A Crooner is a singer’s singer. Crooners make current songs into timeless standards. 


Here’s the definitive list of the Top 10 Crooners of all Time: 

1. Frank Sinatra 
2. Aretha Franklin 
3. Billie Holliday 
4. Bing Crosby 
5. Sammy Davis, Jr. 
6. Tom Waits 
7. Peggy Lee 
8. K.D. Lang 
9. John Waite 
10. Judy Garland

Posted by David Boles

David Boles was born in Nebraska and his MFA is from Columbia University in the City of New York. He is an Author, Lyricist, Playwright, Publisher, Editor, Actor, Designer, Director, Poet, Producer, and Boodle Boy for print, radio, television, film, the web and the live stage. With more than 50 books in print, David continues to write 2MM words a year. He has authored over 25K articles and published more. Read the Prairie Voice Archive at Boles.com | Buy his books at David Boles Books Writing & Publishing | Earn the world with David Boles University | Get a script doctored at Script Professor | Touch American Sign Language mastery at Hardcore ASL.

70 Comments

  1. LOVE k.d. lang! Good list!

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  2. Have you heard K.D.’s album with Tony Bennett? She out sings him at every turn and beats him to ever corner. Her voice is so beautiful. She’s the female Mel Torme.

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  3. finally a top ten list i can appreciate. you mention tony bennett and mel torme — they aren’t crooners?

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  4. Well, clem, I only had 10 slots to use.:)
    Maybe by mentioning Tony and Mel was my way of sort of tacking them on at the end.
    Mel was more a Jazz mainstay. Tony was more of an imitator than an originator of standards — “I Left My Heart in San Francisco” is not enough!

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  5. Tony should be on the list… i’ll give you Mel for not being on it.

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  6. Okay, clem, so who do you boot off the list in favor of Tony?

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  7. lose #9 John Waite never heard of him. He’s not an oldtimer.

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  8. Not John Waite! He’s my most daring pick! They don’t have to be oldtimers to make the list.

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  9. next list should be only oldtimers then.

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  10. Okay, then. Fair enough, clem.

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  11. Here’s another Top Ten topic for ya – Top Ten Holiday Songs.😀

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  12. Ooo! I love that one, Carla! I’ll do that one tomorrow!

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  13. But you should also include the performance you feel is best because so many people do horrible covers of holiday songs!
    Of course, that’s a suggestion. It is YOUR Top Ten, after all.😉

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  14. Okay. That complicates things but it’s a good suggestion.

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  15. What about Bobby Darin?😦

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  16. Is “Bobby Darin” a code name for “Kevin Spacey?”:mrgreen:

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  17. I’m insulted…it’s has a hint of truth…but I’m still insulted😛

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  18. We can see right through you, Robin!😆 Bobby Darin wasn’t really a trendsetter in standard songs, was he? What were his unique crooned hits?

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  19. Mack the Knife (I think) was just a great song…I listen to it in my car all the time and it really makes me move. There is also Dream Lover and of course Beyond the Sea. Now you all know my love for Mr. Spacey but watching the movie on Bobby Darin made me realize how much he really brought to his genre but then again I’m 27 so I’m pretty much clueless to all this kind of music. If it weren’t for that movie I wouldn’t have a clue who he was. I am still surprised he did the song “Splish Splash.”

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  20. Okay, good points, Robin. So who do you bump off the list in favor of Kevin — err, Bobby?:)

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  21. Well when you put it that way…😛
    (Although I have no idea who John Waite is)

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  22. John Waite was the lead singer of The Babys and then he struck out on his own with a successful solo career. He has an acoustic album out where it’s basically just his voice against a few instruments. His style is unmistakable and crying. He sings chill bumps.

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  23. I guess Kevin isn’t the only one out there to teach me of great singers😉

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  24. Geez, no one seems to remember “Missing You”! That was a huge song for John Waite in the ’80s. Definitely one of my faves. I always find myself singing along with the chorus *ain’t missing you at all!*
    Too cool!

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  25. Robin –:mrgreen:
    Carla — If by “no one” you mean “Robin” welp — we are with you!:mrgreen:
    “Missing You” was a huge hit and is a prime example of his crooning — especially on the new acoustic version!

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  26. Clemmis didn’t know who he was either.:)

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  27. Carla — Clem doesn’t count! Anything before 1930 is the “newfangled future unknown” to him!😀

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  28. oh, i count. i just can’t count.

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  29. You forgot me! I’ve been singing really loud and long notes to Troll Baby for the last half hour!
    BTW – LOVE to see Frankie at #1…..you have great taste.

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  30. Karen!
    Nice to see you here! You are so funny!
    Thanks for the feedback and we’ll keep trying to make you happy!:)

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  31. Dude! Where’s Paul Anka?

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  32. Love for Paul Anka but no love for Bobby😦

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  33. Well, if when you say “Bobby” you mean “Kevin” then — you got that right!:mrgreen:

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  34. Ok so first off no I meant Bobby😛 and 2nd how can you not have love for Kevin? 2 disses with one shot.

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  35. I love Kevin! But not him faking being Bobby.

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  36. Oh I didn’t know you saw Beyond the Sea.

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  37. I did. Love Kevin. Didn’t love the movie.

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  38. Ok, well as long as you saw it I accept it as long as you still like Kevin. Now have you seen Donnie Darko yet?

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  39. I can’t tell if you are joking or not. Donnie Darko…as in the movie with Frank in it.

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  40. I can’t tell if you are joking or not. Donnie Darko…as in the movie with Frank in it.

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  41. Sorry.
    I forgot the little green man last time::mrgreen:
    No, I haven’t seen Donnie Darko yet… but I did see Donnie and his Osmonds live in concert at the Nebraska State Fair a long time ago and it rained the whole time… I just ordered the DVD… not of my Donnie but of yours.

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  42. Ok well I look forward to a review😀

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  43. Ok well I look forward to a review😀

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  44. I’m surprised it came out in 2001! I thought it was more recent than that.

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  45. That’s only cause every couple of years they go nuts talking about it I’m not sure why. They just came out with a new edition of the dvd which actually I really need to get at some point.

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  46. That’s only cause every couple of years they go nuts talking about it I’m not sure why. They just came out with a new edition of the dvd which actually I really need to get at some point.

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  47. Ah! That must be why. Yeah, search on “Donnie Darko” on Amazon and you get lots of stuff popping up. Looks fun!

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  48. I just thought of three other good voices. They’re really not worthy of a top ten, but I just thought I’d mention them.
    George Michael: Yes, he will forever be the “I Want Your Sex” guy, but on the same album, the song “Kissing a Fool” really shows off his voice. Plus, at the Freddie Mercury tribute with Queen, he totally rocked “Somebody to Love.”
    Speaking of Queen, I’d also like to mention Freddie Mercury. I guess he wouldn’t really be a “crooner” though.
    Chris Isaak: He does a version of “Return to Me” that makes my knees weak!😉

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  49. I’m with you on Chris Isaak! He’s a great crooner.
    I’ve never been a George Michael fan. I find him ordinary.
    Freddie, on the other hand, is a huge talent — a one of a kind. He isn’t really a crooner, though he had a beautiful voice.

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  50. I’m with you on Chris Isaak! He’s a great crooner.
    I’ve never been a George Michael fan. I find him ordinary.
    Freddie, on the other hand, is a huge talent — a one of a kind. He isn’t really a crooner, though he had a beautiful voice.

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  51. I’m with you on Chris Isaak! He’s a great crooner.
    I’ve never been a George Michael fan. I find him ordinary.
    Freddie, on the other hand, is a huge talent — a one of a kind. He isn’t really a crooner, though he had a beautiful voice.

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  52. I love George Michael, I wonder why you said GM’s voice was ordinary while Freddie’s beautiful, their voice are quite similiar in my opinion. That means if GM wanted, he could rock too. Freddie seemed to like GM’s voice too. I think they are both equally talented.

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  53. I love George Michael, I wonder why you said GM’s voice was ordinary while Freddie’s beautiful, their voice are quite similiar in my opinion. That means if GM wanted, he could rock too. Freddie seemed to like GM’s voice too. I think they are both equally talented.

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  54. I love George Michael, I wonder why you said GM’s voice was ordinary while Freddie’s beautiful, their voice are quite similiar in my opinion. That means if GM wanted, he could rock too. Freddie seemed to like GM’s voice too. I think they are both equally talented.

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  55. I came across this feed by accident as I was looking for crooners. Now I must admit I’m new to listening to crooners but my favorite and has actually been my favorite for many years is Dean Martin but there are a few young guys out there picking up in this day and age! The likes of Harry Connick Jr , Micheal Buble and Matt Dusk . Any thoughts on the omission of Dean or your thoughts on the younger generation???

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  56. I came across this feed by accident as I was looking for crooners. Now I must admit I’m new to listening to crooners but my favorite and has actually been my favorite for many years is Dean Martin but there are a few young guys out there picking up in this day and age! The likes of Harry Connick Jr , Micheal Buble and Matt Dusk . Any thoughts on the omission of Dean or your thoughts on the younger generation???

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  57. I came across this feed by accident as I was looking for crooners. Now I must admit I’m new to listening to crooners but my favorite and has actually been my favorite for many years is Dean Martin but there are a few young guys out there picking up in this day and age! The likes of Harry Connick Jr , Micheal Buble and Matt Dusk . Any thoughts on the omission of Dean or your thoughts on the younger generation???

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  58. Hi Glenn —
    Dean was a fine singer but he was known more for comedy and for acting than for singing.
    The new guys don’t interest me. They don’t hold a candle to the Golden Age because they are only imitating what has come before without blazing a new trail of insight and perfection.

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  59. Hi Glenn —
    Dean was a fine singer but he was known more for comedy and for acting than for singing.
    The new guys don’t interest me. They don’t hold a candle to the Golden Age because they are only imitating what has come before without blazing a new trail of insight and perfection.

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  60. Ahh, Tom Waits. Truly a genius.
    What about Rufus Wainwright?

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  61. What happened to Tony Bennett, Nat King Cole, Johnny Mathis, Steve Tyrell?

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  62. What happened to Tony Bennett, Nat King Cole, Johnny Mathis, Steve Tyrell?

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  63. They are excellent, too!

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  64. N.K.Cole, wow, what more can i say, a true crooner.

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  65. If you love crooners it is well worth listening to the first crooners. I suggest Russ Columbo, Gene Austin, Vic Damone and Al Bowlly.

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