagger, respectively. 

15. Miley Cyrus

Miley Cyrus - Wrecking Ball (Official Video)

Miley Cyrus left her Hannah Montana persona behind in the 2010s, becoming the hypersexual and controversial pop star that you either loved or hated. Her vocal talents were never in question, the only thing most people wondered was if she would mature beyond swinging naked on a wrecking ball. And even if you hated that music video, the song was catchy as hell.

We Can’t Stop and 23 set the stage for her to enter her prime in the early 2020s, but her time in the spotlight in the 2010s was nothing short of entertaining. 

16. John Legend

John Legend - All of Me (Official Video)

John Legend established himself as an incredible vocalist and pianist in the 2000s, but it was the latter portion of that decade and the 2010s that his career went full bore. His fourth album Love In The Future was released in 2015, and a year later, he released Darkness And Light. In 2018, he also released an impressive Christmas album to showcase his prowess as a vocalist. Some of his best songs included All Of Me and Bring Me Love

17. Frank Ocean

Frank Ocean began his music career as a ghostwriter but joined the hip hop collective Odd Future in 2010. After releasing his first mixtape in 2011, securing a recording contract, and eventually releasing his debut album Channel Orange in 2012. Its lead single Thinkin’ Bout You was nominated for Record of the Year and the album was nominated for Album of the Year at the Grammys.

He was named one of Time’s most influential people in 2013 as well. From then on, he has become a respected singer, songwriter, producer, and fashion designer. 

18. Katy Perry

Katy Perry was one of the most prolific pop singers of the early 2010s, dominating the charts and releasing a continuous stream of catchy hit songs. After rising to fame in 2008 with her singles Hot N Cold and I Kissed A Girl, she made the early 2010s her plaything.

Her Teenage Dream album produced five number-one hits, making it only the second album in history—after Michael Jackson’s Bad—to achieve that feat. Songs like Teenage Dream, Firework, California Gurls, Roat, and Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.) became staple pop tracks of the era. 

19. Robyn

Robyn - Dancing On My Own (Official Video)

Robyn is a Swedish pop singer who has been around since 1995. Her work in the 2010s was incredible, spawning a series of mini-albums known as the Body Talk series that earned three Grammy nominations and produced three top-10 hit singles. Dancing On My Own, Hang With Me, and Indestructible all brought her widespread acclaim. The record producer, DJ, and songwriter is also known as an incredible vocalist. 

20. Chris Stapleton

Chris Stapleton - Tennessee Whiskey (Official Audio)

Chris Stapleton has become one of the biggest names in modern country music thanks to his soulful voice and old-school sensibilities, but it’s his songwriting that has put him over the top. With over 170 song credits to his name, he has written songs for artists like Luke Bryan, Taylor Swift, Kenny Chesney, George Strait, Adele, and many others.

His solo vocalist career took off when his version of Tennessee Whiskey was released in 2015 from his debut album Traveller. His second album in 2017 won his second CMA for Album of the Year and brought home the Grammy Award for Best Country Album. 

21. Justin Bieber

Justin Bieber - Sorry (PURPOSE : The Movement)

The late 2000s and early 2010s were the peak of Bieber fever, but the teenage sensation had a set of pipes that helped him carry his music career farther than his early songs ever could. The 2010s saw him become a serious music artist, releasing songs like What Do You Mean?, Love Yourself, and Sorry to critical praise. And in the years since, he’s collaborated with other big artists to continue producing hit singles.

22. Nicki Minaj

Nicki Minaj - Super Bass (Official Video)

You can’t talk about the landscape of the music world in the 2010s without bringing up Nicki Minaj. Her four albums during that decade were all iconic, producing incredible hit singles like Super Bass, Anaconda, and Starships. She flipped the hip hop community upside-down and cemented her place as one of the best-selling artists of all time and the best-selling female rapper in history. 

23. Kendrick Lamar

Kendrick Lamar - HUMBLE.

Kendrick Lamar is often thought of as one of the greatest rappers of all time. His melodic cadences, creative songwriting, and social consciousness have turned him into one of the foremost names in the hip hop world. His alt-rap debut album was released in 2011, and it was only up from there.

Numerous hit singles like Swimming Pools, Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe, and HUMBLE. came to shape hip hop in the 2010s and cement his legacy in the industry. He is also the only artist outside of the classical and jazz genres to have been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Music

24. Post Malone

Post Malone, Swae Lee - Sunflower (Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse)

Post Malone started his music career in 2011 but broke into the mainstream in 2015 with the release of his debut single White Iverson. Congratulations earned a diamond certification, but he reached his peak in 2018 with the release of his acclaimed album Beerbongs And Bentleys. For the rest of the 2010s, the rapper continued producing unique hip hop, cemented his place in the industry, and earned numerous awards. 

25. Demi Lovato

Luis Fonsi, Demi Lovato - Échame La Culpa

Demi Lovato is another kid TV star to make a name in the music industry after her acting career. She became famous for her role in Camp Rock and its sequel, eventually releasing her debut pop-rock album in 2008. Her album Unbroken in 2011 reached number three on the Billboard 200, and she went on to release two other successful albums during the 2010s. The lead single of Tell Me You Love Me in 2017, Sorry Not Sorry, reached number six on the Hot 100. 

26. Britney Spears

Britney Spears - Hold It Against Me (Official Video)

Britney Spears is known as one of the pop icons of the 2000s, but she didn’t stop releasing music when the decade ended. She had a few chart-toppers in the 2010s as well, with songs like Hold It Against Me and Scream And Shout reaching widespread popularity. By the late 2010s, fans were advocating for her legal rights as her family struggles were made public, and she rose from those ashes to continue producing hit music. 

27. Travis Scott

Travis Scott - SICKO MODE ft. Drake

Travis Scott is another rapper to enter the upper echelons of hip hop and characterize the genre during the 2010s. After signing a major record label deal in 2012, he has become one of the biggest names in the trap and pop-rap communities. Songs like Sicko Mode from his Astroworld album and Antidote from his Rodeo album scored major successes for him. He has gone on to become a global pop culture icon and one of the most influential artists of the modern era. 

28. Calvin Harris

Calvin Harris - Summer (Official Video)

Calvin Harris is better known as a DJ than he is a vocalist, but he produced some of the biggest and best summer party anthems of the 2010s. While he isn’t averse to singing for his songs, it isn’t the biggest draw for him. He used social media to place his music on charts worldwide, releasing songs like Feel So Close and Summer to critical and fan acclaim. 

29. Marcus Mumford

Fare Thee Well (Dink's Song)

There’s little debate over Marcus Mumford’s vocal abilities. As the lead singer of Mumford And Sons, he’s been at the forefront of the band’s rise to stardom in the alt-rock and folk-rock communities. Their 2012 album Babel earned eight Grammy nominations and took home the award for Album of the Year. 

30. Eminem

Eminem - Love The Way You Lie ft. Rihanna

There isn’t much anyone really needs to say about Eminem. One can make a great argument that he’s the greatest rapper of all time, and he’s undoubtedly one of the best lyricists in history. His historic highs came during the early 2000s as he and 50 Cent owned the hip hop world, but his 2010 album Recovery marked a major comeback for the rapper.

While album releases got more sparse as the 2010s went on, some of his best-known songs were released in this decade. Not Afraid, Rap God, Kamikaze, Love The Way You Lie, and Killshot are just a few examples of his hits during this era. 

31. Dan Reynolds

Imagine Dragons - It's Time (Official Music Video)

It’s impossible to talk about the 2010s without bringing up Imagine Dragons and the vocal prowess of Dan Reynolds. Major players in the alternative rock and heavy pop genres, the group broke into the mainstream in 2012 with the hit single It’s Time. Following that top 20 hit, their debut album Night Vision was released, and they continued to release acclaimed albums for the rest of the decade. Radioactive, On Top Of The World, and Whatever It Takes were three of their biggest hit singles. 

32. Carly Rae Jepsen

Carly Rae Jepsen - Call Me Maybe

Carly Rae Jepsen broke into the mainstream after placing third on Canadian Idol in 2007, but her debut album didn’t see a release outside of Canada until 2011. Her songs were insanely catchy, though a bit goofy. If you lived through the days of Call Me Maybe you understand. But while that mega-hit is what most people know her for, she continued releasing quality albums throughout the decade and scored at least one more top-five hit with I Really Like You.

33. Kanye West

Kanye West - All Of The Lights ft. Rihanna, Kid Cudi

Put aside all of the controversy and lunacy that surrounds Kanye West, don’t think about any of the drama, and what do you have left? One of the best and most successful hip hop artists of all time is what. The 2010s were just as huge for him as the 2000s were, with song releases like Paris, I Love It, and Ghost Town all coming out in that decade. 

34. Hayley Williams

Paramore: Still Into You [OFFICIAL VIDEO]

Paramore became one of the most beloved pop-punk bands of all time with the release of their 2008 album Riot! but that wasn’t the only success they’ve found. Behind their lead singer Hayley Williams, the band continued their incredible run into the 2010s with songs like Ain’t It Fun, Still Into You, and This Is Why. With Williams finally released from her 20-year contract—that she was signed to at 14 by the way—the future of the band is as exciting as it has ever been. 

35. Shawn Mendes

Shawn Mendes - Treat You Better

Shawn Mendes gained his initial following in 2013 thanks to posting music on Vine, eventually earning a record deal and releasing his debut album in 2015, Handwritten. It debuted atop the Billboard 200 and produced the number-one single Stitches. From there, he continued a great run in the 2010s that produced hit songs like Senorita, If I Can’t Have You, and In My Blood.

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