These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time Bands/Musicians

These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

249k votes 22k voters 372k views 867 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Vote on whether or not you think the songwriters should be considered the best of all time

If you ask anyone who has ever tried, it's tough to write one song, nevertheless a batch to be considered a songwriter. Add to the mix that the song actually getting recorded and becoming a hit, it's pretty hard to be a great songwriter. Yet that's what make the greatest songwriters different from Average Joe who has tried to pen a song. The best songwriters usually have written multiple hits that not only their most ardent fans know, but also casual listeners.

John Lennon and Paul McCartney are considered two the best songwriters. The Beatles were fueled by this legendary duo's prowess and are debatably the greatest band because these two outstanding songwriters.

Similarly to Lennon and McCartney, Bob Dylan is another songwriter who can be considered one of the greatest of all time. Dylan's songwriting introduced powerful imagery and themes that were deeply layered within the context of his writing. His songwriting influenced an entire generation of bands, songwriters and fans, including another member of this list, Bruce Springsteen.

This is the Ultimate List of the greatest songwriters of all time. Everyone on this list is considered one of the best at his or her craft. Vote for the songwriter who you think is the greatest, which shouldn't be too easy with a list like this one.
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Collection Photo:  via wikimedia
  • 117 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 5,540
    - 3,092

    the people's #1

    ;
  2. 2
    + 4,891
    - 3,527
    Bob Dylan is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    most listed
    Highway 61 Revisited, Blood on the Tracks, Blonde on Blonde

  3. 3
    + 4,972
    - 2,819
    Brian Wilson is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time


    SMiLE, What I Really Want for Christmas, Orange Crate Art

  4. 4
    + 2,829
    - 2,154
    Paul Simon is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time


    Graceland, Still Crazy After All These Years, So Beautiful or So What

  5. 5
    + 2,483
    - 2,419

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Harvest, Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, After the Gold Rush

    ;
  6. 6
    + 2,888
    - 2,207
    George Harrison is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time


    All Things Must Pass, Cloud Nine, Living in the Material World

  7. 7
    + 2,047
    - 1,981
    David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, Hunky Dory, ...

  8. 8
    + 5,682
    - 4,229
    Prince is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Purple Rain, Sign 'O' the Times, 1999

  9. 9
    + 2,228
    - 1,907
    Stevie Wonder is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    often listed
    Songs in the Key of Life, Innervisions, Talking Book

  10. 10
    + 2,815
    - 2,811

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Blue, Court and Spark, Ladies of the Canyon

    ;
  11. 11
    + 2,249
    - 1,221

    ranked low on reranks
    Imagine, John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band, Double Fantasy

    ;
  12. 12
    + 2,330
    - 2,345
    Bruce Springsteen is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Born to Run, Born in the U.S.A., The Rising

  13. 13
    + 1,540
    - 781
    Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by JasonWitherspoon
    Flaming Pie, Ram, McCartney

  14. 14
    + 1,504
    - 1,097

    ranked low on reranks & added by mjhegger
    American V: A Hundred Highways, American IV: The Man Comes Around, At ...

    ;
  15. 15
    + 1,948
    - 2,072

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Songs of Leonard Cohen, Songs of Love and Hate, Old Ideas

    ;
  16. 16
    + 1,998
    - 1,648
    Elton John and Bernie Taupin is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time
  17. 17
    + 1,695
    - 1,257
    Carole King is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time


    Tapestry, Wrap Around Joy, Music

  18. 18
    + 2,009
    - 1,650


    Working Man's Café, The Storyteller, Thanksgiving Day

    ;
  19. 19
    + 673
    - 331
    Freddie Mercury is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by coldspacemusic
    The Solo Collection, Barcelona, Mr. Bad Guy

  20. 20
    + 1,598
    - 1,206
    Billy Joel is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    added by wiabux
    The Stranger, Piano Man, 52nd Street

  21. 21
    + 1,442
    - 1,302


    Astral Weeks, Moondance, Saint Dominic's Preview

    ;
  22. 22
    + 1,255
    - 1,139

    added by wiabux
    Sun Is Shining, One Love, Rainbow Country

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  23. 23
    + 1,602
    - 1,742

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Rain Dogs, Mule Variations, Blood Money

    ;
  24. 24
    + 1,451
    - 1,381


    Empty Glass, Psychoderelict (Music Only), White City

    ;
  25. 25
    + 1,005
    - 648

    ranked low on reranks
    Buddy, 20 Golden Greats, What You Been A-Missin': What You've Been ...

    ;
  26. 26
    + 1,357
    - 1,281

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    First Rays of the New Rising Sun, Band of Gypsys, Voodoo Child: The Jimi ...

    ;
  27. 27
    + 1,410
    - 974
    George Gershwin is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Masters of the Roll (disc 1), An American in Paris, Porgy & Bess

  28. 28
    + 1,191
    - 1,080
    John Fogerty is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time


    Deja Vu All Over Again, Hoodoo, Centerfield

  29. 29
    + 1,583
    - 1,066


    Symphony Edition, Classical Anthology, Eternal Classics

    ;
  30. 30
    + 1,068
    - 946


    The Great Twenty-Eight, Maybellene, Two Great Guitars

    ;
  31. 31
    + 973
    - 935
    James Taylor is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    added by StacyWolfe
    Sweet Baby James, A Christmas Album, James Taylor at Christmas

  32. 32
    + 1,071
    - 1,241

    often listed
    This Year's Model, Armed Forces, Get Happy!!

    ;
  33. 33
    + 290
    - 92
    Simon and Garfunkel is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by jmmikkola
    Bridge Over Troubled Water, Sounds of Silence, Bookends

  34. 34
    + 637
    - 591

    added by KellySouthworth
    Paris Jim, Dionysus

    ;
  35. 35
    + 1,327
    - 1,046


    Symphony Edition, Classical Anthology, Symphonies Nos. 1-9 (feat. piano: ...

    ;
  36. 36
    + 966
    - 1,010

    added by MohammadrezaMomeni
    The Pros and Cons of Hitch Hiking, Amused to Death, When the Wind Blows ...

    ;
  37. 37
    + 1,476
    - 1,852

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Excitable Boy, The Wind, I'll Sleep When I'm Dead: An Anthology

    ;
  38. 38
    + 725
    - 853

    added by wiabux
    Heroes, Pretty Paper, Countryman

    ;
  39. 39
    + 1,071
    - 1,017
    Hank Williams is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Cold, Cold Heart, Beyond the Sunset

  40. 40
    + 1,077
    - 1,493
    Lou Reed is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Transformer, Berlin, New York

  41. 41
    + 898
    - 856

    added by StacyWolfe
    Full Moon Fever, Wildflowers, Highway Companion

    ;
  42. 42
    + 1,012
    - 1,049
    Peter Gabriel is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Peter Gabriel, Us, Security

  43. 43
    + 443
    - 280

    ranked low on reranks
    What's Going On, Here, My Dear

    ;
  44. 44
    + 273
    - 168
    Burt Bacharach is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by dudedude
    Painted From Memory, Toledo (disc 1), The Look of Love: The Burt Bacharach ...

  45. 45
    + 1,606
    - 1,475
    Kate Bush is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    added by tomeksj
    Hounds of Love, The Dreaming, The Kick Inside

  46. 46
    + 358
    - 234
    Sam Cooke is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    added by jprovince
    Night Beat, Shake, Touch the Hem of His Garment: 23 Gospel Gems

  47. 47
    + 1,827
    - 2,058

    often listed & added by tomeksj
    Little Earthquakes, From the Choirgirl Hotel, Strange Little Girls

    ;
  48. 48
    + 449
    - 345


    Warm Thoughts, Where There's Smoke, Anthology (disc 3)

    ;
  49. 49
    + 830
    - 840
    Stevie Nicks is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    added by MaeganBell
    Bella Donna, Buckingham Nicks, Trouble in Shangri-La

  50. 50
    + 665
    - 702
    Mick Jagger is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list These Poetic Geniuses Wrote Your Favorite Songs of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Wandering Spirit, Goddess in the Doorway, The Very Best of Mick Jagger

868 +

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