Singing, rapping, speaking, and chanting are all part of the same animal, made from the greatest of all instruments. There’s no one formula for a compelling vocal; some great singers and rappers sound bored, some sound utterly transfixed. Personality is the key, and if you can get that through Auto-Tune, great. The results are what matter. Here are 10 performances that hit us particularly hard, listed alphabetically by name.
Erykah Badu, “Window Seat” (Universal Motown)
Her voice at its most enticing and caramel-like — qualities that describe the music as well. The video, meanwhile, got her in more trouble than 15 “Tyrone”s.