Every country/style has an iconic singer who creates emotion like no other for that style. Often they are female, and often they are now dead. Very few are in jazz.
Youtube is great in that we can at least now check them out.
So here are a few:
Amalia Rodrigues.(Beautiful enough to make one cry and understand the meaning of saudades.)
Om Khaltoum. (When I went to Yemen a few years ago, there was even a channel on the plane dedicated just to her.)
Elis Regina (here with the Father Christmas of jazz, Hermeto Pasocal. Amazing to think that, if she were alive today, she'd be just 64.
and of course Billie Holiday
Too many more to list. But I'd be interested for any thoughts, especially UK ones.
Suddenly thought. What about Sandy Denny?