What a brutal task! There are literally hundreds of talented musicians we could have considered for our All-Time Best 10 Frontmen (and Women). We whittled it down though, to an elite group of 10. 10 men and women who truly embody the spirit of rock n’ roll and who all led their respective bands to superstardom
10. Steven Tyler (Aerosmith)
Steven Tyler is truly one of a kind. From the way he dresses to the ridiculous inflections in his voice. Regarding the latter, it’s really amazing to hear its evolution from early albums like Toys in the Attic to current Aerosmith fare. Steven Tyler is everything you could want in a frontman: talented, charismatic, and supremely original. With goods like that it’s easy to overlook the disaster that was the Super Bowl XXXV halftime show.
9. Janis Joplin (Big Brother and the Holding Company)
With a raw, soulful and gritty voice, Janis Joplin is without question rock’s greatest frontwoman. You only need to hear her once to grasp how influential she was in the world of music. From 60’s rock/pop to 90’s grunge, her fingerprints are everywhere.
8. Kurt Cobain (Nirvana)
Even though Cobain wasn’t the best singer to grace a rock mic, his presence was undeniable. Ultimately, you listen to Kurt and Nirvana not because of trends or pop culture, but to share a kinship with a brilliant man and tortured soul. A man whose pain we felt in Nirvana’s honest and emotional music.
7. Bruce Springsteen (Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band)
The Boss is undoubtedly an amazing solo artist, but where he really shines is in the company of his uber-talented E Street Band. Bruce provides the grit and grind to beautifully complement his band’s smooth and rich sound. Springsteen’s energy on stage is undeniable, as he makes a 20,000 seat arena feel like an intimate smoky club with an unparalleled connection to his audience.
6. Roger Daltrey (The Who)
Roger Daltrey, like the rest of The Who, is a madman on stage. With a voice that ranges from blues to primal scream, nobody has the versatility Daltrey has vocally. No joke, the man is just the embodiment of rock. Seriously, he could sing “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” at a Motorhead concert and still live to tell about it.
5. Bono (U2)
Love Bono or hate him, he’s the straw that stirs the drink that is U2. Like Springsteen, you can’t find a harder working frontman. Add in his ability to play rhythm guitar, and you’ve got the total package. Make no mistake about it though, thousands come to each U2 tour date to hear his haunting operatic pipes.
4. Paul McCartney(The Beatles, Wings)/John Lennon (The Beatles)
Sue me, I cheated! That’s right I made this an All-Time Best 11 countdown. Seriously though, how can you separate arguably the greatest duo from arguably the greatest rock band of all-time. When you look at it though, the two couldn’t be more different as frontmen. While Paul was the happy, lovable Beatle with a choirboy’s looks and voice, Lennon was raw, real, and unfettered. Even with their differences, good luck picking between the two.
3. Robert Plant (Led Zeppelin)
If you tried to make a rockstar, you couldn’t do better than Robert Plant. Heartthrob looks, intuitive stage presence, and the most freaking ridiculous voice ever. What else do you need? It never hurts though, when you have the most musically gifted rock band in history behind you. Just listen to “Immigrant Song.” Is this guy for real?
2. Mick Jagger (The Rolling Stones)
From the very definition of rockstar to the biggest rockstar on the planet. You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone with more charisma than Mick… even at age 70. His criminally underrated voice does nothing but further the legend that has become Sir Mick. The man rocks harder now than most frontmen and women do in their 20’s.
1. Freddie Mercury (Queen)
Freddie Mercury truly was a once-in-a-lifetime talent. No one before was like him and no one will be after. Combing rock n’ roll with Broadway-caliber theatrics, you’ll never find anyone who entertained like Freddie. Just to top it off, he had a voice that could play at Wembley Stadium or the Met. The guy truly was that damn good!
Hope you enjoyed! Tomorrow, in honor of the NFL Draft, the ALL-TIME WORST 10 #1 DRAFT PICKS
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