The Greatest Living Rock Songwriters Bands/Musicians
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124  items 27,338 votes 2,154 voters 78,583 views by  Ranker
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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!
  • 11 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    Up 751
    Down 433

    Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

    open
  2. 2
    Up 638
    Down 441

    the people's #1 & added by Benjamin Dunn Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

    open
  3. 3
    Up 500
    Down 222

    ranked low on reranks Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music

    open
  4. 4
    Up 416
    Down 364

    Rock music, Folk music, Folk rock

    open
  5. 5
    Up 385
    Down 397

    Rock music, Experimental rock, Grunge

    open
  6. 6
    Up 320
    Down 152

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

    open
  7. 7
    Up 326
    Down 282

    Synthpop, Pop music, Spoken word

    open
  8. 8
    Up 246
    Down 243

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

    open
  9. 9
    Up 386
    Down 418

    Americana, Blues-rock, Heartland rock

    open
  10. 10
    Up 139
    Down 92

    Blues-rock, Disco, Pop music

    open
  11. 11
    Up 381
    Down 358

    added by Mark

    open
  12. 12
    Up 283
    Down 173

    ranked low on reranks & added by KirkSaw Adult contemporary music, Blue-eyed soul, Pop music

    open
  13. 13
    Up 307
    Down 288

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

    open
  14. 14
    Up 363
    Down 372

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

    open
  15. 15
    Up 327
    Down 331

    added by Ron Mexico Elton John and Bernie Taupin

    open
  16. 16
    Up 173
    Down 118

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

    open
  17. 17
    Up 248
    Down 180

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

    open
  18. 18
    Up 199
    Down 166

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

    open
  19. 19
    Up 201
    Down 241

    often listed & added by Ariel Kana Pop music, Folk music, Folk jazz

    open
  20. 20
    Up 294
    Down 280

    added by Randolph Rock music, Pop rock, Merseybeat

    open
  21. 21
    Up 177
    Down 162

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

    open
  22. 22
    Up 248
    Down 137

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

    open
  23. 23
    Up 200
    Down 254

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

    open
  24. 24
    Up 79
    Down 39

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

    open
  25. 25
    Up 217
    Down 172

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

    open
  26. 26
    Up 202
    Down 214

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

    open
  27. 27
    Up 73
    Down 48

    Blues-rock, Pop music, Rock music

    open
  28. 28
    Up 162
    Down 141

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

    open
  29. 29
    Up 274
    Down 206

    added by Pallknowing1 Folk rock, Progressive rock, Art rock

    open
  30. 30
    Up 86
    Down 54

    Rock music, Space rock, Experimental rock

    open
  31. 31
    Up 127
    Down 184

    often listed & added by KirkSaw Progressive metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

    open
  32. 32
    Up 213
    Down 229

    New Wave, Rock music, Pub rock

    open
  33. 33
    Up 148
    Down 158

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

    open
  34. 34
    Up 127
    Down 159

    added by Randolph Ballad, Country pop, Pop music

    open
  35. 35
    Up 178
    Down 152

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

    open
  36. 36
    Up 110
    Down 109

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

    open
  37. 37
    Up 47
    Down 45

    Jangle pop, Alternative rock, College rock

    open
  38. 38
    Up 149
    Down 163

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

    open
  39. 39
    Up 57
    Down 34

    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

    open
  40. 40
    Up 53
    Down 56

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

    open
  41. 41
    Up 50
    Down 34

    Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

    open
  42. 42
    Up 147
    Down 184

    New Wave, Worldbeat, Experimental music

    open
  43. 43
    Up 63
    Down 124

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

    open
  44. 44
    Up 85
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    added by KirkSaw Pop music, Rock music, Soft rock

    open
  45. 45
    Up 147
    Down 185

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

    open
  46. 46
    Up 85
    Down 141

    added by LaurieM Blues-rock, Rock music, Protopunk

    open
  47. 47
    Up 39
    Down 23

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

    open
  48. 48
    Up 82
    Down 150

    often listed & added by jdbranded Gothic rock, Garage rock, Alternative rock

    open
  49. 49
    Up 34
    Down 18

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

    open
  50. 50
    Up 60
    Down 101

    Doom metal, Glam metal, Blues-rock

    open
  51. 125 +

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