Person The All Time Greatest Muses in the Music World

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Behind every love song there exists a story of true love. From John Lennon to Mick Jagger to Peter Gabriel to Bob Dylan, these rockstars owe some of their most popular hits to the ladies behind them. Granted, there have been many male muses (it's rumored that Carly Simon's "You're So Vain" is about Warren Beatty and Alanis Morissette's "You Oughta Know" is about Dave Coulier), but the majority of history's most famous muses of rockstars have been women. 

Some of these famous musician muses were pivotal in the careers of multiple musicians, like Pattie Boyd (who was a muse for both George Harrison and Eric Clapton) or Courtney Love (who inspired both Kurt Cobain and Billy Corgan). And some muses inspired people who didn't even know them (Neil Diamond thanks Caroline Kennedy for inspiring the biggest hit of his career).
 
This list includes some of the music's all time greatest muses. They weren't just groupies. They weren't just side pieces. They weren't just flashes in the pan. They were people who helped create some of the best songs to ever be produced, and without them, the world would be missing out on some true musical magic.
Bebe Buell is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The All Time Greatest Muses in the Music World
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Bebe Buell


During the 1970s, Bebe Buell was known as a rock muse to the likes of Steven Tyler and Mick Jagger, inspiring some of their top hits. Other rock stars she dated or inspired included Iggy Pop, Jimmy Page, Rod Stewart, Todd Rundgren, and Elvis Costello.

Buell was the basis for the character Penny Lane in the film Almost Famous, and she is the mother of actress Liv Tyler.

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Age: 62

Birthplace: Portsmouth, Virginia, United States of America

Nationality: United States of America

Profession: Model, Singer

Children: Liv Tyler

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#99 on Celebrities You Didn't Know Use Stage Names

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Linda McCartney is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The All Time Greatest Muses in the Music World
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Linda McCartney


Linda Eastman married Paul McCartney in 1969, and from then on was McCartney's mate and inspiration for every love song he wrote from then on out. The Beatles' song "I Will," as well as Wings' "My Love" and Paul's "Maybe I'm Amazed" were all written for Linda, who passed away in 1998 from cancer. "Any love song I write," Paul said in 1997, "is written for Linda."

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Age: Died at 57 (1941-1998)

Birthplace: New York City, New York, USA

Nationality: United States of America

Profession: Film Score Composer, Entrepreneur, Musician, Film Producer Actor, + more

Cause Of Death: Breast cancer

Place Of Death: Tucson, Arizona, United States of America

Children: Stella McCartney, James McCartney, Mary McCartney, Heather McCartney

Also Ranked

#202 on People We Wish Were Still Alive

#144 on Rock Stars Whose Deaths Were The Most Untimely

#53 on List of Famous Jewish Singers and Songwriters

#10 on Famous People Named Linda

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Edie Sedgwick is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The All Time Greatest Muses in the Music World
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Edie Sedgwick


True, she was Andy Warhol's muse and became his superstar pet and inspiration for many of his films, but musically, Sedgwick also was a muse for the legendary Bob Dylan. When the two dated, Dylan wrote several songs about the would-be star, including "Just Like a Woman" and "Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat." Warhol was livid that Sedgwick had left him to become a muse for Dylan, and it was after this relationship that her drug use spiraled out of control.

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Age: Died at 28 (1943-1971)

Birthplace: Santa Barbara, California, United States of America

Nationality: United States of America

Profession: Socialite, Model, Actor, Artist

Cause Of Death: Drug overdose, Barbiturate overdose, Barbiturate

Place Of Death: Santa Barbara, California, United States of America

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#180 on Famous Drug-related Deaths & Celebrity Drug Overdoses

#29 on Famous Boarding School Alumni

#30 on 300+ Famous People Who Went to Prep School

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Yoko Ono is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The All Time Greatest Muses in the Music World
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Yoko Ono


For better or worse, Yoko Ono was John Lennon's muse. Some say she tore apart The Beatles, however some think she was responsible for helping Lennon create some of his best music. Ono was a painter, sculptor, photographer, singer-songwriter, and and peace activist, and you can see her influence in Lennon songs such as "Oh Yoko," "Dear Yoko," "The Ballad of John and Yoko," and the #2 hit "Woman."

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Age: 82

Birthplace: Japan, Tokyo

Nationality: Japan

Profession: Film Score Composer, Musician, Film Producer, Screenwriter Author, + more

Children: Sean Lennon, Kyoko Chan Cox

Also Ranked

#579 on The Best Singers of All Time

#27 on The Worst Bands of All Time

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Caroline Kennedy is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The All Time Greatest Muses in the Music World
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Caroline Kennedy


"Sweet Caroline" by Neil Diamond is perhaps the best karaoke song of all time and in 2007, Diamond finally revealed that it was President John F. Kennedy's daughter, Caroline, that inspired the song. After seeing a picture of the girl, Diamond wrote the song that would become the most famous of his career. "It was a picture of a little girl dressed to the nines in her riding gear, next to her pony," Diamond recalled. "It was such an innocent, wonderful picture, I immediately felt there was a song in there."

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Age: 58

Birthplace: New York City, Manhattan, USA, New York

Nationality: France, United States of America

Profession: Spokesperson, Editor, Politician, Author Writer, + more

Children: Jack Schlossberg, Rose Schlossberg, Tatiana Schlossberg

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#43 on List of Members of the Kennedy Family

#149 on 300+ Famous People Who Went to Prep School

#11 on Famous People Named Caroline

#13 on Famous People Whose Last Name Is Kennedy

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Marianne Faithfull is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The All Time Greatest Muses in the Music World
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Marianne Faithfull


Marianne Faithfull left her husband to live with Mick Jagger and in turn became the definition of rock star girlfriend. Faithfull is said to have influenced songs including "Sympathy for the Devil," "You Can't Always Get What You Want," "Wild Horses," and "Let's Spend the Night Together." Jagger and Faithfull were together for five years, but after they broke up, she was left penniless and drug-addicted.

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Age: 69

Birthplace: England, London, Hampstead

Nationality: United Kingdom, England

Profession: Songwriter, Actor, Singer

Children: Nicholas Dunbar

Medical Conditions: Breast cancer

Also Ranked

#521 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#223 on The Best Female Vocalists Ever

#490 on The Best Rock Bands of All Time

#140 on The Best British Rock Bands/Artists

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Pattie Boyd is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The All Time Greatest Muses in the Music World
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Pattie Boyd


Pattie Boyd is most famous for being the real Layla in the Eric Clapton song of the same name, as well as the inspiration for his song "Wonderful Tonight." She was also George Harrison's "Something" muse (as well as his wife for many years). When interviewed by ABC News's Elizabeth Vargas about why she was such a strong muse for artists, Boyd responded, "I wish I knew.  Like, I wish I could tell you. I don't know."

Also Ranked

#43 on Famous People Whose Last Name Is Boyd

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Courtney Love is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The All Time Greatest Muses in the Music World
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Courtney Love


People love to hate Courtney Love, but Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain considered his wife a true muse. However, before she met Cobain, Love was a muse for Smashing Pumpkins singer Billy Corgan, inspiring the album Siamese Dream. It is also assumed that most of what Cobain wrote was inspired by Love, who many refer to as Generation X's Yoko Ono.

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Age: 51

Birthplace: California, United States of America

Nationality: United States of America

Profession: Film Score Composer, Record producer, Guitarist, Songwriter Musician, + more

Children: Frances Bean Cobain

Medical Conditions: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

Also Ranked

#1795 on The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

#151 on The Best Current Female Singers

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#137 on The Worst Bands of All Time

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