Music

Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums 

Ranker Music
Updated June 26, 2020 30.9k votes 1.9k voters 7.5k views 139 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

Albums: Abbey Road, Revolver, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, The White Album, Rubber Soul, + more

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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The Worst Beatles Songs #2 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timelisted on The Best English Boy Bands

2
Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin IV, Led Zeppelin II, Physical Graffiti, Houses of the Holy, + more

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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Infamous Stories From Led Zeppelin's Heyday Most Fans Don't Talk About #3 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #1 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

3
Pink Floyd is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: The Wall, The Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here, Meddle, Animals, + more

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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The Best Pink Floyd Songs #89 of 668 The Best Rock Vocalists #295 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

4
The Rolling Stones is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: Let It Bleed, Exile on Main St., Sticky Fingers, Beggar's Banquet, Some Girls, + more

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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What Happened When The Rolling Stones Hired The Hells Angels To Run Security #137 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #5 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

5
Queen is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: A Night at the Opera, Queen, Innuendo, Queen II, Crazy Little Thing Called Love, + more

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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The Best Queen Songs of All Time #1 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #3 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

6
Creedence Clearwater Rev... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added

Albums: Green River, Cosmo's Factory, Willy and the Poor Boys, Bayou Country, Pendulum, + more

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

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The Best Creedence Clearwater Revival Albums of All Time #48 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #10 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

7
David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Genre: Rock music, Psychedelic pop & Electronic music; Nationality: United Kingdom

Albums: The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, Hunky Dory, Diamond Dogs, Aladdin Sane, "Heroes", + more

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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The Best David Bowie Songs of All Time #4 of 668 The Best Rock Vocalists #21 of 1,043 The Best Singers of All Time

8
The Who is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: Who's Next, Tommy, Quadrophenia, Live at Leeds, The Who Sell Out, + more

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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Fascinating Facts You Didn't Know About The Who's 'Who Are You' #436 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #6 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

9
Bob Dylan is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Genre: Blues-rock, Rock music & Folk music; Nationality: United States of America

Albums: Highway 61 Revisited, Blood on the Tracks, Blonde on Blonde, The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan, Bringing It All Back Home, + more

Bob Dylan (born 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. Much of his most ...more

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The Best Bob Dylan Songs #3 of 265 The Greatest Living Rock Songwriterslisted on 1970s Christian Pop Artists

10
Stevie Wonder is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added Genre: Motown Sound, Psychedelic soul & Pop music; Nationality: United States of America

Albums: Songs in the Key of Life, Innervisions, Talking Book, Stevie Wonder's Original Musiquarium I, Music of My Mind, + more

Stevland Hardaway Morris (born May 13, 1950), better known by his stage name Stevie Wonder, is an American singer, songwriter, musician and record producer. A prominent figure in popular music, ...more

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The Best Stevie Wonder Albums of All Time #22 of 1,043 The Best Singers of All Time #11 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

11
Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added Genre: Pop music, Rock music & Experimental rock; Nationality: England

Albums: Flaming Pie, Pipes of Peace, Ram, Chaos and Creation in the Backyard, Press to Play, + more

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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There Are A Lot Of People Who Still Believe Paul McCartney Died In 1966, And Here's Their "Evidence" #1 of 265 The Greatest Living Rock Songwriters #14 of 668 The Best Rock Vocalists

12
Elton John is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Glenn J. Wiener added Genre: Pop music, Rock music & Piano rock; Nationality: United Kingdom

Albums: Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Disney's Sing-Along: The Lion King, Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy, Madman Across the Water, Don't Shoot Me I'm Only the Piano Player, + more

Sir Elton Hercules John (born 25 March 1947) is an English singer, songwriter, pianist, and composer. He has worked with lyricist Bernie Taupin since 1967; they have collaborated on more than 30 ...more

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The Best Elton John Albums of All Time #4 of 265 The Greatest Living Rock Songwriters #9 of 668 The Best Rock Vocalists

13
Billy Joel is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Glenn J. Wiener added Genre: Blue-eyed soul, Pop music & Rock music; Nationality: United States of America

Albums: The Stranger, Piano Man, 52nd Street, Glass Houses, An Innocent Man, + more

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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The Best Billy Joel Songs of All Time #54 of 265 The Greatest Living Rock Songwriterslisted on Famous Accordionists

14
Eagles is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: Hotel California, Eagles Greatest Hits, Volume 2, Desperado, The Long Run, + more

The Eagles are an American rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1971 by Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Bernie Leadon, and Randy Meisner. With five number-one singles, six Grammy Awards, five American ...more

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#204 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #8 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #1 of 314 The Greatest American Rock Bands

15
Tom Petty and the Heartb... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: The Last DJ, Damn the Torpedoes, Into the Great Wide Open, Southern Accents, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, + more

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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The Most Fascinating Facts You Didn't Know About Tom Petty #19 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #16 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

16
AC/DC is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: Back in Black, Highway to Hell, Let There Be Rock, The Razors Edge, Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, + more

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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The Best AC/DC Songs of All Time #420 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timelisted on List of Famous Bands from Australia

17
Genesis is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Jack Deckard added

Albums: The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway, Genesis, Foxtrot, A Trick of the Tail, Trespass, + more

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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The Best Genesis Albums of All Time #449 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #52 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

18
The Beach Boys is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: Pet Sounds, Surfin' USA, Ultimate Christmas, Endless Summer, Sounds of Summer: The Very Best of the Beach Boys, + more

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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The Best Beach Boys Songs of All Time #230 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #47 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

19
Van Halen is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Wabesabe added
Van Halen is the debut studio album by American rock band Van Halen. Released on February 10, 1978, the album peaked at number 19 on the Billboard Hot 100. The album became widely recognized as ...more
20
Scorpions is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
rroimela added

Albums: Blackout, Love at First Sting, Animal Magnetism, Lovedrive, In Trance, + more

Scorpions are a German rock band formed in 1965 in Hanover by Rudolf Schenker. Since the band's inception, its musical style has ranged from hard rock to heavy metal. The lineup from 1978–1992 ...more

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#15 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #176 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #75 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

21
Jethro Tull is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Wabesabe added

Albums: Aqualung, The Jethro Tull Christmas Album, Thick as a Brick, Stand Up, Crest of a Knave, + more

Jethro Tull are a British rock band formed in Blackpool, Lancashire, in 1967. Initially playing blues rock, the band later developed their sound to incorporate elements of hard rock and folk ...more

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The Best Jethro Tull Albums of All Time #8 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #200 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

22
The Kinks is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

Albums: The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society, Arthur (or The Decline and Fall of the British Empire), The Kink Kronikles, Something Else by The Kinks, Face to Face, + more

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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The Best Kinks Songs of All Time #33 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #29 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

23
Eric Clapton is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
Glenn J. Wiener added Genre: Blues-rock, Rock music & Reggae; Nationality: England

Albums: 461 Ocean Boulevard, Crossroads, Pilgrim, Journeyman, Tears in Heaven, + more

Eric Patrick Clapton, (born 30 March 1945) is an English rock and blues guitarist, singer, and songwriter. He is the only three-time inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: once as a solo ...more

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All the Drugs, Murder, Adultery, and Disaster Around Eric Clapton's Layla #9 of 265 The Greatest Living Rock Songwriters #35 of 668 The Best Rock Vocalists

24
Electric Light Orchestra... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
AndyMehiel added

Albums: Out of the Blue, Time, A New World Record, Xanadu, Balance of Power, + more

The Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) are an English rock band formed in Birmingham in 1970 by songwriters/multi-instrumentalists Jeff Lynne and Roy Wood with drummer Bev Bevan. Their music is ...more

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The Best Electric Light Orchestra Albums of All Time #49 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #35 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

25
Michael Jackson is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums
moezelpg added Genre: Motown Sound, Rock music & Electronic music; Nationality: United States of America

Albums: Thriller, Bad, Off the Wall, Dangerous, Michael, + more

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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The Best Michael Jackson Songs of All Time #2 of 1,043 The Best Singers of All Time #13 of 2,044 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time