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THE queens of the charts defined their own journey and were true to themselves in 2015. Let’s take a look at those who made a particularly strong impression this year.

Adele

The world was waiting for her, and nobody else would do. And for good reason. It had been several years since we’d heard anything from Adele, and four years since the launch of her last album 21 which sold over 30 million copies. She made a remarkable comeback at the end of October with her single Hello and an accompanying video directed by Quebecois filmmaker Xavier Dolan (Mommy). The video smashed the record for the most views in a day, notching up 27.7 million. The record was previously held by Taylor Swift, who clocked up 20.1 million views in 24 hours for Bad Blood. The cherry on the cake: Adele broke several sales records in the UK, and her track was the fastest selling digital single in its first week with over 1 million downloads in the US.

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift was difficult to miss this year: she won three prizes at the American Music Awards, three MTV Video music awards, she was the brains behind a music video (Blank Space) which amassed 1.2 billion views (the record for the most viewed video of all time on YouTube), she sold the most albums in 2014, and Forbes magazine ranks her as the 64th most powerful woman on the planet. On top of all that came the best sales week for an album in the US since 2002 for 1989, and a playful battle with the music giant Apple. She criticized Apple’s new streaming service, which was planned to have a free three-month trial. “Three months is a long time to go unpaid and it is unfair to ask anyone to work for nothing”, she said. Apple backed down and said it would in fact pay artists during the trial period. A happy end which resulted in the Shake It Off singer allowing her album to be part of Apple’s streaming service.

Rihanna

This industry heavyweight made her fans wait all year for an album which in the end was not released. But the Umbrella singer still managed to keep their attention throughout 2015. She recently announced a 70-date ‘Anti tour’, with the same name as her highly anticipated opus. And she did release a few singles from her album including Four Five Seconds with Kanye West and Paul McCartney, American Oxygen and Bitch better have my money with a video in which she played a gangster.

The singer also got involved in a string of projects outside the music world. As well as starring in a Christian Dior advertising campaign, she is set to have a role in Valérian and the City of a Thousand Planets, the upcoming Luc Besson blockbuster which is an adaptation of a 1960s French comic book series. And having launched her new perfume ‘Riri’, she also designed a creeper shoe for the sports company Puma which was sold out in just over a week.

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