Music

Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums  

Ranker Music
23.7k votes 1.5k voters 5.7k 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

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#1 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Worst Beatles Songslisted on The Best English Boy Bands

2
Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 2 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

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#4 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #2 of 2,219 The Best Rock Bands of All Timefeaturing Infamous Stories From Led Zeppelin's Heyday Most Fans Don't Talk About

3
Queen is listed (or ranked) 3 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

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#2 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #69 of 465 The Best Current Pop Groups/Singersfeaturing Behind The Scenes Of The Movie 'Bohemian Rhapsody'

4
Pink Floyd is listed (or ranked) 4 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

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#3 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #175 of 715 The Best Rock Vocalistsfeaturing Behind The Scenes Of Pink Floyd's 'The Wall'

5
The Rolling Stones is listed (or ranked) 5 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

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#5 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #137 of 465 The Best Current Pop Groups/Singersfeaturing The Best Rolling Stones Albums of All Time

6
David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 6 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

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#19 of 455 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years #544 of 1,151 The Best Actors in Film Historyfeaturing The Best David Bowie Songs of All Time

7
Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 7 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

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#71 of 276 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities in the Worldfeaturing There Are A Lot Of People Who Still Believe Paul McCartney Died In 1966, And Here's Their "Evidence"listed on Famous Left Handed People

8
Alice Cooper is listed (or ranked) 8 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

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#158 of 455 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Yearsfeaturing The Best Alice Cooper Albums of All Timelisted on Musicians You May Not Know Are Republican

9
Stevie Wonder is listed (or ranked) 9 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

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#116 of 276 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities in the World #13 of 455 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Yearsfeaturing The Best Stevie Wonder Albums of All Time

10
The Who is listed (or ranked) 10 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

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#14 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #6 of 2,219 The Best Rock Bands of All Timefeaturing Fascinating Facts You Didn't Know About The Who's 'Who Are You'

11
Bob Dylan is listed (or ranked) 11 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

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#64 of 455 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years #2 of 298 The Greatest Living Rock Songwritersfeaturing The Best Bob Dylan Songs

12
Elton John is listed (or ranked) 12 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

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#72 of 276 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities in the World #20 of 455 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Yearsfeaturing The Best Elton John Songs, Ranked by Fans

13
Michael Jackson is listed (or ranked) 13 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

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#9 of 455 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years #6 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best Michael Jackson Songs of All Time

14
Eminem is listed (or ranked) 14 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

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#140 of 455 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years #228 of 282 The Best (Male) Actors Working Todayfeaturing The Best Eminem Songs of All Time

15
The Police is listed (or ranked) 15 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

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#27 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #24 of 2,219 The Best Rock Bands of All Timefeaturing The Best Police Albums of All Time

16
The Beach Boys is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Pet Sounds, Surfin' USA, Ultimate Christmas
The Beach Boys are an American rock and roll band. Formed in 1961, they gained popularity for their close vocal harmonies and lyrics reflecting a California youth culture of surfing, girls, and ...more

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#25 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #154 of 465 The Best Current Pop Groups/Singersfeaturing The Best Beach Boys Songs of All Time

17
The Kinks is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society, Arthur (or The Decline and Fall of the British Empire), The Kink Kronikles
The Kinks are an English rock band formed in Muswell Hill, North London, in 1964 by brothers Ray and Dave Davies. They are regarded as one of the most influential rock bands of the 1960s. The ...more

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#122 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #37 of 2,219 The Best Rock Bands of All Timefeaturing The Best Kinks Songs of All Time

18
Genesis is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Jack Deckard added The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway, Genesis, Foxtrot
Genesis were an English rock band formed at Charterhouse School, Godalming, Surrey, in 1967. The most successful and longest-lasting line-up consisted of keyboardist Tony Banks, ...more

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#34 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #152 of 465 The Best Current Pop Groups/Singersfeaturing The Best Genesis Albums of All Time

19
Billy Joel is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Glenn J. Wiener added The Stranger, Piano Man, 52nd Street
William Martin Joel (born May 9, 1949) is an American singer-songwriter, composer, and pianist. Commonly nicknamed the "Piano Man" after his first hit and signature song of the same ...more

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#29 of 455 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Yearsfeaturing The Best Billy Joel Songs of All Timelisted on Famous Accordionists

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

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#127 of 455 The Greatest Singers of the Past 30 Years #8 of 298 The Greatest Living Rock Songwritersfeaturing The Best Neil Young Albums of All Time

21
AC/DC is listed (or ranked) 21 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

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#12 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timefeaturing The Best AC/DC Songs of All Timelisted on List of Famous Bands from Australia

22
Black Sabbath is listed (or ranked) 22 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

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#23 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #230 of 283 Musicians Who Belong in the Rock and Roll Hall of Famefeaturing Drug-Fueled, Sordid Tales From Black Sabbath's Heyday That Prove Just How Unhinged They Really Were

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

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#21 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #13 of 2,219 The Best Rock Bands of All Timefeaturing The Best U2 Songs of All Time

24
Rush is listed (or ranked) 24 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

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#74 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #188 of 465 The Best Current Pop Groups/Singers #29 of 2,219 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

25
Tom Petty and the Heartb... is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
The Last DJ, Damn the Torpedoes, Into the Great Wide Open
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers (alternately Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers) were an American rock band from Gainesville, Florida. Formed in 1976, the band originally comprised Tom Petty ...more

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#112 of 2,187 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #30 of 2,219 The Best Rock Bands of All Timefeaturing The Most Fascinating Facts You Didn't Know About Tom Petty