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8.2k voters

The Best Singing Drummers

Updated July 22, 2020 40.8k votes 8.2k voters 157.1k views50 items

List RulesRank the list based on their singing prowess, not their drumming skills.

Prepare to be impressed by this list of drummers who also sing. These musicians are both notable as capable drummers and as vocalists. Many of them performed in both roles in a single band, including Ringo Starr (who did vocals and drums on The Beatles' "Octopus Garden" and "Yellow Submarine," among others) and Karen Carpenter. Other singing drummers became notable for their vocal skills only after parting ways with their former band, as is the case with Dave Grohl. Initially known primarily as the drummers for iconic grunge band Nirvana, he stepped out from behind the drum kit to serve as the frontman and lead singer for his follow-up project, Foo Fighters.

Drummers are often the least visible, famous members of a large, popular rock band, making the number of great percussionists who have proven themselves to be great singers rather low. (The number dwindled even further on April 19, 2012, when the world lost the legendary Band drummer Levon Helm.) Vote for your favorite drummer/vocalists, and if you can think of any that haven't made the cut, add them at the bottom of the page.
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    Karen Carpenter

    Pop music, Soft rock
    Karen Anne Carpenter (March 2, 1950 – February 4, 1983) was an American singer and drummer who...  more

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    2,244
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    Dave Grohl

    Doom metal, Rock music
    David Eric Grohl (born January 14, 1969) is an American singer, songwriter, musician and...  more

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  • 3
    2,020
    1,236

    Don Henley

    Pop music, Rock music
    Donald Hugh Henley (born July 22, 1947) is an American musician, singer, songwriter, record...  more

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    1,454
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    Levon Helm

    Americana, Rock music
    Mark Lavon "Levon" Helm (May 26, 1940 – April 19, 2012) was an American musician and actor who...  more

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    Phil Collins

    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music
    Philip David Charles Collins (born 30 January 1951) is an English drummer, singer,...  more

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    1,052
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    Roger Meddows Taylor

    Rock music, Heavy metal
    Roger Meddows Taylor (born 26 July 1949) is an English musician, singer, songwriter, and...  more
  • 7
    1,437
    1,063

    Ringo Starr

    Pop music, Rock music
    Sir Richard Starkey (born 7 July 1940), known professionally as Ringo Starr, is an English...  more

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    Peter Gabriel

    New Wave, Pop music
    Peter Brian Gabriel (born 13 February 1950) is an English singer, songwriter, record producer...  more

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  • 9
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  • 10
    1,179
    927
    George Michael Dolenz Jr. (born March 8, 1945) is an American actor, musician, television...  more

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    #248 of 489 The Best Rock Vocalists#140 of 739 The Best Singers Of All Time

  • 11
    501
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    Chris Cornell

    Rock music, Grunge
    Christopher John Cornell (né Boyle; July 20, 1964 – May 18, 2017) was an American musician,...  more

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    Sheila E.

    Pop music, Rock music
    Sheila Cecelia Escovedo (born December 12, 1957), better known under the stage name Sheila E.,...  more

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    Taylor Hawkins

    Rock music, Post-grunge
    Oliver Taylor Hawkins (born February 17, 1972) is an American musician, best known as the...  more

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  • 14
    619
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    Ginger Baker

    Blues-rock, Jazz fusion
    Peter Edward "Ginger" Baker (born 19 August 1939) is an English drummer and a founder of the...  more

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  • 15
    662
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    Peter Criss

    Glam metal, Pop music
    George Peter John Criscuola (born December 20, 1945), better known by his stage name Peter...  more

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  • 16
    491
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    Stewart Copeland

    New Wave, Pop music
    Stewart Armstrong Copeland (born July 16, 1952) is an American musician and composer. He was...  more

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  • 17
    327
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    Buddy Miles

    Rock music, Rhythm and blues
    George Allen "Buddy" Miles Jr. (September 5, 1947 – February 26, 2008), was an American rock...  more

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    Don Brewer

    Rock music, Hard rock
    Donald George Brewer (born September 3, 1948) is an American drummer who is best known as the...  more
  • 19
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    Eric Carr

    Glam metal, Heavy metal
    Paul Charles Caravello (July 12, 1950 – November 24, 1991) better known by his stage name Eric...  more
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    152
    215

    Gil Moore

    Heavy metal, Progressive rock
    Gil Moore (born October 4, 1953) is a Canadian musician. Born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada,...  more
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    Mike Portnoy

    Thrash metal, Progressive metal

     
    Michael Stephen Portnoy (born April 20, 1967) is an American drummer and songwriter primarily...  more
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    254
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    The Rev

    Progressive metal, Third-wave of ska
    James Owen Sullivan (February 9, 1981 – December 28, 2009), professionally known by his stage...  more

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    Megan Martha White

    Blues-rock, Punk blues
    Megan Martha White (born December 10, 1974) is an American drummer and occasional singer known...  more
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    Chicago

    Ballad, Ska
    Chicago is an American rock band formed in 1967 in Chicago, Illinois, calling themselves the...  more

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    Caroline Corr

    Pop music, Rock music
    Caroline Georgina Corr MBE (born 17 March 1973), known to fans as the "Chick with Stick", is...  more