Friday, March 22, 2019

Dave’s Music Database Hall of Fame: Music Maker Inductees (March 2019)

Originally posted 3/22/2019; last updated 5/21/2021.

January 22, 2019 marks the 10-year anniversary of the DMDB blog! To honor that, Dave’s Music Database announces its own Hall of Fame. Each month, new inductees will be added. In January, the first dozen inductees were songs. In February, 9 albums were inducted. This month, the top 10 acts of all-time (according to Dave’s Music Database) are being inducted. Note: click on the name of the act to see the full DMDB Music Maker Encyclopedia entry. See the full list of music maker inductees here.

The Beatles (active 1960-1970)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

“They were the greatest and most influential act of the rock era, and introduced more innovations into popular music than any other rock band of the 20th century. Moreover, they were among the few artists of any discipline that were simultaneously the best at what they did, and the most popular at what they did. Relentlessly imaginative and experimental, the Beatles grabbed a hold of the international mass consciousness in 1964 and never let go for the next six years, always staying ahead of the pack in terms of creativity, but never losing their ability to communicate their increasingly sophisticated ideas to a mass audience. Their supremacy as rock icons remains unchallenged to this day.” RU1 Read more.

Bing Crosby (1903-1977)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

Bing Crosby was the undisputed best-selling artist until well into the rock era (with over half a billion records in circulation). His everyman persona gave America a symbol of what their country was about during the Depression and World War II. With a far less formal style than the European-influenced classical and popular music of the 1910s and '20s, Crosby put his own stamp on showtunes, film music, country & western songs, patriotic standards, religious hymns, holiday favorites, and ethnic ballads (most notably Irish and Hawaiian). His recording of “White Christmas” ranks as the #1 song of all time according to the DMDB. Read more.

Tommy Dorsey (1905-1956)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

“Among the greatest trombonists in jazz history. He and his brother Jimmy played with the California Ramblers, Charleston Chasers, Jean Goldkette, Red Nichols, and Paul Whiteman, among others. Tommy also played with Vincent Lopez and Rudy Vallee. Started his band in 1935 with the heart of the Joe Haymes ensemble, and over the years led an extraordinary array of top musicians. The jazz arrangements of Sy Oliver were among the most acclaimed of the era, and during the early ‘40s the band got a sensational new star in Frank Sinatra.” PM Read more.

Michael Jackson (1958-2009)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

“Michael Jackson was unquestionably the biggest pop star of the ‘80s, and certainly one of the most popular recording artists of all time.” SH He started as a child star in the ‘60s performing with his brothers and became a solo star in the ‘70s. He achieved his greatest success with Thriller, the biggest-selling album of all time and a DMDB Hall of Fame inductee in the first class. Read more.

Elton John (1947-)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

Elton John has been “one of the most successful purveyors of hit songs and records in the history of the music industry.” SHOF “A multifaceted talent, John excels as both a ballad-oriented singer/songwriter and a flamboyant rock and roll star.” RH “He and lyric writer, Bernie Taupin, comprise one of the longest-running and most successful songwriting teams of all time.” SHOF “In terms of sales and lasting popularity, Elton John was the biggest pop superstar of the early ‘70s.” STE His “output was as critical to this decade as the Beatles were to the Sixties and Presley to the Fifties.” RH “Moreover, his longevity as an active recording artist surpasses both of them.” RH Read more.

Billy Murray (1877-1954)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

At a time before radio ruled the waves and recording technology remained primitive, Billy Murray’s success gave the fledgling recording industry the credibility to develop into a popular form of entertainment. He became the most sensational record seller of the entire pre-1920 pioneer era, recording as a solo artist, in duets with Ada Jones, and on group hits with the Haydn Quartet, American Quartet, and the Heidelberg Quintet. In all, he sang on 30 #1 songs. The recording careers of Bing Crosby or Elvis Presley pale in comparison. Read more.

Elvis Presley (1935-1977)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

As the “musician most responsible for popularizing rock & roll on an international level” RU2 it could be argued that Elvis Presley is “the single most important figure in American 20th century popular music.” RU2 While he wasn’t the first white man to sing R&B, he was “the first…to assertively fuse country and blues music into the style known as rockabilly.” RU2 However, he didn’t stop there, also touching on “pop, gospel, and even some bits of bluegrass and operatic schmaltz” RU2 during his 20+ year career. Read more.

The Rolling Stones (active 1963-)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

This London based-band has often been referred to as the greatest rock and roll band of all time. They formed in the early 1960s as a contemporary to the Beatles, but were shaped as a rougher, tougher, and grittier band. True to the band’s guitarist Keith Richards’ reputation as one of the few living beings who would still be kicking after a worldwide holocaust, the band has remained active for six decades, releasing albums and touring. Read more.

Frank Sinatra (1915-1998)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

Frank Sinatra was one of the most important acts of the 20th century, rivaled only by Bing Crosby, Elvis Presley, and the Beatles. Through his ability to make classics from his interpretations of others songs, Sinatra survived ‘50s’ rock and ‘70s’ punk, winning over new fans while retaining a loyal, if aging, group of aficionados. Besides recording nearly 1,500 songs, Sinatra starred in nearly 60 motion pictures (many with his Rat Pack buddies). His turbulent personal life and tough-guy posturing also made him a well-known media figure. Read more.

Paul Whiteman (1890-1967)

Inducted March 2019 as a “Top 10 All-Time Act.”

The most popular bandleader of the pre-swing era. Played violin and viola in the Denver & San Francisco Symphony Orchestras before forming his band in 1919 featuring Henry Busse (trumpet) and Frede Grofe (piano/arranger). Almost immediately after the blocbuster debut hit “Whispering,” the Whiteman band became the dominant force in American popular recording, with a staggering profusion of hits. Whiteman’s historic premiere of George Gershwin’s classic “Rhapsody in Blue,” his late-’20s addition of Bix Beiderbecke and other jazz greats, and his introduction to America of Bing Crosby, solidified his stature in popular music history. PM Read more.
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