The 10 most influential black American music artists of all time

BLack of History Month is fast approaching and today we are here to celebrate the 10 most talented and influential American black female artists to ever walk the earth. These artists come from a wide range of backgrounds and genres, but their contributions to music and pop culture have made them stand out as the best. The following list of artists perform in genres such as jazz, pop, blues, R&B, etc. However, their goal and vision is the same and that is to enrich the scope of music with their magnificent melodic flow and understanding of music as a whole.

Creator: Isabel Infantes | Credit: AP

Alicia Keys

An international artist who rose to fame for her dynamic mix of musical sequences such as contemporary and classical R&B in fluid productions backed by a piano. One of his most famous songs is “Fallin”, while his debut album Songs in A Minor also gained international fame by selling over 50,000 copies just one day after its release in 2001. Currently, the album holds a sales record of over ten million. Her career spans over 20 years and she has also been actively involved in various social and community work and raising the courage of young women facing body image issues.

Aretha franklin
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Aretha franklin

It can be called the soul of soul music that paved the way for contemporary American pop. Her music focused on gospel, which led her to connect with audiences with a greater sense of relativity. She was indeed the “queen of soul” and is considered to this day as the most influential female artist from the black community. Over the years of her flourishing career, she has released numerous hits that continue to enrich the field of music as a whole. Jennifer Hudson is expected to play her in the upcoming biopic titled Respect.


Queen Bae is one of the most popular and recognizable names in contemporary pop and R&B music. She rose to fame as a member of the music group Destiny’s Child before embarking on a solo career. She reaped her multi-platinum record sales and a flourishing career starting in 2001 and there has been no looking back since. From a string of awards to appreciation, Beyoncé is a figure who exudes courage and vocalizes various issues related to the black community in her music.


Bessie smith

Bessie Smith was one of the very first great blues and jazz recording artists who drew generations with her vocal confidence and power. During her career and contribution to music, she won the respected title of “Empress of the Blues”. She recorded as early as 1923, which still echoes the passion in her voice no matter how primitive the recording is. She paved the way for many subsequent artists to follow her league and expand the cultural evolution of music to new degrees.

Bessie smith
Bessie smith

Billie Vacation

Billie Holiday was also one of the first female jazz singers to have gathered a large following as true fans. She incorporated a personal touch into her classic blues songs. Due to her individuality, she pushed jazz to popular accolades and historically changed American pop history for good. His music continues to stir people’s hearts for the passion and righteousness of his voice.

Celia cruz

This Latin artist is one of the most influential and respected in the industry. She has been nominated ten times for the Grammy Awards. Although she still sings in Spanish, the difference in language did not prevent her from becoming famous. Among its most prestigious awards are the Smithsonian Lifetime Achievement Award, honorary doctorates from the University of Miami and Yale University, and a National Medal of the Arts award.

Diana ross

Diana Ross was like magic when it came to music and art. As a black woman, she changed the way women of color were viewed in the booming era of rock music. She has had a successful career in music, gaining fans all over the world. She was also the lead singer of the group called The Supremes in the 1960s, which made her success all the more profound and meaningful.

Gave summer

This list is incomplete without the disco queen. Initially, she started out as a gospel singer, which straddled many of her contemporaries. However, she distinguished her movement and popularity with her incredible songwriter abilities, her stage personality, and her choice of collaborators who collectively and gradually pushed her career towards a lasting and globally popular career.

Ella Fitzgerald

Arguably the best female jazz vocalist of all time, Ella Fitzgerald was known as the First Lady of Song, Lady Ella, Queen of Jazz, and more. Her impeccable voice, purity, tone and everything in between her composure and her honesty made her the best of them all. Music was his medium and his songs have touched the hearts of many over the years. During her career, she released many hits which are still considered gems of the historical path of jazz music.

Whitney houston

Who can forget Whitney Houston singing “And I Will Always Love You” in the credits of Bodyguard and have tears in their eyes with the emotional ripples in her voice? She was one of the best-selling artists of her time. His vocal power and courage touched the hearts of many and continues to do so even after his death in 2012.

Whitney houston
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All of their artists have achieved star status on their own. These black women have proven that there is a common difference in art. Their music is presented as a harbinger of a cultural amalgamation which continues to enrich the extent of the earth and of our artistic civilization. Listen to their music and keep dreaming big for yourself too.

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