A recent survey of music industry insiders through “King of Mask Singer” analyzed solo idol singers with the best vocal abilities. 40 participants were asked to vote for who they thought was the best idol vocalist amongst those who had debuted as soloists. Here’s the list of the top ten!
9. MAMAMOO’s Solar and BEAST’s Yang Yoseob
Tied for ninth place were rookie group member Solar and veteran Yang Yoseob. Solar is one of two exceptions on the list as she hasn’t yet had a formal solo debut, but recently wowed with her stellar performance on “King of Mask Singer.” One voter said, “She’s got it all, from a refreshing singing ability to her sense of performance. Dare I say it’s the birth of a new diva?”
As for Yang Yoseob, he was lauded for his singing ability from the very start, from his debut as the main vocalist for BEAST to the release of his first solo album, “The First Collage.” Insiders commented on his distinct tone, excellent breath control, and emotional performances.
8. EXID’s Solji
Solji first debuted into the Korean entertainment industry as a member of ballad duo 2NB, later working as a vocal trainer before becoming a member of EXID. Voters said, “She received a lot of recognition even before her debut because of her background in singing backup and working as a trainer,” and, “She has a tremendous ability to make listeners empathize with her when she sings.”
7. Super Junior’s Kyuhyun
The youngest member of Super Junior has long been regarded as the best vocalist in the group, and recently has earned the title of “the next ballad king” of the industry. Kyuhyun made his solo debut last year with “At Gwanghwamun” and his second album, “Fall, Once Again” was released last week. Kyuhyun’s strengths, according to insiders, includes “the gentle tone that is unique to him.”
6. BIGBANG’s Taeyang
Taeyang of BIGBANG first debuted as a soloist in 2010 with “Solar,” and has since taken the world by storm, especially with the song “Eyes, Nose, Lips” from his second album. One of the comments from voters said, “Taeyang’s voice is really unrivaled in terms of his range, depth, and technique. His specialization in R&B in particular makes his songs feel more refined.”
5. A Pink’s Jung Eun Ji
The only other artist to make the list without having made a solo debut, Jung Eun Ji is the main vocalist for A Pink and has shown off her distinctive background on the drama “Trot Lovers.” Commenters said, “She has a voice that is more sensitive than those coming out of the rush of idols,” and, “Even in her higher registers, Jung Eun Ji has a voice that is neat and refreshing.”
4. SHINee’s Jonghyun
The main vocalist of SHINee received recognition for writing the majority of his own songs for his solo debut album, “Base.” Currently in the midst of his first solo concert, Jonghyun also received praise from voters, such as “He has a charming tone and outstanding singing ability, and his musicianship can be seen in his writing his own music and lyrics.”
3. Xiah Junsu
Soloist and JYJ member Xiah Junsu has shown his talents far and wide, from his solo activities including three studio albums and two mini albums since 2012 to his career as an established musical actor. Known for having incredible ticket power, Xiah Junsu received many accolades, including “Xiah Junsu has an exceptional expressiveness and appeal,” and, “He’s got an explosive voice, he’s succeeding in the musical world, and his husky voice is especially charming.”
2. SISTAR’s Hyorin
SISTAR member Hyorin has proven her singing abilities time and again, from her solo debut in 2013 with “Love and Hate” to her appearance on “I Am a Singer.” Voters said on Hyorin’s singing ability, “She’s a vocalist who doesn’t tremble or falter, and her voice is incredibly powerful. She’s got the soul of African-American R&B singers and her tone is unmatched.”
1. Girls’ Generation’s Taeyeon
Taking first place on the survey is Taeyeon of Girls’ Generation. Though she only just made her solo debut, insiders applauded her for her emotional voice, relatability of her songs, and outstanding expressiveness. Furthermore, one voter said, “Taeyeon has a talent of giving her music meaning, and can comfortably sing in difficult registers without taking a breath.”
What do you think of the list? Do you agree with the rankings the industry insiders gave? Who do you think should have made the list that didn’t? Let us know your thoughts below!