38. Ellie Goulding
British songbird Ellie Goulding went from relative unknown to globally recognized artist overnight thanks to the support of one rather famous fan – Kate Middleton, who selected her to perform at the reception of her royal wedding to Prince William. The following week she performed as the musical guest on “Saturday Night Live,” capping what must have been one of the most nerve-wracking weeks in singer-songwriter history. She hasn’t made as big of a splash in the U.S. as, say, Adele, but her airy dance music could secure her a place in the pop pantheon. Goulding's second album is tentatively slated for an October 2012 release.—Jeff Royer
(Photo: Kevin Winter, Getty Images)
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