Sunday, May 26, 2019

The Top 100 Acts of All Time

First posted 1/13/2013; revised 5/26/2019.

Below are the top 100 acts of all time according to the DMDB. This list is an aggregate of multiple best-of lists, including specialty lists, such as those focused exclusively on a certain genre.

This information is combined with various awards, chart success, and sales figures (click here for a link to the resources). A great effort has been made to find lists that represent numerous genres and eras of music. Even so, this list still leans almost entirely on the 20th century, or roughly the era of recorded music, meaning classical music, such as composers Ludwig van Beethoven, are absent from this list. Still, this list does at least acknowledge that there were big-name acts who made music prior to the rock era, something which few best-of lists seem to realize.

Links below connect to the act’s entry in the Music Makers A-Z guide, which offers a short bio about the act and lists significant works. In some cases, the act has a more detailed DMDB page which can be linked to via the A-Z guide entry. In some cases, an act also has a DMDB list of its top songs, indicated after the act’s name.

1. Bing Crosby: top 100 songs
2. Elvis Presley: top 100 songs
3. The Beatles: top 100 songs
4. Frank Sinatra: top 100 songs
5. Paul Whiteman: top 100 songs
6. Billy Murray: top 100 songs
7. The Rolling Stones: top 100 Songs
8. Elton John: top 100 songs
9. Henry Burr: top 100 songs
10. Tommy Dorsey: top 100 songs
11. Michael Jackson: top 50 songs
12. Stevie Wonder: top 50 songs
13. Guy Lombardo: top 100 songs
14. Byron G. Harlan: top 50 songs
15. Benny Goodman: top 50 songs
16. Arthur Collins
17. Bob Dylan: top 100 songs
18. Bruce Springsteen: top 60 songs
19. Louis Armstrong: top 50 songs
20. Ray Charles: top 50 songs
21. David Bowie: top 65 songs
22. Glenn Miller: top 100 songs
23. Aretha Franklin: top 50 songs
24. Eric Clapton: top 50 songs
25. Prince: top 50 songs
26. Madonna: top 60 songs
27. Al Jolson
28. Harry MacDonough
29. U2: top 100 songs
30. Perry Como
31. The Beach Boys: top 20 songs
32. Paul McCartney: top 70 songs
33. James Brown: top 50 songs
34. Led Zeppelin: top 50 songs
35. Jimi Hendrix: top 25 songs
36. Marvin Gaye
37. Duke Ellington
38. Nat “King” Cole
39. Jimmy Dorsey
40. Rod Stewart
41. Queen: top 50 songs
42. The Who: top 30 songs
43. Billy Joel: top 50 songs
44. Johnny Cash
45. Ada Jones
46. Neil Young: top 40 songs
47. Chuck Berry: top 25 songs
48. Mariah Carey: top 40 songs
49. Pink Floyd: top 50 songs
50. The Andrews Sisters
51. The Bee Gees: top 40 songs
52. Billie Holiday
53. Fleetwood Mac: top 50 songs
54. The Peerless Quartet/Columbia Male Quartet
55. John Lennon: top 40 songs
56. Haydn Quartet
57. Bob Marley
58. Eagles: top 70 songs
59. Ben Selvin
60. Simon & Garfunkel/Paul Simon
61. Fats Domino
62. R.E.M.: top 30 songs
63. Whitney Houston: top 50 songs
64. Ella Fitzgerald
65. American Quartet
66. The Temptations
67. Aerosmith
68. Roy Orbison
69. The Doors
70. Sting
71. Sam Cooke
72. Ted Lewis
73. The Kinks
74. Tina Turner
75. Tom Petty: top 30 songs
76. Willie Nelson: top 80 songs
77. The Supremes
78. Fats Waller
79. Little Richard
80. Sammy Kaye
81. Van Morrison
82. The Police: top 60 songs (Sting & the Police)
83. Rihanna
84. Diana Ross
85. Jay-Z
86. AC/DC
87. Hank Williams
88. Chicago
89. Eminem
90. Carlos Santana
91. Barbra Streisand
92. Count Basie
93. Neil Diamond
94. Van Halen
95. Kenny Rogers
96. Dolly Parton
97. Buddy Holly
98. Eddy Arnold
99. Drake
100. Creedence Clearwater Revival

4 comments:

  1. How are the Velvet Underground not on this list? I have seen dozens of "Greatest of all time" lists,and they are always on them.That's not hyberbol. I think you need to double check your work.

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  2. Hey, Joe. That's just the way the lists played out. Personally, I'd put VU on my own list, but they just didn't make the cut often enough for this list.

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  3. Absolutely fantastic job you have done here.This is so nice.Thanks for sharing.

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  4. Great job, have you thought of expanding the list to 250, 500 or even 1000?

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