Music
84.7k voters

The Best Rock Vocalists

Updated July 13, 2020 1.3m votes 84.7k voters 838.6k views603 items

List RulesOnly vocalists primarily associated with rock music

Update: Follow Ranker's official New Rock 2020 playlist on Spotify!

The best rock vocalists of all time are the frontmen of our favorite rock bands or those solo artists whose voices are some of the best ever. These talented men and women of rock could easily captivate audiences with just their vocals. Their voices set them and their bands above the rest and define them as the best rock singers of all time. List includes both men and women. 

To be included on this list, the vocalists must be primarily known for their association with rock music and (obviously) must have a great voice. That really doesn't narrow down the many greatest rock singers in recent rock music history, though a certain few stand out as above and beyond all the rest. Greats like Robert Plant, David Bowie, Steve Perry and Neil Young come to mind, as do icons like Bono, Mick Jagger and Bruce Springsteen.

While there are many notable vocalists of today's rock music, arguably many of the best rock vocalists of all time are those from earlier generations. Elvis Presley, Freddie Mercury from Queen, John Lennon from The Beatles, Jim Morrison from The Doors and Bob Dylan are only a few of some of the best rock vocalists ever but also some of the most influential singers of all time. Freddie Mercury especially had an amazing voice and was ranked second only to Mariah Carey by MTV for the best voices in music ever.

A perfect combination of range, power, articulation and control is needed to become one of the greatest vocalists of all time. All of those can be taught but the natural ability to have that golden voice, as all of these great rock vocalists possess, is nothing that can be learned. Have a favorite rock singer that we missed? Think one vocalist should be above another? Want to put these singers in your own order? You can do all that and more be voting on, re-ranking and adding rock vocalists below! Rock on!

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  • 26
    Karen Carpenter
    3,618
    3,446
    Karen Anne Carpenter (March 2, 1950 – February 4, 1983) was an American singer and drummer who... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 27
    Jim Morrison
    10,158
    11,283
    James Douglas Morrison (December 8, 1943 – July 3, 1971) was an American singer, songwriter... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 28
    Ronnie James Dio
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  • 29
    Jon Bon Jovi
    6,395
    6,904
    John Francis Bongiovi Jr. (born March 2, 1962), known professionally as Jon Bon Jovi, is an... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 30
    Axl Rose
    11,255
    11,962
    W. Axl Rose (born February 6, 1962) is an American singer, songwriter, record producer and... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 31
    Bon Scott
    5,669
    6,142
    Ronald Belford "Bon" Scott (9 July 1946 – 19 February 1980) was an Australian singer,... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • 32
    Annie Lennox
    4,120
    4,481
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  • 33
    Mick Jagger
    8,023
    9,585
    Sir Michael Philip Jagger (born 26 July 1943) is an English singer, songwriter, actor, and... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 34
    Phil Collins
    5,167
    5,866
    Philip David Charles Collins (born 30 January 1951) is an English drummer, singer,... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • 35
    Ozzy Osbourne
    7,159
    8,427
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  • 36
    John Mellencamp
    2,359
    2,703
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  • 37
    Barry Gibb
    2,377
    2,125
    Sir Barry Alan Crompton Gibb, (born 1 September 1946) is a British-American singer,... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 38
    Eric Clapton
    5,114
    6,076
    Eric Patrick Clapton, (born 30 March 1945) is an English rock and blues guitarist, singer,... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • 39
    Debbie Harry
    2,917
    3,490
    Deborah Ann Harry (born July 1, 1945), born Angela Tremble, is an American singer, songwriter,... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 40
    Sting
    5,177
    6,388
    Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner CBE (born 2 October 1951), known as Sting, is an English musician... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 41
    Layne Staley
    5,528
    6,276
    Layne Thomas Staley (born Layne Rutherford Staley, August 22, 1967 – April 5, 2002) was an... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 42
    David Gilmour
    4,772
    5,588
    David Jon Gilmour ( GHIL-mor; born 6 March 1946) is an English multi-instrumentalist, singer... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 43
    Neil Diamond
    2,516
    2,781
    Neil Leslie Diamond (born January 24, 1941) is an American singer-songwriter, musician and... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 44
    Bruce Dickinson
    4,630
    5,844
    Paul Bruce Dickinson (born 7 August 1958) is an English singer, songwriter, musician, airline... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 45
    Neil Young
    2,867
    3,337
    Neil Percival Young (born November 12, 1945) is a Canadian singer-songwriter. After embarking... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • 46
    Kurt Cobain
    7,609
    9,176
    Kurt Donald Cobain (February 20, 1967 – April 5, 1994) was an American singer, songwriter, and... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • 47
    Sam Cooke
    2,811
    3,141
    Samuel Cook (January 22, 1931 – December 11, 1964), known professionally as Sam Cooke, was an... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • 48
    Paul Rodgers
    2,112
    2,592
    Paul Rodgers (born 17 December 1949) is an English singer, songwriter and... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button
  • 49
    Rod Stewart
    4,205
    5,397
    Sir Roderick David Stewart, (born 10 January 1945) is a British rock singer and songwriter.... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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  • 50
    Pink Floyd
    Pink Floyd were an English rock band formed in London in 1965. They emerged from London's... more on WikipediaAmazon buy button

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