Music

Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums  

Ranker Music
23.2k votes 1.4k voters 5.5k views 126 items

List Rules Only vote up bands or artists who have released five great albums. Not good albums. GREAT albums. This only includes studio albums. No live albums. No B-side collections.

Building a successful band is tough but keeping it going is much tougher. Even some of history's biggest, best-selling bands couldn't repeat the magic more than once. Break-ups and bad musical decisions have sabotaged some of the all-time best bands and artists. Just how hard is it? The Smiths, Cream and Velvet Underground lasted just four albums. Nirvana and Jimi Hendrix? Just three. The Sex Pistols? Only one.

Sure, plenty of bands continue to release albums for years but that doesn't mean they are good. The list of artists who have released what would be considered five great albums isn't as long as you might think. Not everyone can successfully reinvent themselves like Bob Dylan or The Beatles or stay as consistent as AC/DC and Led Zeppelin. 

So which artists have gone the distance five full times? 

list ordered by
1
The Beatles is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Abbey Road, Revolver, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
The Beatles were an English rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960. With a line-up comprising John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, they are regarded as the most ...more
2
Stevie Wonder is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added Songs in the Key of Life, Innervisions, Talking Book
Stevland Hardaway Morris (né Judkins; born May 13, 1950), better known by his stage name Stevie Wonder, is an American singer, songwriter, musician and record producer. A prominent figure ...more
3
The Police is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added Synchronicity, Reggatta de Blanc, Ghost in the Machine
The Police were a British rock band formed in London in 1977. For most of their history the line-up consisted of Sting (lead vocals, bass guitar, primary songwriter), Andy Summers (guitar) and ...more
4
Michael Jackson is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added Thriller, Bad, Off the Wall
Michael Joseph Jackson (August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009) was an American singer, songwriter, and dancer. Dubbed the "King of Pop", he is regarded as one of the most significant ...more
5
Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin IV, Led Zeppelin II
Led Zeppelin were an English rock band formed in London in 1968. The group consisted of vocalist Robert Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page, bassist/keyboardist John Paul Jones and drummer John Bonham. ...more
6
Queen is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
A Night at the Opera, Queen, Innuendo
Queen are a British rock band formed in London in 1970. Their classic line-up was Freddie Mercury (lead vocals and piano), Brian May (lead guitar and vocals), Roger Taylor (drums and vocals) and ...more
7
Pink Floyd is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
The Wall, The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here
Pink Floyd were an English rock band formed in London in 1965. They emerged from London's underground music scene during the late 1960s, and became one of the most commercially successful and ...more
8
The Rolling Stones is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Let It Bleed, Exile on Main St., Sticky Fingers
The Rolling Stones are an English rock band formed in London in 1962. The first settled line-up consisted of Brian Jones, Ian Stewart, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Bill Wyman, and Charlie Watts. ...more
9
INXS is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added Kick, Shabooh Shoobah, Dirty Hearts
INXS (pronounced "in excess") were an Australian rock band, formed as The Farriss Brothers in 1977 in Sydney, New South Wales. The band's founding members were bassist Garry Gary ...more
10
Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added Flaming Pie, Pipes of Peace, Ram
Sir James Paul McCartney (born 18 June 1942) is an English singer, songwriter, musician, composer, and record and film producer who gained worldwide fame as bass player for the Beatles. His ...more
11
David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, Hunky Dory, Diamond Dogs
David Robert Jones (8 January 1947 – 10 January 2016), known professionally as David Bowie (, BOH-ee), was an English singer-songwriter and actor. He was a leading figure in the music industry ...more
12
Creedence Clearwater Revival is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added Green River, Cosmo's Factory, Willy and the Poor Boys
Creedence Clearwater Revival (often referred to as Creedence or CCR) was an American rock band active in the late 1960s and early 1970s which consisted of lead vocalist, lead guitarist, and ...more
13
Alice Cooper is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Welcome to My Nightmare, Hey Stoopid, Brutal Planet
Alice Cooper (born Vincent Damon Furnier; February 4, 1948) is an American singer, songwriter, and actor whose career spans over 50 years. With his distinctive raspy voice and a stage show that ...more
14
The Who is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Who's Next, Tommy, Quadrophenia
The Who are an English rock band formed in London in 1964. Their classic line-up consisted of lead singer Roger Daltrey, guitarist and singer Pete Townshend, bass guitarist John Entwistle and ...more
15
Bob Dylan is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Highway 61 Revisited, Blood on the Tracks, Blonde on Blonde
Bob Dylan (born Robert Allen Zimmerman; May 24, 1941) is an American singer-songwriter, author, poet, and visual artist who has been a major figure in popular culture for more than fifty years. ...more
16
Elton John is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Glenn J. Wiener added Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Disney's Sing-Along: The Lion King, Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy
Sir Elton Hercules John (born Reginald Kenneth Dwight; 25 March 1947) is an English singer, songwriter, pianist, and composer. He has worked with lyricist Bernie Taupin since 1967; they have ...more
17
Joni Mitchell is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
oosala added Blue, Court and Spark, Ladies of the Canyon
Roberta Joan "Joni" Mitchell (née Anderson; born November 7, 1943) is a Canadian singer-songwriter. Drawing from folk, pop, rock, and jazz, Mitchell's songs often reflect social ...more
18
R.E.M. is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Thomas Rudnicki added Murmur, Green, Automatic for the People
R.E.M. was an American rock band from Athens, Georgia, formed in 1980 by drummer Bill Berry, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist/backing vocalist Mike Mills, and lead vocalist Michael Stipe. One of ...more
19
Black Sabbath is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Paranoid, Black Sabbath, Heaven and Hell
Black Sabbath were an English rock band, formed in Birmingham in 1968, by guitarist and main songwriter Tony Iommi, drummer Bill Ward, bassist and main lyricist Geezer Butler and singer Ozzy ...more
20
Neil Young is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Harvest, Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, After the Gold Rush
Neil Percival Young (born November 12, 1945) is a Canadian singer-songwriter. After embarking on a music career in the 1960s, he moved to Los Angeles, where he formed Buffalo Springfield with ...more
21
Rush is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Moving Pictures, 2112, Hemispheres
Rush was a Canadian rock band consisting of Geddy Lee (bass, vocals, keyboards), Alex Lifeson (guitars), and Neil Peart (drums, percussion). Formed in 1968, the band went through several ...more
22
The Doors is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
The Doors, L.A. Woman, Strange Days
The Doors were an American rock band formed in 1965 in Los Angeles, with vocalist Jim Morrison, keyboardist Ray Manzarek, drummer John Densmore and guitarist Robby Krieger. The band took its ...more
23
U2 is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
The Joshua Tree, War, Achtung Baby
U2 are an Irish rock band from Dublin, formed in 1976. The group consists of Bono (lead vocals and rhythm guitar), the Edge (lead guitar, keyboards, and backing vocals), Adam Clayton (bass ...more
24
Eminem is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
The Marshall Mathers LP, The Slim Shady LP, The Eminem Show
Marshall Bruce Mathers III (born October 17, 1972), known professionally as Eminem (; often stylized as EMINƎM), is an American rapper, songwriter, record producer, record executive, film ...more
25
AC/DC is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Back in Black, Highway to Hell, Let There Be Rock
AC/DC are an Australian hard rock band, formed in November 1973 by brothers Malcolm and Angus Young, who continued as members until Malcolm's illness and departure in 2014. Commonly referred to ...more