My Top 20 Singles of 2011: Adele, Nicki Minaj, Lady Gaga and much more

This year was a decent year for singles. We can’t say there were that many songs that consumed us; instead, there was a nice consistency where a broader number of artists, from all genres, supplied us with a steady ration of tunes that made it fun to turn on the car radio and wonder what ear candy would come on.

As you can see, my list also touches on many different genres. Like most folks, music comes at me from all different directions and I long ago stopped listening (or dismissing) music from any one specific format.

As disparate as these songs are, what they all have in common is that there was something compelling in each of them; something that kept me listening to them over and over and drawing me to them, whether it was the beat or a riff or a vocal performance or a lyric. Plus, my criteria is that they all had to be released to radio as singles.

Some of these tunes may have started their radio life at the end of 2010, but they definitely hit their stride in 2011, hence their inclusion here. I linked to each song in case you haven’t heard the tune or you just want to enjoy it again.

My top albums of 2011 are here.

My colleague Katie Hasty posted her top songs of the year last week. Check it out here.

20) “Video Games,” Lana Del Rey
19) “Countdown,” Beyonce
18) “Pumped Up Kicks,” Foster the People
17) “Ghost on the Canvas,” Glen Campbell
16) “We Found Love,” Rihanna feat. Calvin Harris
15) “Rain Over Me,” Pitbull feat. Marc Anthony
14) “Someone Like You,” Adele
13) “You and Tequila,” Kenny Chesney and Grace Potter
12) “Barton Hollow,” The Civil Wars
11) “Down By the Water,” The Decemberists
10) “Monarchy of Roses,” Red Hot Chili Peppers
9) “Lighthouse”  The Roots feat. Dice Raw
8) “Super Bass,” Nicki Minaj
7) “Otis”: Kanye West and Jay-Z
6) “Time Spent in Los Angeles,” Dawes
5) “The Edge of Glory,” Lady Gaga
4) “Rolling In the Deep,” Adele
3) “The Cave,” Mumford & Sons
2) “Love On Top,” Beyonce
1) “Walk,”  Foo Fighters

What were your favorite songs of 2011?