Famous American Rock Musicians

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite American Rock Musicians

 1 
Jimi Hendrix
(One of the Most Influential Electric Guitarists & the Greatest Instrumentalist in the History of Rock Music)

Jimi Hendrix
4
Birthdate: November 27, 1942
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Seattle, Washington, United States
Died: September 18, 1970

One of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th century, Jimi Hendrix began playing guitar at the age of 15. As his career progressed, he became the first musician to use stereophonic phasing effects in recordings. Rolling Stone ranked him as the greatest guitarist and the sixth greatest artist of all time. He died under mysterious circumstances at the age of 27.

 2 
Eddie Van Halen
(Guitarist and Keyboardist of the Rock Band Van Halen)

Eddie Van Halen
4
Birthdate: January 26, 1955
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Died: October 6, 2020

Eddie Van Halen was an American songwriter and guitarist. The co-founder of the popular rock band Van Halen, Eddie is widely considered one of the greatest guitar players in the history of rock music. He is credited with popularizing the tapping technique, which is now used extensively by guitarists all over the world.

 3 
Alanis Morisette
(Singer-Songwriter)

Alanis Morisette
4
Birthdate: June 1, 1974
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ottawa, Canada

Alanis Morisette is a Canadian-American singer-songwriter and actress. Renowned for her mezzo-soprano voice, Morisette has been named by Rolling Stone as the Queen of Alt-Rock Angst. A recipient of 13 Juno Awards and seven Grammy Awards, Morisette has released several successful albums, including Jagged Little Pill, which was named in Rolling Stone magazine's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list.

 4 
Carlos Santana
(Guitarist)

Carlos Santana
4
Birthdate: July 20, 1947
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Autlán, Mexico

Guitarist Carlos Santana rose to fame in the late 1960s and 1970s with his rock band Santana. He introduced elements of Latin American jazz in his rock music to create unique songs. He is the recipient of ten Grammy Awards and three Latin Grammy Awards. Rolling Stone magazine listed him on its list of the 100 greatest guitarists in 2015.

 5 
David Byrne
(American-Scottish musician)

David Byrne
5
Birthdate: May 14, 1952
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Dumbarton, Scotland
Talking Heads lead vocalist and avant-garde musician David Byrne has won several awards, including the Grammy, Oscar, and Golden Globe. He has spoken at TED Talks, launched his own record label, and held visual arts exhibitions. He advocates for cycling and has mostly used a bike throughout his life.

 6 
Tom Morello
(Musician)

Tom Morello
4
Birthdate: May 30, 1964
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: New York City, United States

Tom Morello is an American musician, rapper, singer, actor, songwriter, and political activist. Morello is best known for his association with Rage Against the Machine, which he co-founded with Zack de la Rocha. Renowned for his creative and unique guitar playing style, Tom Morello was ranked among the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time by Rolling Stone magazine.

 7 
Taylor Hawkins
(Musician)

Taylor Hawkins
3
Birthdate: February 17, 1972
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Fort Worth, Texas, USA
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 8 
Grace Slick
(Retired Singer-Songwriter - Was A Key Figure in San Francisco's Early 'Psychedelic Music' Scene in the Mid-1960s)

Grace Slick
4
Birthdate: October 30, 1939
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Highland Park, Illinois, United States

Grace Slick is a retired singer-songwriter. Slick played an important role in the psychedelic music scene that flourished in San Francisco during the mid-1960s. One of the earliest female rock stars, Slick played a key role in the development of rock music during the 1960s. She was named among the Greatest Women of Rock N Roll by VH1 in 1999.

 9 
Fiona Apple
(Singer-songwriter)

Fiona Apple
4
Birthdate: September 13, 1977
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New York City, United States

 10 
Bob Seger
(Singer-songwriter, Musician)

Bob Seger
4
Birthdate: May 6, 1945
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Detroit, Michigan, United States

Singer, songwriter, and musician, Bob Seger, first gained fame in the 1960s as a heartland rock artist. Known for his classic raspy and powerful voice, he recorded many songs that dealt with themes like love and women. With worldwide sales of more than 75 million records, he is one of the world's best-selling artists of all time.

 11 
Todd Rundgren
(Multi-instrumentalist and Member of The Rock Band 'Utopia")

Todd Rundgren
4
Birthdate: June 22, 1948
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

Todd Rundgren is an American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and record producer. He is credited with forming popular rock bands, such as Utopia and Nazz. Regarded as a pioneer in the fields of progressive rock, electronic music, Internet music delivery, and music videos, Todd Rundgren's works, such as A Wizard, a True Star remain influential in the world of music.

 12 
Ryan Adams
(Singer-songwriter who released his debut solo album, Heartbreaker, to critical acclaim)

Ryan Adams
6
Birthdate: November 5, 1974
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Jacksonville, North Carolina, United States

 13 
Ronnie Van Zant
(Singer, Singer-songwriter, Musician, Composer, Guitarist)

Ronnie Van Zant
4
Birthdate: January 15, 1948
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Jacksonville
Died: October 20, 1977

 14 
Moby
(Musician)

Moby
4
Birthdate: September 11, 1965
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Harlem, New York, United States

 15 
Steve Vai
(Guitarist, Songwriter)

Steve Vai
4
Birthdate: June 6, 1960
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Carle Place, New York, United States
Three-time Grammy-winning guitarist and singer Steve Vai began his career as a transcriptionist for Frank Zappa and played for his band till he launched his solo career. Guitar World named him the “10th Greatest Guitarist. His music was featured in music videos such as Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.

 16 
Brandon Flowers
(Lead singer and keyboardist of the Las Vegas-based rock band The Killers)

Brandon Flowers
4
Birthdate: June 21, 1981
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Henderson, Nevada, United States

 17 
Josh Homme
(Founder and Only Continuous Member of the Rock Band 'Queens of the Stone Age')

Josh Homme
4
Birthdate: May 17, 1973
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Joshua Tree, California, United States

Josh Homme is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and record producer. He is credited with founding the popular rock band, Queens of the Stone Age, for which he serves as the primary songwriter, lead vocalist, and guitarist. He is also credited with co-founding other rock bands, such as Eagles of Death Metal and Kyuss.

 18 
Rob Thomas
(Singer-Songwriter)

Rob Thomas
4
Birthdate: February 14, 1972
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Landstuhl, Germany

 19 
Chris Isaak
(Musician)

Chris Isaak
3
Birthdate: June 26, 1956
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Stockton, California, United States

 20 
Krist Novoselic
(Musician)

Krist Novoselic
4
Birthdate: May 16, 1965
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Compton, California, United States

 21 
Ace Frehley
(Co-founder and Former Lead Guitarist of the American Rock Band ‘Kiss’)

Ace Frehley
3
Birthdate: April 27, 1951
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Bronx, New York, United States

Ace Frehley is an American songwriter and musician. He is credited with co-founding the rock band Kiss, for which he served as the original lead guitarist. Renowned for his aggressive guitar-playing style, Frehley was named in Guitar World magazine's Greatest Metal Guitarist of All Time list. He is also popular for playing guitars that emit smoke to create special effects.

 22 
Harry Nilsson
(Former Singer-songwriter known for Everybody's Talkin' and Without You, both of which won Grammy Awards)

Harry Nilsson
4
Birthdate: June 15, 1941
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Died: January 15, 1994

 23 
John Frusciante
(Lead guitarist for the Red Hot Chili Peppers who helped write such songs as "Scar Tissue" and "Give it Away)

John Frusciante
4
Birthdate: March 5, 1970
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States

 24 
Tori Amos
(Musician and Singer)

Tori Amos
3
Birthdate: August 22, 1963
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Newton
Alternative rock singer Tori Amos is known for her songs that highlight issues such as feminism. Amos was the youngest to win a music scholarship to the Peabody Institute. She performed with the group Y Kant Tori Read before going solo. She is associated with RAINN, a sexual abuse helpline. 

 25 
Billy Preston
(Musician & Songwriter)

Billy Preston
3
Birthdate: September 2, 1946
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Houston, Texas, United States
Died: June 6, 2006

Billy Preston was an American musician and top session keyboardist who worked with popular artists like Ray Charles, Reverend James Cleveland, Sam Cooke, and the Beatles. A two-time Grammy Award winner, Preston struggled throughout his life with his sexual orientation. He chose not to come out as gay until before his death, due to his religious beliefs.

 26 

Navarone Garibaldi
3
Birthdate: March 1, 1987
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Santa Monica, California, United States
Navarone Garibaldi is the lead singer and guitarist of the Los Angeles-based rock band Them Guns. He is the son of Italian director Marco Garibaldi and Priscilla Presley, and the half-brother of Lisa Marie Presley. Garibaldi owns a reptile collection. His music is inspired by the likes of Nirvana.

 27 
Benji Madden
(Guitarist)

Benji Madden
6
Birthdate: March 11, 1979
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: La Plata, Maryland, United States

Along with his identical twin brother, Joel Madden, Benji Madden has been one of the greatest musical duos as far as twin siblings are concerned. A huge fan of tattoos, Benji Madden has several tattoos, including one of Benjamin Franklin, which is so big that it covers his entire back!

 28 
Ben Gibbard
(Singer, Singer-songwriter, Actor, Composer, Guitarist)

Ben Gibbard
3
Birthdate: August 11, 1976
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bremerton

 29 
Steve Burns
(Actor best known as the original host of the long-running children's preschool television program Blue's Clues from 1996 until 2002)

Steve Burns
4
Birthdate: October 9, 1973
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Boyertown, Pennsylvania, United States

 30 
Linda Perry
(Famous songwriter for stars like Pink, Gwen Stefani, Courtney Love, Kelly Osbourne, and Christina Aguilera)

Linda Perry
4
Birthdate: April 15, 1965
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States

 31 
Graham Nash
(Singer-songwriter, Guitarist)

Graham Nash
3
Birthdate: February 2, 1942
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Blackpool

 32 
Dexter Holland
(Lead Vocalist and Guitarist of the Rock Band 'The Offspring')

Dexter Holland
3
Birthdate: December 29, 1965
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Garden Grove, California, United States

Bryan Holland, or Dexter Holland, formed the rock band The Offspring, of which he is also the lead singer and guitarist. A virologist, too, he also attained a PhD in molecular biology from USC. He is also a certified pilot and works for charitable causes such as AIDS awareness.

 33 
Alex Wolff
(Actor)

Alex Wolff
4
Birthdate: November 1, 1997
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: New York City, New York, USA

 34 
Steve Earle
(Musician, Singer-songwriter)

Steve Earle
3
Birthdate: January 17, 1955
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Hampton, Virginia United States

Rock, country, and folk singer-songwriter, Steve Earle, developed an early interest in music and started his career when he was a teenager. Rebellious as a young man, he went through his share of struggles before he was able to establish himself successfully as a singer. Also a political activist, he is a vocal opponent of capital punishment. 

 35 
Carrie Brownstein
(Singer, Guitarist, Actor, Writer, Musician, Blogger, Television actor)

Carrie Brownstein
3
Birthdate: September 27, 1974
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Seattle

 36 
Shirley Manson
(Actor, Singer, Guitarist, Musician, Model, Songwriter)

Shirley Manson
3
Birthdate: August 26, 1966
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Edinburgh

 37 
Hillel Slovak
(Musician)

Hillel Slovak
3
Birthdate: April 13, 1962
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Haifa, Israel
Died: June 25, 1988

 38 

Stewart Copeland
3
Birthdate: July 16, 1952
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Alexandria, Virginia, USA

 39 
Amanda Palmer
(Singer, Street artist, Composer, Pianist, Musician, Playwright, Blogger, Songwriter)

Amanda Palmer
3
Birthdate: April 30, 1976
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: New York City

 40 
Rivers Cuomo
(Musician, Singer)

Rivers Cuomo
3
Birthdate: June 13, 1970
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States

 41 

Captain Beefheart
3
Birthdate: January 15, 1941
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Glendale, California, U.S.
Died: December 17, 2010

 42 

John Gallagher Jr.
3
Birthdate: June 17, 1984
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Wilmington, Delaware, United States

John Gallagher Jr. is an American musician and actor known for his contribution across all three major acting mediums. He is best known for playing Moritz Stiefel in a rock musical titled Spring Awakening, for which he was honored with a Tony Award. He has also played important roles in popular TV series, such as The Newsroom and Westworld.

 43 
GG Allin
(Musician, Singer-Songwriter)

GG Allin
15
Birthdate: August 29, 1956
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Lancaster
Died: June 28, 1993
Punk rock artist and drummer GG Allin is best remembered for his controversial live performances, which involved acts like self-mutilation, and his themes of violence. He was also arrested for assaulting his audience members. He vowed to commit suicide on stage, multiple times, but eventually died of a drug overdose. 

 44 

Bruce Randall Hornsby
3
Birthdate: November 23, 1954
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Williamsburg, Virginia, United States

 45 
Nancy Spungen
(Drug trafficker, Prostitute)

Nancy Spungen
3
Birthdate: February 27, 1958
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: University City
Died: October 12, 1978

 46 
Brittany Howard
(Musician)

Brittany Howard
3
Birthdate: October 2, 1988
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Athens, Alabama Athens, Alabama, United States

 47 
Gary Rossington
(Musician)

Gary Rossington
3
Birthdate: December 4, 1951
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Jacksonville, Florida, United States

 48 
Sib Hashian
(Musician)

Sib Hashian
3
Birthdate: August 17, 1949
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Died: March 22, 2017

 49 
Taylor Hanson
(Musician)

Taylor Hanson
3
Birthdate: March 14, 1983
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Tulsa, Oklahoma, United States

 50 
Wes Borland
(Guitarist for the Rap Metal Band ‘Limp Bizkit’ & Lead Vocalist of the Industrial Band ‘Black Light Burns’)

Wes Borland
3
Birthdate: February 7, 1975
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Richmond, Virginia, United States

Wes Borland is a rock musician best known for his association with the popular rock band, Limp Bizkit. Borland is also credited with co-founding an experimental metal band named Big Dumb Face. Known for his elaborate visual appearance, Borland often wears a mask while performing. He was named in the Top 100 Guitarists of All Time list by the magazine Total Guitar.