rock The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time  

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The greatest rock songwriters of all time have a lot in common. Firstly, they are some of the biggest names in rock music history. These household names have written some of the most popular songs. Secondly, even if you aren't too familiar with these songwriters, you've definitely heard their songs at least once or twice. You may not be familiar with their names or faces, but you should know their music. For some bizarre reason, you may not have heard of John Lennon or Paul McCartney, but you definitely have heard of The Beatles and their music. The same goes for Freddie Mercury and Queen, who like The Beatles' songwriting duo, wrote some of the most popular songs in music history.

Bob Dylan is widely considered one of the first songwriters to incorporate poetry, imagery and a social consciousness to rock music. His influence ranges far and wide. Many of the songwriters on this list count Dylan as one of the most important songwriters in rock history. He may not have had the same impact as Dylan, but Kurt Cobain has proven to be one of the most important songwriters in recent history. His career may have been short, but his impact on music history cannot be understated.

It's not easy to determine which of these songwriters is the greatest of all time. It's up to you to determine who is the greatest rock songwriter of all time by voting for who you think deserves that title.
list ordered by

1
1,352 1,076
Paul Simon is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Paul Simon Rock music, Folk music, Folk rock

2
1,160 1,270
Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Paul McCartney Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

3
1,160 1,270
John Lennon & Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time

4
1,226 1,662
Bob Dylan is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Bob Dylan Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

5
1,157 1,270
John Lennon is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
John Lennon Blues-rock, Pop music, Rock music

6
899 1,517
David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
David Bowie Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music

7
823 1,028
Peter Lennodo is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Peter Lennodo Rock music, Pop music, Baroque pop/rock

8
944 1,504
Freddie Mercury is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Freddie Mercury Pop music, Rock music, Rockabilly

9
656 1,348
Pete Townshend is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Pete Townshend Rock music, Pop rock, Merseybeat

10
478 901
Elton John is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Elton John Pop music, Rock music, Piano rock

11
581 1,131
Mick Jagger & Keith Richards is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time

12
532 1,091
Bruce Springsteen is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Bruce Springsteen Americana, Blues-rock, Heartland rock

13
363 632
Prince is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Prince Hip hop music, Synthpop, New Wave

14
602 1,280
Neil Young is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Neil Young Rock music, Experimental rock, Grunge

Rock Stars Who Have Aged Surprisingly Well

15
426 599
Tom Petty is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Tom Petty Blues-rock, Heartland rock, Rock music

16
400 612
John Fogerty is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
John Fogerty Americana, Blues-rock, Swamp pop

17
590 968
Jim Morrison is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Jim Morrison Blues-rock, Rock music, Acid rock

18
379 502
Eric Clapton is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Eric Clapton Blues-rock, Rock music, Reggae

19
610 1,266
George Harrison is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
George Harrison Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

20
443 787
Brian Wilson is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Brian Wilson Pop music, Rock music, Outsider music

21
397 484
Kurt Cobain is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Kurt Cobain Grunge, Alternative rock, Punk rock

The Best Hybrid Cars on the Market

22
315 320
Robert Plant is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Robert Plant Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk rock

23
289 317
Stevie Nicks is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Stevie Nicks Classic rock, Pop music, Rock music

24
363 623
Stevie Wonder is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Stevie Wonder Motown Sound, Psychedelic soul, Pop music

25
556 840
Johnny Cash is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Johnny Cash Outlaw country, Christian music, Americana

26
273 333
Buddy Holly is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Buddy Holly Lubbock sound, Rock music, Rockabilly

27
450 724
Billy Joel is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Billy Joel Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

28
556 1,060
Roger Waters is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Roger Waters Folk rock, Progressive rock, Art rock

The Greatest Living Rock Songwriters

29
205 260
Bernie Taupin is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Bernie Taupin Pop music, Rock music

30
363 677
Chuck Berry is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Chuck Berry Rock music, Rhythm and blues, Rock and roll

31
457 712
Jimi Hendrix is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Jimi Hendrix Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock

32
208 173
Don Henley is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Don Henley Pop music, Rock music, Country rock

33
266 454
Joni Mitchell is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Joni Mitchell Pop music, Folk music, Folk jazz

34
256 371
Carole King is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Carole King Adult contemporary music, Blue-eyed soul, Pop music

35
358 578
Leonard Cohen is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Leonard Cohen Synthpop, Pop music, Spoken word

The 37 Greatest On-Stage Falls of All Time

36
378 542
Van Morrison is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Van Morrison Skiffle, Blue-eyed soul, Pop music

37
187 179
James Taylor is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
James Taylor Blues-rock, Disco, Pop music

38
197 222
Bob Seger is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Bob Seger Blue-eyed soul, Heartland rock, Rock music

39
316 409
Bob Marley is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Bob Marley Reggae

40
180 138
Roy Orbison is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
versusmen added Roy Orbison Country pop, Pop music, Rock music

41
283 270
Mark Knopfler is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Mark Knopfler Celtic rock, Blues-rock, Rock music

42
256 274
Lindsey Buckingham is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Lindsey Buckingham New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

The Worst Rock Bands of All Time

43
375 538
David Gilmour is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
David Gilmour Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock

44
82 66
Alice Cooper is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Clay Glenny added Alice Cooper Glam metal, Experimental rock, Shock rock

45
478 808
Jimmy Page is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Jimmy Page Blues-rock, Folk rock, Heavy metal

46
443 715
Lou Reed is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Lou Reed Noise rock, Blue-eyed soul, Spoken word

47
364 569
Peter Gabriel is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Peter Gabriel New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

48
543 918
Ray Davies is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Ray Davies Pop music, Rock music, Pop rock

49
182 252
Tom Waits is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Tom Waits Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

50
262 368
Keith Richards is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time
Keith Richards Blues-rock, Rock music, Reggae