The Greatest Living Rock Songwriters Bands/Musicians
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130  items 29,109 votes 2,306 voters 81,942 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!
  • 12 ReRanks
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  1. 45
    Up 60
    Down 64

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

    open
  2. 32
    Up 154
    Down 194

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

    open
  3. 70
    Up 24
    Down 26

    added by Cory85 Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

    open
  4. 75
    Up 18
    Down 21

    Doom metal, Blues-rock, Power metal

    open
  5. 38
    Up 54
    Down 53

    Jangle pop, Alternative rock, College rock

    open
  6. 69
    Up 29
    Down 73

    often listed & added by Kel Varnsen Americana, Heartland rock, Rock music

    open
  7. 109
    Up 12
    Down 61

    often listed & added by LaurieM Americana, Folk music, Folk rock

    open
  8. 88
    Up 28
    Down 21

    Outlaw country, Americana, Traditional pop music

    open
  9. 8
    Up 259
    Down 260

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

    open
  10. 82
    Up 46
    Down 89

    added by KirkSaw Synthpop, Pop rock, Alternative rock

    open
  11. 123
    Up 37
    Down 51

    added by ConnieStarnes Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

    open
  12. 16
    Up 184
    Down 130

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

    open
  13. 13
    Up 383
    Down 385

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

    open
  14. 54
    Up 62
    Down 108

    Doom metal, Glam metal, Blues-rock

    open
  15. 65
    Up 17
    Down 11

    added by Honda Synthpop, Rock music, Acoustic music

    open
  16. 125
    Up 58
    Down 87

    added by JesusAlonso New Wave, Gothic rock, Pop music The Cure

    open
  17. 3
    Up 529
    Down 246

    Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music

    open
  18. 80
    Up 25
    Down 50

    added by danmedsker Outlaw country, Rock music, Folk music

    open
  19. 43
    Up 70
    Down 132

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

    open
  20. 121
    Up 23
    Down 24

    added by ChanczProwess Psychedelic soul, Rock music, Rhythm and blues

    open
  21. 29
    Up 173
    Down 148

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

    open
  22. 79
    Up 20
    Down 45

    added by bdfsu157 Rock music, Pop rock, Soft rock

    open
  23. 11
    Up 150
    Down 110

    Blues-rock, Disco, Pop music

    open
  24. 35
    Up 152
    Down 167

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

    open
  25. 17
    Up 261
    Down 191

    ranked low on reranks & added by TVs Frank New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

    open
  26. 107
    Up 22
    Down 14

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

    open
  27. 78
    Up 19
    Down 49

    added by autosurvive Rock music, Power metal, Heavy metal

    open
  28. 76
    Up 5
    Down 10

    added by NarimanKashefi Adult contemporary music, Pop music, Rock music

    open
  29. 81
    Up 13
    Down 22

    added by cheeseburger Blues-rock, Punk blues, Rock music

    open
  30. 39
    Up 115
    Down 115

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

    open
  31. 14
    Up 320
    Down 304

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

    open
  32. 27
    Up 208
    Down 226

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

    open
  33. 46
    Up 152
    Down 191

    New Wave, Worldbeat, Experimental music

    open
  34. 126
    Up 11
    Down 17

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

    open
  35. 25
    Up 229
    Down 179

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

    open
  36. 4
    Up 434
    Down 387

    Rock music, Folk music, Folk rock

    open
  37. 116
    Up 16
    Down 20

    Smooth soul, Rhythm and blues, Soul music

    open
  38. 6
    Up 343
    Down 159

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

    open
  39. 21
    Up 186
    Down 171

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

    open
  40. 98
    Up 17
    Down 15

    added by looksharp Celtic rock, Blues-rock, Rock music

    open
  41. 99
    Up 5
    Down 24

    often listed & added by looksharp Contemporary Christian music, Alternative rock

    open
  42. 93
    Up 22
    Down 21

    Rock music, Pop rock, Soft rock

    open
  43. 118
    Up 2
    Down 6

    Rock music, Folk rock, Acoustic music

    open
  44. 2
    Up 703
    Down 461

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

    open
  45. 22
    Up 261
    Down 146

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

    open
  46. 103
    Up 17
    Down 18

    ranked low on reranks Blues-rock, Classic rock, Heavy metal

    open
  47. 122
    Up 13
    Down 21

    Outlaw country, Blues-rock, Boogie rock

    open
  48. 96
    Up 47
    Down 109

    often listed & added by LaurieM Rock music, Heavy metal, Alternative rock

    open
  49. 86
    Up 32
    Down 20

    ranked low on reranks Pop music, Vocal music

    open
  50. 36
    Up 33
    Down 20

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

    open
131 +

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