After revealing the region’s first-ever Top 100 Arab Celebrities list, “Forbes Middle East” has compiled a list of top 10 Arab singers. And as you would have thought, three Lebanese songbirds have made the cut.
The country’s sweetheart, Nancy Ajram earned second place on the list, after Egyptian singer Amr Diab. The “Albi Ya Albi” and “Hassa Beek” singer, who has 48.14 million social media followers, the highest number amongst all the stars on the list, kickstarted her career at an early age. The first female regional UNICEF ambassador for the Middle East and North Africa landed a recording contract with EMI when she was just 15 years old.
Elissa, who has a career that spans 20 years, was ranked as the third most influential singer. The much-loved Lebanese songstress, who recently released “Sahbit Raey” from what’s expected to be her last album, has 43.48 million social media followers. Following her battle with breast cancer, Elissa, known as the “Queen of Emotions,” inspired her fans with “Ila Kol Elli Bihebbouni.”
Najwa Karam, the third Lebanese singer on Forbes’ list, with a total of 26.58 million social media followers, landed the fifth spot. Karam, who has been in the limelight since the 1990s, has a renowned unique style, which includes featuring the Lebanese dialect into her songs. The “Ya Yomma” singer is also known to be a fashion icon.
To compile the list, “Forbes Middle East” looked at over 500 Arab celebrities’ social media platforms and shortlisted those with a total number of over 3 million followers. While the publication focused heavily on social media followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube, they also took how long the celebrities have been actively singing into account. They also looked at other influential activities outside of their showbiz career, including whether they have been cherrypicked as UN goodwill ambassadors.
The Top 5:
1. Amr Diab
2. Nancy Ajram
4. Kadim Elsaher
5. Najwa Karam