9 Black Soul Singers Who Move Us More Than Adele Ever Could

jazmnesullivan-summerstage-Aug15-EVTPhoto_17I’m sick of folk flipping out over Adele as if she is that standard under which all over voices should be evaluated. Her voice is not that great. She can sing, She can hold a note. Let’s be honest: if you find yourself at a good Black Baptist church on any Sunday, you’ll be able to find somebody that could belt Adele under the table.

Omarosa infamously made history (again) when she went on the now defunct Bethanny show and said:

“It’s different for you and I, I am an African American woman. You get to walk around and be mediocre and you still get rewarded with things. We have to be exceptional to get anything in this business.”

And she was right.

The same goes for the music business. There is an abundance of black singers that can slay you straight to your soul that get little to no support whereas flimsier white artists like Meghan Trainer have everybody in their corner. There is no better example of this than Adele. She has a good voice. She is a talented writer. But not moreso than criminally slept on Tank. Not moreso than R&B fundamentalist Tyrese. Still, both crooners have at a minimum pondered retiring from music altogether due to the lack of support they’ve received.

the wiz live fierceIt’s time we stopped acting like Adele is serving soul like a those Emerald City dancers from The Wiz Live!. Adele gets away with being mediocre in the music industry because she is soulful by white standards.

Don’t believe me? Check these 9 artists below and let me know if Adele has ever performed near these standards.


1. Whitney Houston

Whitney Houston commanded the 1994 AMAs stage with a medley of “I Loves You Porgy”/”And I’m Telling You”/”I Have Nothing”. Who else you know that can take 3, count ’em 3, black standards to a non-black awards show and fully captivate the entire audience? That’s why Whitney is known as “The Voice”.


Whitney took The Star Spangled Banner, the United States National Anthem and a song that the most backwoods folk in our nation hold dearest to their hearts, and made it her own just like Serena stole tennis.


2. Jill Scott

“Jilly from Philly” has been putting your faves to shame on wax for years, but put her behind on a stage and you’ll see Ms. Scott really go to work. In this live and rare performance of her beloved “He Loves Me”, Scott is at her best. Her voice is strong yet delicate, and her delivery is like that pf a new age Billie Holiday. **snaps**


3. Fantasia

Before she was an actual recording artist, Fantasia went down in history for her performance of “Summertime” on American Idol. With her shoes off and sitting on the edge of the stage, Fantasia earned her American Idol crown weeks before the season was over.

When you put together a tribute for Patti Labelle, you can’t just book any singer. You need a sanger. And Fantasia fits that bill. She took her performance of “Lady Marmalade” from the stage to the audience to a dance with Patti and back, snatching wigs all along the way.


4. Jazmine Sullivan

There is plenty of material I could pull showing Jazmine Sullivan blowing the roof off of venues. But to further prove my point that Adele is mediocre in comparison to the bevy of black artists in the industry, I’m not going to share one of her current performances. Instead, I’ve goe an 11 Year Old Jazmine Sullivan singing “Home” From The Wiz. At 11(!) Ms. Sullivan could already blow back Adele’s coif.


5. Tamia

When I think of slept on vocalists, Tamia always shows up on my list. Do you even know of anybody else that can sing “You Put A Move On My Heart”? That takes range and power of voice that only a precious few are blessed with. But while visiting the Steve Harvey Morning Show, Mrs. Hill sang a collection of her hits and then capped the whole affair with a cover of Anita Baker’s “Been So Long”. Don’t try this at home folks.



6. Jennifer Hudson

Just like Fantasia, Jennifer Hudson was a force to be reckoned with on American Idol. Despite the hate she received from judges week in and week out, she proved again and again that she’s got the pipes. “Circle of Life” will have you testifying the goodness of God’s grace.


“Weekend In New England”, on the other hand, showed that she was a performer that didn’t have to just rely on belting out notes at the top of her range. She could do tender too. And even though she ended up getting voted off of the show after this performance, it was also a sign of the superstar that we’d see blossom in the coming years.


7. Luther Vandross

You don’t sing live on Soul Train. It was a rule. No matter who you were, you performed to a prerecorded track. But not Luther. Luther sings live. And when he pulls out “A House Is Not A Home” and starts those ad libs, you know you better get ready.


8. Luke James

I’m just waiting for Luke James to get the respect he deserves. His breakout hit “I Want You” was an instant classic.  But for his debut self-titled album, he included a cover of Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me”. To me Sam Smith is just like Adele, and this comparison makes that clear as day.


9. Tyrese

“Sweet Lady”. “Lately”. “Stay”. Tyrese has been true to soul music from the start. And his recent (and final) album Black Rose further cemented his dedication to the genre. “Shame”, the lead single off of the album, was already a soul monster on its own. But watching him perform the song with Patti LaBelle at her house? I need a nap.

Photo Credit: Emily Tan, The Boombox

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Daren W. Jackson

Daren is one half of the Water Cooler Convos team. He's a writer, music connoisseur, and comic book geek who spends his free time working on his novel and other short stories.

253 Responses

  1. Shawna says:

    Aw. This hurt me a lil bit. I love all the artists you mentioned and I do own their music, but I also love Adele and own her music as well . I don’t think she’s just mediocre. She has a unique sound and it is more soulful than most artists of her skin hue, but it is not the same sound as any of the artists you mentioned or any of the soul singing greats.

    When I stand her alone, she has original talent, and it doesn’t hurt for me that she’s not a size 2. She embodies the exact singer that media typically uses on an album for her talent and hides her away for video and performances because she’s overweight or doesn’t fit society’s model of beauty. I LOVE that Adele doesn’t allow herself to be sat behind the scenes and that she is so popular in spite of what pop thinks and says will sell.

  2. D Jackson says:

    I agree with you that Adele does go against the grain a bit in terms of image and music quality. And I do enjoy her voice and some of her songs (I guess I don’t say that much here). The problem is that pop culture has latched onto her as if she is the musical genius of the century.

    Plus, when I hear other artists cover her work, I tend to prefer the covers more than the original. If you get a chance, check out Jade Novah’s cover of “Hello” (https://soundcloud.com/jadenovah/hello). She takes that song to a new place.

  3. Michael says:

    Can’t just one thing not be about race. Just one. Please.

  4. D Jackson says:

    Of course. But sadly, not for this piece.

  5. LaQuitta Palmer says:

    Wish there was a dislike button for this article…what a nasty and mean thing to say…I love Adele and that’s not taking anything away from Tyrese, Tank, or anyone else. She just dam good at what she does. Beyonce isn’t the best singer but everybody swear by her music…well I’m swearing by Adele…that lady music moves me. Stop making everything about race any dam way.

  6. Evan Ginzburg says:

    It’s always a losing battle pitting one great Artist against another. I mean, I love Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Bobby Womack, Sam Cooke, Otis Redding, Ella, Sarah Vaughn, and lots of other African-American singers more than Adele. But it doesn’t mean Adele isn’t great or that she has some perceived advantage because she’s White. She was a chubby girl doing quality music from the heart- the very last person you should be targeting in an era where much Pop music is crap.
    What’s the point?

  7. D Jackson says:

    Understood. And you are entitled to your opinion. But to be clear, no shade to Adele. I’m not saying she is talentless. I am saying that the hype machine is working overtime for her and she is overrated. Still, to each his or her own.

  8. D Jackson says:

    There is a deeper conversation to be had here about race, privilege, and society, but I wasn’t trying to make it that deep. Great for Adele. She has clearly found her niche. I just wish that the world would stop acting like she is the best vocalist on the planet.

  9. Evan Ginzburg says:

    I’d be far more impressed if you did a piece on AGEism in the music industry than going after someone legit talented. BTW I have tickets for Maxwell, not Adele in NYC, she’s not even on my top 10 list let alone “best vocalist on the planet”.

  10. D Jackson says:

    Agreed. The industry chooses its prize ponies and let’s the rest out to pasture. And from what I’ve seen, it’s the indie artists that tend to have the beat material (you know, before industry execs get their hands on them). There are a few on your list that I’m not aware of, so I will definitely be checking them out.

  11. Treymaine Alford says:

    I’m trying to see what he whole point of this article was. Are you saying that because blacks are the originators of soul music, that we do it the best? Or are you saying that Adele’s talent is not on par with those artist that you have mentioned above and that because she is white she is lauded for basic singing that would be laughed at if she were black? Or is it a bit of both?
    I for one will tell you that I don’t agree with you at all on any of the above premises that I’ve mentioned or any of what you wrote in your article. The reason Adele is winning is that she is true to herself. She’s a breath of fresh air in the music world. She’s relatable and real. She also understands whose shoulders she suits upon and from the interviews I’ve heard she’s a big supporter of black music artist.
    Lastly she may not be able to do what some of my favorites such as Kim Burrell, Tasha Cobb, Karen Clark Shearf and her sister Dorinda Clark Cole and Marvin Sapp can do and all of them can out sing all the above save for Whitney Houston but Adele had that certain something that you can’t fully explain but causes people like myself and all of the media to swoon over her….

  12. Tyshan Broden says:

    How did you leave off Ledisi???

  13. DevDev says:

    Don’t nobody betta say nuttin’ bad about Miss Adele! Us black folk don’t stand fa NOBODY throwing dirt on the name of our pale soulful queen!!! Fuck outta here. Thanks for writing this piece. I agree wholeheartedly in that folks go on and on about how there’s room for EVERYONE and we don’t need to tear Adele down, but magically none of these stans can find the time to defend and support artists who look like them. And yeah, you forgot Ledisi!

  14. D Jackson says:

    The point here is that “the world” is lauding Adele like her voice is manna from heaven. I can’t deny that she is talented or that she has found a niche all her own. I wouldn’t advocate for her to stop making music or for anyone to stop buying it. However, let’s also not act like she’s the best to ever do it or that she is the best example of soul music today. That is just patently false.

  15. D Jackson says:

    To be honest, there are a bunch of folks that could have been included on this list. I’m pondering doing another list. Shouldn’t be difficult to pull together.

  16. D Jackson says:

    Thanks. After putting this out, I’ve heard so many calls to “celebrate everyone”. People don’t understand that was my point. Adele is already being celebrated. I’m advocating for those that aren’t and arguably should be celebrated more.

  17. disqus_JiuI4IPUW6 says:

    What does Adele have to do with this conversation really? She hasn’t taken anything from the singers listed above. They are all talented. Music is music really. I think it’s sad that we have take someone to task for being successful which is all she is. Rather than doing an article about why Adele shouldn’t be this or isn’t that, why not just do an article heralding the people listed above?

  18. How about we just say that every black soul musical artist sounds better than Adele? She has a nice instrument, but seriously now….name one black soul singer (not pop) within the last 100 years that couldn’t out-sing Adele….

    I’ll wait…

  19. The day that the aforementioned singers get the same recognition, awards, and income as Joss Stone, Adele, Amy Winehouse, and other white/ British singers will be the day that articles like this will not have to be written…

  20. Camille J says:

    By “the world” I’m assuming you mean white America. To be fair, white America has always been obsessed with British talent– the Rolling Stones, the Beatles, the Spice Girls even. I’m just not sure why Adele is coming under siege. Because she’s a white Brit who sings soul and is everywhere? Part of the marketing hype is because she was gone 5 years and is trying to “come back”. It’s just old school marketing. She doesn’t have the name power, if you will, to drop an album in the dark and it just sky rocket- Beyonce. I agree with many others, not sure why we have to tear Adele down, calling her overrated, etc., just to uplift black singers. The black community is well aware of everyone mentioned, and “the world” is well aware of Whitney and Luther, so why does it matter if “the world” is or isn’t? Are black people really in need of “the world” to constantly say, “Yay, good job”? Because people had a fit when “the world” did nothing but applaud black athletes and entertainers as if that was all black people were expected to do, accomplish, excel at.

  21. disqus_JiuI4IPUW6 says:

    Who says they aren’t? I’d say the majority of these people have enjoyed a huge amounts of recognition, praise, and money. I mean Whitney, Jennifer, Jill, and Tyrese are movie stars in their own right so success. Can you say the same about the singers you mentioned? Now about the music, it’s all about crossing over into mainstream. What are these artists doing to make that happen? The reason Adele or any of the other British singers have crossed over is because their lyrics or the way they interpret their lyrics touches a chord with people. What confuses me the most why does having a soulful voice have to do with skin color?

  22. Ricky P says:

    The days that these artists make songs, whole albums that are as good, and music that touches people over racial, socio-economic, cultural and geographical barriers is the day that these aforementioned singers DESERVE the same recognition, awards and income as Adele. The only singer on this list that comes close is Whitney Houston, whose arguably a better singer..but is more pop and commercial..rather than being soulful.

  23. Daryl A Rogers says:

    Rachelle Ferrell, Lalah Hathaway, Ledisi…

  24. Rodney Burrell says:

    Jennifer Hudson has won every award under the sun. Grammy, Academy
    Awards, MTV, BET, New York Film Critics Award. Who says she doesn’t get
    recognition? She been recognized by white and black media and fans as a
    powerhouse. Jill Scott won several Grammy’s in the early and mid 2000’s,
    but she doesn’t put out a ton of music, so should we recognize her just
    because she’s black? How has Luther Vandross NOT been recognized? He
    basically had a holiday when he passed and been a icon his whole career,
    winning multiple awards. Whitney Houston? The Bodyguard soundtrack was
    pretty much the mid -90’s…give me a break. This whole article is hacky
    and designed to race bait black folks into saying that white singers
    get more recognition. Shitty writing tactic, D. Jackass. Adele is
    talented, and she hasn’t released an album in 5 years…people, black
    and white, like listening to her. How could a “Music Connoisseur” write something like this? Clown.

  25. Ronnie Reese says:

    Right, because it’s not like Whitney, Luther and Jennifer aren’t mega-stars in their own right…

  26. Evan Ginzburg says:

    Whitney made more and burned through more than all the White singers mentioned.

  27. Ronnie Reese says:

    But most of the artists you mention ARE celebrated. You don’t have to advocate for people like Whitney, Fantasia or Tyrese, and those you do have to advocate for, like Luke James, are out of their league on this list. I think that’s where you went wrong, because you’ve presented too wide of a range here. Whitney and Luther are in a class of their own, Fantasia and Jennifer are in a class of their own. Tyrese and Jill in another, etc. A better approach would have been to find artists on the level of James, then make your Adele argument.

  28. Baemie St. Patrick says:

    Meh to Jennifer Hudson.

    But I feel this way about Justin Timberlake. We should ask the white people who love white singers who are soulful why they don’t buy records of black soul singers.

  29. Marion Marine says:

    This was AMAZING! I had the biggest smile on my face listening to my brothers and sisters! My darn cheeks hurt! Soul singing while white is definitely killing our music! We been doing thins since the beginning of times but as soon as one of them do it its the ‘new’ craze! Like ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm really NOW you like it? ….

  30. Marion Marine says:

    Standing OVATION! Bloop.

  31. Bkmews says:

    You forgot Brandy.

  32. Adele's_Witch_Doctor says:

    If you want to check out some of the lists for greatest singers of all time, namely rolling stones’, those lists are dominated by people of color, in fact isn’t Aritha Franklin at the top? Anyway the point you’ve made about Adele being mediocre has no base, ill thought out, is prejudice bias and actually shameful, simply because she’s white? Mentioned earlier was Beyonce would you have written this same article a few years back when she was running the show? Now on the point of music, it being, in a sense, a culture it is dynamic, i.e. it will continually change (sometimes for the better/worse), what a lot of black artist are failing to do is to adapt to where music is headed, and to make it to Adele’s status you need something that sets you apart, a niche. It is no longer about the best vocal ability, the highest note or the most soul (bare in mind there have been other standards of singing other than soul that have faded), you need to set yourself aside if you want to be remembered and not be (with all due respect) the generic gospel singer one can expect at their baptist church. And lastly Adele isn’t riding on Soul, Soul is riding on her back and we should thank her for reminding the world that Soul is not quite done yet topping the charts. However thank you for the above videos those unlike you opinion I found remarkable and quite enjoyable.

  33. Sydney Christian says:

    Adele is so wide known not only for her voice but it is for her content. All of the above singers are fantastic. But I could do without a Ni$$er or a bit$h in my R&B (Whitney and Tamia excluded). Let’s talk about classic love, heartache struggles. Lets have full albums with Let it burn, Options, I’ll even go with some Exit Wounds (great song with cussing). People buying Adele range in age and are mostly white. Older people are the ones buying music. Unfortunately we have to match our content to who buys albums. Songs like #hoodlove are not going to drive older white people to download. No shade. I will add Andra Day.

  34. simone says:

    Lol at these comments. Let’s learn history people…Accurate history…everything is a Black art form. We (starting with our ancestors) invented a lot of these art forms including rap, jazz, rock and roll as a way to deal and cope with oppression. Then the Europeans culturally appropriate it. Well steal and monopolize it actually. As a result our artists have to jump through hoops for a record deal. Just like Elvis did to Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton’s song Hound Dog. It isn’t until years later the truth comes out because we get sick of seeing the rape of our culture.
    While I like Adele, to an extent, let’s leave her off as a soul singer for now until a couple of more hits. Remember Iggy was falsely and prematurely claimed to be the White girl to run hip hop by forbes magazine? Umm haven’t seen or heard from her in a while. Also remember one or two hits doesn’t make Adele Teena Marie. Like one or two hits doesn’t make Iggy equal to or better than Nikki, Lil Kim, M.C. Lyte, Sweet Tea, Queen Latifah or any Black Female Emcee to touch a mic. Lol and finally, in my opinion Teena Marie is the only white Soul singer past or present who should ever be compared to the likes of the Great Whitney Houston, Patti Labelle, Jill Scott and the list goes on. Great article by the way but horrible memories of the ones who want to classify Whitney as Pop. The National Anthem she sang was far from pop. Go listen to some of her albums and tell me where you see pop at?

  35. Yolonda CM Greenfield says:

    First and foremost to even say Adele is mediocre is ASININE! Her voice is fucking amazing and she can sing her ass off period! Mediocre at best is bull! Why does everything have to be about race and white privilege. Her career in the beginning wasn’t even that great and it wasn’t until 21 that she blew up! Why because she’s talented and her songs have meaning!!! You can’t compare her to a soul singer because she’s not one! There are black artist that can blow that have great careers, but considering no one knows what happens behind the scenes and how the music industry works then how can you even say that she hasn’t worked for what she got. Isn’t it up to us as FANS to blow up an Artist. If we don’t buy, upload, download, stream and support an artist then THEY don’t have a career! They put the music out there WE have to SUPPORT them! A lot of the artist on this list don’t even need to be advocated for! Especially Whitney she’s the damn Queen of R&B or Queen of Soul one of them!!! Like why do you have to down play Adeles talent because that she, just to get your point across?

  36. Yolonda CM Greenfield says:

    Exactly!!! Great point!

  37. Oz says:

    Maybe she isn’t the best but out of the current promoting artists? She is the best. She has a great voice, has some soul and is likable as a person. Not to say that the artists you mentioned above aren’t but are they relevant right now? Not really. Most of the people you mentioned have already had long running careers and have established themselves as great artists so why you gotta poop on Adele’s cheerios? Let her do great and get the recognition. She deserves it imo.

  38. Jillian says:

    I agree that they should be celebrated, however why do we always have to tear someone else down to “big up” another. To say Adele is “Mediocre” and nont on the same levels as the few names on this list, I’m appalled. I myself don’t believe Adele is mediocre, and I agree that those named and not named deserve recognition. However, we need to do better in getting our point across and not tear someone else down to do so. She has soul within her standards. Although Whitney and Fantasia are my favorites above all and have been recognized as greats, I’m still a big fan of Adele’s along with several others, they are all great in their own way!

  39. Denim James says:

    I have to jump in D Jackson… Ms. Keke Wyatt sings down as well… She should be on your next list too. I agree Ms. Jilly from Philly and Jazzzzz 😍😍😍😍

  40. Mr Good Taste says:

    But NOBODY is STOPPING ANYONE from buying these folks’ CDS and attending their CONCERTS. NOBODY!

  41. Mr Good Taste says:

    She sounds nice, but I prefer Adele’s to this, and I prefer Joe’s to this.

  42. Kmonroe says:

    In all fairness sir, the real reason why Adele is being praised right now has nothing to do with her being the best of the best. She reached a peak in early 2012 then went off the face of the earth so to speak. She comes back 3 years later and sounds better and gives real music hope again amongst the played out same old songs. Much like the anticipation of Frank Ocean’s CD, that is still yet to come. People are waiting to hear what’s next for these stars who hit so hard. Much like when Beyonce took 4 years off and Janet 10 and there were people who doubted they would make an impact. They were wrong. Especially when Janet hit number 1 and was there for nearly a month. It’s not because she’s the best, but because if you pay close attetion, people wanted more. You made this terribly about race and that’s not true. Plus every single artist you listed is and has been praised throughout their entire caeer.

  43. Daniel Carroll says:

    Actually she sounds good, the singers listed are greats, does it really have to come down to race?

  44. Daniel Carroll says:

    If they were in their prime now, it would be nuts. Look at people and iphones. Its just a different time

  45. Donita Binford says:

    Ledesi and Lalah Hathaway should be on this list.

  46. Dissenter says:

    This is ridiculous! I’ve yet to meet anyone who would mention Adele in the same breath as Luther or Whitney. Most of the other people here I’ve either never even heard of or haven’t made an album in 10 years! Anyway, since there’s just about nothing good on the radio these days, if any of these people have real talent someone should tell them to get in a studio and bring it. The race stuff is tired. And I’m black!

  47. JORIAL says:

    Give me a pen and I’ll name 900.

  48. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Because he is telling the truth duh! Everyone you’ve mentioned with the exception of Whitney were only exposed to black radio hence only getting “black” awards. Do your research.

  49. Kevin J. Ford says:

    The point the writer is trying to make is that these same record companies that exposed Adele to the world don’t or won’t get behind black artist and do the same for them with the exception of very few artist.

  50. Xavier Red says:

    Whitney Houston sang in many genres. Remember “How Will I Know”, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody”, “So Emotional”, “I’m Your Baby Tonight”, “My Name is Not Susan”, and- oh yeah, about a thousand dance remixes? All pop music. Learn history. Accurate history.

  51. Marva Crump says:

    This is so true! Its all about who they want to force down your throat and tell you whose acceptable! Tyrese sent all kinds of chills through me with that sangin……👏👏👏

  52. simone says:

    Right and it still doesn’t negate the fact that the rest of my comment is spot on!!!

  53. Kara Black says:

    you all left out Chaka Khan, Vesta Williams, Sade, Anita Baker…come on now

  54. simone says:

    Shauna, you know every once in a while comes along the great white hype and people expect us Black Folks to settle down and accept it. Let’s see who they are going to bring out now. So in short, I’m waiting with you………

  55. Marlina de Aragon says:

    I just listened to her album today. Adele is good blue eyed soul but Whitney’s voice was the voice of a god. I dont want to insult Adele, but i was noticing that her voice doesn’t have the full richness of black divas like Jazmine or Jill, who’s tones bring goosebumps to my skin. I do like her songs but i dream of Whitney singing them. I wish Whitney would have sung every song ever written. Her voice hypnotized me…

  56. simone says:

    Not sure where my original reply went to this response. Let me say thanks for your reminder regarding the late and great Whitney Houston. However, a few songs doesn’t make Whiteney a Pop artist no more than one hit makes Adele a ‘Soul Singer’. Whitney started out in church, remember? Gospel at that? Now let me break down my comment for you…The ACCURATE HISTORY I typed in my original comment is then followed by EVERYTHING IS A BLACK ART FORM…now that is the accurate history I was speaking on. The culture of Black people but more specifically the music from rap, jazz and even rock and roll, that is appropriated by Europeans and monopolized so they can have monetary gain and control of. I was also referencing the fight or struggle the people who have created the art form have just to maintain some type of recognition in and of it and I referenced Elvis Pressley and Willie Mae Thornton so people can do the research for themselves. Even though I’m sure that the music business has been raping Black culture for years before that. Hell the Original Betty Boop wasn’t even white but with marketing and merchandising we’d never know unless we’d research.

  57. Reggie Burl says:

    Everyone knows the minute a white person does something half as good as a black person everyone goes crazy about it. Example; “who’s that singing that song with all that soul?” “Adele.” “Dang I can’t believe that white girl singing like that?” ….another example elvis shakes his pelvis a decade after jackie wilson, sam cooke, and chuck berry. Anytime a white person does something kinda impressive it gets blown out of proportion.

  58. Phinehas M Nyang'Oro says:

    Thank you Daren W. Jackson for the wonderful article! However, I am sad that you didn’t mention the woman with the most soulful and knowledgeable voice on Earth Ms. Rachelle Ferrell 😉 !!!!!!!!!!

  59. Phoebe Pasdesignz Stewart says:

    Check out L’Renee & Conya Doss

  60. Camille J says:

    The Grammys are “black awards”?? Since when?

  61. Ms. Marie says:

    Sorry but she has no comparison to these great singers.

  62. Real Plain says:

    Now that black folks have created R&B, Rock & Roll, Hip Hop/Rap, Blues, Jazz…they’ed better be careful. One day they may find themselves on the outside looking in with illinformed negroes saying that white artists are the greatest of all time. Can you imagine that ever happening?!?!

    You’re talking a segment of humanity that has claimed to be the first human beings but their own science has rebuked them. People that have anhialated entire groups of people, plant and animal species and destroyed land and ecosystems. That have marketed through video and campaigns calling indigenous people savage yet coveting their bodies, art and culture.

    Better informed people will not be highly impressed with Adele nor any non-black artist while they are under socio-cultural/economic global apartheid. If you’re aware of the traits and trace elements you can call it what it is.

    No just imagine…what rice cake pond water flavored asthetics would be coming out of Europe and countries of non-people of color were it not for the people that are now shut out of the industry.

  63. Susan Murphy says:

    So true I don’t even know why her or Sam ? Are classified as r&b, except to piss off black people!They don’t compare to real r&b like Marvin , Freddy, Luther, Larry Graham, Chaka Khan, Anita, Natalie Coke, Aretha, Gladys, the list is endless! The great white hopes don’t even come close! It’s insulting to even compare them to our giants!

  64. Moro1518 says:

    This subject should have been treated with more depth. I respect your opinion, but for a “writer” and “music connoisseur” you sure know how to write a flaimebait article. You claim that she knows how to sing and write, yet you call her “mediocre”, that in my opinion is a very harsh word. While i agree, that there is talented black female artists especially miss Sullivan who blew me away with her last record “Reality show” (it’s really good!!), i find it a bit misogynistic that you have to put down a woman’s success to prove your point. I’m sure you know that Adele is in an indie label , she’s not obliged to put out great numbers to stay relevant in the business, in fact she had little success in her beginnings. Then after the huge success of 21, she’s been raising her son and came out with a nice record that people loved. She already commented on the “soul” comparison, she never claimed to be a powerhouse vocalist, she litterally said: “i’m not a ladysinger (like ella or whitney), i’m just a lady who sings” and that’s what i like about her, she knows her limits, she doesn’t have this big ego, she’s very modest about her success, and that’s what people like about her.
    As to why black female artists are not successful, i believe it all comes down to their labels, it irritates me that they choose to portray these ladies as untouchable and serious and that makes them off-putting to the public, they never give them control, they never promote them, they build this weird image that these women always sing about heartbreak, yet when you hear their records, you listen and feel multiple emotions, except jennifer hudson, her material is lacking. i never hear these ladies on radio or tv, i want to know their interpretation of their songs. So yeah some changes needs to be made, and it’s not gonna happen by insulting another woman’s achievement.

  65. Damon1518 says:

    i never see these type of articles when justin timberlake gets compared to michael jackson or when eminem’s dominating the hip hop’s industry, i guess it’s easier to criticize women. Oh well….

  66. Cameron Keith says:

    His point is there is a lot of conversation as if Adele is an anomaly as a talent, and their are countless black artist that have shown amazing constancy throughout their careers that do not win acclaim. Faith Evans, Kelly Price, Chante Moore, Tank & Joe really should’ve been noted more the likes of Whitney, Jennifer, Fantasia and Luther who I definitely feel get their due. But hos point is valid, even addressing Meghan Trainer & Sam Smith. though they are talented, they are not abnormalities, but are treated as so because they are white and singing with more soul then most other white. They aren’t even the first amongst white people to be soulish, i.e Teena Marie, Barbara Streisand, Michael McDonald, Celine Dion, Christian Aguilera & Anne Lenox to name a few


    No Adele is beyond the common, American-style racism debate.

    Indeed, she is inspired by black Americans like Whitney Houston and has worked on that scale. Adele is operatic, technically proficient and she has a bit of pain in her past which ignites her voice (her soul, if you like). Just like Whitney did. All the other singers on this list are completely different styles after Whitney Houston.


    That day is surely gone, init. The blacks give up the power so they can make a living, I suppose; as a producer or part of the ‘white’ singer’s entourage. Even Mariah was a path to the Adele monster you’ve created! 🙂


    Jennifer Hudson feels like a concession despite her awards. She’s just not that great a singer. Not very strong. In the America’s I think the ‘whites’ tend to chose one or two ‘blacks’ as a touchstone to purge the guilt for their utter race domination.

  70. Yolonda CM Greenfield says:

    And that’s totally fine! But to down play Adele’s talent is WRONG and call her mediocre… like What!!!?? If he’s going to advocate pick a group of people who don’t have great careers in the music industry! You don’t have to downplay her talent to get your point across about this subject!

  71. JzzE1 . says:

    . . . And the band will continue to play on. I give Adele and Sam Smith some props. They do have voices and they sing some poignant tunes and I enjoy their music a lot; but yes, Whitney, Jill, Jennifer, LUTHER! (NO CONTEST) and let’s go to the Way Back machine for Roberta Flack, Phyllis Hyman, Donny Hathaway, Marvin, Smokey, Lionel, MsBadu, Sade, Aaliyah,Chaka, Patti, Faith, Mary J. Aretha, (my fingers gettin’ tired) (Ms Do You Know Where You’re Going To)Ross,
    Miriam Makeba….

  72. andan04 . says:

    People can engage in the subjective debate over who is the more technically proficient singer, but music isn’t a science. It’s an art, created to speak to an audience. And regardless of the promotion behind her, Adele would not have enjoyed the success she has if her songs didn’t do that. They may not speak to this writer, and he may not understand why they do resonate with others, but clearly they do. Of course Whitney’s songs did, too. She sold more than 200 million records worldwide, so we can hardly say that her record company buried her.

  73. Tim Merrill says:

    Am I the only one who finds Adele’s voice to be annoyingly whiny? I never could take much of Celine Dion either. Alice Russel is my blue eyed soul selection.

  74. Xavier Red says:

    Except that your definitions are totally arbitrary and seem to be pulled out of thin air. By your own reckoning, Teena Marie was a soul singer despite only two top 40 singles in her entire career (“I Need Your Lovin” hit number 37 and “Lovergirl” reached number 4- her “one hit”). She has seven top 10 tracks with one at number 1 on the “R&B” charts that required far fewer sales, so arguably “one hit” in a career that spanned more than three decades. Adele has two number 1 albums and four number 1 singles in only eight years. Barring unforeseen tragedy, she has time to catch up. Audiences today have unprecedented access to information. If more people wanted to buy Janet Jackson (used for comparison because she and Adele both released their “comeback” albums at about the same time) they would, but they haven’t. Sometimes success isn’t all due to structural racism, sometimes it’s just popularity. Try to educate without being so casual with words like “rape”, since blackness is just another construct. When Elvis was starting out the world was very different and many people would never have heard of Willie Mae Thornton- or Carl Perkins for that matter. Jazz is a fusion of African AND European music styles, but you don’t see me whining about classical music and instruments being “appropriated” or European culture being “raped” because Americans took different styles and made something new, great, and uniquely American.

  75. Tom Gould says:

    Black Soul Singers have always moved me more than white ones. I’m not sure why people think that Adele is better. Her music is more depressing to me, whereas the above mentioned artists usually make me feel better.

  76. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Check-out the categories that they’ve all except Whitney Houston won in. Luther won song of the year over all for “Dance With My Father” which was arguably some of his worst work, that didn’t go over well in the black community. Just having a Grammy is a big deal until the artist realizes which category it is in then it separates again.

  77. Ms_Sunshine9898 says:

    Just stop! Adele is just as good as each and everyone of these artists on this list. Call it what it is and say you dislike her because she’s a white woman who can sing her a$$ off just as good as the talent you listed above and is more famous because she’s marketed to white folks unlike the other individuals listed!

  78. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Now you get the whole picture of this article!

  79. Ms_Sunshine9898 says:

    Exactly. What the author and his supporters fail to realize is most of the artists he mentioned above exclusively market themselves to black audiences. The real power is marketing across the board. Ever wonder why Rihanna, Beyonce, Tina Turner, and Michael Jackson had so much power behind them? Because they marketed their music to more than narrow field of strictly (urban contemporary) black listeners!

  80. Kevin J. Ford says:

    In his opinion there is nothing special about her talents and frankly I feel the day way. That’s not tearing her down it’s the truth. You all act as if she’s “the best thing since sliced bread”!

  81. NathanDrake777 says:

    You’re so right. It’s dumb to make everything about race. Imagine this article with the races reversed. The funny thing is many White soul singers have gone without recognition. This article makes it seem like every White soul singer have recieved a Grammy. Horrible race baiting. Enjoy artists regardless of race.

  82. Philip A Downes says:

    Adele is Not the be all end all of Soul music … but SHE would tell you that. I wish this article was more about the absurd conservatism of ‘black radio’ that says the Alabama Shakes ain’t black enough for their format … or how a racist industry only gives accolades to middle of the road white artist… attack THOSE establishments ? I am with u … very happy to see artist I knew little about … but trying to say no one knows Whitney or Luther because of Adele or picking Tyrese over Anthony Hamilton … bums me out . Iggy Azeala gets dissed because she’s mediocre and gets props … putting Adele and Amy Winehouse(both amazing) in the mediocre category just cuz they’re white defeats the purpose for me … in a world of American Idol where real singers like Jennifer Hudson get sidelined … THAT is the real problem!

  83. Dustin says:

    Just who in the hell is Adele ? And a great big thank you as I had never heard of Jill Scott . ( Whadda ya expect ? I’m a White boy from out West !) But I damn well guarantee you that I will be looking for her music ! The others I know .

  84. Dustin says:

    Crybaby basteerd ! Take your bigotry and race card and shove it in an anatomically uncomfortable place on your body ! Most of them were only regional artists as they did not appeal to everyone . It just so happens I like good music wherever it comes from !

  85. John Michael Hobson says:

    The article has some truth to it but still uses a race baiting style of writing. The authors frustration for the lack of attention that black soul artists recieve after years of work.

  86. Chuckie Boggs says:

    This comment is hacky

  87. Chuckie Boggs says:

    Actually Jennifer Hudson is amazing its the fact that when she was still climbing all that crazy stuff went on with her family and her husband being a contestant on Ilove new York and a bad wrestler helped bring her star down. Theres a reason why she beat out Beyonce for the awards she can flat out sing!!! Not that strong she has a crazy strong voice and as well as a good range vocally. Are you ok? I think you need get checked out! She just not marketable like Beyonce. Put her voice in Beyonce guarantee she’d be widely known for her talents 40 years from now.

  88. london4 says:

    All the singers above are amazing. So is Adele. There is no reason to knock her down to prove your point. And starting this article with Whitney really makes the opposite point, as she’s one of the most famous singers of all time. Adele isn’t famous because she has a good voice, it’s because she writes her own music from the heart and sings it powerfully. People resonate with that. Can we just enjoy music – the one gift the blind have access to – without having to drag race into it?

  89. Anthony Brennan says:

    Black people not supporting black singers is the issue, nothing else.

  90. Anthony Brennan says:

    Oh please, you are displaying cognitive dissonance if you think she isn’t good.

  91. Anthony Brennan says:

    I can’t think of a more ignorant “think piece”, it was shoddy and lazy at best. You are making Adele the picture of black culture appropriation, tearing her down to put up these other artists. You have artist like Patti Labelle and Aretha Franklin who say that Adele possesses “Soul”, Patti Labelle going as far to say (during her White House interview) that Adele, who is white, is not defined by her skin colour, that she possesses soul because she sings from the soul. How do you justify your comments when you have Patti Labelle and Aretha Franklin endorsing her? They are nothing but hyperbole statements that showcase your lack of critical thinking.

    Another thing, and this is crucial, although systemic racism is absolutely real, and exists throughout the media etc, the reason for these artists not crossing over has more to do with the lack of support they get from their own community. Black artist need to be supported, it is the ultimate betrayal to the Black community to try and minimise the lack of support they get, instead trading on race baiting hyperbole. Jazmin’s music doesn’t get requested, her albums don’t get bought or streamed, but you can bet that every article pitting Adele against these singers will mention Jazmin at one point or another. The articles will ask you benign questions like “Why isn’t Jazmin doing Adele numbers?”. The answer is simple, they are not supported by their own community. Yolanda Greenfield said it perfectly.

    Lastly, to say her voice isn’t good has to be the stupidest thing in the world. My dad doesn’t like her, but he turned around the other day and said “She has a set of pipes on her though”. To deny her talent in favour of uplifting other artist is an exercise in ignorance.


    hmm, sounds like bollocks to me, lover! 🙂

  93. vanx 2801 says:

    I liked your article, not because of the topic but because of the conversation it inspired. It’s nice to see that people are not cursing each other out although I didn’t read all of the comments but are contributing meaningful opinions about this topic

  94. Rodney says:

    This is the most idiotic article I have ever read. I apologize that I don’t have anything more profound to say. It’s so ridiculous that I can’t even form a complete thought.

  95. Mrs_Spengler says:

    You honestly think Joss Stone is more successful than Whitney Houston? I couldn’t even tell you a Joss Stone song.

  96. Kevin J. Ford says:

    It’s not by there own doing, it’s how the record label markets them. If that wasn’t the case then everyone would be a cross over because trust me after you make a record you want the whole world to hear it not just a select market…

  97. private says:

    This is article is absurd. While I respect the writer’s opinion here, I absolutely disagree. Its all about how this record labels marketed and promoted their artists. I like Adele, not because she’s white, but she’s talented. Do i think she’s overrated? Absolutely not. She’s her own artist. Unfortunately, most R&B singers cannot crossover to the pop market like Whitney Houston did. Its more than just talented. Its about money making to these record labels. Some record labels don’t see most R&B artists who can sing as real money makers in the pop market. No matter how talented you are, black or white, the music industry is about business making than talented.

  98. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Thank you!

  99. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Say it!

  100. Kevin J. Ford says:

    No because Whitney was a cash-cow (no pun intended) to Clive Davis and Arista!

  101. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Trust me those arguments are there.

  102. Kevin J. Ford says:


  103. Kevin J. Ford says:

    The sad part is that I’ll informed blacks help out with it!

  104. Kevin J. Ford says:

    And with that being said Teena Marie could song Adele into a soul music coma!

  105. Xavier Red says:

    Terrible that artists of color have been relegated to the Grammy Ghetto. Or not.
    2014- Best Pop Solo Performance- Pharrell Williams
    2013- Record of the Year- Daft Punk w/Pharrell Williams & Nile Rogers
    2013- Album of the Year- Daft Punk w/Pharrell Williams & Nile Rogers
    2013- Best Pop Group Performance- Daft Punk w/Pharrell Williams & Nile Rogers
    2013- Best Pop Vocal Album- Bruno Mars
    2013- Best Pop Instrumental Album- Herb Alpert
    2011- Best Pop Instrumental Album- Booker T. Jones
    2010- Best New Artist- Esperanza Spalding

    2010- Best Male Pop Vocal- Bruno Mars
    2010- Best Pop Collaboration w/Vocals- Herbie Hancock w/India Arie
    2009- Song of the Year- Beyonce
    2009- Best Female Pop Vocal- Beyonce
    2009- Best Pop Group Performance- Black Eyed Peas
    2009- Best Pop Vocal Album- Black Eyed Peas
    2007- Album of the Year- Herbie Hancock
    2006- Best Pop Group Performance- Black Eyed Peas
    2005- Best New Artist- John Legend
    2005- Best Male Pop Vocal- Stevie Wonder
    2005- Best Pop Collaboration w/Vocals- De La Soul

  106. Xavier Red says:

    She was a great performer when she was alive, but she didn’t demonstrate the vocal power, range, or control of many of the other singers in this discussion- Adele included.

  107. Xavier Red says:

    “Hound Dog” was written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. Two white guys. It was covered TEN TIMES by black and white artists before Elvis recorded his version, which remains the most popular. It used to be much more common for multiple artists to record the same song once it became popular, although it has become much more rare since the 1970’s. The last example that comes immediately to mind is Donna Summer’s 1995 cover of “Spiritual High” which was a hit in 1992 for Moodswings with Chrissie Hynde on vocals.

  108. Jonathan says:

    Unbelievable. This entire article is nothing but a Kanye West-style tirade of incendiary RACE BAITING. I haven’t listened to that much from Adele but this nonsense is just an attempt to trample upon her Success. And the above list of such great singers I’m sure would not agree on pitting white against black in the way this article is doing. Whitney Houston is as globally recognized for her talent as anybody else we can think of.

  109. Alexis Morton says:

    This was an asinine article at best. If we’re being real about this situation, here’s the truth: in 2015, Adele shouldn’t be winning. Why? Because artists like Taylor Swift, Katy Perry–oh wait they’re white, so I’m only playing into your race baiting ridiculousness. Let me try this again: She shouldn’t be winning because artists like BEYONCÉ AND RIHANNA who fit the western standards of beauty, exude sex-appeal, and make music that one can “twerk” to exist. She shouldn’t be winning. But she is. Adele’s first album went largely unnoticed which is shameful because it’s just as amazing as her most recent studio releases. But when she hit the scene, no one in America was checking for a “Big” WHITE girl from across the pond singing a song about love while sitting on a stool, holding a microphone with only a piano for background music. Why? Because we had Rihanna holding an umbrella or Beyoncé getting bodied, while Souljya Boy was making people crank this, that, superman, batman, spider man, and everything else.

    So why is it that out of nowhere, this beautiful woman just explodes onto the scene in a music world dominated by “sexy” slim bodies and upbeat music with no depth?? Because she’s white?!?!??? Are you serious? To say that her voice is mediocre at best and then to add her white privilege to the reason for why she has the highest selling albums of this current millennium is low, and pathetic on your end. Her voice is great. It’s a breath of fresh air when stacked against all the other ACTUAL mediocre songs that have made it into the mainstream. And it’s not just her voice. She is a song writer writing songs from her heart, from her SOUL. Heartbreak and love. And she’s doing it in a way that is striking a chord with many people. Not just white people. Blacks, Asians, etc. etc.

    If we’re being honest, Hello maybe wasn’t the BEST song she’s produced. If Brandy or Tamar Braxton (Black) or even Taylor Swift or Katy Perry (white)–to keep this in perspective–would have released the exact same song or something similar, it probably wouldn’t have faired as well… Not because she’s white and the former two are black, but because she carved out a niche and struck while the iron was hot. The vocals drive that record. The vocals are great. The lyrics are something people can relate to. Now add that to dropping the highest grossing album of the last 20 or so years in 2010 and then disappearing for 5 years…. It wasn’t a marketing strategy–Adele just doesn’t do fame. She lives her life. Regardless, Adele set up a corner in the music industry that is hers, and when she came back, she came to claim what is rightfully hers.

    But what I don’t understand is why you felt the need to bring her down in order to lift up others–something typical of OUR PEOPLE. Thanks for setting us back. Just because Adele is making history doesn’t mean that the value of other great black artists diminishes. Beyoncé is still the Queen B, Rihanna will surely release other set of singles that will jump straight up on the billboard charts–AT NUMBER ONE, Mariah Carey will still be THE number one Diva, daaarling, and Whitney Houston will forever be the voice that brought us a better version of Dolly Parton’s I Will Always Love You. Just because Adele is winning now, everyone else just becomes nonexistent? Really?

    But since your point was specifically soul singers or “true” R&B singers–because of course only us black people can sing R&B, no one else!!–lets talk about that. I feel as though the people you mentioned would be OFFENDED that you basically implied that their careers were nothing. Fantasia WON American Idol. Not BET’s Sunday Best, AMERICAN IDOL. Watched by all of America, not just the black community. And from there, she went on to have a successful, albeit shorter than anticipated career. But she had her time. Jennifer Hudson, really?! She was on the same season of AO as Fantasia but when talking about that season, Fantasia who!?!? Dream Girls gave J Hud so much and then more. Awards on Awards on Awards. She did the damn thing. She had her time. Luther Vandross? What!? He’s rolling in his grave at your implication that his career was lackluster at best. He had a very successful career. Tyrese literally just bought his daughter an island for Christmas…. Guess he bought it with the nonexistent money from his nonexistent career…. And if we’re being honest about the others, Adele is a better singer. Her lyrics are better. Why can’t she have her time? Why can’t she be successful like the names you mentioned before her? Maybe you were raised thinking everyone deserves a golden star. No. Everyone doesn’t. Everyone isn’t the same. Everyone isn’t always the winner. Don’t sit here and say “when all my favorite soul singers receive the exact same amount of recognition as Adele, then all will be right. But she’s white, so that’s not going to happen.” Umm I’m sorry, but do you not realize that there are just as many white singers out there if not more who will also NEVER reach the same level as Adele? Oh but you can’t mention that now can you? Because then your whole argument of this being about race becomes faulty. But to be clear, it was never whole from the start. There is room for everyone at the table in this music industry. Those that are good are good. Now I’m not gonna sit here and act like minorities aren’t at a disadvantage–that would be ignorant on my part. But to sit here and suggest that Adele is overrated when she isn’t and then you suggest that underrated singers deserve more credit BECAUSE they’re black, is disgusting. You sir, are a hater.

  110. Xavier Red says:

    As for Whitney Houston not being a pop artist, she has pretty strong pop credentials (listed below). Maybe you should listen to more than just the National Anthem and The Preacher’s Wife soundtrack.

    1985 Billboard New Pop Artist
    1985 Billboard Top Pop Album Artist- Female nominee
    1985 Billboard Top Pop Singles Artist- Female nominee
    1986 Grammy Best Pop Vocal Performance- Female
    1986 Billboard Top Pop Artist
    1986 Billboard Top Pop Album
    1986 Billboard Top Pop Album Artist- Female
    1986 Billboard Top Pop Single Artist- Female nominee
    1986 Billboard Top Pop Compact Disc nominee
    1987 AMA Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist
    1987 AMA Favorite Pop/Rock Album
    1987 AMA Favorite Pop/Rock Video- Female nominee
    1987 Billboard Top Pop Artist nominee
    1987 Billboard Top Pop Album Artist nominee
    1987 Billboard Top Pop Single Artist nominee
    1987 Billboard Top Pop Single nominee
    1987 Billboard Top Pop Album Artist- Female
    1987 Billboard Top Pop Single Artist- Female nominee
    1988 AMA Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist
    1988 AMA Favorite Pop/Rock Single
    1988 Grammy Best Pop Vocal- Female
    1988 Billboard Top Pop Single Artist nominee
    1988 Billboard Top Pop Album Artist- Female nominee
    1988 Billboard Top Pop Single Artist- Female
    1989 Grammy Best Pop Vocal Performance- Female nominee
    1991 Grammy Best Pop Vocal Performance- Female nominee
    1991 Billboard Top Pop Single Artist nominee
    1991 Billboard Top Pop Single Artist- Female nominee
    1992 Grammy Best Pop Vocal Performance- Female nominee
    1994 AMA Favorite Pop/Rock Album
    1994 AMA Favorite Pop/Rock Single
    1994 AMA Favorite Pop/Rock Female Artist
    1994 Grammy Best Pop Vocal Performance- Female
    1994 World Music Awards Best Selling Pop Artist of the Year

  111. domseekingfem says:

    THANK YOU; SOMEONE FINALLY SAID IT!!!! Kevin …. been that way for years; Whitney was great and she had Clive!!!! I am not going to engage further but I agree; too many of our great singers do not get the recognition they deserve! There’s a reason for it, it’s not “just because of the fans not buying, streaming, downloading it either. Just as it has always been; Media and radio stations CHOOSE who they back and like!!! Go back to James Brown and when the little Caucasian dudes first arrived and they wanted James to open for them!

  112. domseekingfem says:

    Not true in every case of our artist ….

  113. domseekingfem says:

    I can drive to work in 20 minutes; they will play Adele’s song 2 times that morning along. Can’t get them to play Tyrese new cut(s) like that. Dele’s is played so much I am starting to dislike it; too much AIR TIME … that’s not the artist doing – it’s the radios / media’s doing! Right D. Jackson and I agree with Kevin as well. I do not dislike Dele; but it is what it is.

  114. domseekingfem says:

    You must be on Crispy cocoa puffs miss …. Jen can’t sing …Lol Let me hear you rise!

  115. domseekingfem says:

    Come on son … yeah Chuckie!!!!! Grace is disgraced Lol

  116. domseekingfem says:

    Ha-hahhhh Giants they were and are my sista!

  117. VIsidore` says:

    What? Beyonce is getting over like a fat rat. I don’t know the pay scale of the mentioned artist, but we really need to stop this racist crap.

  118. VIsidore` says:

    One writer is trashing Adele. Most of black artist listed won Grammy’s and other accolades. Not one person is mentioned as”flipping out over Adele as if she is that standard under which all over voices should be evaluated.” Adele didn’t ask for accolades. She earned what she received through talent. I think the author’s assumption is borderline racist and causing division.

  119. VIsidore` says:

    That is not the issue and point of this article.

  120. VIsidore` says:

    I agree. Adele is amazing.

  121. VIsidore` says:

    If artist black or white can’t cut it, they need to be gone. It’s obvious their music isn’t selling, so why throw good money into someone who isn’t selling? Tamia? Really. That is one mediocre singer. Jazmine Sullivan need to grow up and learn how to sing better. Her version of “Home” was dreadful. She should have lip synced to the Stephanie Mills version.

  122. VIsidore` says:

    Beyonce is nothing but a pretty face. I don’t own any music of hers. I am running out to buy Adele as soon as I can.

  123. VIsidore` says:

    My list is Sam Cooke,Otis Redding, James Brown, Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, and Edda James to start with.

  124. Anthony Brennan says:

    Actually it’s the whole issue and the biggest one. Piss off unless you have something substantial to add to this conversation. Thanks

  125. Heem says:

    This is a terrible article. It has typos, poor grammar, and most of all the list sucks.

    First, Adele isn’t stopping any black artist from succeeding.

    Second, Whitney Houston is more famous than Adele ever been.

    And Tyrese? Lol.

    Some black people are confused by what pro blackness actually is, that’s including the writer.

    I’ve never been on this site before and I’m never coming back again lol

  126. Heem says:

    And Adele is not mediocre lol

  127. theqwndiva says:

    Thank you. I was thinking the same thing. We don’t need to make up another reason to be divided.

  128. Carla Martin says:

    Y’all forgot to mention, BET Sunday Best (Season 3), Grammy Award & 2x Stellar Award winner, Le’Andria Johnson! This woman can flat out SANG!! Put her up against ANYBODY listed here and I guarantee she will shut it down!

  129. L - Moderator #3541 says:

    This article was more then likely written by a bitter racist. The facts are music is universal, people buy the CDS of people they enjoy.

    A white man doing well in rap is incredibly rare, as well as a white woman.. but talent is talent.. that’s why adele and eminem have massive followings, they are extremely talented.

    Stop being ignorant whoever wrote this.

  130. L - Moderator #3541 says:

    What if i were to say that you claiming a style of music belongs to a certain demographic is blatant bigotry at it’s core?

  131. Derrick Anderson says:

    no one has yet surpassed Diana Ross and The Supremes. never has, never will.

  132. gram parsons says:

    you know adele and amy are from the uk, probably the most class bound society on earth, the uk’s poorest areas all tend to be white(thats a fact,its northern citys such as glasgow have among the poorest in all the western world) and adele and amy are both white and working class. both those girls deserve all the credit they’ve achieved, its just a shame amy cant be here to enjoy it.

  133. gram parsons says:

    you should look into and learn about the class situation in a country like the uk. the uk has statistically about the worst class problems of any major country. its famous for being somewhat of an anomoly in that its worst off tend to be white and adele is white and working class. its a real source of joy for us in the uk that she has achieved what she has, it does not happen often.

    ok i know your looking at this from an american perspective where race dominates everything, where in the uk we look at things from a class perspective. we’re famous for it and its wrecked our country in the same way race has ruined america

  134. gram parsons says:

    i dunno i honestly find this a little offensive, its like you chose just about the worst possible artist to try making a racial point. adele is a fat white working class girl from the most class bound country on earth. she’s a real thing of pride for the working class in britain. just like blacks in america the working class whites of britain use music or sport to get ourselves out the ghetto and we see our struggle as similar to the race struggle in america.
    so an article like this, well i dunno smh

  135. Dewey Daunte says:

    The point is the unwarranted praise she gets, while more deserving artists go un noticed. Try to think sometimes before you make silly statementss

  136. Officer Meow Meow Fuzzyface says:

    But why bring race into it at all? Why not just say ‘Adele is overrated, here are some folks I think are better’? Which I agree with. But to imply the reason Adele’s less talented is because of her skin color, or that there’s some racist agenda at play here in peoples’ enjoyment of Adele, seems stretching. People like Adele because they don’t know there’s better out there. I don’t know that there’s some secret cabal of racists keeping black soul singers from becoming more popular, that seems a broad assumption, but I definitely don’t see racism as the motivator to why Adele is so popular. People just like bland and mediocre. It’s true of all pop culture right now.

    Much respect to the article, just my two cents of course.

  137. Officer Meow Meow Fuzzyface says:

    yes, its all a sinister plot and not at all about what people genuinely enjoy.

  138. Full Moon says:

    The prejudice is palpable.

  139. Mary Burrell says:

    Don’t understand why you coming for Adele like this? I am a huge fan and I am so disappointed I couldn’t get a ticket to go to her concert. It’s already sold out, but you are entitled to your opinion.

  140. Mary Burrell says:

    She deserves all the praise she is talented.

  141. Mary Burrell says:

    I think she is wonderful and this is a hateful post thread. Leave Adele alone.

  142. Mary Burrell says:

    She is the best thing since white bread. She is wonderful.

  143. Mary Burrell says:

    Why is Tamia on here?

  144. NathanDrake777 says:

    Cmon Bro. Tyrese music/lyrics is way more sexual, thus less mainstream. Stop reasoning everything with racism. Time for us Blacks to evolve beyond saying “this is raysis” at everything. One of the most popular singers of all time (Michael Jackson) was Black.

  145. NathanDrake777 says:

    So you’re saying Whites listen to Black singers for guilt? That’s dumb and completely false. People listen to what they want to listen to. It’s this type of thinking that’s going to make us Black people think we’re entitled to special treatment. A cycle that needs to stop.

  146. yet again I can’t rap my head around why y’all are whining, bitching and moaning pleading for recognition from the very people who always envy you and your talents, it seems that you need them more than they need you when in reality they need you more than you need them but psychologically in 2015 you need them more than they need you, that been said this been going on since Little Richard and Elvis Presley.

  147. Avy Ferguson says:

    The fact that you imply Adele is getting good more acclaim than Whitney is the first sign that this article was full of fail– aside from the title. Jilly from Philly is OVER confident in general, but also problack to the point of sounding antiwhite at times, and that’s a big part for why she’s only a big deal in the black community. Adele is gracefully confident (much like Whitney) and everyone loves a humble star.

    Another reason America is eating Adele up (just like Amy Weinhaus before her) is because she’s from the UK.

    And one thing a lot of Black Americans don’t realize is that soul singers were amazing to Brits back into the day to the point that were even rock bands wanted them.

    There are a lot of things white supremacy has taken but this post on Adele is a stretch. She is a talented young woman who writes music from the heart and sings it with passion without killing our ears with a million runs. If you want to build others up, fine, but there’s no need to tear her down.

    And where’s India Arie on this list? Sheesh

  148. Avy Ferguson says:

    All those people are majorly famous, some world-renowned, so comparing them to Adele would be another list of fail.

  149. Kevin J. Ford says:

    That’s the point here the artist doesn’t see race when they ate creating there music, is the record companies that creates this division in how they market certain types of music (namely r&b music).

  150. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Then you’re buying and eating subpar bread, maybe you should try a different brand!!

  151. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Maybe India was not mentioned because for the most part the girl just can’t sing!!!!

  152. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Okay then, bye bye!

  153. Kevin J. Ford says:

    Wow! The saddest part of your rant is that you really believe all the crap you just said. The most troubling part about what your are writing is that somewhere in your brain you believe the world is equal to you. I’m sure there are civil rights pioneers turning in there graves because this is not the lesson they were teaching!!!

  154. Kevin J. Ford says:

    He should really be ashamed of himself for leaving Ms. Ferrell off the list, arguably the best of them all!

  155. Kevin J. Ford says:

    If you can say this then you’ve never listened to the real Teena outside of what pop stations played!

  156. Marisol says:

    I don’t understand why the writer had to bother mentioning all of these great vocalist. Adele is not in their league, so there shouldn’t be an issue? The truth is in the vocals. When we are dealing with a people who’s only known culture is: pillaging, oppressing, murdering, annihilating, enslaving, dehumanizing, demoralizing and lying to justify it all, what more can you expect?

  157. domseekingfem says:

    “raysis”? where? Lol

  158. domseekingfem says:

    Lol … let me hear you sing and see if you can rake in bucks with your voice or perform as she does; better yet … let me see your pretty face dear. Not saying you aren’t but if Bey is just a pretty face; then she’s getting paid for her “looks” right? Can you get oaid for yours? I can not Ha-hahh

  159. Truthand Equality says:

    I totally love Adele but sorry he does have some very good points. Frankly, in a little while there will be no more Black soul singers or R&B singers if the industry has anything to do with it. Sorry but rap is next. When Tyrese came out blasting the industry for not playing his music on the radio but playing the same type music if a Caucasian sang it people were in an uproar but I got it totally. The same thing that happened with Rock N Roll will soon happen to R & B when it was music Blacks primarily supported but now that Caucasian singers have mastered the techniques of runs and mimicking the soulful vibrato of soul singers the Black singers will soon be x’ed out sorry and it doesn’t really have anything to do with Adele, just look at the last few music award shows and it is quite clear.

  160. Truthand Equality says:

    I really like Adele but I do totally get your point. You actually can go into any Black church and get a singer to outblow her but they probablly would not get the type of push behind them as a British soul singer. But it is the nature of the industry and who has the ability to take over what. He who has the gold makes the rules. I actually hear Adele’s song more times on Black radio than I hear most other songs by Black artists. But I do understand the music industry and more and more I do feel that they are trying to X out Black singers, at least where the big money is concerned. And please don’t use Beyonce as a comeback, or as an example (I see the posts coming) as in comparison to how many big name Caucasian entertainers out here who are singing R & B, singing what was once –music not allowed to be played in certain people’s homes. People have short memories. But it is up to us to get our acts together, no excuse to allow R & B to go the way of Rock N Roll that eventually transformed into rock. And you know how many of us are in rock now.

  161. domseekingfem says:

    Ya know what; I see exactly what you are saying. Here’s the hit (the truth); everything else has been “taken” from us (in some form or another) so to want our “soul music” is no surprise. It’s been copied / learned for decades as well as our dance moves. Now One has to understand that it “truly only comes from the soul”; but I have learned people as humans can “copy” anything and anyone. It’s like “transforming”; and if you are around “our people” long enough you and or “listen to our music / study our voices – it can be and is today “copied”. Why do you think they win “awards” whenever they sound like us? Oh I am going to et some heat from tis one; but it’s ok – this is a social site for folk to speak their mind. Just do not be ignorant, rude, nasty and or mean. I am telling you. Listen, I work around younger folk who attend college and are raised in the suburb in close proximity and I am telling you lol if you do not see their faces and just hear their voices; you would possible think they were a different race. No wait, I am by no means saying “perfect English” belong to any one group of people but I am telling you the way certain folk curve their syllables, drag their words and their tones in speaking lol I am telling you. Also, I have observed; seriously Ha-hah … when I watch youthful kids dance (some not all and adults too) who have grew up closely amongst “another race” they “dance just like they do”. Ha-hahh I’m telling you; some of them loose most of their natural rhythm. In the same token (visa verse); I have seen/ heard other kids (people) who I can tell immediately have been around our race for lengthy period of time; they dance better and sound like many of us sound when they express themselves. Why do you think J. Beaver has a few steps? Usher Ha-hahh! Another “no surprise” and another, yes I agree – they want to X out R&B. I believe Tyrese knows this and sees this for the future because he was quite agitated bout his record sales and such when I last saw him which was on the view. I could sense it; and he expressed his feelings and I was able to “catch it”. It did not fly by me; but it may have for some. I understood exactly what he was really saying. He even went as far as saying; this would be his last piece. Thx for the convo brotha!

  162. domseekingfem says:

    Oh yea, I really dig her music as well; I just ENJOY “likable music” as in “words you can understand” – doesn’t matter “who” sings it but this conversation began with other elements of “the who” factor in relation to “getting exposure”. Oh wait Ha-hah, I did Eminem music, I like the “fast spitting” he does and I don’t always know what he is saying Loll. Gotta laugh at myself on this one. “MONSTER IN ME” Ha-ha

  163. Shayla Hudson says:

    Booom!!! There it is right there! Yid it! Instead of complaining about it black folks need to buy it and support good artists. Ill tell the truth… unfortunately we don’t celebrate our gems we disgard them as soon as something deemed “in” comes out. There are countless artist that fall victim to this although there are a select few who don’t…I stress a very select few, but for the most part its a no go. I’d like to know who on here complaining actually bought Jill Scott’s new album or Tyres new album? Or went to see Luke James concert? Or even know who Ryan Leslie is and what this Harvard graduate is doing to innovate the way artists make and promote their music? If your iPod or iTunes is littered with music that you didn’t pay for then have several seats. Anyway I went off on my soap box lol…I totally agree with what you said.

  164. ananse77 says:

    Starting this list with Whitney is a bit strange. Whitney is widely acknowledged to be one of the greatest voices of all time. There are not many people over 30 who would even put Adele in the same category as Whitney vocally. Luther also doesn’t belong on this list because his voice and songs were celebrated worldwide. Moreover, Whitney and Luther are not contemporaries of Adele and earned their share of mega sales and accolades in their day. They are not in competition with Adele for recognition. Adele is the queen *of the moment* and there is nothing wrong with that. For this list to make sense you would have to include only singers that are underrated and uncelebrated, and are also Adele’s contemporaries.

  165. ananse77 says:

    Actually, that is not true. I’m not a big fan of much of Beyonce’s music, but she can sing her face off and puts everything into her live shows. She is a very hard worker.

  166. ananse77 says:

    “Etta” James. And those people are celebrated international ICONS that have stood the test of time. Why would you even put them in a list to compare them with Adele?

  167. ananse77 says:

    Anyone that has observed the music industry knows that the ability to “saaaaang” is not always what it takes to make a star. As you say, every good Baptist church has one or more saaaaangers – so why are they not all stars? Many saaaaangers were and are back-up singers to stars with *mediocre* voices. The making of a star is an unknown formula. Every rule that you could lay down – good voice, good looks, sex appeal, likeable personality, fitting in with current trends – there is someone who had that thing and didn’t succeed, and someone who didn’t have that thing, but succeeded nonetheless. Adele, I think, succeeded not just because of her voice, but mainly because of her own heartfelt, personal, evocative lyrics, which made her stand out from the other pop music being created at the time. She struck a chord with the masses. Not everyone strikes that chord. There are many super-talented struggling musicians of all colors, including white, who have not done so, and don’t know why. Whereas, Rihanna has succeeded. Rihanna, who has a mediocre voice, presents a sulky face to the world, and doesn’t write her own music. But she has that X Factor. You could have written this article about Rihanna as well – “Singers that are so much better than Rihanna, yet don’t get hyped like her.”

    The premise underlying your article is not without validity. But the reality is more complex. And you watered down your point by including on your list a couple of singers that have attained international recognition for their vocals that Adele has not seen and will probably never see.

  168. domseekingfem says:

    Lol … I like Adele’s music; but I won’t be buying it because it’s played so much on the radio (just in the length of time I am driving – there’s no need to). This isn’t a Adele against Beyoncé war; it should not be a war at all …just people expressing their opinions. Also, there’s been so much crap and negativity said about Bey over the years so no one’s “picking on Adele”. Last but least, Singers are talented in their own rights; no good trying to compare them; the core of the convo was how Media does not support them by upstaging them, radios don’t play them so much and how other good talents are lacking media attention and air time… that’s it.

  169. domseekingfem says:

    YES she is and YES she does; I have SEEN Bey in Action with and without her husband. Put’s her all and all in it; seriously! Bey will give you your money’s worth 4sho!!!

  170. Camille J says:

    Even so, the categories may be “black categories” but the Grammy’s overall, is not a black award show/program.

  171. Sarah says:

    Thanks for sharing this! I don’t think I’m very adventurous in music so this is great! 🙂

  172. Conjay says:

    This article reads more like a rant than a journalistic piece. Super biased and ill planning/thought process. There is a good and mostly accurate point, but very little effectiveness in displaying the message.

  173. Your comment makes literally no sense. The premise of the article is opinion. It is not meant to be news. Hence the format and flow. The author doesn’t say this is a “journalistic” piece. We aren’t journalists. We are editorialists. We write opinions here. If you came here looking for APA style, you’re in the wrong place. Clearly.

    Secondly, of course it’s biased! It’s an entire article about NOT LIKING something. And, how can you tell what the author’s planning process was? It doesn’t follow article format because. it. is. a. list.

    Lastly, I’m really tired of folks who use words like “rant” and “journalistic” to make themselves sound like the arbiters of what belongs on the Internet. If you are unfamiliar with what we write here, please do your research. If you have something valuable to contribute other than critiques of the author’s writing style, please proceed. Otherwise, do us all a favor and don’t.

  174. Conjay says:

    It wasn’t the style really. It was what was said. And I was just leaving a comment. No malicious intent.


    guilt for what? theft? (lol)

  176. Raven says:

    Adele isnt mediocre and im not understanding why all these african american artists are tryna compare themselves to Adele. the reason Adele is more successful is because of MARKETING and PROMOTIONS. Also the fact that african american audiences dont support theyre artists as much as caucasion artists audiences

  177. gram parsons says:

    totally agree traditional soul is massive in the uk, and along with sports one of the routes young white and black brits use to escape the ghetto.

    this article could went for the wrong target completely

  178. V.J. says:

    Why do we always have to compare? They are all talented in their own right. There is room for All of them to shine and get some recognition. Please people….they just want to do what they love and there is an audience for each one of the them. Stop the s–t. You fan base and support is the direct result of how much recognition you receive.

  179. Dusty Ayres says:

    Maybe he felt that Tyrese Gibson didn’t get enough love for his singing career?

  180. Dusty Ayres says:

    Simple solution to (IMHO) simple problem-don’t listen to the radio. Buy what you want from word of mouth, streaming and having your name on a list so that you can get emails with info about said artist that you love.

  181. domseekingfem says:

    Thanks for your “suggestions”; though they’re not needed.

  182. Dusty Ayres says:

    You’re welcome, sir-I was just trying to be helpful.

  183. domseekingfem says:

    Yes Ma’me …

  184. Poindexter Montgomery says:

    This list is not factual, this is simply your personal opinion and a list of your favorite singers. Look at it as art. Every person will come up with different list and reasons.

  185. Poindexter Montgomery says:

    Unfortunately and fortunately there is no meter or device to judge the best voices, it all comes down to personal taste. Singers with unique voices are a blessing and the ones that can sing louder or do voice acrobatics are not usually the ones I personally prefer to listen to. There is a skill in enunciating the words clear and keeping it one an even level until some drama builds and the pitch changes. The Emotions come to mind. When that three part harmony blends in and they all raise their voices higher and louder…it gives me cold chills. I’d much rather hear that than one of the riff runners or screamers.

  186. Poindexter Montgomery says:

    Adele’s voice is hooking the audiences. We all know it’s not fair or equal…that’s life. This is pure jealousy, Adele has done nothing to but use her gift. Then the Baptist Church on Sunday. Omarosa’s 15 minutes of fame came and left and this is all for attention. Sorry to burst all the hatter bubbles. All good singers including black ones didn’t all come from or go to a Baptist Church on Sunday. Some are Jewish and Italian. Think about Sammy Davis Jr and his Rat Pack buddies.

  187. Poindexter Montgomery says:

    They appreciate our (American) artist and music in Europe more than we do here. That’s why Josrphine Baker left the U.S. and became a huge entertainer in France. For some reason when an artist here get’s older the radio stations completely stop playing their music and their audience doesn’t stay connected. Chaka Khan, Gladys Knight…they release new music but you’ll never know or hear about it.

    Over in Europe they cherrish, love and appreciate our older artist…that’s why they head for Europe first when they go on tour. They are into everything older, it’s like a time capsule. That’s why Tina Turner is there and Diana Ross plays several nights in England alone. Here, we’d rather put out money on kids who have to dance the entire concert because they can’t sing. My sister had a girl group in the late 60’s. One slow song, the B-side is up tempo and there’s also an instrumental of the B-side. I found the song on You Tube and the people were saying how the song was their special song from the old days…more than just one or two.

    They love all of our artist and we just trade them in for a newer model trying to copy the original.

  188. KrustyMoi says:

    No shade huh?

    “Her voice is not that great”
    “Adele gets away with being mediocre…”

    Nope, no shade at all…..

  189. domseekingfem says:

    -:)) … excuse me – thnx.

  190. domseekingfem says:

    No she is not; then again – if she’s the best thing since “white bread” you are in TROUBLE Lol. FACT Check: White bread is made from “refined white flour” containing several UNwholesome constituents (very little nutrients and dietary fibre, vital for a healthy digestive system and a stable metabolism. Why? Because such flour is produced from whole wheat grain, then subjected to the refining process which removes ALL traces of the husk, or BRAN along with it all the GOODNESS contained in the grain. Then it’s bleached using “chemical bleaching agents” which contain CHLORINE and dried in kilns at high temperature to kill any remaining BENEFICIAL constituents. Lol

  191. Elephant in the Room says:

    Adele represents watered down soul propped up by a large white demographic. It may not be fair to competing black artist but it is just a fact of reality as a result of a listening audience that is overwhelming white. I cannot fault Adele for accepting the gift and riding the wave.

  192. Elephant in the Room says:

    You are obviously very white

  193. cyran says:

    Whitney Houston has been a HUGE name, far greater than Adele. Ignoring that JUST because you want to sell this agenda that blacks are still so oppressed is ridiculous.

    Also, if you want to complain about Adele’s money, list another artist on this list that went INTERNATIONAL. Not that she was better, she was willing to travel to perform. Amy Winehouse wasn’t even that big. Big enough to be known for a while. She’s more known for what a mess she was than a singer. FAlse equivalence, miss.

    And my god, Fantasia has an annoying voice… so whiny and shrill when s he vibratos.

    And the LAST point… sans Whitney Houston… Adele’s lyrics are more easily interpreted to the majority who listen to it so they feel more like it’s relateable. Whereas (not in this list as well) a lot of the R & B singers who claim to be better but I do not find are, also have atrocious lyrics, repeating stupid phrases and words like boo.

    And I’m big on lyrics. That “Am I wrong?” song would be so fantastic if he had a better lyricist. “I ain’t trying to do what everybody else do. Just cause everybody do what they all do” it’s retarded sounding and is a pointless line. it’s effin filler for an opening to your song. This is a BIG problem with a lot of music today in general though… and while I do not like Taylor swift music, if I read her lyrics, it’s actually decent.

  194. cyran says:

    The problem is I see the people that are better than Adele do have astounding praise, where it’s due (a lot of them do not cross racial interest because of what their songs include. They also do not hit international because of similar reasons and unwillingness to perform international) And a lot of these singers that some people are claiming as ‘better’ I actually find annoying, like Fantasia. I couldn’t stand her voice on American Idol.

    So the counterpoint is falsely making a point to validate someone who thinks they aren’t as famous as they are for X reason. Whitney houston brought the argument to a halt, because she is far better than adele, made more money than adele, did win more than adele and she did this WITHOUT the internet, social media and selling herself internationally.

    So using Whitney saying that Adele was more successful than her because she’s white… you’re full of crap.

  195. cyran says:

    Explain Kanye West then. he’s shit horrible, yet somehow successful as a ‘musician’ when he doesn’t even know what an A note is

  196. Onandagus says:

    And they’re more deserving because….they’re black? Who decides which artists are “more deserving?” The best and worst thing about art is that it’s subjective to opinion. Some people will agree with the author of this article that all the mentioned singers are more worthy of critical praise than Adele. Others won’t. The idea that Adele is somehow stealing attention away from black artists is both blatantly false and extremely petty. When music is more about attention than it is about the music, then it ceases to be art.

  197. Jeff Rasmussen says:

    That’s BS – racism or overly racialist? Music has no color. It is art. White folks don’t blog on how Charlie Pride was inferior to white country singers and got fame just bc he was black … move on dude ! Now if you were talking about Brittany spears I might agree with ya – Adele is GREAT. When we folks see this stuff it confirms what we believe -b lack folks are equally racist or racialist. SO many black jazz and blues players would have starved if it wasn’t for white f olks likin and buying their stuff. I could go on and on …

  198. The Pink Unicorn says:

    So I guess you have not heard of Beyonce. Ridiculously sucessful mediocre black singer. Infact the No.1 mediocre black singer in the business. Why does Beyonce get away with being a mediocre black singer?

  199. Björn P Bergström says:

    This is stupid.
    Recognition is something you earn through skill, talent and engagement, not because you are born white or black.
    Plenty of black artists making a great living for themselves out there, but thats through hard work, not sitting at home pouting about how unfair the world is.
    Also, there is a huge difference between “having a great voice” and “being a great artist/performer”.

  200. Jesse Munoz says:

    This is the most ridiculous and unnecessary article ever written about music. This is laced with blatant racism and chock full of haterade. DAREN JACKSON, you, Sir, are an idiot.

  201. Truth Sayer says:

    Oh shut up. Who invented basketball? Kobe Bryant? A black guy? No it was one of the whitest guys you can ever find. Yet I don’t see white guys crying over how black guys have taken over the game. Instead, they celebrate them. So stop with the victim bs and raise your self esteem.

  202. Truth Sayer says:

    Shut up and learn to stop racebaiting. Always playing the victim. How can we black people grow when we always potray ourselves as inferior/victims every chance we get. Gtfoh

  203. Truth Sayer says:

    And who invented basketball? And who has taken over it? Let me answer that for you. Basketball was invented by the whitest guy you’ve ever met, and black people have taken over it. So stop with this victim bs, it’s frankly unappealing

  204. Bill mobley says:

    Come on. We have for years talked about how white people have no soul. Now some of them are singing with soul, and we’re going to criticize them? And I just have to say this, Barbara Streisand can belt a lot of us under the table. I understand what you’re saying, and I realize you don’t mean no harm, but Adele sings like she does because she loves black music. She is inspired by black artists.

  205. Arvind G Balasubramaniam says:

    Tamia is incredible. Nice find!

  206. Keith Cio says:

    i agree that black artists, whether it be with blues in the 50s, soul in the 60s or funk in the 70s have made the most amazing contributions to music.

    but you and this article like phrasing things to pit white vs black. so fuck you, you’re part of the problem.

  207. Keith Cio says:

    you left etta james and nina simone off the list. i’m a 20 year old white kid and i apparently know more about this than you. fail. nice race baiting too.

  208. Mark G says:

    the day we start buying music again they will.

  209. Sally says:

    Why is it important to name seven black singers who are better than one white one? Sounds like someone is insecure about their skin color and envious of what someone else has.

  210. D Jackson says:

    No insecurity or envy here. On the contrary, I’m happy for Adele and the success she has achieved. My problem isn’t even with her. My problem is with the folks that give her undue praise, as if these phenomenal black singers don’t even exist.

  211. Sally says:

    You mean, kind of like how during Whitney Houston’s reign, no other singer – black, white, or other – even came close to her? And how – even 25 years later, her rendition of the “Star-Spangled Banner” in 1991 is considered by many to be the quintessential version? Thanks for proving my point.

  212. Vel Omarr says:

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/13d468fecee65fec19a6b7b326d2d0bdc9ac87f260681cfda1b770b30bd55b26.jpg I am a Soul singer. When I read or hear that Black artists don’t get the support that white artists get, the thought that comes to my mind is “Who do we expect to support us, if we can’t get our own people to support us first?” We SHOULD NOT always be depending on Others to feed us! We should Do for ourselves and the see if THAT will solve the problem. I’m just sayin’….
    Vel Omarr

  213. Ka says:

    I am a Whitney Houston fan. She was indeed the voice. Miss her… I love everyone on this list. However, it is missing some people. Avery Sunshine is AWESOME!!!!! Check her out on YouTube. Her single ‘Like This’ make you go get your man and slow dance….

  214. Ka says:

    They didn’t call Whitney ‘The Voice’ for nothing

  215. Kileza says:

    It’s possible that the general public is not so adamant about the race of the singer, but as an up-and-coming black singer, I have been told multiple times by many different record companies, that it’s “boring” to see a black girl who can sing well. They tell me to my face that it would be more interesting if I were white and “soulful”. It is what it is. Amy, Sam, Meghan, and Adele are talented, but there are scores of black artists out there that are not given the same marketing push. Honestly I think it’s just a case of numbers. The buying majority is white, if it were black things would be different, like they are in Africa for example. Oh well. Adele is not mediocre, she’s great in many ways, but there are equally talented black girls and boys who are not given the same opportunities to shine. Pity. But that’s life.

  216. Kileza says:

    Jennifer Hudson has an incredible voice, one of the best of all time. Not many people on earth can sing “And I Am Telling You”. I think she doesn’t have the catchiest pop songs though.

  217. Kileza says:

    One of the reaons why Whitney was so successful is because they purposefully marketed her like a white artist. Clive Davis actually told her to stop singing so many runs etc. for example. Google it. Again it’s a numbers gain, people like to see themselves in the media.

  218. Kileza says:

    For you it’s convenient to not drag race into it. But for the people that are affected by this, it’s not. Adele is very talented, so I can agree that the article is wrong in that regard. But why are there so few black women on the pop charts – not r&b charts, the billboard hot 100. They are relegated to the R&B charts, just like back in the 60’s, the public is not to blame, the record companies are.

  219. Kileza says:

    If you do your research you’ll see that Clive specifically crafted Whitney’s songs so that she would be more appealing to a white audience, sometimes she was frustrated with his methods (like telling her to sing more “straight” – fewer runs), but it worked in the end. It just makes sense to market to the majority who have the most money.

  220. Kileza says:

    Those are some valid points.

  221. Kileza says:

    Beyonce’s voice is not shall we say as “meaty” as Adele’s but she has impeccable control, she’s got those runs down to a science, and in heels 🙂

  222. Kileza says:

    I still think she’s a good singer and she also writes or at least co-writes many of her own songs, which not many others do, but yes, demographics do play a role, you’re one of the few to get it.

  223. Kileza says:

    You’re right, marketing and promotion are very important. The African American audience is only 12% of people in the US so that makes a difference.

  224. Kileza says:

    true, this is a pretty respectful thread.

  225. A W says:

    Well said. Even Adele herself says she sings “pop” songs, although One and Only is quite soulful in my opinion, very reminiscent of the blues sound. And as another commenter mentioned, there are lots of white Brits who come from humble, working-class backgrounds and become more successful later in life, so not everyone is so privileged as the author likes to believe… I went to Adele’s concert and I can say hands down she is the best performer I’ve seen live. People who had gone to her concert on the first night were going back to see her again on the fourth night in my city, so she’s definitely not mediocre 🙂

  226. A W says:

    But isn’t that the nature of the music industry? For every person that is successful, there are hundreds or more that aren’t. Record companies have to be choosy, they have to choose the best. So if any of these artists are among the lucky few, I think that usually says something about their talent.

  227. christopher says:

    Haters gonna hate.

  228. bokots says:

    white singers are better than whitney

  229. antoniosantiago says:

    I might be wrong, but I feel a bit of racism in this man’s writing. And racism is something that has to stop. EVERY EACH WAY.

  230. AJ says:

    YOu have lost your mind to think Fantasia is a better singer than Adele. Besides music has no color, it is music. I have collected vinyl for over 40 years with over 3000 albums and my music covers the spectrum, with timeless songs and music, I have no performers music like Beyonce, Britney Spears and such who perform, and do not write or play an instrument but songs you still sing or listen to years later. If you really love music you don’t see race or color, only the magnificent product they produce. Jill Scott, Jennifer Hudson are incredible and deserve all they get. If you really want to recognize a good singer, let them sing accapello and see how they hold a note and carry a melody. Then tell me how many of your top 9 can do that.

  231. Real Plain says:

    Hey there angry boy. ROFL. Victim. ROFL again! The new “N” word. My self-esteem at it’s worst wouldn’t be enough to lose to your corny @ZZ. There’s a huge difference in strong arming a genre through thievery and taking control through talent.

  232. Angrykitty says:

    Blacks are a minority, they have to crossover to get mainstream (which means majority) support which means they need somekind of recognition to be known by whites (who normally don’t keep up with black America until something goes viral). White artist immediately appeal to whites, they don’t have to crossover, they are already over. Trying to explain this concept to a white person is like salt trying to explain to sugar why they taste different.

  233. Storm says:

    Whoever started this damn hatin’ ass discussion ought to be ashamed. Adele never claimed to be better than any of these people. She sings from HER soul and that’s what matters. If she doesn’t growl & squall enough for you, don’t listen to her. She works with what she has, and that connects with millions all over the world. Also, you should be embarrassed for putting Tamia on the list. She couldn’t out-sing a teenage Brandy.

  234. Berenice Dimitrova says:

    Whitney is the best and everyone who knows about music knows that!

  235. Brian L. says:

    The “issue” is that:

    a) White fans significantly outnumber black R&B fans

    b) Industries will always cater to that majority, as it’s always done about white transitions of black American genres of music

    c) If there’s any truth to your statement at it, it’s in how it’s more of a generational thing, than anything. “Old heads” do support black singers.

    The scenario is, young black kids are more accustomed to what’s mostly out there: An R&B scene where everyone’s either white British (or increasingly, biracial Canadian), a fusion of European-style EDM, or as light-toned (and often, post-production lightened) as Beyoncé.

    Black American culture isn’t so black or American anymore, just on popularity among non-black population size along. Younger black generations just see it as diversity. Older folks see it as not wholly “bad,” but not wholly good, either.

    Our culture has somehow gone from being with negative stigmas and social disregard when black people were the height of it, to now being the stuff that’s making superstars and “sweethearts” out of white counterparts.

    Because if American sweetheart Taylor Swift truly does do an R&B/hip-hop album as has been entertained as rumor, I’ll puke. And if I never see Post Malone again anywhere in the media, it’ll be too soon.

  236. D Jackson says:

    Yep. White people are great at denigrating others for the same things they profit from.

  237. Jeremy Breault says:

    Get Joss’s name out your mouth, the only recognition she gets is from other musicians. She gets mad respect from her peers because she is ultra talented. Joss ings with soul more then pretty much anyone dead or alive. Joss dropped her label and is independent.

  238. ria deli says:

    So basically every black singer….

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