In 1950 -- the year the Peanuts comic strip debuted, the Korean War started, and Goodnight Irene by Gordon Jenkins and the Weavers topped the pop charts -- Bing Crosby was the runaway favorite in a Gallup poll asking Americans to name their favorite male singer.
|John Charles Thomas||1|
|Other operatic singers||7|
|No favorite, none, no one in particular||17|
|Nov. 12-17, 1950|
By 1950, Crosby's rendition of White Christmas, first recorded in 1942, had already become the best-selling Christmas song of all time -- a distinction it still holds. This, along with Crosby's multidecade best-selling career, helps explain why a remarkable 33% of U.S. adults named Crosby their favorite male singer. Perry Como was a distant second, mentioned by 6%, followed by Dennis Day at 4%.
Frank Sinatra tied Nelson Eddy and Ezio Pinza for fourth at 3%. However, as George Gallup noted, "considerable differences" were found by age. Sinatra ranked third among 21- to 29-year-olds, fifth among 30- to 49-year-olds, and ninth among those 50 and older. Bandleader and bebop pioneer Billy Eckstine also ranked much higher among young people, while Eddy and Day had greater appeal among older Americans. Notably, Crosby led among all age categories.
|21 to 29 years||30 to 49 years||50 and older|
|Gallup, Nov. 12-17, 1950|
The same poll asked Americans to name their favorite female vocalist. Dinah Shore led that list, at 11%, followed by Jeanette MacDonald, Kate Smith, Jo Stafford, Lily Pons and Doris Day.
These data can be found in Gallup Analytics.
Read more insights from the Gallup Vault.