Musicians

A musician is a person who plays one or many musical instrument and is also referred to as an instrumentalist. History has given us some really notable music composers and performers the likes of which include names of people like Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig Van Beethoven. Just like everything else, music too evolved through the ages to churn out various genres. The most noticeable evolution took place in the last 50 years. There was the Rock ‘N Roll era, which preceded the music of the 1980’s. Music underwent yet another slight change and evolved into the music of the 1990’s which was followed by pop music, house, club, trans and many others. To say that the hall of fame is reserved only for the classical musicians would be folly because even the new age music has given us people who have become legends in their own right. We have seen guitarists like Jimmy Hendrix and Jimmy Page (of Led Zepplin), drummers like Mike Portnoy (of the band Dream Theater) and John Bonham (from Led Zeppelin) and even disk jockeys like David Guetta, Swedish House Mafia, and DJ Tiesto. All of them have led very interesting live which deserves a read through. Therefore without further ado, here are the biographies of these famous men and women, along with a few details about their life stories, timelines, trivia, including information about their personal and professional lives.

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

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 1 Freddie Mercury

Freddie Mercury
30
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: September 5, 1946
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: British
Died: November 24, 1991

Legendary singer, songwriter and lead vocalist of the British rock band, Queen, Frederick Bulsara adopted the name Freddie Mercury which aptly suits his on-stage vibrant and exuberant persona. A four-octave vocal range musician, Mercury owned every stage he set foot on as much with his vivid performance as with his superhuman voice modulation.  

 2 Billie Eilish

Billie Eilish
139
Famous As: Singer-Songwriter
Birthdate: December 18, 2001
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: American

A young singer and songwriter who rose to international fame while still in her teens, Billie Eilish is blessed with a soprano vocal range and an ethereal voice. Already the recipient of numerous accolades, including five Grammy awards, she was named in Time magazine’s  inaugural "Time 100 Next" list in 2019.

 3 Eminem

Eminem
27
Famous As: Rapper
Birthdate: October 17, 1972
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American

Amongst the biggest rappers of all time, Eminem gained worldwide popularity with the release of albums like The Slim Shady LP and The Marshall Mathers LP. His subsequent albums became huge successes further making him a bigger sensation and one of the bestselling music artists of all time. His fame greatly inspired other white rappers to succeed in popular music.

 4 Elton John

Elton John
17
Famous As: Singer, Composer
Birthdate: March 25, 1947
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: British
The supremely gifted English singer, songwriter, pianist and composer, Elton John has entertained music lovers globally since the 1970s. His phenomenal talent make him one of the best-selling music artists in the world. Not to forget his tribute to Princess Diana, Candle in the Wind 1997, which till date is one of the best-selling singles in the UK and the US.

 5 Lil Nas X

Lil Nas X
38
Famous As: Rapper
Birthdate: April 9, 1999
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: American

 6 Avicii

Avicii
24
Listed In: Record Producers, DJs
Famous As: Musician, DJ
Birthdate: September 8, 1989
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: Swedish
Died: April 20, 2018

Avicii was a Swedish international DJ, remixer, musician and songwriter. He attained fame with his single, Levels, in 2011. His debut studio album, True, released in 2013 received positive reviews. His second studio album, Stories, was released in 2015. He suffered from mental health issues and died by suicide at age 28. His third album, Tim, was released posthumously in 2019.

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 7 Kurt Cobain

Kurt Donald Cobain
23
Famous As: Singer, Songwriter
Birthdate: February 20, 1967
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: American
Died: April 5, 1994

Gaining fame as a member of the rock band Nirvana, singer-songwriter and musician Kurt Cobain was often heralded as a spokesman of Generation X. He is considered to be one of the most influential musicians in the history of alternative rock. He enjoyed tremendous professional success, but his personal life was troubled. He died of suicide at just 27.

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 8 George Harrison

George Harrison
10
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: February 25, 1943
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: British
Died: November 29, 2001

Gaining fame as the lead guitarist of the rock band, the Beatles, English musician, George Harrison, helped broaden the scope of popular music in the Western world. He was also successful as a solo performer and released many best-selling albums. He was named in Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time

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 9 Alicia Keys

Alicia Keys
18
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: January 25, 1981
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: American

Singer-songwriter Alicia Keys has been active in the music industry since the mid-1990s. Her debut album was a super hit and earned her five Grammy Awards. She is one of the best-selling artists in the United States and has sold over 40 million albums worldwide. She is also known for her humanitarian work, philanthropy, and activism.

 10 Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin
18
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: March 25, 1942
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: American
Died: August 16, 2018

Widely regarded as the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin was a singer-songwriter, actress, and civil rights activist. Recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Aretha was ranked number one on Rolling Stone magazine's 100 Greatest Singers of All Time list in 2010. Having sold over 75 million records, she is also one of the best-selling musicians ever.

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 11 Stevie Nicks

Stevie Nicks
25
Famous As: Singer-Songwriter
Birthdate: May 26, 1948
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: American

Stevie Nicks is a songwriter and vocalist with the British-American rock band, Fleetwood Mac. She also performs solo and is known for her unique voice. She has numerous hits to her credit and her records have sold in millions. She has won many awards, including the Grammy and was named one of the 100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time by the Rolling Stone magazine.

 12 Marshmello

Marshmello
21
Listed In: DJs
Famous As: DJ & Music Producer
Birthdate: May 19, 1992
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American

Marshmello is an American DJ and electronic music producer. In 2017, he was named as one of the world's highest-paid DJs by Forbes magazine. He wears a custom helmet, which looks like a marshmallow, for public appearances, and his identity was unknown at the beginning of his career. He is also a well-known philanthropist and a generous donator.

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 13 Chris Cornell

Chris Cornell
0
Famous As: musician
Birthdate: July 20, 1964
Sun Sign: Cancer
Nationality: American
Died: May 18, 2017

Singer, songwriter, and musician Chris Cornell rose to fame as the lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist for the bands Soundgarden and Audioslave. One of the key figures of the 1990s grunge movement, he also had a successful solo career. Unfortunately, he suffered from depression and died of suicide at the peak of his career.

 14 Ludwig van Beethoven

Ludwig van Beethoven
11
Listed In: Composers
Famous As: Composer
Birthdate: December 16, 1770
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: Austrian, German
Died: March 26, 1827

German composer and pianist, Ludwig van Beethoven, remains one of the most admired composers in the history of Western music even two centuries after his death. Born into a musical family, he was initially tutored by his father. He found success early as a pianist and went on to become an admired composer despite suffering from hearing-impairment.

 15 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
8
Famous As: Composer
Birthdate: January 27, 1756
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: Austrian
Died: December 5, 1791

A child prodigy, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is regarded as one of the greatest classical composers ever. A prolific composer, he had a profound influence on Western music. Many of his works are considered pinnacles of choral, symphonic, operatic, chamber, and concertante music. Before his death, at the age of 35, he had composed over 600 works.

 16 Eddie Van Halen

Eddie Van Halen
44
Listed In: Guitarists
Famous As: Guitarist
Birthdate: January 26, 1955
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: Dutch, American
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.

 17 Jim Morrison

Jim Morrison
4
Listed In: Poets
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: December 8, 1943
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Nationality: American
Died: July 3, 1971

Considered the prototypical rock star, Jim Morrison remains one of the most influential singer-songwriters, almost five decades after his death. Jim influenced the counterculture of the 1960s as he embodied the hippie counterculture rebellion. Due to his erratic performances and wild personality, he is regarded as one of the most iconic frontmen in rock history.

 18 Billy Joel

Billy Joel
4
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: May 9, 1949
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American

Popularly known as the Piano Man, Billy Joel is a singer-songwriter and musician. Having sold more than 150 million records worldwide, Billy is one of the best-selling musicians of all time. He is also America's third best-selling solo artist and the sixth best-selling recording artist. He is also known for his multiple relationships with popular women.

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 19 Ray Charles

Ray Charles
8
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: September 23, 1930
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: American
Died: June 10, 2004

Ray Charles went on to become a great singer-songwriter, composer, and pianist, despite suffering blindness due to glaucoma early in his life. One of the most respected and decorated musicians of all time, Ray Charles has been named in lists, such as 100 Greatest Singers of All Time. He pioneered the soul music genre, which remains his greatest contribution.

 20 Troyal Garth Brooks

Troyal Garth Brooks
2
Famous As: American singer-songwriter
Birthdate: February 7, 1962
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: American

Troyal Garth Brooks is an American singer-songwriter. Having sold over 170 million records worldwide, Brooks is one of the best-selling musicians in the world. He is also the best-selling solo albums musician in the US. Also known for his charitable activities, Garth Brooks established the Teammates for Kids Foundation in 1999, which provides financial support to charities for kids.

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 21 Joe Pesci

Joseph Frank Pesci
8
Listed In: Actors
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: February 9, 1943
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: American

 22 Prince

Prince
0
Famous As: African-American Singer
Birthdate: June 7, 1958
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: American
Died: April 21, 2016

Singer-songwriter, dancer, and musician, Prince is is widely regarded as one of the greatest musicians of his generation. He was considered a guitar virtuoso and could also play several other instruments. With worldwide sales of over 150 million records, he is ranked among the best-selling music artists of all time. He was also well known for his flamboyant persona.

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 23 Amy Jade Winehouse

Amy Jade Winehouse
20
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: September 14, 1983
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: British
Died: July 23, 2011
Soul and jazz singer Amy Winehouse is best remembered for her tracks Stronger Than Me and Rehab. She was the first British female to win five Grammys. Following her death due to alcohol poisoning at age 27, her album Back to Black became U.K.’s best-selling album of the 21st century.

 24 Khalid (Singer)

Khalid (Singer)
6
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: February 11, 1998
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: American

Khalid is an American singer-songwriter whose work in Logic’s hit single 1-800-273-8255 earned him a nomination at the Grammy Awards. He has also received prestigious awards, such as Billboard Music Awards, MTV Video Music Award, and American Music Awards. In 2019, he was named in Time magazine's list of 100 Most Influential People.

 25 Lizzo

Lizzo
12
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: April 27, 1988
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American
Three-time Grammy-winning rap and hip-hop sensation Lizzo is also a queer and body-positivity icon. She began singing with groups such as The Chalice and Grrrl Prty, and graced the Billboard 200 with the album Cuz I Love You. Time’s 2019 Entertainer of the Year, Lizzo is also a talented flute-player.

 26 Queen Latifah

Queen Latifah
6
Famous As: Rapper
Birthdate: March 18, 1970
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: American

Queen Latifah is an American musician and actress whose song U.N.I.T.Y. played a major role in raising awareness about women's rights worldwide. Dubbed Queen of Jazz-Rap, Latifah has influenced several soul, R&B, and hip-hop artists like Remy Ma, Lil' Kim, Ivy Queen, Missy Elliott, Lauryn Hill, and Eve among other artists. As an actress, Latifah has won several prestigious awards.

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 27 Slash

Slash
2
Listed In: Guitarists
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: July 23, 1965
Sun Sign: Cancer
Nationality: British, American

Slash is an English-American songwriter, musician, and record producer. After achieving popularity as the lead guitarist of Guns N' Roses, Slash left the band to form Velvet Revolver, a hard rock supergroup. Widely regarded as one of the greatest guitar players in the history of rock, Slash is often named in lists, such as the Top Guitarists of All Time.

 28 Meek Mill

Meek Mill
2
Listed In: Rappers
Famous As: Hip-hop Artist
Birthdate: May 6, 1987
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American
Rapper Meek Mill initially performed with the group The Bloodhoundz. His debut album was featured at number 2 on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart. He has released Billboard-charting tracks such as Amen and Going Bad, both featuring Drake. His brushes with the law inspired the documentary Free Meek.

 29 Alanis Morisette

Alanis Morisette
0
Famous As: American-Canadian singer-songwriter
Birthdate: June 1, 1974
Sun Sign: Gemini
Nationality: Canadian

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.

 30 Christopher Maurice Brown

Christopher Maurice Brown
0
Famous As: American singer-songwriter
Birthdate: May 5, 1989
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American

 31 Hank Williams

Hank Williams
10
Famous As: Father of contemporary country music
Birthdate: September 17, 1923
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: American
Died: January 1, 1953

Musician Hank Williams is widely considered one of the most influential and significant American singer-songwriters of the 20th century. Hank Williams influenced several singers, such as Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Chuck Berry, Johnny Cash, and Charley Pride to name a few. Since his untimely death at the age of 29, many artists have released tribute albums honoring Hank Williams.  

 32 Chuck Berry

Chuck Berry
2
Listed In: Guitarists
Famous As: Guitarist
Birthdate: October 18, 1926
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American
Died: March 18, 2017

Chuck Berry was an American singer-songwriter. Referred to as the Father of Rock and Roll, Berry is credited with pioneering rock and roll music. He is also credited with influencing the attitude with which the rock music lifestyle is usually associated. Also revered for his guitaring skills, Berry is often included in lists like the Greatest Artists of All Time.

 33 John Mayer

John Mayer
4
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: October 16, 1977
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American
John Mayer went from working at a gas station to producing the multi-platinum albums Room for Squares and Heavier Things and winning multiple Grammys. He has worked with bands such as the John Mayer Trio and Dead & Company. He has written for Esquire, donates to charities, and collects watches. 

 34 Neil Young

Neil Young
2
Famous As: Singer-Songwriter
Birthdate: November 12, 1945
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Nationality: Canadian

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.

 35 Willie Nelson

Willie Nelson
21
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: April 29, 1933
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American

An accomplished musician and one of the most popular names of the late 20th century American country music, Willie Nelson garnered fame with his albums Shotgun Willie, Red Headed Stranger, Stardust and Always on My Mind. The multiple Grammy award winning musician, who continues to record even today, has also appeared in numerous films and authored a number of books.

 36 Louis Armstrong

Louis Armstrong
8
Listed In: Jazz Musicians
Famous As: Trumpeter
Birthdate: August 4, 1901
Sun Sign: Leo
Nationality: American
Died: July 6, 1971

Louis Armstrong was an American trumpeter and singer who played an important role in the development of jazz. Thanks to his playing, trumpet became known as a solo instrument and jazz, which was previously known as a collectively improvised folk music, became a soloist's art form. Not surprisingly, Louis Armstrong is widely accepted as the embodiment of jazz. 

 37 Hans Zimmer

Hans Zimmer
2
Listed In: Record Producers
Famous As: Film score composer
Birthdate: September 12, 1957
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: German

German film score composer and record producer Hans Zimmer has composed music for over 150 films so far. He developed a love for music as a child and started playing professionally when he was in his teens. He eventually ventured into films. He is the recipient of four Grammy Awards and three Classical BRIT Awards.

 38 Jimmy Page

Jimmy Page
2
Listed In: Guitarists
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: January 9, 1944
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Nationality: British

An English musician, songwriter, and record producer, Jimmy Page gained international recognition as the founder of the popular rock band Led Zeppelin. Widely regarded as one of the most influential and greatest guitarists of all time, Jimmy Page was ranked third in Rolling Stone magazine's list of 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time. Jimmy Page has influenced several popular guitarists.

 39 Lewis Capaldi

Lewis Capaldi
8
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: October 7, 1996
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: British, Scottish

Lewis Capaldi's success story is one of the greatest testimonies to the fact that magical things can happen when talent meets opportunity. From being just another aspiring singer, he quickly became a popular singer-songwriter in the UK and the US after Ryan Walter stumbled upon his iPhone recording on his SoundCloud account. Subsequently, he was signed to Universal Music Group.

 40 Sabrina Carpenter

Sabrina Carpenter
2
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: May 11, 1999
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American

A Radio Disney Music Award winner, Sabrina Carpenter is a popular actress and singer. After finishing third in a singing contest called The Next Miley Cyrus Project, Sabrina landed acting roles before launching her music career. Although described as a teen pop singer, she has explored various other genres, such as country, folk pop, and acoustic.

 41 Chance the Rapper

Chance the Rapper
10
Famous As: Rapper
Birthdate: April 16, 1993
Sun Sign: Aries
Nationality: American
Chance the Rapper is best known for his Billboard-charting mixtape Coloring Book, which was the first streaming-only album to earn a Grammy. An avid social activist in Chicago, he owns the non-profit SocialWorks. He is known for his signature style of wearing a cap with the number "3" on it.

 42 Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson
62
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: August 29, 1958
Sun Sign: Virgo
Nationality: American
Died: June 25, 2009

The King of Pop and an international superstar, Michael Jackson was a musical entertainer whose work – both with Jackson 5 and solo – won accolades and hearts worldwide. Equally popular were his unique dance moves that created sensation and shaped future dance styles. Amongst the most successful entertainers of all time, Jackson was later accused of child molestation.  

 43 Nina Simone

Nina Simone
2
Famous As: Singer-songwriter, Composer
Birthdate: February 21, 1933
Sun Sign: Pisces
Nationality: American
Died: April 21, 2003

Widely regarded as one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century, Nina Simone was a pioneering recording artist whose career was characterized by improvisational genius and fits of outrage. Nina continues to be an important musician and has influenced several artists like Elton John, Adele, David Bowie, Madonna, and Aretha Franklin. She was also a civil rights activist.

 44 Tommy Lee

Tommy Lee
2
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: October 3, 1962
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: Greek, American
Best known as the drummer and founding member of the bands Mötley Crüe and Methods of Mayhem, Tommy Lee Bass has been riddled with major controversies and has even spent time in jail for spousal abuse. Brash and bold, he has also been named to VH1's 100 Sexiest Artists list.

 45 Seal

Seal
6
Famous As: Singer-songwriter
Birthdate: February 19, 1963
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: British

Seal is a British singer and songwriter. He has received several prestigious awards over the course of his career. Also known for his charity work, Seal has performed at several charity events in an attempt to help non-profit organizations, such as the Make It Right Foundation.

 46 Carole King

Carole King
0
Famous As: Composer
Birthdate: February 9, 1942
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: American

Carole King is an American singer-songwriter. As a songwriter, King has contributed immensely to the success of other singers and is widely regarded as one of the most successful female songwriters of the 20th century. In 2013, she became the first woman to be honored with the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.

 47 Axl Rose

Axl Rose
2
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: February 6, 1962
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: American
Rock and Roll Hall of Famer W. Axl Rose, being true to his rebel spirit, fled to Los Angeles on a bus at 17, before he co-founded the legendary hard rock band Guns N' Roses. Working as the lead vocalist/lyricist of the band, he soon became a global sex symbol. 

 48 Roy Orbison

Roy Orbison
0
Famous As: Singer-Songwriter
Birthdate: April 23, 1936
Sun Sign: Taurus
Nationality: American
Died: December 6, 1988
Six-time Grammy-winner Texan rocker Roy Orbison gained fame with songs such as Oh, Pretty Woman and Drove All Night. His shyness and stage fright made him dye his hair black and wear sunglasses. The "Caruso of Rock" was part of the Traveling Wilburys, along with legends such as Bob Dylan.

 49 Paul Simon

Paul Simon
2
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: October 13, 1941
Sun Sign: Libra
Nationality: American

One half of the popular musical duo Simon & Garfunkel, Paul Simon is a singer-songwriter, musician, and actor. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest guitarists and songwriters of all time. His career, which has spanned more than 60 years, has been so influential that Time named him among the 100 People Who Shaped the World in 2006.

 50 Brandy Norwood

Brandy Norwood
2
Famous As: Singer-songwriter, Composer, Actor, Record producer
Birthdate: February 11, 1979
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Nationality: American

The singer of chartbuster songs like The Boy Is Mine, I Wanna be Down and Sittin' Up in My Room, Brandy Norwood is known for her raspy and husky voice. Most of her songs are about love, relationships and heartache. She was involved in a car accident in 2006, leading to multiple lawsuits, which were eventually settled out of court.

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