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Artists Lists Project: Seeking Other Lists

Some posters have discussed coming up with a ranking of artists based on artists lists. Naturally, there aren't going to be as many lists/sources as there are for albums and songs/tracks. Because of the lack of titles compared to those for albums/songs, I'm taking into account some reader/viewer lists (i.e. VH1 UK) and am including lists however they're phrased- whether it be Greatest Artists/Icons/Stars. I'm even including Entertainers lists from sources such as Entertainment Weekly and Variety, as some music acts fare well on those.

I have collected a number of lists/sources. The all-inclusive features will carry more weight than specific lists dealing with women, country acts, hip-hop acts, hard rock acts, etc. etc. Also, viewer-vote lists probably will carry as high a weight as non-reader-/viewer-vote lists.

For something like the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, instant-inductees-upon-eligibility will receive the most points, followed by breakdowns (i.e. acts getting in in 1-3 years of their eligibility receive the next highest points, followed by 4-6 years and so forth).

Here are the lists I have thus far. Basically, I'm looking for any list contributions AM posters may have, that are not listed here. Single-critic lists from notable sources are OK for this (as you can see by some of the lists below).

Thanks in advance. :-) This is a project that will take some time to complete, as you can imagine.

U.S. Lists

* Billboard (USA): 20th Century Music Encyclopedia: The Century's Enduring Icons
* Blender (USA): 50 Geniuses of Rock/Pop
* Blender/MTV (USA): 22 Greatest Voices in Music (2005)
* Bob Gulla (USA): Icons of R&B and Soul: An Encyclopedia of the Artists Who Revolutionized Rhythm (2007)
* Carrie Havranek (USA): Women Icons of Popular Music: The Rebels, Rockers and Renegades (2008)
* CD Review (USA): 10 Greatest Performers (1994)
* CMT (USA): 40 Greatest Women of Country Music (2002)
* CMT (USA): 40 Greatest Men of Country Music (2002)
* CNN International: 20 Iconic Musicians (2010)
* Dale Sherman (USA): 20th Century Rock & Roll-A Guide to the Artists Who Made the Century's Greatest Rock Music: Women in Rock (2001)
* Dave Marsh (USA), New Book of Rock Lists: Most Important Women: Female Performers Who’ve Made the Greatest Impact (Top 40)
* Discovery Channel/AOL (USA): The 100 Greatest Americans (2005)
* Entertainment Weekly (USA): 100 Greatest Entertainers (1999)
* Grammy (USA): Legend Award
* Grammy (USA): Lifetime Achievement Award
* Kathleen Krull and Stephen Alcorn: Book of Rock Stars: The 24 Musical Icons That Shine Through History (2003)
* LIFE Magazine (USA): Top 100 Rock & Rollers of All Time (2004)
* Michael Heatley (USA): The Definitive Illustrated History of Rock: Key Artists (2006)
* Mickey Hess (USA): Icons of Hip-Hop: An Encyclopedia of the Movement, Music and Culture (2007)
* MTV (USA): Video Vanguard Award
* MTV (USA): 25 Greatest Video Stars (2003)
* MTV (USA): The 10 Greatest Hip-Hop MCs of All Time (2006)
* MTV (USA): The 10 Greatest Hip-Hop Groups of All Time (2007)
* People (USA): 25 Legends of the Last 25 Years (1974-1999)
* Robert Christgau (USA), Growing Up Wrong: 75 Great Rock and Pop Artists From Vaudeville to Techno (1998)
* Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (USA)
* Rolling Stone (USA): The Immortals- 100 Greatest Artists (2004)
* Rolling Stone (USA): 100 Greatest Singers (2008)
* Rosanne Orgill (USA): Shout, Sister, Shout! Ten Girl Singers Who Shaped a Century (2001)
* Scott Schinder and Amy Schwartz (USA): Icons of Rock: An Encyclopedia of the Legends Who Changed Music Forever (2007)
* Spin (USA): The Ten Artists That Mattered Most, 1985-1995
* Spin (USA): 50 Greatest Bands of All Time (2002)
* The Stranger (USA): Everett True's List of The Ten * Greatest Female Singers of the 20th Century
* Variety (USA): Top 100 Stars of the Century
* Variety (USA): 100 Years…100 Icons (2005)
* VH1 (USA): 100 Greatest Artists of Rock & Roll (1998)
* VH1 (USA): 100 Greatest Women of Rock (1999)
* VH1 (USA): 100 Greatest Artists of All Time (2010)
* VH1 (USA): 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock
* VH1 (USA): 50 Greatest Hip-Hop Artists
* VH1 (USA): 200 Greatest Pop Culture Icons (2003)
* VH1 (USA): 50 Greatest Women of the Video Era (2003)
* Women Who Rock (USA): 100 Essential Women in Music (2001)
* Women Who Rock (USA): 50 Women Who Rocked the World (2003)

UK, Other Lists

* Aftonbladet (Sweden): The Artists of the Century (1999)
* Guardian Unlimited (UK): The 40 Best British Bands Today (2003)
* Guardian Unlimited (UK): The 40 Best U.S. Bands Today (2003)
* HMV/Channel 4/ClassicFM (UK): Music of the Millennium Poll
* Mojo (UK): 100 Greatest Singers (1998)
* NME (UK): 50 Greatest Artists of All Time (2002)
* Q (UK): The 100 Greatest Stars Of The 20th Century (1999)
* Q (UK): Icons: The Greatest Music Stars of All Time (2004)
* Q (UK): 100 Women Who Rock the World (2002)
* Q (UK): The Ultimate Music Collection: Five Essential Artists (2005)
* Q (UK): 50 Bands That Changed the World (2004)
* Q (UK): 100 Greatest Singers (4/07)
* Q (UK): 50 Bands You Must See Before You Die (2002)
* Q (UK): The 21 People Who Changed Music (2007)
* The Sun (UK): 10 Dynamic Divas (2007)
* UK Music Hall of Fame
* VH1 (UK)/Heart 106.2 100 Artists of the Millennium
* VH1 (UK): Top 100 Greatest Pop Culture Icons
* VH1 (UK): 100 Greatest Women (1999/2000*)
* VH1 (UK): 100 Greatest Women (2002)

Re: Artists Lists Project: Seeking Other Lists

Well if you're going to include 100 Greatest Singers, why not Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Guitarists. If you look down the list it seems pretty obvious to me that Rolling Stone has ranked many of them on artistry rather than guitar-playing ability.



I had thought of that one, too. That's a fine addition.

Mojo also had a list, where it also included an outstanding album or track. I guess that could be included, too.

Also- for lists that cite members of groups- if a list speaks specifically about individuals, then I will lump those citations in with the group. For instance, McCartney and Lennon on lists like 100 Greatest Stars of the Century, 100 Icons, etc. If the list includes The Beatles and those guys individually, then the individual member citations would count toward their solo-artist acclaim.

Of course, that gets tricky, as some acts were members of more than one prominent group. However, in a lot of those cases, those acts' amount of list appearances, from what I've seen, isn't comparable to the amount enjoyed by the biggies.

Re: Artists Lists Project: Seeking Other Lists

Lists from les Inrocks "50 ans du rock" included in acclaimed music for albums were presented as artists lists by the magazine much more than as albums lists.

You can find the lists here

to be precise :
there are 4 lists of 50 artists (80-90s, hidden treasures, 70s and 60s), the other albums cited are either albums bubbling unders or subcategories.
I don't know if that all seems clear but well, those are basically artists list, completed with albums.

Thanks, Nassim...

if I'm understanding those entries correctly, all of the listed acts were part of an "Essential Artists" feature, even the ones in the first post? Or was that first post only for albums?

Other features I have yet to look at are honorees of the Country Music Hall of Fame and VH1 Hip-Hop Honors- I think they'd be alright to add to the to-do list.

Also- Philip Dodd's The Book of Rock includes 500 artists- that will be included, too. As will Time's 100 Persons of the Century (which only included six musicians, but, still, a noteworthy list). As well as other century-type lists that include music acts in the mix.

Re: Thanks, Nassim...

Here's a link to DMDB's Top 100 Acts of All Time...He's got plenty of other lists for songwriters and musicians...Hope it helps for your project JR...My personal fave act of all time is PIXIES!!!

Thanks, o.m...

that looks to be a collective based on various lists- kinda like what I'm working on. :) But, it also includes lists based on chart/sales success, too. I may find a list in there that I didn't have, though.

Thank you also for the link to Porcy's list of Essential music acts (I think it was you who posted it. At some point, I'll post an update of what lists I have collected.

Re: Thanks, Nassim...

if I'm understanding those entries correctly, all of the listed acts were part of an "Essential Artists" feature, even the ones in the first post? Or was that first post only for albums?

I had not seen you asked a question sorry !

The first post is the 80-90s post, it includes 50 artists + 12 French Albums (those under the "French Rock" brackets) and 20 Bubbling Under Albums !
I know it can seem quite strange to mix Artists and Albums but the idea was to highlight 50 artists + 20 albums they consider great even though the artists might not be as great as the 50 others (which is still quite strange since they more or less admit to have put Mercury Rev in their list only based on Deserter's Song).

olivier's second post deals with the Inrocks issue about the "beautiful losers", great artists which have not met global success.
I works with the same idea, the 50 chosen by the magasine are those in capital letters in paragraphes not starting by brackets and above the + 10 Great LP's By Not So Great Bands section !
Below that, it is only albums picks.

Third post, about the 70s, works the same : don't take the "dub" paragraph, the bubblegum one and the bubbling unders.

Same for the 60s, I remembered the "Seattle" page to be only about the Sonics but it might not (which is a shame since that would exclude them).
Don't take the Stax vs Motown section either, it leaves Otis Redding behind very sadly, but Marvin and Stevie are both there and on their own pages, so I guess he should not count.

You should then have 200 artists ! I hope it is clearer (it might be easier if I answered to olivier's topic with the 200 artists list, I could do that if you need).

Re: Thanks, Nassim...

Hey JR I found a few lists here that might interest you!

For those interested I compiled the 5 lists above and came up with a very nice top 201 "alternative" artists list...Here's the top 50...

1 Nirvana
2 Red Hot Chili Peppers
3 U2
4 Depeche Mode
5 Radiohead
6 Green Day
7 Pearl Jam
8 The Cure
9 The Smashing Pumpkins
10 Beastie Boys
11 The Ramones
12 The Smiths
13 The Clash
14 Stone Temple Pilots
15 Sublime
16 Foo Fighters
17 Weezer
18 Incubus
19 blink-182
20 Linkin Park
21 Morrissey
22 Beck
23 No Doubt
24 New Order
25 Alice In Chains
26 Coldplay
27 Oasis
28 The Police
29 311
30 Nine Inch Nails
31 Bush
32 The Sex Pistols
33 The Strokes
34 Rage Against The Machine
35 R.E.M.
36 Garbage
37 Jane's Addiction
38 Bob Marley & the Wailers
39 Soundgarden
40 The Offspring
41 Pixies
42 Tool
43 System Of A Down
44 Social Distortion
45 Jimmy Eat World
46 Violent Femmes
47 Korn
48 Echo & the Bunnymen
49 The White Stripes
50 Rancid

Oh, and I found another one that might interest you...


Re: Artists Lists Project: Seeking Other Lists

NME's 20 most influential artists in history:

Time Out's 30 most important acts 1968-98:

Incidentally, Bowie is number 1 on both.

Re: Artists Lists Project: Seeking Other Lists

Regarding the NME poll: I'll admit that I am a dinosaur when it comes to music, but do you young kids really believe that artists 12-15


are really "more influential" than artist no. 16:



Maybe cooler or more hip, but I have a hard time believing more influential. Dylan re-wrote the book and ushered in the modern era of pop music.

Re: Artists Lists Project: Seeking Other Lists

The Time Out list of "important" artists has The Happy Mondays listed above The Clash (formerly "the only band that matters").


Also, I can't make sense out of Bob Marley at No. 3 most important while The Rolling Stones are way down at No. 25. The Stones had as big an impact on rock as Marley had on reggae. Is reggae really that much more important than rock?

Re: Artists Lists Project: Seeking Other Lists

Regarding the NME poll: I'll admit that I am a dinosaur when it comes to music, but do you young kids really believe that artists 12-15


are really "more influential" than artist no. 16:



Maybe cooler or more hip, but I have a hard time believing more influential. Dylan re-wrote the book and ushered in the modern era of pop music.

That is a horrible list. How is Radiohead even close to the second most influential, and how are the Velvet Underground only number 18 (behind Mos Def)? And is whose dream world is Nick Drake a more influential singer-songwriter than Dylan?

Re: Artists Lists Project: Seeking Other Lists

hi JR, here's another list that might interest you for your project...
When will you tabulate the results...? I can't wait...