3.5k voters

The Most Musically Gifted Children of Musicians

Updated February 7, 2020 24.5k votes 3.5k voters 139.7k views57 items

List RulesOnly musicians with famous musical parents. Aunts and Uncles do not suffice

The most musically gifted children of musicians have inherited their famous parents' natural abilities, and they've also been able to channel them into some great music. Having a musically talented mother or father doesn't automatically ensure that kids will grow up to be equally as talented. Sometimes, though, they do, and that's what this list is about. Vote for the artists that you believe are truly the most musically gifted, and vote down any artists that you don't think make the cut. Also, feel free to add any great talents whose parents are/were famous musicians, too.

The musicians on this list are the children who show enough promise to get noticed in the industry -- not just because their parents are famous musicians, but because they have enough musical talent that they don't have to just rely on their dad or mom's well-known name.

Some of the musicians on this list have not one, but two famous musical parents. Among them: singer-songwriter Rufus Wainwright, whose parents are Loudon Wainwright III and the late folk singer Kate McGarrigle. Musician and actor Ben Taylor is the son of James Taylor and Carly Simon (his sister, Sally Taylor, is also a musician). Amazingly, none of the famous parents rank among MTV's best voices in music ever, but they don't really do music anymore, do they?

Another interesting observation: Many of the musically gifted kids of famous musicians on this list are the eldest children in their families, including Rosanne Cash (daughter of Johnny Cash), Natalie Cole (daughter of Nat King Cole), Adam Cohen (son of Leonard Cohen), Nancy Sinatra (daughter of Frank Sinatra) and. Liza Minnelli (daughter of Judy Garland) while others are famous only children like Lisa Marie Presley whose dad Elvis Presley was also an only child.

It's almost possible to compile a separate list of musically gifted children of The Beatles and considering they produced many of the best albums of all time, it's no surprise they'd have talented musical offspring as well. Julian Lennon and his younger half-brother, Sean Lennon (sons of John Lennon), have each enjoyed some success in the music industry. Dhani Harrison, the son of George Harrison, is a gifted musician, singer and songwriter and Paul McCartney's son, James McCartney, has released several EPs in recent years. Zak Starkey, son of Beatles drummer Ringo Starr, apparently inherited his dad's talents: Starkey has worked as a drummer for Oasis and The Who, among others.

And no list of musically gifted children of musicians would be complete without mentioning reggae legend Bob Marley's four talented sons: Ziggy, Damian, Stephen, Julian and Ky-mani Marley. Impressive legacy, no?
  • 1

    Liza Minnelli

    Pop music

    AlbumsResults, Paris — Palais des Congrès: Intégrale du spectacle, Liza Minnelli, Come Saturday Morning, The Rink (1984 original Broadway cast)

    Daughter of Judy Garland

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  • 2

    Rosanne Cash

    Rock music, Folk music

    AlbumsKing's Record Shop, Seven Year Ache, Black Cadillac, 10 Song Demo, The Wheel

    Daughter of Johnny Cash

    More Rosanne Cash 

    #34 of 291 The Top Country Artists of All Time#66 of 215 The Greatest Classic Country & Western Artists Of All-Time

  • 3

    Natalie Cole

    Adult contemporary music, Pop music

    AlbumsChristmas With You, Unforgettable: With Love, This Will Be Natalie Cole's Everlasting Love, Dangerous, Ask a Woman Who Knows

    Daughter of Nat King Cole

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  • 4

    Bonnie Raitt

    Blues-rock, Blue-eyed soul

    AlbumsNick of Time, Nine Lives, Fundamental, Silver Lining, Longing in Their Hearts

    Daughter of John Raitt.

    More Bonnie Raitt 

    The Best Bonnie Raitt Albums of All Time#66 of 225 The Best Blues Artists of All Time

  • 5

    AlbumsSymphony Edition, Classical Anthology, Eternal Classics, Concertos for Flute, Harp and Orchestra (Orchestra: Saint Paul's Philharmonic Orchestra; Flute: Ubaldo Rosso; Harp: Ursula Mazurek; Conductor: Silvano Frontalini)

    Son of Leopold Mozart

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  • 6

    Norah Jones

    Vocal jazz, Jazz blues

    AlbumsCome Away With Me, Feels Like Home, The Fall, New York City, Not Too Late

    Daughter of Ravi Shankar

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  • 7

    Hank Williams, Jr.

    Outlaw country, Country rock

    AlbumsOld School New Rules, Three Hanks: Men With Broken Hearts, That's How They Do It in Dixie: The Essential Collection, Rowdy, The Almeria Club Recordings

    Son of Hank Williams

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  • 8

    Ricky Nelson

    Pop music, Rock music

    AlbumsRick Sings Nelson, Rudy the Fifth, The Rock 'n' Roll Era: Ricky Nelson: 1957-1972, Best of Ricky Nelson, The Lost '60s Recordings

    Son of bandleader Ozzie Nelson

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  • 9

    Stewart Copeland

    New Wave, Pop music

    AlbumsKollected Works, Klark Kent: Music Madness From the Kinetic Kid, The Rhythmatist, Orchestralli, The Stewart Copeland Anthology

    Son of Miles Copeland, Jr., trumpet player with the Glenn Miller Orchestra.

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    #135 of 294 The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s#16 of 50 The Best Singing Drummers

  • 10

    Julian Lennon

    Rock music

    AlbumsSosv1, Mr. Jordan, Valotte, Help Yourself, Photograph Smile

    Son of John Lennon
  • 11

    robin taylor zander

  • 12

    Adam Cohen

    Rock music

    AlbumsAdam Cohen, Like a Man, Melancolista

    Son of Leonard Cohen
  • 13


    Hip hop music, Synthpop

    AlbumsPurple Rain, Sign 'O' the Times, 1999, Love Symbol Album, Around the World in a Day

    More Prince 

    The Best Prince Songs of All Time#13 of 649 The Best Singers Of All Time

  • 14

    Daxx Nielsen

  • 15

    Jeff Buckley

    Rock music, Folk music

    AlbumsGrace, Sketches for My Sweetheart the Drunk, Songs to No One 1991-1992, Live at Sin-é, So Real: Songs from Jeff Buckley

    Son of Tim Buckley

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    #341 of 542 The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time#164 of 316 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years

  • 16

    Dweezil Zappa

    Pop music, Rock music

    AlbumsMusic for Pets, My Guitar Wants to Kill Your Mama, Havin' a Bad Day, Confessions, Automatic

    Son of Frank Zappa
  • 17

    Andrew Lloyd Webber

    Musical theatre

    AlbumsThe Phantom of the Opera, Jesus Christ Superstar, Highlights from Andrew Lloyd Webber's Sunset Boulevard (1994 Los Angeles cast), Excerpts from The Phantom of the Opera, Jesus Christ Superstar (Highlights 20th Anniversary)

    Son of William Lloyd Webber

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  • 18

    Pam Tillis


    AlbumsJust in Time for Christmas, Homeward Looking Angel, Put Yourself in My Place, Greatest Hits, All of This Love

    daughter of Mel Tillis

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    #33 of 161 The Top Female Country Singers#6 of 52 The Best Country Singers From Florida

  • 19

    Ziggy Marley


    AlbumsDragonfly, Love Is My Religion, Wild and Free, In Concert, Family Time

    Son of Bob Marley


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  • 20

    Jakob Dylan

    Rock music, Alternative rock

    AlbumsSeeing Things, Women + Country

    Son of Bob Dylan

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    #272 of 489 The Best Rock Vocalists#184 of 303 The Greatest Jewish Singers and Songwriters

  • 21

    Jason Bonham

    Blues-rock, Rock music
  • 22

    Dhani Harrison

    Rock music, Alternative rock
    Son of George Harrison
  • 23

    Keith Moon

    Skiffle, Pop music

    AlbumsTwo Sides of the Moon

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  • 24
    Daughter of Brian Wilson

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  • 25

    Thomas Rhett


    AlbumsThomas Rhett, It Goes Like This, Something to Do With My Hands, It Goes Like This