The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary German Singers of all time. This list of famous German Singers is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of German Singers.
With an HPI of 70.58, Nico is the most famous German Singer. Her biography has been translated into 43 different languages on wikipedia.
Christa Päffgen ([ˈkʁɪsta ˈpɛfɡən]; 16 October 1938 – 18 July 1988), known by her stage name Nico, was a German singer, songwriter, actress and model. She had roles in several films, including Federico Fellini's La Dolce Vita (1960) and Andy Warhol's Chelsea Girls (1966). Reviewer Richard Goldstein describes Nico as "half goddess, half icicle" and writes that her distinctive voice "sounds something like a cello getting up in the morning".At the insistence of Warhol, she sang on three songs of the Velvet Underground's debut album The Velvet Underground & Nico (1967). At the same time, she started a solo career and released Chelsea Girl (1967). Nico's friend, Jim Morrison, suggested that she start writing her own material. She then composed songs on a harmonium, not traditionally a rock instrument. John Cale of the Velvet Underground became her musical arranger and produced The Marble Index (1968), Desertshore (1970), The End... (1974) and other subsequent albums. In the 1980s, she toured extensively in Europe, United States, Australia and Japan. After a concert in Berlin in June 1988, she went on holiday in Ibiza to rest and died as the result of a cycling accident.
With an HPI of 69.48, Constanze Mozart is the 2nd most famous German Singer. Her biography has been translated into 30 different languages.
Maria Constanze Cäcilia Josepha Johanna Aloysia Mozart (née Weber; 5 January 1762 – 6 March 1842) was a trained Austrian singer. She was married twice, first to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; then to Georg Nikolaus von Nissen. She and Mozart had six children: Karl Thomas Mozart, Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart, and four others who died in infancy. She became Mozart's biographer jointly with her second husband.
With an HPI of 67.16, Klaus Meine is the 3rd most famous German Singer. His biography has been translated into 42 different languages.
Klaus Willi Meine (born 25 May 1948) is a German singer and songwriter, best known as the longtime frontman of the hard rock band Scorpions. Meine and guitarist Rudolf Schenker are the only two members of the group to appear on every Scorpions album, though he did not join the band until 1969, four years after its founding. Meine placed at No. 22 on Hit Parader's 'Top Heavy Metal Vocalists of All Time' list in 2006.
With an HPI of 66.32, Anna Magdalena Bach is the 4th most famous German Singer. Her biography has been translated into 28 different languages.
Anna Magdalena Bach née Wilcke (22 September 1701 – 27 February 1760) was a professional singer and the second wife of Johann Sebastian Bach.
With an HPI of 66.06, Dieter Bohlen is the 5th most famous German Singer. His biography has been translated into 49 different languages.
Dieter Bohlen (German pronunciation: [ˈdiːtɐ ˈboːlən]; born Dieter Günter Bohlen, 7 February 1954) is a German songwriter, producer, singer and television personality. He first achieved fame as a member of pop duo Modern Talking in the 1980s, and has since produced numerous German and international artists. He was also a judge on casting shows Deutschland sucht den Superstar and Das Supertalent, having been present on all seasons of both shows until 2021.
With an HPI of 64.79, Nina Hagen is the 6th most famous German Singer. Her biography has been translated into 52 different languages.
Catharina "Nina" Hagen (German: [ˈniːna ˈhaːɡn̩] (listen); born 11 March 1955) is a German singer, songwriter, and actress. She is known for her theatrical vocals and rose to prominence during the punk and Neue Deutsche Welle movements in the late 1970s and early 1980s. She is known as "The Godmother of German Punk". Born and raised in the former East Berlin, German Democratic Republic, Hagen began her career as an actress when she appeared in several German films alongside her mother Eva-Maria Hagen. Around that same time, she joined the band Automobil and released the single "Du hast den Farbfilm vergessen". After her stepfather Wolf Biermann's East German citizenship was withdrawn in 1976, Hagen followed him to Hamburg. Shortly afterwards, she was offered a record deal from CBS Records and formed the Nina Hagen Band. Their self-titled debut album was released in late 1978 to critical acclaim and was a commercial success selling over 250,000 copies. The band released one more album, Unbehagen, before their break-up in 1979. In 1982, Hagen signed a new contract with CBS and released her debut solo album NunSexMonkRock, which became her first record to chart in the United States. She followed it with two more albums: Fearless (1983) and Nina Hagen in Ekstasy (1985), before her contract with CBS expired and was not renewed. In 1989, she was offered a record deal from Mercury Records. She released three albums on the label: Nina Hagen (1989), Street (1991), and Revolution Ballroom (1993). However, none of the albums achieved notable commercial success. Hagen made her musical comeback with the release of her album Return of the Mother (2000). Besides her musical career, Hagen is also a voice-over actress. She wrote three autobiographies: Ich bin ein Berliner (1988), Nina Hagen: That's Why the Lady Is a Punk (2003), and Bekenntnisse (2010). She is also noted for her human and animal rights activism.
With an HPI of 63.45, Sandra is the 7th most famous German Singer. Her biography has been translated into 40 different languages.
Sandra Ann Lauer (born 18 May 1962), later Sandra Cretu, commonly known under her mononymous stage name of Sandra (German pronunciation: [ˈzandʁa]), is a Franco-German pop singer who enjoyed mainstream popularity in the 1980s and early 1990s with a string of European hit singles, produced by her then-husband and musical partner, Michael Cretu, most notably "(I'll Never Be) Maria Magdalena" (1985), "In the Heat of the Night" (1985), "Everlasting Love" (1987), "Secret Land" (1988), "Hiroshima" (1990), and "Don't Be Aggressive" (1992). Her albums Into a Secret Land (1988) and Close to Seven (1992) have won Sandra high critical acclaim.Prior to embarking on a solo career, Sandra was the lead singer of the all-female disco trio Arabesque, which had a massive following in Japan and the Soviet Union. Also, between 1990 and 2001, she provided vocals on album releases of the very successful musical project Enigma, which had top 10 hits in North America and the United Kingdom. A cult star with a devoted fan base, Sandra remains one of the most popular singers of the 1980s in Continental Europe. During the height of her popularity, she even managed to outsell Madonna in a number of countries around the world. With sales in excess of 33 million records worldwide, Sandra has established her position as the most successful German female vocalist.
With an HPI of 63.06, Thomas Anders is the 8th most famous German Singer. His biography has been translated into 41 different languages.
Bernd Weidung (born 1 March 1963), known by his stage name Thomas Anders, is a German singer, songwriter and record producer. He is best known as the lead vocalist of the pop duo Modern Talking.Starting his singing career while still in school, Anders unsuccessfully attempted to establish himself as a Schlager artist for several years. After forming the Eurodisco duo Modern Talking with Dieter Bohlen in 1983, they became a worldwide sensation with their hit "You're My Heart, You're My Soul". They followed up with a string of other hits, namely "You Can Win If You Want", "Cheri, Cheri Lady", "Brother Louie", "Atlantis Is Calling (S.O.S. for Love)", "Geronimo's Cadillac", and "Jet Airliner", before dissolving in 1987. In 1998, they reunited and produced several new songs such as "You Are Not Alone", "Sexy, Sexy Lover", "No Face, No Name, No Number", "Ready for the Victory", and "TV Makes the Superstar", before dissolving again in 2003. Their controversial break-ups led to several lawsuits and heavy coverage from the German tabloid press. During their two stints together, the duo sold 120 million records worldwide and received numerous sales certifications around the globe.After the two break-ups of Modern Talking, Anders performed as a solo artist during the 1990s and after 2003. During the first Modern Talking split, he released six studio albums, none of which managed to chart, whereas some singles such as "Love of My Own" achieved mediocre success. Only his Spanish language album Barcos de Cristal (1994) proved successful in Argentina, where its eponymous title track climbed to number 1. Following the second break-up, Anders started a more successful solo career, with his album This Time (2004) reaching number 14 in Germany and producing number 1 hits in Russia and Turkey. His 2010 album Strong reached Platinum status in Russia for sales of more than 650,000 copies. Two (2010), a collaboration album with Jörn-Uwe Fahrenkrog-Petersen reached number 11 in Germany, while his first German language album Pures Leben (2017) climbed at number 14. While being unable to match his success with Modern Talking with his solo career, Anders is considered a musical icon in Eastern Europe, where he is more revered than in his native country and regularly performs stadium tours and on New Year's Eve in Poland. In 2006, the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv made him an honorary professor for "shaping the musical taste of a generation", and he holds the distinction for being the best-selling foreign artist of all time in Russia.
With an HPI of 62.13, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau is the 9th most famous German Singer. His biography has been translated into 37 different languages.
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (28 May 1925 – 18 May 2012) was a German lyric baritone and conductor of classical music, one of the most famous Lieder (art song) performers of the post-war period, best known as a singer of Franz Schubert's Lieder, particularly "Winterreise" of which his recordings with accompanists Gerald Moore and Jörg Demus are still critically acclaimed half a century after their release.Recording an array of repertoire (spanning centuries) as musicologist Alan Blyth asserted, "No singer in our time, or probably any other has managed the range and versatility of repertory achieved by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. Opera, Lieder and oratorio in German, Italian or English came alike to him, yet he brought to each a precision and individuality that bespoke his perceptive insights into the idiom at hand." In addition, he recorded in French, Russian, Hebrew, Latin and Hungarian. He was described as "one of the supreme vocal artists of the 20th century" and "the most influential singer of the 20th Century".Fischer-Dieskau was ranked the second greatest singer of the century (after Jussi Björling) by Classic CD (United Kingdom) "Top Singers of the Century" Critics' Poll (June 1999). The French dubbed him "Le miracle Fischer-Dieskau" and Dame Elisabeth Schwarzkopf called him "a born god who has it all." At his peak, he was greatly admired for his interpretive insights and exceptional control of his soft, beautiful instrument. He dominated both the opera and concert platforms for over thirty years.
With an HPI of 61.72, Ivan Rebroff is the 10th most famous German Singer. His biography has been translated into 30 different languages.
Ivan Rebroff (31 July 1931 – 27 February 2008) was a German-born vocalist, allegedly of Russian ancestry, who rose to prominence for his distinct and extensive vocal range of four and a half octaves, ranging from the soprano to bass registers.
Pantheon has 117 people classified as singers born between 1701 and 2007. Of these 117, 81 (69.23%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living singers include Klaus Meine, Dieter Bohlen, and Nina Hagen. The most famous deceased singers include Nico, Constanze Mozart, and Anna Magdalena Bach. As of April 2022, 13 new singers have been added to Pantheon including Hans Hotter, Hermann Prey, and Inge Borkh.
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Which Singers were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 25 most globally memorable Singers since 1700.