Famous African American Singers Who Influenced Many Aspirants Around The World

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Music is a field which has been constantly evolving since time immemorial. The rich history of American music has witnessed several significant changes over the past few centuries. Many individuals of African American descent have made waves in the recent past for their prowess in music and have earned many accolades including prestigious awards for their efforts. The most popular example would probably be the king of pop Michael Jackson, who revolutionized world music with his style. His tracks such as ‘Beat It’, ‘Thriller’, ‘Billie Jean’ and ‘Black or White’ are anthems among the youth even today. Michael, or MJ as he’s popularly known, is a recipient of 13 Grammy awards. He has also been felicitated with 26 American music Awards for his incredible talent. Many of his songs have topped the ‘Billboard Hot 100’ charts. The legendary Ray Charles is another legendary musician who has millions of followers worldwide. He was also mentioned in the list of ‘100 Greatest Artists of All Time’, published by the ‘Rolling Stones’ magazine. Stevie Wonder, Jimi Hendrix, Whitney Houston, Beyonce and Nina Simone are a few other African American singers who have made their community proud. Some of these singers also enjoy a major fan following on social media platforms as well. Scroll below to know the names of singers of African American descent who have changed world music in a great way. Some of their works have influenced many famous singers of today.
Vote for Your Favourite African American Singers Who Influenced Many Aspirants Around The World
 1 
Michael Jackson
(One of the Most Significant Cultural Figures of the 20th Century Popularly Known as the 'King of Pop')
Michael Jackson
241
Listed In: Dancers
Birthdate: August 29, 1958
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Gary, Indiana, United States
Died: June 25, 2009
Height: 5'9" (175 cm)
 2 
Tupac Shakur
( 100 Greatest Artists of All Time by Rolling Stone)
Tupac Shakur
206
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: June 16, 1971
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States
Died: September 13, 1996
 3 
Whitney Houston
(Best-Selling Female R&B Artist of the 20th Century)
Whitney Houston
59
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: August 9, 1963
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Newark, New Jersey, United States
Died: February 11, 2012
Height: 5'8" (173 cm)
 4 
Ice Cube
(Rapper - Contributed Significantly to the Development of 'Gangsta Rap')
Ice Cube
64
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: June 15, 1969
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Crenshaw, California, United States
Height: 5'8" (173 cm)
 5 
Aretha Franklin
(One of the Best-Selling Music Artists in the World & 'Queen of Soul')
Aretha Franklin
105
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: March 25, 1942
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Memphis, Tennessee, United States
Died: August 16, 2018
Height: 5'5" (165 cm)
 6 
Alicia Keys
(Singer, Actress)
Alicia Keys
52
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: January 25, 1981
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Hell's Kitchen, New York, United States
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 7 
Stevie Wonder
(Singer-Songwriter and Musician)
Stevie Wonder
40
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 13, 1950
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Saginaw, Michigan, United States
Height: 6'0" (183 cm)
 8 
John Legend
(Best Known for His Debut Album 'Get Lifted' and 'Once Again')
John Legend
57
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: December 28, 1978
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Springfield, Ohio, United States
Height: 5'9" (175 cm)
 9 
Christopher Maurice Brown
(One of the World's Best-Selling R&B and Hip-Hop Music Artists)
Christopher Maurice Brown
56
Birthdate: May 5, 1989
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Tappahannock, Virginia, United States
Height: 6'1" (185 cm)
 10 
Queen Latifah
(Best Known as 'Queen of Rap')
Queen Latifah
44
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: March 18, 1970
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Newark, New Jersey, United States
Height: 5'10" (178 cm)
 11 
Pharrell Williams
(Lead Vocalist of the of the Hip Hop Band ‘N.E.R.D’)
Pharrell Williams
21
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: April 5, 1973
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Virginia Beach, Virginia, United States
Height: 5'9" (175 cm)
 12 
James Brown
(Central Progenitor of Funk Music and Referred to as 'Godfather of Soul')
James Brown
32
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 3, 1933
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Barnwell, South Carolina, United States
Died: December 25, 2006
 13 
DMX
(Rapper)
DMX
22
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: December 18, 1970
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Mount Vernon, New York, United States
Height: 5'11" (180 cm)
 14 
Lauryn Hill
(One of the Greatest Rappers Of All Time)
Lauryn Hill
26
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 26, 1975
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Newark, New Jersey, United States
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 15 
Kid Cudi
(Rapper who Rose to Fame with His Debut Mixtape 'A Kid Named Cudi')
Kid Cudi
48
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: January 30, 1984
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Cleveland, Ohio, United States
 16 
Chuck Berry
(One of the Most Influential “Rock 'n' Roll” Performers in Music History)
Chuck Berry
24
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: October 18, 1926
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Died: March 18, 2017
Height: 6'2" (188 cm)
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 17 
Mary J. Blige
(Rapper, and Actress Known as "Queen of Hip-Hop Soul")
Mary J. Blige
42
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: January 11, 1971
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Bronx, New York, United States
 18 
Logic
(Rapper Known for His 'Young Sinatra' Mixtape Series)
Logic
25
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: January 22, 1990
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Gaithersburg, Maryland, United States
Height: 5'9" (175 cm)
 19 
Sammy Davis Jr.
(Singer, Dancer and Actor Known for His Song ‘The Candy Man’)
Sammy Davis Jr.
23
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: December 8, 1925
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Harlem, New York, United States
Died: May 16, 1990
Height: 5'5" (165 cm)
 20 
André 3000
(Rapper)
André 3000
18
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 27, 1975
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Height: 5'10" (178 cm)
 21 
Lizzo
(Rapper Know for Her Hit Songs "Good as Hell" "Truth Hurts" & "Juice")
Lizzo
63
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: April 27, 1988
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Detroit, Michigan, United States
Height: 5'10" (178 cm)
 22 
Otis Redding
(Singer-songwriter)
Otis Redding
33
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: September 9, 1941
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Dawson, Georgia, United States
Died: December 10, 1967
Height: 6'1" (185 cm)
 23 
Common
(Rapper)
Common
24
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: March 13, 1972
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: South Side, Chicago, Illinois, United States
Height: 6'0" (183 cm)
 24 
Robert Johnson
17
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 8, 1911
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Hazlehurst, Mississippi, United States
Died: August 16, 1938
 25 
Janelle Monae
(Singer-songwriter)
Janelle Monae
20
Birthdate: December 1, 1985
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kansas City, Kansas, United States
Height: 5'0" (152 cm)
 26 
Nina Simone
(One of the Most Influential Musical Artists of the 20th Century)
Nina Simone
15
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: February 21, 1933
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Tryon, North Carolina, United States
Died: April 21, 2003
 27 
Method Man
(Rapper And Member Of Hip Hop Collective 'Wu-Tang Clan')
Method Man
7
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: March 2, 1971
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Hempstead, New York, United States
Height: 6'3" (190 cm)
 28 
Ciara
(Singer)
Ciara
24
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: October 25, 1985
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Austin, Texas, United States
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
 29 
Brandy Norwood
(Singer-Songwriter and Actress Know for Her Single ‘The Boy Is Mine’ and Her Role in the Sitcom 'Moesha')
Brandy Norwood
25
Birthdate: February 11, 1979
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: McComb, Mississippi, United States
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
 30 
Gladys Knight
(Singer-Songwriter)
Gladys Knight
11
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 28, 1944
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 31 
Playboi Carti
(Rapper, Singer-Songwriter and Record Producer)
Playboi Carti
26
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: September 13, 1996
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Riverdale, Georgia, United States
 32 
Isaac Hayes
(Singer-songwriter)
Isaac Hayes
10
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: August 20, 1942
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Covington, Tennessee, United States
Died: August 10, 2008
 33 
Busta Rhymes
(Rapper)
Busta Rhymes
11
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 20, 1972
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: East Flatbush, New York, United States
Height: 6'1" (185 cm)
 34 
Donna Summer
(Singer-Songwriter)
Donna Summer
15
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: December 31, 1948
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Died: May 17, 2012
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
 35 
Mos Def
(Rapper, Actor)
Mos Def
5
Birthdate: December 11, 1973
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Height: 5'10" (178 cm)
 36 
will.i.am
(American Rapper, Singer-Songwriter, Founding and Lead Member of the Musical Group ‘Black Eyed Peas’)
will.i.am
11
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: March 15, 1975
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Eastside Los Angeles, California, United States
Height: 5'10" (178 cm)
 37 
Joyner Luca
(Known for Remixing Popular Hip Hop Songs)
Joyner Luca
12
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: August 17, 1988
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Worcester, Massachusetts, United States
 38 
Big Boi
(Rapper)
Big Boi
10
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: February 1, 1975
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Savannah, Georgia, United States
Height: 5'6" (168 cm)
 39 
2 Chainz
(Rapper Best Known for His Single ‘Duffle Bag Boy’)
2 Chainz
14
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: September 12, 1977
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: College Park, Georgia, United States
Height: 6'5" (196 cm)
 40 
Jill Scott
(Singer-songwriter)
Jill Scott
12
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: April 4, 1972
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Height: 5'6" (168 cm)
 41 
Solange Knowles
(Singer, Songwriter & Performance Artist)
Solange Knowles
23
Birthdate: June 24, 1986
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Houston, Texas, United States
Height: 5'8" (173 cm)
 42 
Ja Rule
(Rapper)
Ja Rule
6
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: February 29, 1976
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New York City
Height: 5'9" (175 cm)
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 43 
Charley Pride
(Country Singer and One of Three African-American Members of the 'Grand Ole Opr')
Charley Pride
7
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: March 18, 1934
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Sledge, Mississippi, United States
Died: December 12, 2020
Height: 6'1" (185 cm)
 44 
Master P
(Rapper)
Master P
14
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: April 29, 1970
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Height: 6'4" (193 cm)
 45 
Paul Robeson
(Singer, Actor, and Black Activist.)
Paul Robeson
4
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: April 9, 1898
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Princeton, New Jersey, United States
Died: January 23, 1976
Height: 6'3" (190 cm)
 46 
Sly Stone
(Musician)
Sly Stone
1
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: March 15, 1943
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Denton, Texas, United States
Height: 6'2" (188 cm)
 47 
Della Reese
(Known for Her 1959 Hit Single 'Don't You Know?' and Her Role in the TV Series 'Touched by an Angel')
Della Reese
6
Birthdate: July 6, 1931
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Black Bottom, Detroit, United States
Died: November 19, 2017
 48 
D'Angelo
(Singer-songwriter)
D'Angelo
4
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: February 11, 1974
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Richmond, Virginia, United States
 49 
Bo Diddley
(Guitarist, Singer, Singer-songwriter, Composer)
Bo Diddley
2
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: December 30, 1928
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: McComb
Died: June 2, 2008
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
 50 
Orlando Brown
(Actor, Voice Actor, Singer)
Orlando Brown
4
Birthdate: December 4, 1987
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)