Adele, Amy Winehouse & Duffy: The Soul Divas Who Helped Revitalize Soul Music

Adele, Amy Winehouse & Duffy all have a few things in common. One of them being they are all Grammy award winners.

They also have albums and singles that helped revitalize the fiery burning passion of soul music back into mainstream radio. This includes Adele’s Rolling In The Deep (21) , Amy Winehouse’s Rehab (Back to Black),
and Duffy’s Mercy (Rockferry), all which are karaoke staples as well.

While numerous comparisons between these soul divas surfaced continuously throughout the end of the 2000’s decade because of their same genre focused album(s), they each came along close enough that allowed a chain of events to occur.

Winehouse’s breakout album is considered to be ‘Back to Black’ which has sold over 10 million copies worldwide, which was released in 2006. Duffy’s debut (considered her breakout album), has sold over 9 million copies and she came in a little after the lovely Winehouse in 2008 as did Adele whose debut album ’19’ delivered over 7 million copies.

Technically, you could say ’21’ was Adele’s real breakout album since it has sold over 30 million copies, but she was able to garner the Grammy award for Best New Artist and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance during her ’19’ era, so the breakout label would definitely be considered fair.

These three ladies are cited or considered to be a part of the third wave British invasion of the U.S.
in regards to music. The second wave was considered to be the late 90’s (Spice Girls) and early 2000’s decade.

Not only have they inspired the many rising artists of today such as Sam Smith, Ella Eyre, Meghan Trainor, etc, but aided in the resurgence of soul music on radio through their respective signature songs that essentially took over the media worldwide!

Just a little factual data for your convenience.


  • Won the 2008 MOJO Award for Song of the Year. MOJO editor Phil Alexander called the song a “timeless” classic that “could really have come from any period in time over the last 50 years”.
  • The single was nominated for a BRIT Award in 2009, for Best British Single and nominated for a Grammy Award in the category “Best Female Pop Vocal Performance”.
  • “Mercy” was also nominated for PRS for Most Performed Work and Best-selling British Song at the 2008 Ivor Novello Awards, winning in the former category.
  • The song was the fourth most played anywhere in the United Kingdom in 2009, revealed in a list compiled by music body PRS.


  • Received universal acclaim from music critics. Rolling Stone characterized it as a “Motown-style winner with a banging beat and a lovesick bad girl testifying like Etta James.”
  • People magazine called the track “instantly memorable.
  • Billboard remarked that Winehouse’s vocals on the song were “Shirley Bassey-meets-Ella Fitzgerald” and called the track “a better buzz than a double-gin martini.”
  • On 10 February 2008, “Rehab” won three Grammy Awards: Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.

Rolling In The Deep:

  • The writers of Rolling Stone placed “Rolling in the Deep” at number one on their list of “50 Best Singles of 2011”.
  • Claire Suddath of Time magazine named “Rolling in the Deep” one of the Top 10 Songs of 2011.
  • Won in the category for Best Track at the 2011 Q Awards.
  • MTV chose the song as their “Song of the Year”.
  • Received the Grammy Awards for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Short Form Music Video at the 54th annual ceremony.

Any more evidence needed? Guess not. Thanks for all the soul-inspired anthems ladies.

Written by Dannii C.

girl group advocate. latino. prospective teacher. multi-instrumentalist. self-proclaimed Twitter-ologist @oscahhhhh.