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//Neon Limelight’s Top 5 Male Vocalists Of 2008//

Here at Neon Limelight we love catchy tunes and the occasional mechanically enhanced vocal performance just like the next blog, but this list is all about the real vocalists–they span many genres but the one thing they have in common is they’re artists whose voices give us chills with one note. They could sing the phone book and convince us we’re hearing the angels calling us home.

Here’s to our top 5 favorite male vocalists of 2008!

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Most of you may remember Jon McLaughlin from this little revelation, but Neon Limelight fell in love with the 25-year-old blue-eyed heartthrob when he crooned the pivotal “So Close” from Disney’s blockbuster Enchanted. The song was nominated for an Oscar for Best Original Song and Jon found himself performing the song for millions on the 80th annual awards show in February 2008. The novice never skipped a beat or dropped a note. His velvety voice sent shivers up our spines. Even though the song lost, Jon’s performance was an epic win. He won us over yet again with his eclectic sophomore album, OK Now. There was no way we could leave this dreamboat off our list. We promise it has more to do with his hypnotizing voice than his perfect face and wind-swept hair.

Watch and Listen: So Close – Live at the 80th Annual Academy Awards

Smack Into You

Beating My Heart

When we were brainstorming to find a great rocker voice to make the list, the only name that immediately came to mind was David Cook. The American Idol season 7 winner doesn’t get the credit he deserves for his amazing range. Remember when he ripped the Andrew Lloyd Webber week on Idol? You ‘member, ‘member? He took what should have been the most difficult (and possibly boring) week and made it look like a cake walk, delivering a tear-inducing high note at the end of “Music of the Night” from Phantom of the Opera. Even if he wasn’t an overall brilliant singer, that note alone would have put him on the list.

Watch and Listen: Music of the Night – Live on Idol

Always Be My Baby - Live on Idol

Heroes

David Archuleta may be the youngest singer on our list, but he proves that age is nothing but a number when it comes to sheer talent. Young Archie’s voice has the clarity and range many adult singers never develop. He made grown men cry when he tackled the John Lennon classic “Imagine“ during week two of American Idol season 7. Next to Fantasia‘s “Summertime,” it was single-handedly one of the best Idol performances ever. Hell, I wouldn’t feel bad about saying it’s one of the top televised vocal performances ever. He may not have won Idol, but you can clearly see he’s tops on our list.

Watch and Listen: Imagine – Live on Idol – Week 2

Touch My Hand – AOL Sessions

Running

He’s modern R&B’s Captain Save ‘Em; the wordsmith of choice for all of your favorite stars from Beyonce to Celine Dion, but singer/songwriter Ne-Yo has a thriving career of his own–well, only if you consider two platinum albums, one Grammy, numerous hits, and a butt-load of Grammy nominations for the upcoming awards ceremony (count ‘em, six!) thriving. Ne-Yo gets hit with criticism often over his voice. Being in R&B, rich baritones and abusing runs are often commonplace. Ne-Yo is a simpler singer; his light voice, reminiscent of a young Michael Jackson, never tries too hard, and that’s why we love him. Even when he’s singing the hook on the latest rapper’s new joint, his voice could coo the bloomers off any lady (or the boxers off any man–we don’t judge).

Watch and Listen: So You Can Cry – Live on Walmart Soundcheck

Go On Girl – Acoustic Imeem Performance

Stop This World

After many years in the business, Gavin DeGraw still manages to fly under the radar of the pop masses, but anyone who has been lucky enough to witness his sheer brilliance live will tell you he’s even more incredible live than he is on CD–and that’s tough to beat since he’s pretty damn close to perfect in the studio. The NY native can effortlessly rock out like he does on the first single from his self-titled sophomore album, “In Love With A Girl,” and then ooze soul covering Marvin Gaye classics like “Let’s Get It On” and “Sexual Healing.” There’s no genre his eargasmic voice can’t tackle and this is why he’s numeral uno on our list.

Watch and Listen: All I Want For My Birthday – Live in Richmond, VA

Sexual Healing/Let’s Get It On – Live in Lancaster, PA

Tracks Of My Tears – Live in Lancaster, PA

She Holds The Key

In Love With A Girl

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Honorable Mentions:

Robin Thicke was criticized for being a vocal one-trick pony on his sophomore album, The Evolution of Robin Thicke. He was accused of abusing his falsetto and letting the strength of his full voice fall back. On his third album, Something Else, the R&B crooner decided to switch it up more and it worked for him. He sounds the best he ever did on the retro-soul tracks.

Watch and Listen: The Sweetest Love

 

Admittedly, we’ve caught on to ginger-haired folk/pop singer Brett Dennen late. He’s been in the business for quite a while playing gigs, but it took the appeal of a familiar pop tart, Mandy Moore, in his latest music video for us to expand our horizons and give him a listen–and boy, are we glad we did. His voice is a little unexpected and somewhat quirky, and that’s exactly why we love it.

Watch and Listen: Make You Crazy

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Comments

  1. thanks for the compliment about archie! he is truly amazing..^^

  2. yay go david james archuleta!!
    happy b-day david love ya so much

  3. Number one on this list should be Clay Aiken. The only reason he isn’t is because the author hasn’t given his new album a listen and possibly because he is prejudiced.

    A damn shame because his 5 octave range and masterful control of his vocals is astonishingly good while the songs are eclectic and widely varied. His style has evolved light years past the Idol stage.

  4. Congratulations to David Archuleta! He is super talented and his album is EPIC! Love love love every song on David’s album!
    Happy Birthday to you David!
    Peace, love, and happiness to David always!
    Thanks so much David for working so hard for us, so we can enjoy your beautiful music on your album! And thanks for singing the Christmas songs, a 1000 miles…and the Jingle Jams…He’s so good to us! David has inspired so many of us around the world with his beautiful singing and good nature! Can’t wait to see David on tour in 2009! Hooray for David Archuleta!

  5. OK, first off, thanks SO much for including David Cook on this list, he deserves it. BUT… and I may be a bit biased… but, Gavin Degraw is ranked higher? I saw them both live on the same night and Gavin has nothing on David vocally. Do a search on youtube for David’s live version of the song permanent from the Orlando show on 12/14. He is an amazing vocalist.

  6. Why it was so difficult to find a great voice in the rock world? A lot of rockers out there have better range than pop singers. I agree David Cook is the best option, but he should be # 1, even if he is a rocker…

  7. Thanks for including David Cook on the list but please listen to David’s song Permanent. That is an amazing vocal performance that can be duplicated and, in fact, sung even better in person. Check both out on youtube. You may want to revise your rankings afterwards.

  8. I agree with all your choices except Ne-Yo. Musical talent, yes, but not such a great singer in my opinion.

    And for my money, David Archuleta has the best voice in the business, despite his young age. No one has more clarity or expressiveness. And his vocal technique is basically flawless.

  9. whaaaat??? who in their right minds would put Cook’s voice BEFORE Archuleta’s? You might want to check your rankings again. That is just all kinds of wrong.

  10. yeyyyyy!!! ne yo got #2!!! but he shoulda got #1

  11. Wow John Legend didn’t make the list??

  12. I’m sooooo happy that David Archuleta made #3 on the list he deserves it soooo much. He does have a an AMAZING voice. Thank You so much for including him on the list. Although I would’ve been happier if he was #1, but it’s ok.

  13. wowwww….David Archuleta is the best male singer that i’ve ever witnessed in my life..Congratulations.you totally deserve it…we ,your fans really love you

  14. I believe David Archuleta has the best singing voice in the business right now. I can only imagine where he’ll take us next!?

  15. Yay!! love ne-yo!! he is the best. Maybe I have to listen to the 2 Davids after all. Yall give them such good ranks.

  16. Map Props to my favorite singer of the year, DAVID JAMES ARCHULETA.

    The light of 2008.

    and Happy Birthday to him.

  17. Go David Archuleta!
    And yeah!
    I believe that David Archuleta is the best singing voice business right now!!
    I Love David!

  18. Best voice in the bunch? David Archuleta, hands down. Thanks for ranking him in your top three. He deserves all the accolades he is receiving right now. Can hardly wait for his solo tour this year!

  19. I totally agree with the author, david Archuleta vocie is terrific and makes grown women and men cry at its beauty.

  20. Great Choice for #1. Gavin DeGraw has a beautiful voice. The man sounds better live than on his albums, and that’s saying something. Writes all his own music & lyrics and could pretty much go solo with just his voice while playing the piano or guitar and he still knocks it out of the park every time. His solo acoustic shows are amazing.

  21. alexandra says:

    OMG!!! im so happy gavin degraw is in the number one spot… he truly is an AMAZING singer!!! and he is unbelievable live!!! He has so much talent and he really deserves being recognized as one of the most talented male singers out there!!! <3

  22. dvid cook should be #1
    1 gavins ok but number one ! cook’s got a orignal & amazing vocie ,somthing you cant say about archuleta !!

  23. Gavin!!!!! I am so proud that he’s number one! He is an amazing artist that doesn’t get enough attention or praise for his work. People don’t realize untill they see him live how inventive and talented he is… a far cry from the Singles that are released that make him sound like a completely sugar coated pop artist (Though Chariot was fabulous!)

    I’ve seen him live a bunch of times but the last time he did just an acoustic set… Just him and his guitar or Piano… And i had goosebumps!

    Great Job Gavin!

  24. So HAPPY to see that Gavin is # 1. I have loved him forever and he does not get enough attention for his talent. Honestly and I know that this might piss some people off, but I dont agree the David’s being on that list. Robin Thicke should have taken a least one of those spots.

  25. Yeap u r the best Mister Gavin Degraw!!

    Thkxxxx for all urs songs!

    Best regards,

    Malika
    Bisous Bisous

  26. gavin so far deserves the #1 spot, great choice!

  27. T think that both “Davids” have a really long way to be on top. And Gavin is always the good choice for #1

Trackbacks

  1. […] David 3. bester Sänger des Jahres! Neonlimelight, ein viel gelesener Blog, der sich hauptsächlich mit dem Thema Musik (vor allem Pop) beschäftigt, […]

  2. […] David drittbester Sänger des Jahres! Neonlimelight, ein viel gelesener Blog, der sich hauptsächlich mit dem Thema Musik (vor allem Pop) beschäftigt, […]

  3. […] When we were brainstorming to find a great rocker voice to make the list, the only name that immediately came to mind was David Cook. The American Idol season 7 winner doesn’t get the credit he deserves for his amazing range. Remember when he ripped the Andrew Lloyd Webber week on Idol? You ‘member, ‘member? He took what should have been the most difficult (and possibly boring) week and made it look like a cake walk, delivering a tear-inducing high note at the end of “Music of the Night” from Phantom of the Opera. Even if he wasn’t an overall brilliant singer, that note alone would have put him on the list. Source […]

  4. […] top 5 male vocalists of 2008 caused a bit of a stir. Now it’s time to show some love to the ladies who rocked the […]

  5. […] Check out a video of Gavin in the studio working on the new album below and the tour dates on the other side. Don’t miss your chance to see why we named Gavin 2008’s top male vocalist. […]

  6. […] be the case when I heard that season 7 American Idol runner-up and one of Neon Limelight’s top five male vocalist of 2008 David Archuleta would be teaming up with Disney darling Miley Cyrus for a vocal match-up on […]

  7. […] Limelight put David Archuleta at number 3 on its list of Top 5 Male Vocalists of 2008. Gavin DeGraw and Ne-Yo were first and second, respectively. Of the Miley Cyrus and David Archuleta […]

  8. David Archuleta, top 5 male vocalist Neon Limelight

    http://bit.ly/1Mybt

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