English singer-songwriter and actor David Bowie is regarded as one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century. Dubbed "The Greatest Rock Star Ever" by Rolling Stone magazine, he rose to international prominence in the 1970s with his innovative style of music. Deeply dedicated to his profession, he remained musically active until his death in 2016.
Multifaceted personality, Dolly Parton is a singer, songwriter, record producer, actress, author and businesswoman and is known mainly for her work in country music. She has received various accolades and awards in her very successful singing career spanning several decades and has composed over 3,000 songs. She has also worked in several movies and is a prolific songwriter.
John Legend is a singer, songwriter, actor, film producer and theatre director and his song All of Me from his fourth studio album was a Billboard Hot 100 number-one hit. He has released a host of successful albums. He has also won many awards, including an Oscar and a handful of Grammys. He is also an actor and a TV personality.
British rock and pop singer and songwriter, Rod Stewart has sold over 250 million records worldwide and is counted among the best-selling music artists of all time. During his extensive career that spans almost six decades, he has won numerous awards and accolades. He was mentioned on the "Billboard Hot 100 All-Time Top Artists" list in 2008.
John Denver was one of the highest-selling and most popular singers during the 1970s. He was known for folk, pop and country music. Some of his greatest songs are Take Me Home Country Roads, Leaving on a Jet Plane, Rocky Mountain High, Sunshine on My Shoulders and Annie's Song. He died when a plane he was piloting crashed in California.
Best known for her powerful mezzo-soprano voice, Janis Joplin was one of the most successful rock stars of her era. Before dying at the age of 27, she achieved so much that Rolling Stone magazine included her in its 100 Greatest Artists of All Time list in 2004 and 100 Greatest Singers of All Time list in 2008.
LL Cool J is an American rapper, entrepreneur, and record producer. Such is his popularity that LL Cool J was named on VH1's list of 100 Greatest Artists Of All Time in 2010. In 2017, he became the first rapper to be awarded the prestigious Kennedy Center Honors. Over the years, Cool J has had a profound influence on hip-hop.
Regarded as one of the most popular and influential rock musicians of the 1990s and 2000s, Dave Grohl is best known for his association with the famous rock band Nirvana, for which he was the drummer. Also a singer-songwriter, Dave Grohl was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2014.
Mary J. Blige is a popular singer-songwriter and actress. Having sold 80 million records worldwide, she is one of the best-selling female artists of all time. Referred to as the Queen of Hip-Hop Soul, Mary is credited with influencing the fusion of R&B and hip hop. She often gets featured in lists like The 100 Greatest Women in Music.
11 Eddie Vedder
Louis Tomlinson is best known for his association with the popular boy band One Direction. A multi-talented personality, he is also known for his acting and footballing skills; while he started his career as an actor, he was later signed by the Doncaster Rovers Football Club. He is regarded as one of the most influential people in the UK.
13 Zayn Malik
Aaliyah was an American singer, actress and model, who became famous when her debut album, Age Ain't Nothing but a Number sold three million copies in the US. Her subsequent albums also sold in millions and won her numerous accolades. She also acted in some films. She tragically died in an airplane crash in the Bahamas, at the age of 22.
American rapper and songwriter DaBaby gained critical acclaim and commercial success with his debut album Baby on Baby. Later, his two other albums Kirk and Blame It on Baby became huge successes and made him one of the biggest rappers in the US. Earlier his single Light Show and Baby Talk series of mixtape attracted quite a lot of attention.
16 Mac Miller
Before his death at the age of 26, Mac Miller had a major impact as a rapper and songwriter. Blue Slide Park, his studio album, became the first independently distributed maiden album since 1995 to top the US Billboard 200. His personal life was marred by depression, substance abuse, and legal issues. He died of drug overdose.
17 Pat Benatar
Four-time Grammy-winning rock artist Pat Benatar left her job as a teller to step into the music industry and is best known for her chartbusting tracks Hit Me with Your Best Shot, Fire and Ice, and Love Is a Battlefield. She has platinum albums in both the U.S. and Canada.
Meghan Trainor is an American talent show judge and singer-songwriter. Trainor is credited with promoting body positivity through her music; her songs often have lyrical themes based on personal empowerment and body image. Also a well-known philanthropist, Meghan Trainor works closely with organizations, such as The American Cancer Society. She also takes an active part in several charity events.
19 Patti Smith
Patti Smith is an American singer-songwriter. Referred to as the punk poet laureate, Smith became an influential figure of the punk rock movement with the release of her album Horses. Many world-renowned musicians, such as Madonna and Michael Stipe, have cited Smith as their inspiration. Even actresses like Ellen Page and Maria Doyle Kennedy have called Smith a major influence.
20 Ricky Martin
22 Katey Sagal
Talented film and television actress Katey Sagal’s big break came with the popular comedy series Married.... with Children. Later, she lent her voice for the animated series Futurama and gave an award winning performance in the drama series Sons of Anarchy. Her film credits include Futurama: Bender's Big Score and Pitch Perfect 2. She has also released two music albums.
South Korean singer and rapper, Jennie, became popular as a member of the girl group Blackpink. She decided to pursue a career in music when she was a teenager. After being active in the music industry for a few years, she gained international fame after being selected for Blackpink. She has since embarked on a solo career as well.
25 Kim Taehyung
Kim Tae-hyung is a South Korean singer, actor, and songwriter. He is best known for his association with the popular boy group BTS, for which he is a vocalist. Renowned for his baritone singing voice, Kim is regarded as a role model by other Korean artists like Younghoon, Jaehyun, Byun Hyun-min, Yeosang, Jungseung, Mingi, and Yunmin.
26 Sade Adu
Nigerian-British singer Helen Folasade Adu, or Sade Adu, often blends Afro-Cuban tunes with soul and smooth jazz in her music. The Grammy Award winner had initially studied fashion designing and been a model. The founder of the band Sade, she has released iconic tracks such as No Ordinary Love.
28 Andy Kaufman
Andy Kaufman was an American entertainer and wrestler. Considered an anti-comedian for his ability and willingness to provoke confused and negative reactions from audiences, Kaufman is revered for his counterintuitive approach to comedy. Apart from influencing comedians like Jim Carrey, Kaufman also inspired movies like Toni Erdmann. There are rumours that his death is believed to be a hoax and part of his prank.
29 Grant Gustin
Singer, songwriter, musician, and activist Joan Baez has been active in the music world for over six decades. She emerged as a major musical figure in the counterculture era of the 1960s. Her music encompasses various genres like pop, folk-rock, country, and gospel music. She is involved in civil rights, human rights, and environmental activism as well.
35 Ross Lynch
36 Kid Rock
38 Robin Gibb
39 Jim Croce
Jim Croce was an American rock and folk singer-songwriter. At the peak of his popularity, Jim Croce died in a plane crash at age 30. Many of his works were released posthumously and achieved popularity. Jim Croce's music has been used in many popular films, such as The Hangover Part II, X-Men: Days of Future Past, and Hobbs & Shaw.
40 Annie Lennox
41 Sissy Spacek
Jimmy Buffett is an American musician, singer-songwriter, actor, author, and businessman. Buffett, who owns the Margaritaville Cafe chain of restaurants, is one of the richest musicians in the world. Also known for his charity work, Jimmy Buffett is credited with founding a non-profit group called Save the Manatee Club, which works towards the conservation of manatees.
French singer and actress, Vanessa Paradis, became a celebrity at the age of 14 with the French song Joe le taxi in 1987. She tasted further success with English songs like Be My Baby and many other French songs. She has also acted in several French films and has modelled regularly for high-end fashion products by Chanel like perfume and handbags.
44 Sean Paul
Sean Paul is a Jamaican recording artist and producer, widely considered one of dancehall's most prolific artists. He is best known for his singles, Temperature and Get Busy. Most of his albums have received Grammy nominations under the Best Reggae Album category.
45 Donna Summer
Rapper Zack de la Rocha, the vocalist for the rock band Rage Against the Machine, also formed the duo One Day as a Lion with drummer Jon Theodore. He supports vegetarianism and the Zapatista (EZLN) movement of Mexico. He also testified against the U.S.’s treatment of Abu-Jamal, at the U.N.
47 Tia Carrere
48 Polo G
Polo G is an American singer, songwriter, rapper, and record executive. Polo G, who became famous for his Chicago drill sound, gradually adopted a more melodic style. Renowned for his vivid storytelling, Polo G's lyrics often reflect on subjects, such as mental health and racism. In 2020, he announced the launch of ODA Records, his own record label.
49 Slick Rick
Slick Rick is an English-American record producer and rapper. He gained national recognition in the mid-1980s when he joined Doug E. Fresh & the Get Fresh Crew. One of the most-sampled artists of all time, Rick’s songs have been interpolated by artists like Eminem. Rick was ranked 15th in the Top 50 Lyricists of All Time list by The Source.