Over the years there has been many a diva topping the charts and sharing their incredible vocal gift with the world. Diva can describe those female stars that are difficult to work with but in the music sense it usually means those with a powerful voice whose hits have dominated the charts over the course of their careers. With so many strong female artists gracing, and having graced, the charts over the last few decades, Sony Music has put together new compilation Ultimate Divas.
Ultimate Divas features an incredible 72 songs over the span of 4 discs celebrating divas from over the ages. The collection opens with Britney Spear’s signature hit Toxic and offers a real mix of genres and artists. There’s a good presence for real divas on the collection such as Whitney Houston (One Moment In Time), Jennifer Hudson (Spotlight), Etta James (Cry Me a River) and Bette Midler (You’ll Never Know).
Our favourite selections include Celine Dion’s more recent hit Loved Me Back To Life, Kelly Clarkson’s emotive Because of You, and Gloria Estefan’s power ballad Don’t Wanna Lose You. The standout on the collection though for us is the Toni Braxton classic He Wasn’t Man Enough, which is as catchy and fierce now as it ever has been.
Looking over the tracklist it’s fairly clear that the term diva has been applied a little too easily to some of the artists included on this collection. We wouldn’t necessarily call Avril Lavigne (I’m With You), Rita Ora (Shine Ya Light), Ke$ha (We R Who We R) or Amerie (1 Thing) divas but their songs are enjoyable enough to not stick out too much on this collection.
One complaint we have about this release is that it’s missing the biggest diva of all time – Mariah Carey. Perhaps it was a licensing issue, although Mariah was on Sony for much of her earl career and is back on the label now, but the omission of the most successful diva in the world is a bit unforgiveable. How can you have a divas collection without her?
Ultimate Divas is a solid collection but a little more focus on the theme of diva could have made it better. It’s great to have contemporary divas like Celine Dion and Leona Lewis sitting on a collection with legends such as LaBelle and Chaka Khan but there are one too many ordinary popstars thrown into the mix. Not everybody can be a diva but the ones included on this collection are amongst the best that the music industry has ever seen.