Bands/Musicians Chess Records Complete Artist Roster

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27.8k views 64 items

List of Chess Records artists, listed alphabetically with photos when available. This Chess Records roster includes both past and present artists. Popular Chess Records bands and artists are all listed here with information such as what genre the bands fall under and what albums they're known for. If you're looking for any of these Chess Records band's full discographies then click on their name and you can find them here on Ranker. The artists and bands on this list might be pop, rap, rock, electronic or any other genre, but what they all have in common is that they were signed by Chess Records.

The list you're viewing is made up of a variety of different artists, including Chuck Berry and Etta James.

This page can help answer questions like, "Who are the best Chess Records bands?" and "Which artists are signed by Chess Records?"

If any musical artists are missing from this Chess Records artists list, you can add them at the bottom of the list. (64 items)

1
Al Jardine is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Al Jardine Rock music, Rock and roll, Surf music Alan Charles "Al" Jardine is an American guitarist, singer and songwriter. He is best known as a founding member of the rock band The Beach Boys, of whom he was a member from 1961 ...more

2
Alan Gerber is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Alan Gerber Rock n' Roll, Boogie-woogie, Blues Alan Gerber is an American-born singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. He is a member of the recently reunited rock band Rhinoceros and also has been pursuing a solo career throughout ...more

3
Alberta Adams is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Alberta Adams Jump blues, Chicago blues Alberta Adams was an American Detroit blues, jump blues, and Chicago blues singer. Raised in Detroit, she began performing as a tap dancer and nightclub singer in the 1930s. In 1952, she landed ...more

4
Big Maybelle is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Big Maybelle Rhythm and blues, Gospel music, Blues Mabel Louise Smith, known professionally as Big Maybelle, was an American R&B singer and pianist. Her 1956 hit single "Candy" received the Grammy Hall of Fame Award in 1999.

5
Billy Stewart is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Billy Stewart Chicago soul, Rhythm and blues, Northern soul Billy Stewart was an American musical artist, with a highly distinctive scat-singing style, who enjoyed popularity in the 1960s.

6
Bo Diddley is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Bo Diddley Blues-rock, Chicago blues, Rock music Ellas Otha Bates, known by his stage name Bo Diddley, was an American R&B and Chicago Blues vocalist, guitarist, songwriter and music producer. He was also known as The Originator because of ...more

7
Bobby Bland is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Bobby Bland Soul blues, Pop music, Rhythm and blues Robert Calvin "Bobby" Bland, né Brooks, also known professionally as Bobby "Blue" Bland, was an American blues singer. Bland developed a sound that mixed gospel with ...more

8
Bruce Robb is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Bruce Robb Bruce Robb is an American musician, record producer, engineer, and music supervisor. He is most recognized for his active role in the formative years of the music industry: first as a member of ...more

9
Buddy Guy is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Buddy Guy Chicago blues, Electric blues, Blues George "Buddy" Guy is an American Chicago blues and electric blues guitarist and singer. He is an exponent of the Chicago blues and has influenced blues guitarists Jimi Hendrix, Eric ...more

10
Charles Stepney is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Charles Stepney Rhythm and blues, Soul music Charles Stepney was a producer, arranger, songwriter and musician famous for his Orchestral Psychedelic soul sound with Chicago's Cadet/Chess records in the 1960s/1970s and afterwards with ...more

11
Chuck Berry is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Chuck Berry Rock music, Rhythm and blues, Rock and roll Charles Edward Anderson "Chuck" Berry is an American guitarist, singer and songwriter, and one of the pioneers of rock and roll music. With songs such as "Maybellene", ...more

12
Clifton Chenier is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Clifton Chenier Creole music, Cajun music, Swamp blues Clifton Chenier, a Creole French-speaking native of Opelousas, Louisiana, was an eminent performer and recording artist of Zydeco, which arose from Cajun and Creole music, with R&B, jazz, ...more

13
Dale Hawkins is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Dale Hawkins Rock music Delmar Allen "Dale" Hawkins was a pioneer American rock singer, songwriter, and rhythm guitarist who was often called the architect of swamp rock boogie. Fellow rockabilly pioneer ...more

14
David
David "Honeyboy" Edwards Folk music, Rhythm and blues, Jazz David "Honeyboy" Edwards was a Delta blues guitarist and singer from the American South.

15
David A. Martin is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
David A. Martin Rockabilly, Rhythm and blues, Rock and roll David A. Martin was a founding member and original bass player for the rock group Sam the Sham, and recorded all their early hits on MGM Records. Martin also co-wrote the group's #1 hit ...more

16
David Ruffin is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
David Ruffin Disco, Pop music, Rhythm and blues Davis Eli "David" Ruffin was an American soul singer and musician most famous for his work as one of the lead singers of The Temptations during the group's "Classic Five" ...more

17
Etta James is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Etta James Rock music, Rhythm and blues, Rock and roll Etta James was an American singer. Her style spanned a variety of music genres including blues, R&B, soul, rock and roll, jazz and gospel. Starting her career in 1954, she gained fame with ...more

18
Fontella Bass is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Fontella Bass Pop music, Rhythm and blues, Soul music Fontella Bass was an American R&B soul singer best known for her 1965 hit, "Rescue Me".

19
Four Tops is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Four Tops Doo-wop, Pop music, Rock music The Four Tops are an American vocal quartet from Detroit, Michigan who helped to define the city's Motown sound of the 1960s. The group's repertoire has included soul music, R&B, disco, ...more

20
Harmonica Frank Floyd is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Harmonica Frank Floyd Rockabilly, Folk music, Country Harmonica Frank was an American blues singer, guitarist and harmonicist.

21
Harvey Fuqua is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Harvey Fuqua Doo-wop, Rhythm and blues, Soul music Harvey Fuqua was an American rhythm and blues singer, songwriter, record producer, and record label executive. Fuqua founded the seminal R&B/doo-wop group the Moonglows in the 1950s. He is ...more

22
Howlin' Wolf is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Howlin' Wolf Chicago blues, Electric blues, Blues Chester Arthur Burnett, known as Howlin' Wolf, was an African American Chicago blues singer, guitarist and harmonica player, from Mississippi. With a booming voice and looming physical presence, ...more

23
Ike Turner is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Ike Turner Soul blues, Rock music, Memphis blues Ike Wister Turner was an American musician, bandleader, songwriter, arranger, talent scout, and record producer. An early pioneer of fifties rock and roll, he is most popularly known for his ...more

24
Irma Thomas is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Irma Thomas Rhythm and blues, Soul music, Gospel music Irma Thomas is an American singer from New Orleans. She is known as the "Soul Queen of New Orleans". Thomas is a contemporary of Aretha Franklin and Etta James, but never experienced ...more

25
J.B. Lenoir is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
J.B. Lenoir Chicago blues, Blues J. B. Lenoir /ləˈnɔːr/ was an American blues guitarist and singer-songwriter, active in the 1950s and 1960s Chicago blues scene. Although his name is sometimes pronounced as French "L'n ...more

26
Jack Owens is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Jack Owens Folk music, Rhythm and blues, Gospel music Jack Owens was an American Delta blues singer and guitarist, from Bentonia, Mississippi, United States.

27
James
James "Sugar Boy" Crawford Rhythm and blues James "Sugar Boy" Crawford, Jr. was an American, New Orleans based, R&B musician. He was the author of "Jock-A-Mo", a hit that was later recreated as "Iko Iko", ...more

28
Jamo Thomas is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Jamo Thomas Northern soul, Soul music, Funk Jamo Thomas is an American soul and funk singer, best remembered for his 1966 hit single, "I Spy". Born in either The Bahamas or Chicago, he recorded for several different record ...more

29
Jimmy Nelson is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Jimmy Nelson Jump blues, Swing music, Rhythm and blues Jimmy "T99" Nelson was an American jump blues and rhythm and blues shouter and songwriter. With a recording career that spanned over 50 years, Jimmy "T99" Nelson became a ...more

30
Jimmy Rogers is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Jimmy Rogers Chicago blues Jimmy Rogers was a Chicago blues singer, guitarist and harmonica player, best known for his work as a member of Muddy Waters' band of the 1950s. He also had solo hits on the R&B chart with ...more

31
John Lee Hooker is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
John Lee Hooker Americana, Electric blues, Talking blues John Lee Hooker was an American blues singer, songwriter and guitarist. He was born in Mississippi, the son of a sharecropper, and rose to prominence performing an electric guitar-style ...more

32
Johnnie Johnson is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Johnnie Johnson Chicago blues, Jazz Johnnie Johnson was an American pianist and blues musician. His work with Chuck Berry led to his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

33
Johnny Shines is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Johnny Shines Jump blues, Blues John Ned "Johnny" Shines was an American blues singer and guitarist.

34
Koko Taylor is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Koko Taylor Chicago blues, Electric blues, Rhythm and blues Koko Taylor, sometimes spelled KoKo Taylor, was an American Chicago blues singer, those style also encompassed many genres including electric blues, rhythm and blues and blues and soul blues ...more

35
Laura Lee is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Laura Lee Soul music, Gospel music Laura Lee is an American soul and gospel singer and songwriter, most successful in the 1960s and 1970s and influential for her records which discussed and celebrated women's experience.

36
Little Walter is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Little Walter Chicago blues, Rock music, Rhythm and blues Little Walter, born Marion Walter Jacobs, was an American blues musician and singer, whose revolutionary approach to the harmonica earned him comparisons to Charlie Parker and Jimi Hendrix, for ...more

37
Louisiana Red is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Louisiana Red Blues Iverson Minter, known as "Louisiana Red", was an African American blues guitarist, harmonica player, and singer, who recorded more than 50 albums. He was best known for his song

38
Lowell Fulson is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Lowell Fulson West Coast blues Lowell Fulson was a big-voiced blues guitarist and songwriter, in the West Coast blues tradition. Fulson was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He also recorded for business reasons as Lowell Fullsom and ...more

39
Martha and the Vandellas is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Martha and the Vandellas Doo-wop, Pop music, Rhythm and blues Martha and the Vandellas were an American vocal group who found fame in the 1960s with a string of hit singles on Motown's Gordy label. Founded in 1960 by friends Annette Beard, Rosalind Ashford ...more

40
Minnie Riperton is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Minnie Riperton Pop music, Rock music, Rhythm and blues Minnie Julia Riperton-Rudolph, known professionally as Minnie Riperton, was an American singer-songwriter best known for her 1975 single "Lovin' You". She was married to songwriter and ...more

41
Mitty Collier is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Mitty Collier Rhythm and blues, Soul music, Gospel music Mitty Lene Collier is an American church pastor, gospel singer and former rhythm and blues singer. She had a number of successful records in the 1960s, of which probably the best known is ...more

42
Muddy Waters is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Muddy Waters Blues-rock, Chicago blues, Rock music McKinley Morganfield, known by his stage name Muddy Waters, was an American blues musician. He is often considered the "father of modern Chicago blues". Muddy Waters grew up on Stovall ...more

43
Otis Rush is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Otis Rush Chicago blues, Electric blues, Rhythm and blues Otis Rush is a former blues musician, singer and guitarist. His distinctive guitar style features a slow burning sound and long bent notes. With similar qualities to Magic Sam and Buddy Guy, his ...more

44
Otis Spann is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Otis Spann Chicago blues, Blues Otis Spann was an American blues musician whom many consider to be the leading postwar Chicago blues pianist.

45
Percy Mayfield is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Percy Mayfield Rhythm and blues Percy Mayfield was an American songwriter famous for the songs "Hit the Road Jack" and "Please Send Me Someone to Love", as well as a successful rhythm and blues artist known ...more

46
Rahsaan Roland Kirk is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Rahsaan Roland Kirk Avant-garde jazz, Hard bop, Post-bop Rahsaan Roland Kirk was an American jazz multi-instrumentalist who played tenor saxophone, flute and many other instruments. He was renowned for his onstage vitality, during which virtuoso ...more

47
Ramsey Lewis is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Ramsey Lewis Jazz-funk, Pop music, Jazz Ramsey Emmanuel Lewis, Jr. is an American jazz composer, pianist and radio personality. Ramsey Lewis has recorded over 80 albums and has received seven gold records and three Grammy Awards so ...more

48
Renaldo
Renaldo "Obie" Benson Rock music, Rhythm and blues, Rock and roll Renaldo "Obie" Benson was an American soul and R&B singer and songwriter. He was best known as the bass of Motown group the Four Tops, which he joined in 1953 and continued to ...more

49
Robert Nighthawk is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Robert Nighthawk Blues Robert Lee McCollum was an American blues musician, who played and recorded under the pseudonyms Robert Lee McCoy and Robert Nighthawk. He is the father of blues musician Sam Carr.

50
Rosco Gordon is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list Chess Records Complete Artist Roster
Rosco Gordon Blues Rosco Gordon was an American blues singer and songwriter. He is best known for his 1952 No. 1 R&B hit single, "Booted", and two No. 2 singles "No More Doggin'" and