Famous Canadian Rock Singers

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Canada has exerted a dominant influence on the world music. Be it pop, rock or hip-hop, Canadian singers and musicians have excelled it all and shone amongst the greatest musicians and singers from across the globe. Talking about rock n roll, this music genre emerged in the mid-20th century in the American colonies. Soon, it gained widespread appeal as artisans from other countries imbibed the culture and became masters of the genre. In Canada, earliest form of rock music was inspired by their American and British counterparts. Soon, Canadian rock stars developed their own style and music type which gained much popularity. Ever since then, Canada has had a considerable impact on the development of rock as a modern popular music. Paul Anka was undoubtedly the first Canadian rock star. His song, ‘Diana’ helped him become a teen idol sensation. Furthermore, he was the first Canadian to have a number one on the US Billboard chart in rock and roll. The Beaumarks was a hit rock band of the 1960s. Their ‘Clap Your Hands’ was the first Canadian made and produced rock recording. Other popular rock stars include Bruce Cockburn, Neil Young, Gordon Lightfoot, Bryan Adams, Sarah McLachlan, and so on. Find out more about Canadian rock singers, their life and their musical quests through this section.
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 1 
Neil Young
(Rock Singer-Songwriter Famous As The 'Godfather of Grunge')
Neil Young
14
Birthdate: November 12, 1945
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Toronto, Canada

One of rock and roll’s greatest songwriters and performers of all time, Neil Young has worked both solo as well with bands like Buffalo Springfield and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. The Grammy award winning musician’s notable albums include After the Gold Rush, Harvest, Harvest Moon and Ragged Glory. He strongly backs environmental and disability issues too.

 2 
Bryan Adams
(Best Selling Pop, Pop-Rock Singer-Songwriter Of All Time)
Bryan Adams
5
Birthdate: November 5, 1959
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Kingston, Canada
Canadian rock guitarist and singer Bryan Adams, known for his cult classics Everything I Do and Summer of '69, has won 20 Juno Awards and a Grammy. The Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductee is also an avid animal rights activist and a professional photographer who has held several exhibitions.
 3 
Joni Mitchell
(Famous for Her Studio Album 'Blue')
Joni Mitchell
19
Birthdate: November 7, 1943
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Fort Macleod, Canada

Joni Mitchell is one of the most popular Canadian singer-songwriters. Widely regarded as one of the greatest songwriters of all time, her songs reflect her feelings about joy, romance, disillusionment, and confusion. Apart from being a musician, Joni is also a visual artist who designs most of her album covers. In fact, she calls herself a painter derailed by circumstance.  

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 4 
Geddy Lee
(Lead Vocalist, Bassist and Keyboardist for the Canadian Rock Group 'Rush')
Geddy Lee
5
Birthdate: July 29, 1953
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Willowdale, Toronto, Canada
Canadian singer Geddy Lee soared to fame as the lead vocalist, keyboardist, and bassist of the rock band Rush. He and his bandmates of Rush were the first to win the Officer of the Order of Canada as a group. He also released a solo album, My Favourite Headache.
 5 
Paul Rodgers
(Singer-songwriter, Musician)
Paul Rodgers
3
Birthdate: December 17, 1949
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Middlesbrough, England

Paul Rodgers is a British singer, multi-instrumentalist, and songwriter. Over the years, Rodgers has performed with popular bands like Bad Company, Free, and Queen. Rodgers, who has influenced several notable rock singers, was honored with the prestigious Ivor Novello Award in 2011. He has also been named in Rolling Stone magazine's list of 100 Greatest Singers of All Time.

 6 
Robbie Robertson
(Guitarist, Producer)
Robbie Robertson
3
Birthdate: July 5, 1943
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Toronto, Canada

Canadian musician, songwriter, and film composer Robbie Robertson became popular following his association as lead guitarist and songwriter with the rock group, The Band. He is credited for playing a key role in popularizing the Americana music genre. He also had a successful career as a solo artist. As a film composer, he has often collaborated with director Martin Scorsese.

 7 
Sarah McLachlan
(Singer-Songwriter Known for Her Best-Selling Album “Surfacing”)
Sarah McLachlan
5
Birthdate: January 28, 1968
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Halifax Regional Municipality, Canada
Canadian singer Sarah Ann McLachlan is best known for her signature ballads and her bestselling album Surfacing. The three-time Grammy-winning and nine-time Juno-winning artist has also launched a free music school for disadvantaged youth and works against animal cruelty. She also launched the Lilith Fair, to promote female music artists.
 8 
Anne Murray
(The First Canadian Female Solo Singer to Reach No. 1 on the U.S. Charts)
Anne Murray
4
Birthdate: June 20, 1945
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Springhill, Canada
Canadian singer Anne Murray became the first Canadian female solo artist with No. 1 tracks on the American charts and the first to get a “gold” certification. The four-time Grammy-winning artist is best known for hits such as Snowbird and is part of the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame.
 9 
Gordon Downie
(Former Lead singer of rock band The Tragically Hip, a group that has received more than ten JUNO Awards)
Gordon Downie
3
Birthdate: February 6, 1964
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Amherstview, Canada
Died: October 17, 2017
 10 
Rick Danko
(Singer-Songwriter, Bassist and Founding Member of 'The Band')
Rick Danko
2
Birthdate: December 29, 1943
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Norfolk County, Canada
Died: December 10, 1999

Canadian singer and The Band member Rick Danko initially performed as a rhythm guitarist and bassist for The Hawks. Part of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Danko struggled with drug addiction and was once even arrested in Japan for smuggling drugs. He died in his sleep after a performance.

 11 
Melissa Auf der Maur
2
Birthdate: March 17, 1972
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
 12 
Alannah Myles
(Canadian Singer-Songwriter and Actress Known for Her Song ‘Black Velvet’)
Alannah Myles
2
Birthdate: December 25, 1958
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Toronto, Canada

Best known for her Grammy-winning and Billboard-charting single Black Velvet, written in memory of Elvis Presley, Alannah Myles is the daughter of legendary Canadian broadcaster William Douglas Byles. She was later seen in Eurovision and also sang the Canadian national anthem at Toronto All-Star Game in 1991.

 13 
Jonny Craig
(Singer-songwriter, best known as the former lead vocalist of bands Dance Gavin Dance, Emarosa, and Slaves)
Jonny Craig
2
Birthdate: March 26, 1986
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Minot, North Dakota, United States
 14 
Gino Vannelli
(Rock singer whose best-known singles include)
Gino Vannelli
3
Birthdate: June 16, 1952
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Montreal, Canada
 15 
Ronnie Hawkins
(Rockabilly musician notable for his role as a talent scout and mentor of musicians he recruited for his band the Hawks)
Ronnie Hawkins
2
Birthdate: January 10, 1935
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Huntsville, Arkansas, United States
Died: May 22, 2022
 16 
Kim Mitchell
(Former Lead Singer and Guitarist for the Band 'Max Webster')
Kim Mitchell
2
Birthdate: July 10, 1952
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Sarnia, Canada
 17 
Adam Cohen
(Canadian singer and songwriter best known as the frontman for the band Low Millions)
Adam Cohen
2
Birthdate: September 18, 1972
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Montreal, Canada
 18 
Frank Marino
(Guitarist and singer, best known as the leader of Canadian hard rock band Mahogany Rush)
Frank Marino
1
Birthdate: November 20, 1954
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
 19 
Serena Ryder
(singer-songwriter)
Serena Ryder
1
Birthdate: December 8, 1982
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
 20 
Matt Thiessen
(Musician)
Matt Thiessen
1
Birthdate: August 12, 1980
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada

The lead vocalist and songwriter of the Christian rock band Relient K, Matt Thiessen is known for albums such as Mmhmm. He formed the band as a high-schooler in Canton, with Matt Hoopes and Brian Pittman. Apart from dating Katy Perry in the past, he has also written songs for her.

 21 
David Usher
(Singer-songwriter and the lead singer for the alternative rock band Moist.)
David Usher
1
Birthdate: April 24, 1966
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Oxford, England
 22 
Marie-Mai
(Singer who was initially known as one of the finalists of the first season of the Quebec reality show Star Académie)
Marie-Mai
1
Birthdate: July 7, 1984
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Varennes, Canada
 23 
Robin Black
(Mixed martial artist)
Robin Black
1
Birthdate: August 10, 1969
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Canada
 24 
Greg Keelor
(Singer-Songwriter)
Greg Keelor
1
Birthdate: August 29, 1954
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Inverness County, Nova Scotia, Canada
 25 
Chris Murphy
(Rock Musician and a Member of the Canadian Rock Band 'Sloan')
Chris Murphy
1
Birthdate: November 7, 1968
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Charlottetown, Canada

Part of the Canadian rock band Sloan, Chris Murphy is not just the band’s main bassist, but also fills in for the drums or the guitar occasionally. In 2021, he revealed on Instagram that he had been diagnosed with Bell’s palsy, an ailment that causes partial paralysis of the face.

 26 
Paul Janz
(Formerly a prominent singer-songwriter of pop rock music in the mainstream and contemporary Christian markets)
Paul Janz
0
Birthdate: 1951 AD
Birthplace: Three Hills, Canada
 27 
Luck Mervil
(Actor, Singer)
Luck Mervil
1
Birthdate: October 20, 1967
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Haitian-Canadian actor-singer Luck Mervil initially experimented with reggae and rap and later appeared on stage, on TV, and in films. His best-known role was that of Clopin in Notre-Dame de Paris. He was later accused of sexually exploiting a minor, pleaded guilty, and served a 6-month sentence.

 28 
Al Tuck
(Singer-Songwriter)
Al Tuck
1
Birthdate: December 21, 1966
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Summerside, Prince Edward Island, Canada