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Top 25 solo singers

Joel D. Amos is a Los Angeles-based writer, and the Senior Entertainment Editor here at SheKnows. He has interviewed numerous celebrities, including Angelina Jolie, Julia Roberts, Katherine Heigl, Rachel McAdams, Jamie Foxx, Anne Hathaw...

Big-time band to solo success

Who are the top 25 singers who have left hit bands to find solo success? Say hello to Justin Timberlake, America! But is Timberlake number one? Only a handful of artists have managed to find solo success after leaving the band that made them famous.

Beyonce

Beyonce emerged from a girl group scoring scads of dance and heartfelt hits. Sounds like a story out of Dreamgirls!

Whether it Single Ladies or Crazy In Love, Beyonce has taken the solo world by storm. She may be Sasha Fierce at times or simply known as Beyonce. Either way, she is fabulous and years from now, she will likely be mentioned in the same breath as Etta James.

Michael Jackson

There is the Jackson 5 and then there is Michael Jackson. There is no better description of this Bad singer. He found ways to be a Thriller while sending his quintet persona to the curb...later personal oddities aside.

Check out some of Michael’s best moments.

Paul McCartney

What Band on the Run?

Paul McCartney found solo triumphs just below The Beatles level of cultural personification. From Maybe I’m Amazed to Jet, McCartney created the benchmark for how a singer leaves a band as huge as The Beatles and still score high on the charts for years to come. McCartney is the master.

(tie) John Lennon

In a very different way, John Lennon broke out of The Beatles and changed the world with his passion. Merging with Yoko Ono, Lennon broke barriers and personified his hit Starting Over with his life outside history’s greatest band.

Diana Ross

First it was the Supremes. Then, it was the Supremes featuring Diana Ross and then there was simply Diana Ross flying solo.

No single personifies her career more than I’m Coming Out. The track triumphantly announces to the world that Diana Ross is her own singer. Ross stood in the spotlight for the greatest girl group in history and found her own era of solo success all by herself.

Want evidence? Check out this 1981 footage of Diana Ross performing I'm Coming Out at the LA Forum in front of thousands!

Phil Collins

The Genesis drummer found solo success in droves in the '80s. His Face Value put his face right out there and No Jacket Required became a seismic legend with five Top Ten singles. Nobody forgot Collins’ name, nor will they ever. It used to be said that anything Phil Collins touched turns to gold.

Robert Plant

There is no thinking about Led Zeppelin without the image of their enigmatic lead singer. His solo turns have been staples across the ‘80s and ‘90s. His Big Log is as haunting as music gets.

Justin Timberlake

‘N Sync and all the other boy bands and Justin Timberlake is the one who triumphs?

This is hardly a surprise given his talent and presence. Rock Your Body may have begun the singer's journey, and he may have brought Sexy Back, but JT as pop culture icon is simply getting started. Looking for the next Michael Jackson? Look no further!

Keep in mind Justin Timberlake is only on his second solo album and he has achieved this level of success. Look out pop world, Timberlake is your new titan.

Here he is doing his thing with TI!

Gwen Stefani

There is no doubt that the style and musical icon has put the ‘S’ in successful. Strictly speaking about her music, Gwen Stefani is in a league of her own.

Sure she's currently back with No Doubt touring the world, but after two solo records, launching a clothing line and having two children, is there any doubt who those fans are flocking to see?

Up next…the number one singer gone solo…expecting anyone else?

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