Names of Artistes that weren’t Signed in any Label but Popular

The names of artistes that weren’t signed in any label but popular are just a handful but it is damn surprising and almost inscrutable to figure out the possibility of how an artiste could have had their way out of the serious struggle of making it especially in the world of music without getting signed up or assisted by one fat label.

Notable artists who have never been signed to a major record label include Tom MacDonald, Chance the Rapper, Macklemore, Noname, David Choi and Ryan Upchurch. Artists that found independent success after leaving their labels include R&B singer Tinashe and rapper Tech N9ne, who started his own label Strange Music with business partner Travis O’Guin.

I guess popularity come cheap for them, or is it hard work spelling them into limelight with no hitch! We shall discover it soon.

Though creating record labels might be a hell of a job, it is yet one of the step blocks to assisting any creative minds into the spotlight of popularity and wealth.

Examples of wonderful record labels who are trusted with their roles in the lives of several international artistes in the world are Interscope (Interscope Digital Distribution), Universal Motown (Unimo Digital Distribution), Island Def Jam (IDJ FirstLook) and Universal Republic (Republic Digital Distribution).

Names of Artistes that weren’t Signed in any Label but Popular

Against all odds, some number of artistes have been able to raise their above the waters of having to grope for the help of record labels before they survive. How they were able to do it may be some mystery to any of us who think that labels are the only surest path to the limelight! However, I shall be listing the names of artistes that weren’t signed in any label but popular among us today:

Ed Sheeran

Despite his incredibly catchy, well-crafted tunes, label executives were unable to see past Ed Sheeran’s bright red hair and average body type. Today, Sheeran is one of the most noteworthy artists in pop music, and the stadiums of fans who come out in droves to see his live shows have proven many of those superficial suits wrong.


Starting from the international scene, Madonna is one of the names of artistes that weren’t eventually signed but popular. After dropping out of college and relocating to New York City with only a few dollars in her pocket, Madonna didn’t make it big right away. Madonna played some of her earliest demos for executives at Millennium Records who were less than impressed by work and turned her down.

Read Also: How to Promote Your Music Online in Ghana

The Beatles

Arguably the greatest band of all time, The Beatles couldn’t quite capture the support of George Martin, the producer at the help of Decca Records. Martin wasn’t impressed by their performance and refused to sign them to his small label only months before the band hit it big.

Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga has performed sold-out stadium tours, intimate shows with the legendary Tony Bennett, and the Super Bowl Halftime Show, but not everyone could see the star she would eventually come to be. L.A. Reid, the head of Def Jam, signed Gaga early on in her career but dropped her before she’d even released her first single.

Missy Elliott

Though the executive will remain nameless, Missy Elliot was told early on in her career by one major label that she was “too fat” to achieve success as a singer. She has since gone on to sell millions of records, becoming a modern day icon.

Don Jazzy

Michael Collins Ajereh, known professionally as Don Jazzy, is a Nigerian record producer. He is the founder and the CEO of Mavin Records. Don Jazzy was co-owner of the now-defunct Mo’ Hits Records record label with D’banj. He has been an artiste too who has not been signed by any other record label  but by his own.

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