100 Best Songs of the 2010s – #53: “Human” by Rag’n’Bone Man

The song at #53 on my list of 100 Best Songs of the 2010s is “Human” by British blues artist Rag’n’Bone Man. An intensely powerful song with a gospel feel, “Human” was a huge breakout hit for the imposing singer/songwriter born Rory Charles Graham. With his soulful and raw bass-baritone voice, he passionately sings of having human frailties, and that he’s neither a saint nor a demon, nor does he have all the answers: “Some people got the real problems / Some people out of luck / Some people think I can solve them / Lord heavens above / ‘Cause I’m no prophet or messiah / You should go looking somewhere higher/ I’m only human after all / Don’t put the blame on me.” I love the deep, booming bass line, thunderous percussion and soaring string synths.

The song was released in July 2016, but didn’t chart in the U.S. until early 2017. It reached #1 in many countries, including Austria, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Greece, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Russia and Slovakia, as well as the Billboard Alternative and Adult Alternative charts. Shockingly, it peaked at only #74 on the Hot 100, a chart I personally now find largely irrelevant.

The video for the song has been streamed more than 1.175 billion times.

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