The Greatest Living Rock Songwriters Bands/Musicians
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originally by  tags 40,010 votes 3,175 voters 98,720 views 146 items f p @

The Greatest Living Rock Songwriters

List Criteria: The best song writers - must be prolific

Who is the best songwriter alive today? The musician responsible for the lyrics and music that's the most memorable, significant and lasting in all of rock history, who is still with us today. We're talking, over the course of an entire career, the person who has written the most great songs--the best songwriters of the 21st century. A few things to keep in mind: (1) Songwriting teams are acceptable if they truly worked together (for example, Elton John writing music to Bernie Taupin's lyrics). When possible, as in the case of John Lennon and Paul McCartney, separate them and focus on individual songwriting. (2) LIVING songwriters. Living. (3) I think the ratio of "great songs" to "not good songs" is important to consider. If someone has 2 classic albums of great songs and then 5 albums worth of garbage, that impacts the overall view of the career, no matter how good the original work was. Something to keep in mind.

Add your own selections below and vote up the people you feel are worthy of the title of Greatest Living Rock Songwriter. PLUS, if you have Spotify, you can listen to full songs from each of the listed songwriters on our Ranker playlist!

  • 17 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 1035
    - 617

    the people's #1
    Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

    ) open
  2. 2
    + 917
    - 571

    most listed & added by Benjamin Dunn
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

    ) open
  3. 3
    + 674
    - 356


    Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music

    ) open
  4. 4
    + 448
    - 432

    added by Ron Mexico
    Elton John and Bernie Taupin

  5. 5
    + 518
    - 509


    Rock music, Experimental rock, Grunge

    ) open
  6. 6
    + 510
    - 472
    ) open
  7. 7
    + 193
    - 125

    added by jrdale1
    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

    ) open
  8. 8
    + 568
    - 474


    Rock music, Folk music, Folk rock

    ) open
  9. 9
    + 401
    - 375

    added by Ron Mexico
    Motown Sound, Psychedelic soul, Pop music

    ) open
  10. 10
    + 435
    - 240

    ranked low on reranks
    Pop music, Rock music, Pop rock

    ) open
  11. 11
    + 326
    - 257

    added by TVs Frank
    New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

    ) open
  12. 12
    + 339
    - 348

    added by jdbranded
    Skiffle, Blue-eyed soul, Pop music

    ) open
  13. 13
    + 359
    - 262

    added by KirkSaw
    Adult contemporary music, Blue-eyed soul, Pop music

    ) open
  14. 14
    + 287
    - 251

    added by KirkSaw
    Rock music, Rhythm and blues, Rock and roll

    ) open
  15. 15
    + 424
    - 378


    Synthpop, Pop music, Spoken word

    ) open
  16. 16
    + 496
    - 537


    Americana, Blues-rock, Heartland rock

    ) open
  17. 17
    + 154
    - 103


    Blues-rock, Pop music, Rock music

    ) open
  18. 18
    + 267
    - 333

    often listed & added by Mark
    Medieval music, Classic rock, New Wave

    ) open
  19. 19
    + 482
    - 456

    added by Randolph
    Blues-rock, Classic rock, Rock music

    ) open
  20. 20
    + 351
    - 193

    ranked low on reranks
    Pop music, Rock music, Outsider music

    ) open
  21. 21
    + 399
    - 359

    added by Randolph
    Rock music, Pop rock, Merseybeat

    ) open
  22. 22
    + 234
    - 210

    added by ohnoitsmanasco
    Disco, Pop music, Rock music Electric Light Orchestra founder and excellent producer.

    ) open
  23. 23
    + 202
    - 106

    ranked low on reranks
    Rock music, Space rock, Experimental rock

    ) open
  24. 24
    + 302
    - 223

    added by Ariel Kana
    Americana, Blues-rock, Swamp pop

    ) open
  25. 25
    + 262
    - 315

    added by Ariel Kana
    Pop music, Folk music, Folk jazz

    ) open
  26. 26
    + 200
    - 183


    Blues-rock, Disco, Pop music

    ) open
  27. 27
    + 234
    - 200

    added by Ron Mexico
    Hip hop music, Synthpop, New Wave

    ) open
  28. 28
    + 198
    - 216

    added by ohnoitsmanasco
    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

    ) open
  29. 29
    + 151
    - 157

    added by KirkSaw
    Adult contemporary music, Pop music, Rhythm and blues

    ) open
  30. 30
    + 268
    - 293

    added by Kel Varnsen
    Rock music, Alternative rock, Punk rock

    ) open
  31. 31
    + 244
    - 220

    added by couchlock420
    Blues-rock, New Wave, Classic rock

    ) open
  32. 32
    + 218
    - 197

    added by couchlock420
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock

    ) open
  33. 33
    + 333
    - 264

    ranked low on reranks & added by Pallknowing1
    Folk rock, Progressive rock, Art rock

    ) open
  34. 34
    + 48
    - 44

    added by HelenNguyen
    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

    ) open
  35. 35
    + 184
    - 232


    New Wave, Worldbeat, Experimental music

    ) open
  36. 36
    + 104
    - 112

    added by Cory85
    Adult contemporary music, Blue-eyed soul, Disco The last surviving Bee Gee.

    ) open
  37. 37
    + 181
    - 244

    added by KirkSaw
    Progressive metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ) open
  38. 38
    + 111
    - 92


    Jangle pop, Alternative rock, College rock

    ) open
  39. 39
    + 261
    - 284


    New Wave, Rock music, Pub rock

    ) open
  40. 40
    + 204
    - 254

    added by Ariel Kana
    Rock music, Electronic music, New Prog

    ) open
  41. 41
    + 174
    - 200

    added by Randolph
    Ballad, Country pop, Pop music

    ) open
  42. 42
    + 110
    - 59

    ranked low on reranks
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Reggae

    ) open
  43. 43
    + 100
    - 54

    ranked low on reranks
    Popular music, Pop music, Rock music

    ) open
  44. 44
    + 68
    - 61

    added by autosurvive
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk rock

    ) open
  45. 45
    + 119
    - 165

    added by KirkSaw
    Pop music, Rock music, Soft rock

    ) open
  46. 46
    + 169
    - 211

    added by Pallknowing1
    Grunge, Folk rock, Alternative rock

    ) open
  47. 47
    + 61
    - 49


    Pop music, Vocal music

    ) open
  48. 48
    + 188
    - 217

    added by Clark Benson
    Blues-rock, Boogie rock, Rock music Young/Young/Johnson

    ) open
  49. 49
    + 90
    - 79


    Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

    ) open
  50. 50
    + 92
    - 178

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Rock music, Jazz fusion, Pop rock

    ) open
147 +

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