Rock band Bon Jovi was inducted into the Rock "n' Roll Hall of Fame as a part of the 2018 Class. To learn more about the band scroll down to artist 60 on this list.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Top 100 American Recording Artists

1. Introduction
These are the Top (All Time) 100+ American recording artists/stars. This is a listing of American musicians based on national, international and global popularity. Record sales, concert performances, Television, Radio, YouTube, Chart Performance, United States and World Populations, and Inflation Index all played a roll in development of this list.

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2. Directory and site usage
Everything is found on this page by scrolling down 
     1. Introduction
     2. Directory
     3. Related Blogs
     4. Top 100 American Recording Artists
     5. About The List
     6. Criteria, Weights and Standards 
     7. Artists To Watch
     8. Electrofied Era

3. Related Blogs

1. 100+ Top American Rock Standards
     A list of the Top 100 Rock Standards.  There are more than 250 Rock 'n' Roll Standards or "American Rock Standards" listed here. As the "Modern American Songbook" this is The Great American Rock Songbook
CLICK  100+ Top American Rock Standards

2. 100 American Pop Standards 
     A list of the Top 100 American Pop Standards. There are over 250 songs listed here as  traditional American Pop Standards.
CLICK  100 American Pop Standards 

Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, fountains dancing to an American Pop Standard.

4. 100 Top American Recording Artists

100. Buddy Holly - (1936 - 1959)
VIDEO - Peggy Sue - Buddy Holly & The Crickets
    Some have called him one of the founding fathers of Rock 'n' Roll while others have dismissed that idea as pure hype.  What is important, he influenced many by his songwriting skills. He was influenced by Elvis Presley and in turn Holly influenced the Beatles and others. He was not a true Global Artist, but was an international Artist who was greatly admired and respected by professionals and fans a like in Europe. He is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Some of his hits were "Oh Boy", "Peggy Sue", "That'll Be The Day", "True Love Ways", "It Doesn't Matter Anymore", and "Raining In My Heart".
For more on Buddy Holly CLICK   
    100 Most Important and Influential American Songs see song 11

 99. Bob Dylan
        He is a singer, songwriter, artist and writer. He has played a variety of genres from Jazz, Folk, Rock, Blues, Country to Gospel. The man struggles to sing and that is giving him credit. His best vocal was on the song "Lay Lady Lay". He was a first class songwriter. There is little doubt about his composition contribution to music.  Breaking ranks with traditional Folk performers he electrified his music borrowing heavily from Rock 'n' Roll. This not only set him apart from traditionalists but brought him the youth crowd.  Dylan's songs on Civil Rights and anti-war themes were great for the sixties when the country was in heated turmoil over the two.  What do you do when the nation moves on.  He still has an aging following of the 60's hippies, but his musical relevance is fading. When people bought Dyan's music they were not buying the vocal talent.  They were buying the ideals as expressed by him - Not Bad.  When people bought Elvis they bought both. Bob was the counter culture voice of a generation. He is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Bob's popularity rests primarily in the United States and Canada.  He does have a strong following in Europe.  He is an International Artist. Bob was one of the primary members of the Anglo-American super group, The Traveling Wilburys. Other members included George Harrison(The Beatles) Jeff Lynne(ELO) Tom Petty and the "Voice" Roy Orbison. Bob's son, Jakob, has been the lead singer for the Wallflowers 
For more on Bob Dylan CLICK
1.   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 50
2.    Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see song 90

 98. Black Eyed Peas
        They are Global Artists with a world wide following.  While they may not have intentionally followed Elvis Presley musical game plan that is what has happened.  Like Elvis they started in one type of music (Alternative Hip Hop) and then they explored other music styles and genres (Surf Rock, Disco/Electronic Music, Hip Hop, R&B, and Pop). By diversifying their music they have added new audiences and demonstrated great flexibility making them one of the hottest bands of the 21st. Century.
For more on the Black Eyed Peas CLICK
1. Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans  see artist 10
2. Top 40 Blind and Visually Impaired American Musicians see artist 3

 97. Justin Timberlake/'N Sync
        What does Justin  Timberlake and early female Rocker, Annette, have in common?  They both launched their recording careers while working for Disney and starring on the Mickey Mouse Club.  Justin was in the new updated version of the Mickey Mouse Club, while Annette was on the original.  They both went into making movies. Justin's work on the Mickey Mouse Club led to the formation of 'N Sync, a boy band that had great success. Justin has found substantial success as a solo singer/songwriter. Some of his hits include "Cry Me A River", "Not A Bad Thing", "Mirrors", "Summer Love", "What Goes Around Comes Around", "Rock Your Body", and "SexyBack". He has also hit big performing with other artists. Some of those songs are "Love Never Felt So Good" with Michael Jackson and Paul Anka, "My Love" with T.I., and "Till The End Of Time" with Beyonce. He has also recorded with Jay Z, Madonna, Rihanna, 50 Cent and others. 

 96. The Ventures
          VIDEO - The Ventures - Stars on Guitars (Japan) 
        They are the world's number one Rock "n" Roll Instrumental Band and are known as "the band that launched a thousand bands" So, you have not heard of them?  You have heard their songs, "Theme from Hawaii Five-O", "Walk Don't Run", and "Perfidia". Because they are an instrumental band they have found huge success globally as an American band with record sales in excess of 100 million.  They are credited with having popularized Rock 'n' Roll and the Electric Guitar in Japan and thus are legendary there. The Ventures were the first foreign recording artists to be inducted into Japan's Conservatory of Music. They just weren't "Big in Japan" they were the Godzilla of Rock out selling the Beatles two to one. The Japanese music market is the second largest in the world only surpassed by the United States. They have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Their current drummer, Leon Taylor, is the son of Mel Taylor the late drummer for the Ventures.  Leon speaks Japanese fluently and introduces many of the Ventures song at performances in Japan.  Like his father Leon is an outstanding drummer in his own right. The Ventures are Global Artists with a following all over the world. Universities with business schools should consider studying how and why they were and are still so successful in Japan in particular and Asia in general.
The Ventures clear vinyl (official)
NASA 25th.Anniversary LP  
Some of their better known songs are "Surf Rider", "Slaughter On Tenth Avenue", "Walk Don't Run 64", "Ram-Bunk-Shush", "Caravan", "Diamond Head",and  "Theme From A Summer Place". 

For more on The Ventures CLICK 
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 6
2. Top 100 American Instrumentals see songs 96, 79, 71, 61, 40, and 19

 95. Chuck Berry
Chuck Barry
For more on this photo visit
       He was one of the founding fathers of Rock 'n' Roll. Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones inducted Chuck into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame. Berry spent time in prison for armed robbery and car theft before becoming successful in the music industry. He spent more time in prison after gaining popularity for violating the Mann Act and had been accused of having sex with a minor. He was one of the early pioneers in blending Blues and Country to create Rock.  He was a prominent writer of Rock music and virtually all the greats in the music industry have recorded his music.  His hits "Maybellene", "Rock 'n' Roll Music", "Roll Over Beethoven" and "Johnny B. Goode" are all Rock classics  He won a law suit against the Beach Boys for their song "Surfin' U.S.A." which was based on his song "Sweet Little Sixteen". His last big hit was a novelty song heavy into double entendre, "My Ding-A-Ling". He is an International Artist but does not rise to being a true Global Artist.
For more on Chuck Berry CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs see song 66
2. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see songs 33 & 28

 94. Duke Ellington - (1899 - 1974)
     He was a songwriter, pianist and Big Band Leader, He performed Pop, Classical, Blues, Gospel, Swing and Jazz. He started recording in the 1920's  and found his recording career was hurt in the 1930's by the Great Depression. He was one of the preeminent Big Band Leaders of the Swing Era. He is an International Artist with a strong fan base in North America and Europe. Stevie Wonder's hit song "Sir Duke" was a tribute to Duke Ellington. Some of his awards and honors include Commemorative U.S. Quarter, U.S. Stamp, Big Band and Jazz Hall Of Fame, Pulitzer Prize, French Legion Of Honor, Songwriters Hall Of Fame, Presidential Medal Of freedom, and Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. The following is a partial listing of artists who have covered Ellington, The Ventures, Natalie Cole, Steely Dan, Nina Simone, Roberta Flack, Patti Austin, Diane Schuur and Esther Phillips. Here are a few of his many hits "Diga Diga, Doo", "Mooche", "Mood Indigo", "Rockin' In Rhythm", "Limehouse Blues", "It Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing", "Caravan", "I Let A Song Go Out Of My Heart", "Take The A Train", "In A Sentimental Mood", "Don't Get Around Much Anymore", "Satin Doll", "I Got It Bad And That Ain't good", and "Moon Glow". 

 93. Michael Bolton        
       He is a singer songwriter having penned hits for Cher and Laura Branigan and himself. He, like so many great artists, has crossed genres performing in a variety of styles from Hard Rock, to Blues, Pop Standard and Soft rock.  His early career was on the Hard Rock front but he gained his greatest success as a Soft Rock Balladeer. He has learned to blend the vocal styling of Hard Rock, Jazz, Soul and the Pop Standard. Despite his own physical disability he has become one of America's greatest singing stars and an International Artist of the first rank  His fan base includes North America, Europe and Australia.
For more on Micheal Bolton CLICK
1. Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans see artist 11
Authors Note:  He is not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!!!!! What is the Hall a -- Whangdoodle?!!

 92. Johnny Rivers
       Johnny Rivers has recorded Doo Wop, Rock, Psychedelic Rock, and Blue Eyed Soul.  He is a singer songwriter. Rivers' early success was doing live club recordings.  He had a long list of hits in the United States. Some of them are "Memphis", "Blue Swede Shoes", "Swayin' To The Music (Slow Dancin')", "Help Me Rhonda" (with Brian Wilson), "Mountain Of Love", "Seventh Son", "Secret Agent Man", "Rockin' Pneumonia - Boogie Woogie Flu", "Baby I Need Your Lovin'", "Poor Side Of Town", and "The Tracks Of My Tears".
Authors Note: Johnny Rivers is not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Did you guys in Cleveland have a train wreck and lose your minds?

 91. Dean Martin- (1917 - 1995)
       He was a singer, actor, comedian and television host.  Martin was a member of the notorious "Rat Pack".  He also recorded with fellow "Rat Pack" members Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr. His musical following was primarily in North America but he did have a fan base in Europe. He had early success as the straight man for Jerry Lewis.  The break up of the comedy team was messy. Lewis went onto have a long film career and a son ,Gary Lewis, who became a successful Rock star (Gary Lewis & The Playboys). Martin had many hits in the fifties and sixties in the Pop Standard vein. He is the father of "Dino" (died in fighter jet accident) Rock star of "Dino, Desi & Billy" Dean Martin was also the father-in-law of Carl Wilson of the Beach Boys

 90. Styx
45 of "Renegade" autographed by
lead singer of the song,, Tommy Shaw.
        Chicago Rock band made up of various personnel but most noted for the following Dennis DeYoung, Chuck and John Panozzo, Tommy Shaw & James Young. They performed Hard Rock, Progressive Rock, Pop, and even Disco slanted Rock. Dennis DeYoung had a Broadway Stage voice and Tommy Shaw had Hair Band pipes. This gave the band great versatility  They took The Ventures invention off the Rock Concept/themed album and brought it to an art form. Some religious leaders claimed they did anti-religious statements in their recordings using The Ventures invention of reverse tracking.  Members of Styx pointed out it was all false. They claimed if they were going to make anti-religious statements they would not hide it in a recording using reverse tracking. Some of their Hits were "Babe", "Renegade", Too Much Time On My Hands", "Mr. Roboto", "Lady", "Don't Let It End", "Come Sail Away", "Show Me The Way" and "Best Of Times"
For more on John Panozzo - CLICK
Drugs, Booze, Death - American Musicians
Authors Note: These guys are not in the Rock And  Roll Hall Of Fame.  Cleveland! - What is going on?????  Who is running the show in Cleveland?  Moe, Larry and Curly!!!!

 89. Toni Braxton
Toni Braxton
Source, Umusic
       She is one tough woman. She is battling a life threatening illness resulting in disability. It impacted her ongoing live performances in Las Vegas and she is currently not performing in Sin City. If this was not enough, she has a son with autism. She has retired from her music career leading many fans to cry "Un-Break Our Hearts". During her music career she did Disco/Electronic music, R&B, Soul, and Pop.  She has done television (Braxton Family Values) and Broadway. Retiring from music does not mean she has retired from life.  She is spending time focusing on acting and film which leaves the door open for the possibilities of more recordings.
For more on Toni Braxton CLICK
   Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans

 88. 50 Cent
       He has a very checkered history from having dealt drugs to being a successful Rapper and businessman.  He was shot nine times in one incident and survived. With the help of Eminem and Dr. Dre he got his rap career into high gear. Besides his music he has found success on the small and large screen. 

87. Bruce Springsteen
       It seems he was "Born To Run" as a Rock star.  It was the appearance of Elvis Presley on the Ed Sullivan Show that launched his interest in Rock music. He and Hoosier singer John Mellencamp both incorporate in their music themes of the working man and lifestyles.  Springsteen is from New Jersey and many of his songs deal with places and life in the Garden State. He has been active in support of Liberal Democrats and that has brought him praise from some and the loss of fans from others.  His star is still bright but fading due to an ever changing musical audience. He is an Global Artist with a strong North American fan base and good popularity in Europe, South America and Australia. Bruce is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.   
    Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see song 35

 86. Britney Spears
        She was born and raised in the deep South, but she isn't the hick from the sticks.  She is one of the nations leading performers of Disco/Dance/Electronic Music. With songs like "Baby One More Time", "Toxic", "Oops!...I Did It again", "(You Drive Me)Crazy", "Womanizer", "3", "Till the World Ends", and "Give Me More" she has proven her star power. "Baby One More Time" was not only her first hit it was also a global hit.  This launched her to Global Artist Status. She has followed in the footsteps of Madonna. People who promote her are afraid to mention how much she was impacted by the Queen of Disco, Donner Summer, because they do not want the word "DISCO" associated with her. The bottom line is "Dance Music" from Donna Summer To Britney has seen minor evolutionary changes.

 85. Lionel Richie/The Commodores   
       He performed R&B, Soul, Country and Disco. Lionel was the primary voice of the Commodores with hits  "Three Times A Lady", "Still", "Brick House","Sail On", and "Easy". His duet with Diana Ross "Endless Love" is what made him a Global Star.  He had numerous hits of his own "Truly", Dancing On The Ceiling", "Say You, Say Me" and others. In recent years he has performed with country artists on stage and in the recording studio. His popularity is truly global in that his music is played in The Middle Wast, Europe, Asia, North & South America and Australia.
Authors Note: Lionel Richie nor the Commodores are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Can anyone there give a good reason as to why not?

 84.  Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass
         He is an American Renascence Man as a singer, songwriter, instrumentalist, painter, businessman and producer. Alpert's first hit "The Lonely Bull" launched his music career  It was covered by many artist the most notable was by The Ventures. Alpert was famous for his instrumentals with "Rise" being his biggest. He however had two monster hits involving vocals. The first he sang "This Guys In Love With You" and the second he had Janet Jackson doing the vocals, "Diamonds" He is in the the Rock and Roll Hall of fame with his business partner but not for his musical influence and artistry.
1. Top 100 American Instrumentals  see songs 77, 53, 50, and 9
Authors Note: He should be in for his musical artistry.

 83. Earth Wind & Fire
      When it comes to a band that does everything they are the "Shining Star".  They can deliver on Rock, R & B, Jazz, Disco, Pop, and Soul. They found their high tide of popularity from the early seventies to the early nineties. They are in the Rock and Roll Hall of fame. 

 82. Aerosmith
        "I Don't Want To Miss A Thing" was their biggest hit but their signature song is "Walk This Way". Run D.M.C. covered "Walk This Way" with members of Aerosmith being integral to the song. They came out of Boston as one of America's Hard Rock hair bands. Despite on going drug issues and infighting the band has survived from the early 70's to today. They are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. They have reached the status of Global Artists.

 81. Christina Aguilera
        Without a doubt one the biggest stars of the 21st Century. She knows "What A Girl Wants" and has been in hot pursuit of success. She has "Stripped" going "Back To Basics" turning out hit after hit as a solo artist.  She has also had several huge hits doing collaborations with other artists.  "Lady Marmalade" was one such hit.

 80. Heart
       The core of the band Heart are the sisters Ann & Nancy Wilson. Heart has been a successful Hard Rock band since the mid seventies.  They are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The song "Barracuda" was their break out hit. The album "Red velvet Car" in 2010 was a major hit. As International Artists they have a following in Europe, Australia  and North America.

 79. Dion/Dion & the Belmonts
       Dion started in Doo Wop as a teen idol and recently has recorded an
45 of "Drip Drop" by Dion
album of classic Blues.  He has done Folk, Rock, Blues, and Pop.  In 1989 he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His better known hits are "Runaround Sue", "Where Or When", "Drip Drop","Lovers Who Wander", "Ruby Baby", and "Abraham, Martin and John". The last listed was inspired by the deaths of Martin Luther King Jr and President John Kennedy.

For more on Dion Click
1. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism see song 50
2. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 88

 78. Nelly
       East Coast Rappers - West Coast Rappers.  What about a Heartland Rapper. "Nellyville" wasn't where he was born, try Austin, Texas, but he grew up in St Louis. Besides his solo work and recordings with St. Lunatic he has collaborated with other artists. Tim McGraw (Country Artist), Fergie (Black Eyed Peas), T-Pain, Chris Brown and others. He has achieved the rank of International Artist.   

 77. Neil Sedaka
        He is a classically trained artist having studied at Juilliard.  He began his true writing career at the Rock 'n' Roll version of Tin Pan Alley, The Brill Building. Sedaka's hits include "Breaking Up Is Hard To Do". "Calendar Gil", "The Diary". "Bad Blood" (Elton John backing vocals), and "Laughter In The Rain". As a songwriter he has penned over 1,000 songs. He wrote hit songs recorded by Elvis Presley, Connie Francis, Clay Aiken,Tony Christie, Gene Pitney, Jimmy Clanton, Captain & Tennille and a host of others.  Although an American he lives in the U.K. and uses it as his base of operations. He is a Global Artist. He is in The Songwriters Hall Of Fame but ironically has not been inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame 
For more on Neil Sedaka CLICK
   Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see song 59   
Authors Note:Their loss. Somebody is  a sleep at the wheel in Cleveland. Please do't do to Neil what has happened to Donna Summer, being inducted after her death.
To petition the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame for Neil Sedaka 
CLICK -->Petition for Neil Sedaka's admission to the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame

 76. Roy Orbison - (1936 - 1988)

Photo of Roy Orbison appeared in
Billboard as part of an ad 21 August
1965 (Originally uploaded on en.wikipedia)
MGM Records 

(Transferred by Annj87/Originally uploaded by We hope)
This photo appears on the cover of the 

Wikipedia book "Roy Orbison The Complete Guide"
     What do you get when you marry a voice with opera proportions and Rock 'n' Roll, Roy Orbison. Elvis is claimed to have said of Roy Orbison he is "The Voice". He was a singer songwriter of the highest stature and an International Artist. He has been inducted into the Songwriters Hall Of Fame and The Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame.  His songs "Crying", "Oh Pretty Woman", "You Got It", and "Only The Lonely". have become Standards within their given genres. It can be said he was the only one who could truly sing in the super group, The Traveling Wilburys.  Other members were George Harrison, Bob (I wish I had a voice) Dylan, Tom (I sound too much like Bob) Petty and Jeff Lynne. Many of Orbison's songs were dark in tone and in that one aspect mirrored his life as his first wife cheated on him and was killed in a motorcycle accident. He lost sons when his home burned and he had severe ups and downs in his professional life.  He died, at age 52, of a heart attack during a huge resurgence in his popularity. His death, George Harrison's decline in health, Jeff Lynn couldn't do it by himself because the other two can't sing, so you understand why the Traveling Wilburys folded.

 75. Puff Daddy/Diddy/P Diddy (Sean "Puff Daddy" Combs)
        He is a successful Rapper and record label owner.  He also has strong business ties to the fashion and clothing industry which have not been without controversy regarding sweatshops and the use of dog fur.  He addressed those issues resolving them. He has had more than one run in with the law concerning the use of violence. Some of his hits are, "Can't Nobody Hold Me down", "I'll Be Missing You", "Satisfy You", "Come To Me", "I Need A Girl (Part One)", "Victory", and "Been Around The World". All of these songs were done in collaboration with some other prominent recording artist.

 74. Usher
       A 21st Century recording star who's forte is Hip Hop and Disco/Dance/Electronic Music. He is multi-talented as a singer, songwriter, actor and dancer. His hits include "U Got It Bad", "U Remind Me". "DJ Got Us Falling In Love", "OMG"(featuring Will I Am - Black Eyed Peas), "Love In The Club", "Yeah", and "There Goes My Baby".

 73. Eminem
      He is a successful White rap artist in a music genre dominated by Black artists. Like many in the Rap music industry he has a checkered history with drug problems and incidents involving guns. He ran a foul of the Secret Service with the song "We As American" which seemed to imply he would like to see the President (George W. Bush) dead. As it is their responsibility to protect the President, they would have been derelict in their duties if they had not investigated Eminem.  The same as if he had released such a song about President Obama. Just keep in mind that it was an entertainer (nationally famous actor) that killed President Abraham Lincoln. His hits include but are not limited to, "The Real Slim Shady", "Without Me", "Cleanin' Out My Closet", "Lose Yourself", "Crack A Bottle" (with Dr. Dre and 50 Cent), "Not Afraid", "The Monster" (with Rihanna), "Love The Way You Lie" (with Rihanna), and "Berzerk".

 72. Jimmy Dorsey - (1904 - 1957)
         His musical career began before the Electofied Era(1940 - Present). Jimmy and his older brother Tommy were top band leaders of the forties and fifties. Both died within months of each other in the mid fifties.  Jimmy's last hit was "So Rare" which incorporated elements of Doo Wop and sax play that verged on Rock. His Big Band had a string of monster hits throughout the forties.  "The Breeze And I", "Green Eyes", "Maria Elena", "Tangerine", "Besame Mucho", "Pennies from Heaven"(featuring Bing Crosby) and "When They Ask About You" are just some of his hits.

 71. Kay Starr
        She came out of the Big Band Era of the forties and early fifties. Black Blues singer Billie Holiday once said of Starr "the only White woman who can sing the Blues".  The problem is that Starr was not White or Black.  She was Native American, primarily Iroquois. Her hits included "Wheel Of Fortune", "Hoop-de-Doo", "Bonaparte's Retreat", "Rock 'n' Roll Waltz", and "If you Love Me (Really Love Me)". She was successful at singing Blues, Jazz, Pop, and Country.

 70. Kool & The Gang
        They Play Jazz, R & B, Soul, Funk and Disco.  They are best known for their Disco hit "Celebration" (1980) witch to this day remains a staple with Mobile (party) DJ's. "Open Sesame"(from Saturday Night Fever soundtrack), "Ladies Night" and "Celebration" were all clearly Disco hits. They had hits in other genres but not on the scale of their Disco material.
Authors Note: Stupid is as Stupid does and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame fits the description.  Kool & The Gang are not in the Hall.

 69. Gloria Estefan & The Miami Sound Machine
      She was born in Cuba but her family fled to the U.S. after Fidel Castro took over. She  performs Rock, Pop Standards, Disco/Dance, Salsa, and Latin Music. Songs such as "Out Of No Where", "Oye!". "Dr. Beat", "Turn The Beat Around"(a carbon copy of the Disco hit by Vicki Sue Robinson) firmly placed her as a Disco Star. Her duet with Frank Sinatra on "Come Rain Or Come Shine" and cuts from various albums showcased her Pop Standards vocal quality. Critics have raved about the pureness of her voice.
Authors Note: Gloria Estefan became eligible for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 2012.

 68. Barry Manilow
        Barry is famous for his soft rock Ballads and Pop Standard covers.  The hits "Copacabana", a Disco/Dance oriented song, along with "Bandstand Boogie"(theme to American Bandstand), a Swing song, diverged from his ballad fare. He had good runs in Las Vegas at the Las Vegas Hilton and Paris hotels and Casinos. He is a singer songwriter and producer. He attended Julliard   His breakthrough came writing jingles for commercials. He wrote memorable jingles for State Farm, KFC, Pepsi, and McDonald's to name a few.
Authors Note: Barry is not in The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Who forgot to pay attention?
 67. The Ink Spots
        A group formed in Indianapolis several years before the Electrofied Era. They were a force to contend with between 1939 and 1954. They were the precursor to Rock 'n' Roll and as such have been inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame. One of their members, Bill Doggett, wrote and recorded the Rock Era hit song "Honky Tonk".  They are one of the most important recording acts of the 20th Century. They were instrumental in helping to develop the Doo Wop art form and mixed with Scat. Their hits included "If I Didn't Care", "Maybe", My Prayer", "The Gypsy" "Prisoner Of Love", and "Don't Get Around Much Any More" to name a few. The group's make up of type of instruments, number of members and stage presence set the standard for what early Rock bands would look and sound like.

 66. Carpenters
        Brother and sister act of Richard and Karen Carpenter. They had a string of soft Rock Hits in the late sixties and through the Seventies and into the early eighties. In 1984 Karen Died ending the Carpenters.  Their hits included, "Ticket To Ride", "(They Long To Be) Close To You", "For All We Know", "Please Mr. Postman", "Solitaire", and "Top Of The World" to name some. They recorded a song that would become a wedding Standard, "We've Only Just Begun", second only to Elvis Presley's "Can't Help Falling In Love".
Authors Note: Who would believe it. They're not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

 65. Boyz II Men
       They came out of Philadelphia. Their success was a supernova in one decade, the nineties. Their singing style has been called Hip Hop Doo Wop.  Authors Note: Less Hip Hop more Soft Pop Doo Wop.  All of their hits like "Motowntphilly". "I'll Make Love To You", "End Of The Road", "On Bended Knee", and "4 Seasons Of Loneliness" were ballads. The song "In The Still Of The Night (I'll Remember)"  showcased two aspects of their singing that set them apart from other groups at the time and that was they sang accepella and did pure Doo Wop.

 64. Jefferson Airplane/Starship
       The band originated out of San Francisco.  Our focus relates to the years Grace Slick was the female vocalist. This band has undergone several reincarnations from Jefferson Airplane to Jefferson Starship and Starship. Personnel changes have been an ongoing circumstance from its inception. Other bands such as Styx, The Ink spots and The Ventures on our list have also had personnel changes. This band started out with folk flavored Rock and moved into Psychedelic Rock, also doing Pop, and Hard Rock. The band over the years suffered over sex, drugs and (infighting over ) Rock 'n' Roll. Their breakout single was "Somebody To Love", but the band is best known for its albums.  It performed at Woodstock and is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as Jefferson Airplane.

 63. Rosemary Clooney - (1928-2002)
        She was born in Kentucky and was a singer, TV Host and actress. She starred with Bing Crosby in the film "White Christmas". Her first important hit was "You Started Something". Some of her other hits included "Mambo Italiano", "Hey There", "Tenderly", and "Come On-a My House".  Her recording career suffered with the advent of Rock 'n' Roll. Her acting, TV personality, and ability to sing Pop Standards and jazz enabled her to survive the onslaught of Rock 'n' Roll. She was one of a few female singers able to hold the Pop Standard banner high during the Rock attack.  She was a heavy smoker and died of Lung Cancer.
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   Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans  see artist 19
 62. Linda Ronstadt
      She has performed in virtually every genre from Mexican Folk songs to Opera, but is best known for her Rock, Pop Standards, Country Rock and Jazz songs. She and her band along with Rick Nelson and his band led the drive to create Country Rock as it is known today.  Members of both bands formed the nucleus of The Eagles who came to define the genre. Her recordings of Roy Orbison's "Blue Bayou" and the Everly Brothers "When Will I Be Loved" foreshadowed the coming of Country Rock. Her albums with Nelson Riddle revived Jazz and Pop Standard songs from the thirties and forties.  Country and Rock artist now record these songs and new ones in the same vein thanks to her. In 2013 she announced she had Parkinson's disease and would not be able to tour. In 2014 she was inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall Of Fame. It was long over due.
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   Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see song 28

 61. Johnny Mathis
           He is famous for his romantic ballads.  Has performed R & B, Jazz, Country, Soft Rock, Soul Pop Standards and Disco. He has colaberated with other singers, most notably Hoosier, Denise Williams, "Too Much, Too Little, Too Late". He is best known for other hits, "Chances Are", "Wonderful Wonderful", "Misty", and "The Twelfth Of Never". While these singles were successful he is more of album artist.

 60. Bon Jovi
       Another New Jersey band, but not just another band. They have risen to Global status. They certainly have not been "Livin' On A Prayer" and they have not been "Bad Medicine". They have toured the world as one of the great Hard Rock/Heavy Metal bands. Recently they have more than dabbled in Country Music having had several hits in that genre. The band is still turning out hit albums and selling out venues all over the world. In 2018 they were inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. An honor that is well deserved.

 59. Tony Bennett
         He is a preeminent Jazz and Pop Standards singer who has dabbled in other genres such as Country. He is the last of the great Broadway/Pop Standards singers who's career was launched before Rock 'n' Roll. He is a veteran of World War II. In the late forties he was discovered by the great Pearl Bailey and through her he toured with Bob Hope who gave him his stage name of Tony Bennett. He has had drug and financial troubles. He has called for the legalization of drugs. He has received the coveted Lifetime Achievement Award from the Grammy's. He is an international Artist with a Strong following in North America, Europe, and Australia.

 58. John Mellencamp
       John is a Hoosier from Seymoure, Indiana. His music is very reflective of his Hoosier roots.  "Jack & Diane", "Pink Houses", and "Small Town" are all fine examples of songs about life in small town Indiana. He is the voice of Heartland Rock. John is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
   Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see songs 75, 71, & 46

 57. Les Paul/Les Paul Trio/
Les Paul and Mary Ford - (1915 - 2009)
        He is in the Inventors Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He has a guitar that bears his name "Gibson; Les Paul". In 1940 he invented the solid body electric guitar. Musically he performed in nearly every genre, Pop Standards, Jazz, Country, Rock, and Blues. He simply wrote the book on how the electric guitar should and could be played.  He also virtually invented the modern recording studio.  He invented Sound on Sound recording and was the primary force in the eight track recorder for the professional studio.  He worked on and contributed to the development of other studio equipment. There is not a guitarist today that does not owe this man.
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1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 1
2. Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans see artist 4

 56. Jackie "Mr. Excitement" Wilson - (1934 - 1984)
        Elvis Presley liked and respected this great singer. That is something that Robert Goulet and many other singers could not say. He is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His hits "Lonely Teardrops", "Whispers", "Baby Workout" and "Higher and Higher" are legendary in the Soul and Rock genres. The dark side of his life revolved around drug and alcohol abuse.  It has been alleged that he sexually assaulted several women but, he was never arrested or tried on the allegations.  While performing in 1975 he had a heart attack and subsequently fell into a coma.  He languished for nearly nine years and in 1984 died. He rose to the status of International Artist due to his widespread popularity in North America and Europe. 

 55.  Bobby Darin - (1936 - 1973)
45 reissue of "Queen Of The Hop"
by Bobby Darin
        Bobby was a singer songwriter and actor. He was married briefly to film star Sandra Dee with whom he made several films. He was a multi-genre performer singing Jazz, Pop Standards, Rock, Fusion Doo Wop, Folk and Country. He is a member of the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. His hits included but were not limited to  "Splish Splash", "Dream Lover", "Mack The Knife", "Things", "If I were A Carpenter", and "You're The Reason I'm Living". A somewhat biographical motion picture was titled after one of his hits, "Beyond The Sea". He died shortly after open heart surgery in Los Angeles.
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   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 68

 54. Doris Day 
        She is an actress, Singer and animal rights activist.  She arrived on the scene just at the dawning of the Electrofied era.  Her hits included "Sentimental Journey", "Que Sera Sera", "Everybody Loves A Lover", "It's Magic", "Bewitched", and Secret Love". She received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President George W. Bush. 

 53. Chubby Checker
        His first hit song was a novelty number, "The Class".  In 1960 he released "The Twist" It was to remain a prominently popular song for three years. In 1962 disco-techs (pre-Disco clubs) were spawned all over the country due to the popularity of the dance associated with the song.  Checker and his record company took advantage of this releasing several more 'Twist' songs and a number of other dance oriented tunes. These included but were not limited to "Pony Time", The Fly", "The Hucklebuck" and "The Limbo". The song "The Twist" dropped from the charts but remained a popular party song for mobile Disc-jockeys.  It has seen rebirths with the  Fat Boys and Chubby Checker doing a new Rap themed version of it. It was remixed in a version of Beyonce's "Put A Ring On t"  It was in a Jive Bunny Disco/Dance mix. For good or bad Chubby Checker changed the way people danced.  Up until "The Twist" people danced in contact with each other after "The Twist" nearly all dancing finds people separated. It may well be his most important cultural contribution.
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   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 16

Authors Note: There has be some sort of TWISTED  thinking going on in the minds of the nominee selection committee to keep ignoring Chubby Checker.  He virtually changed how the world dances with his hits "The Twist" and "Pony Time".

 52. Andy Williams - (1927 - 2012)
        He was a singer, recording executive, and television personality. He began singing as a member of the Williams Brothers during World War II. His singing career began in 1938 at the dawn of the Electrofied Era as member of the Williams Brothers. Author, singer songwriter Kay Thompson helped to launch Williams career.  Williams late in life claimed they had an affair despite that she was twenty years older. He met and married Las Vegas show girl Claudine Longet. They had three children during their eight year marriage. Williams was a close friend to the Robert Kennedy family and was asked by Ethel Kennedy to sing at the funeral of Robert. Despite his friendship with prominent Democrats he claimed he was a Republican. News media reported he had very harsh words for Pres. Barack Obama claiming he was following Marxist (communist) ideas. Some of his many hits included "Canadian Sunset", "Butterfly", "Are You Sincere", "Can't Get Used To Losing You", "Lonely Street", and "The Village of St Bernadette".  His signature song "Moon River" also became the title for his theater in Branson, Missouri. He played a role in the careers of the Everly Brothers, Ray Stevens, Johnny Tillotson and Lenny Welch  In his sixties he married Debbie Meyer. He died of cancer.
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   Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see song 10

 51. The Platters
         The Platters were a bridge group between the Swing/Pop Standard Era and the Rock Era.  They covered songs by the Ink Spots but added a more Rock Era sound to the songs.  They have been inducted into the Rock And  Roll Hall Of Fame. They had many hits but the most notable are "Only You", "My Prayer", "The Great Pretender", "To Each His Own", "You'll Never Know", "Twilight Time", and "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes".

50. Al Jolson - (1886 - 1950)
VIDEO - Mammy (from "The Jazz Singer" Al Jolson )The "Jazz Singer" (1927) was the first motion picture with sound
Al Jolson & Gen. George Patton
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    He was a child, Russian, Jewish immigrant. Al came to prominence and International Artist status just as World War I was starting. He was a singer, radio host and actor. It's been said he was to Jazz, Blues and Ragtime what Elvis Presley was to Rock 'n Roll. His influence in the world of music is prodigious   He made what some say are the first music videos in the very first motion picture with sound, "The Jazz Singer".  Artists such as Bing Crosby, Bob Dylan, Jerry Lee Lewis, Judy Garland and others point to him as influences  He is a controversial artist in light of the fact he frequently performed in "Black Face" or Minstrel Style. By today's standard considered to be a racist form of entertainment. American culture at the time looked upon this in a different light.  He was in reality an advocate for Black equality on Broadway. Early Black Jazz artists have pointed to him as the man the who expanded Jazz to the "White World" providing a new and expanded audience to the musical art form. At his death Black actors lined the funeral route to honor him.  Noble Sissle the president of the Black Actors Guild attended the funeral on behalf of all Black actors. Rock and R&B singer Jackie Wilson recorded a tribute album to Al Jolson. One of Aretha Franklin's early hits was a cover of an Al Jolson song.  Cher recorded the "Jolson Medley" a medley of his hits. Elvis Presley covered "Are You Lonesome Tonight". He was married four times and had several relationships.  His most famous wife was actress Ruby Keeler. It's ironic she left him for another man in light of the fact he was a famous womanizer.  He was still married to his last wife, Erle Galbraith Jolson at the time of his death.  His death was the result of a heart attack believed to have been brought on from exhaustion and poor health conditions by his entertaining the troops in Korea during the Korean War. He was a fiscal conservative and as such supported the Republican Party. Some of his hits were "You Made Me Love You", "Swanee", "California, Here I Come", "I'm Sitting On Top Of The World", "Are You Lonesome Tonight", "Sonny Boy", "Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody", "My Mammy", "Alexanders Ragtime Band", "Toot, Toot, Tootsie", "April Showers", "When You Were Sweet Sixteen", and "Anniversary Song".
Authors Note: It is hard to determine exactly where Al belongs as there is fragmented data before the thirties.  What is certain is the population at the time was slightly more than 120 million people (38% of today's population in the United States) at the height of his career. In terms of discretionary income it was much lower than it is today. The sales of sheet music and records were relatively expensive. Radio air play (first commercial radio station KDKA went on the air in 1920) was in its infancy. He dominated all three. The Great Depression (1930's)was an economic disaster for the music industry. Comparatively speaking he may very well belong in the top ten. He was a pioneer in modern media, records, radio and film.  He did not have television and the internet to enhance and globalize his popularity. He established the standard for others to follow.

 49. Eagles
        Randy Miesner of Rick Nelson's Stone Canyon Band and Glenn Frey and
45 of Eagles classic Christmas song,
"Please Come Home For Christmas".
Don Henley from Linda Ronstadt's band were three of the original four founding members of the Eagles. Bernie Leadon was the other.  The band would have personnel changes over the years. 
They are in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. They were the band that defined Country Rock.  They have record sales in excess of 150 million. Many of today's Country artists can look back at Ronstadt, Nelson and the Eagles as the musicians who set the stage for them and the sound of 21st. Century Country Music. The bands hits included but are not limited to, "Desperado", "Take It Easy", "In The Long Run", "Peaceful Easy Felling","Best Of My Love" and "Hotel California". 
For more on the Eagles CLICK
   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 72
 48. Sam Cooke - (1931 - 1964)
       He was a singer songwriter who performed Pop, Gospel, R&B, Rock and Soul. He also founded his own publishing house and record company. He has been inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. His hits included "You Send Me", "Cupid", Wonderful World", Chain Gang", "Shake", "Another Saturday Night", "(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons", "Having a Party", "Frankie & Johnny","Good News", and "Twisting The Night Away". He was shot and killed by a motel manager under disputed circumstances
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   Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see song 86

 47. Dinah Shore - (1916 - 1994)
        She was the offspring of Russian Jewish immigrants who had settled in Tennessee. She over came childhood Polio.  It left her with a deformed right foot and a limp.  Through therapy and hard work she over came the limp. Dinah saw success in singing, Television and as an actress. She is believed to have had multiple relationships with Frank Sinatra, Burt Reynolds, Dean Martin, Eddie Fisher, James "Jimmy" Stewart, and possibly General George Patton.  She was married to actor George Montgomery for nearly twenty years.  She had a series of television shows with Chevrolet as the primary sponsor.  It was there she became famous for ending the show singing "See The U.S.A. In Your Chevrolet" and finishing the song with a big kiss to the audience. Her hit songs included but are not limited to "I Hear A Rhapsody", "Blues In The Night", "Skylark". "Your So Nice To Come Home Too", I'll Walk Alone", "Candy",  "The Gypsy", "(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons", "The Anniversary Song", "Buttons And Bows" and "Lavender Blue (Dilly Dilly)".  She was a close friend to Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, and the Reagan's.  She considered herself to be a Republican. At 77 she died from Ovarian Cancer.

 46. Gladys Knight and the Pips 
        Gladys is a singer songwriter, actress, and Businesswoman. Gladys Knight is an International star with a strong following in North America and Europe.  She performs Gospel, R&B, Soul, Rock, and Pop Standards. She is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In the last decade she has been a staring performer on the Las Vegas Strip. Her hits include "Every Beat Of My Heart", "I Heard It Through The Grapevine", "Midnight Train To Georgia", "You're The Best Thing That Ever Happened To Me", and "Licence To Kill". She has become active in the LDS (Church of Jesus Christ Latter Day Saints).

 45. Brook Benton - (1931 - 1988)
        He was a singer songwriter who started out in Gospel music and moved into Pop Standards, R&B, Soul, Country, Disco and Rock. While as of this writing he is best remembered for his singing, his lasting legacy may well be the songs he wrote. They included but are not limited to "The Stroll , "It's A Lovers Question"', "Baby You Got What It Takes", "Kiddio", "It's Just A Matter Of Time". Some of the songs he sang that became hits include the novelty song "The Boo Weevil Song", the Disco hit "Makin' Love Is Good For You" duet hits with Dinah Washington "A Rockin' Good Way", "Baby You Got What It Takes" and solo hits "Hotel Happiness", and "A Rainy Night In Georgia". 
Authors Note: He was one of the best at blending Pop Standard style and classic R&B with Gospel to create his own distinctive sound. He belongs in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame because his singing and song writing skills demand he be inducted.

  44. Bobby Vinton
        He is a singer songwriter and actor. Bobby is also known as the "Polish Prince" His forte was in Pop Standards, Pop, and Polkas. When Rock and Elvis invaded the airways Pop Standard artists were virtually driven from the music scene.  When the Beatles and the British invasion happened in the mid sixties American rock stars dropped like flies.  Bobby Vinton was one of those that survived and thrived during the British onslaught. His covers of Pop Standards by Glenn Miller "Moonlight Serenade" and Vaughn Monroe "There I've Said It Again" along with doing Polish Polkas "Beer Barrel Polka" and "My Melody Of Love" took him far afield of Rock. His hits included "Mr. Lonely", "Roses Are Red", Blue Velvet", "Blue On Blue", "Please Love Me Forever", "My Heart Belongs to Only You", and "I Love How You Love Me".
Authors Note" He is not in the Bock and Roll Hall of Fame

 43. Four Tops
        They are best known for their Motown Soul sound but they have recorded in a variety of genres, Jazz, Hard Rock, Pop Standards, and Disco. Their hits included but were not limited to "It's the Same Old song", "Baby I Need Your Loving", "I Can't Help Myself", "Keeper Of The Castle", "Standing In The Shadows of Love", and "Bernadette". They are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

 42. Everly Brothers
45 of "Cathy's Clown" by
The Everly Brothers
       The Everly Brothers were singer/songwriters from Kentucky who were early Rock stars with strong Country Music roots. They also lived in Knoxville Tennessee and attended college at what is today Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana.  They did not graduate as their musical career was taking off while at Indiana State. They were among the original inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and they  have received the coveted Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. From the Beatles to virtually any vocal group of renown the Everly Brothers have been mentioned as a model or as an inspiration. Their hits included but are not limited to "Bird Dog", "Devoted to You", "Til' I Kissed You", "Gone, Gone, Gone", "Cathy's Clown", "Crying In The Rain", "Wake Up Little Susie", "Bye Bye Love", "let It Be Me", "Problems", "Ebony Eyes", "Walk Right Back", and "When Will I Be Loved". While they were not founding fathers of Rock 'n' Roll they were pioneers in shaping and molding Rock.  Virtually anyone of note has at one time or another covered an Everly Brothers song.

 41. Glenn Miller - (1904 - 1944)
        He was an American Big Band leader who was also a songwriter. While 
his career began in the 1920's he found his greatest success in the late 30's and early 40's till his death in late 1944 during World War II over the English Channel. He is still listed as missing in action. He and his band emerged as national performers at the dawn of the Electrofied Era. Miller's band had a string of hits between 1939 and 1944 making The Glenn Miller Orchestra one of the nations most popular recording acts. His hits included "In The Mood", "Moonlight Serenade", "Little Brown Jug", "American Patrol", "Tuxedo Junction", "At Last", "Chattanooga Choo Choo", "Pennsylvania 6-5000", and "String Of Pearls" to name a few. In the 21st Century he still continues to find new listeners to his music as his recordings still sell.
For more on Glenn Miller CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 12
2. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism   see song 51
3. Top 100 American Instrumentals  see songs 10, 3, and 1

 40. Smokey Robinson & The Miracles   
       He is a singer songwriter, author, producer and record company executive. He and the Miracles were the first artist to have a national hit of importance, "Shop Around" for the Motown label. He is in the Song Writers Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  His songs have been recorded by dozens of the world's biggest artists. He has performed in R&B, Soul, Rock and Pop Standard styles.  His hits included "You Really Got A Hold On Me", "Ooh Baby Baby", "Tear Of A Clown", "Tracks Of My Tears", "Mickey's Monkey", "Going To A Go-Go", and "I Second That Emotion". While he is closely associated with Detroit he now lives in Las Angeles.
For more on Smokey Robinson CLICK
   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 24

 39. Barbra Streisand
       She is an singer songwriter, actress, author, producer, and film director. Her breakthrough hit was "People"  She has recorded in  Rock, Pop Standard, Disco/Electronic Music, and Country genres. Her better known Disco songs included "Night of My Life" and "No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)" with Donna Summer. She had hits singing duets with other stars, "You Don't Bring Me Flowers", with Neil Diamond, "Guilty" with Barry Gibb,, "Tell Him" with Celine Dion, "I finally Found Someone" with Bryan Adams and "We Are The World 25 For Haiti" with multiple other artists. Her solo hits included "Stoney End", "The Way We Were", "Evergreen (Theme From A Star is Born)", "My Heart Belongs To Me", "Songbird", "The Main Event", "Woman In Love" and others. She is a liberal Democrat and actively supports the party.
For more on Barbra Streisand CLICK
   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 20

Authors Note: Yes,  she is not in the Hall.  OK, it's alright to shake your head and ask why?? I know she is famous for her Broadway and Pop Standard songs, but she also did Rock Ballads, Disco/Dance and Rock orientated material. She is also one of the biggest recording artist of the 20th. Century and her influence on Rock artists is immeasurable.

 38. Patti Page - (1927-2013)
       She was a "Sooner" born and raised in Oklahoma. This may explain the influence of Country Music on her Pop Standard genre style. With the advent of Rock 'n' Roll many Pop Standard performers were pushed off the record charts.  Patti Page was one of those rare exceptions. Her career began at the dawn of the Electrofied Era but did not gain national notoriety until the late forties and early fifties. Her hits included "Confess", "With My Eyes Wide Open I'm Dreaming", "All My Love", "Tennessee Waltz", "Would I Love You Love Love You)", "Mockin' Bird Hill", "Detour", "I Went To Your Wedding", "You Belong to Me", "(How Much Is That) Doggie In the Window", "Changing Partners", "Cross Over The bridge". "Old Cape Code", "Allegheny Moon", "Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte" and others.

 37. Kenny Rodgers      
       He is one of the most successful Country Music artist of the last century. He is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame. He is a multi-talented person who is a singer, songwriter, author, entrepreneur, photographer, actor, and record producer.  His record sales far exceeds the 100 million mark. He has recorded Doo Wop, Psychedelic Rock, Country and Jazz. Rogers is an International Artist with a strong following in North America, Europe and Australia. His solo hits include "Love Lifted Me", "Lucille", "Daytime Friends", "Love Or Something Like It", "The Gambler", "You Decorated My Life", "She Believes In Me", "Coward Of The County", "Lady", "Through The Years", "I Don't Need You" and more. He has had hits with Kim Carnes, Dolly Parton, The First Edition, Sheena Easton, Kim Carnes & James Ingram, Ronnie Milsap, Dottie West and others. He has been in more than a dozen films. He has been married five times and has five children from four of the five wives.
Authors Note: "The Gambler" "Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)" and found he was not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. This is just wrong!!

 36. Donna Summer - (1948-2012)       
       The "Queen of Disco" and she mocked herself in her 21st Century album "Crayons" and the song "The Queen Is Back". She is a true International Star with a strong following in Europe, Australia and North America. She recorded Disco, Rock and Pop. She was inducted in 2013 into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame. Some of her hits were "She Works Hard For The Money", "Hot Stuff", Bad Girls", "MacArthur Park", "Last Dance", "Dim All The Lights", "I Feel Love", "The Wanderer", "This Time I Know It's For Real" and others.  She had hits with Barbra Streisand, Matthew Ward, Musical Youth, Brooklyn Dreams and others. She died of Lung Cancer not related to smoking.
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   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 86 & 42

 35. Brenda Lee
       She is in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, The Rockabilly Hall Of Fame and the Country Music Hall Of Fame. She has recorded Country, Rockabilly, Rock, Pop, and Gospel tinged Christian Music. She was a child prodigy and early hit "Dynamite" led to her being called "Little Miss Dynamite". While touring in Great Britain in the early sixties The Beatles were her opening act. Some of her hits were "I'm Sorry", "All Alone Am I", "Fool #1", "You Can Depend On Me", "Dum Dum", "Break It To Me Gently", "Emotions", and "As Usual". She is best remembered and recognized by younger generations for her Christmas Standard "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree".

 34. Eddie Fisher - (1928 - 2010)        
       He may well be best remembered for his five Marriages and his daughter, Princess Leia of Star Wars. His daughter with first wife Debbie Reynolds, Carrie Fisher , played Princess Leia. He was also married to actresses Elizabeth Taylor and Connie Stevens. He was a Pop Standard style of singer who gained national recognition in the late forties and soared to great success in the fifties. Two things derailed his career.  The very public and messy divorce to singer and actress Debbie Reynolds so that he could marry Elizabeth Taylor. The other was the Rock 'n' Roll revolution that swept the likes of Fisher and Al Hibbler from the music scene. Some of his hits were "Count Your Blessings", "Anytime", "Oh My Pa Pa", "Tell Me Why", "I'm Yours", "Lady Of Spain", "Even Now", "Downhearted", "I Need You Now", "Heart", and "Dungaree Doll" to name a few.

 33. R. Kelly
       He is a singer songwriter and record producer from Chicago. His career has been hounded with with persistent charges of sex with minors  resulting in legal battles and yet no convictions. These charges began with his first marriage to Aaliyah which was annulled. His record sales are somewhere in the 40 million range. His hits include "Bump n' Grind, "Your Baby's Callin", "I Can't Sleep (Baby If I)", "Down Low (Nobody Has To Know)", "I Believe I Can Fly", "I Wish", "Ignition", and "When A woman Loves" to name a few.

 32. Hall & Oates
          This duo may be the most successful duo of the 20th.Century. Their forte was in Rock, Soul and a combination of the two, Blue Eyed Soul. While they did not break new ground they were very good at what they did.  Some of their hits were "You've Lost That Lovin' Felling" (a cover of the Righteous Brothers), and "Rich Girl", "Private Eyes", "Maneater", "Out Of Touch", "Sara Smile", Kiss On My List" plus others. In 2014 they were inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame.

31. Garth Brooks
      Arguably the greatest Country recording artist of all time. The sale of recordings by him rivals the giants in the music industry, but his fame lies mostly in North America, although he does have a following in Australia and Europe. These facts make him an international Artist, but not a Global Artist. His record sales are in excess of 200 million.  His hits include but are not limited to "The Dance", "More Than A Memory", "Wrapped Up In You", "Good Ride Cowboy", "To Make You Feel My love", "Two Pina Coladas", "Long Neck Bottle", "The Beaches Of Cheyenne", "American Honky Tonk Bar Association", "Ain't Goin' Down (Til The Sun Comes Up)", "The River", "Thunder Rolls", "Shameless", "Two Of A Kind Working On A Full House", "Unanswered Prayers" and "Friends In Low Places". 
For more on Garth Brooks CLICK
   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 99   
 30. Perry Como - (1912 - 2001)

Perry Como in front of TV camera.
Photo by Walter Albertin of the
New York World-Telegram and is
part of the Library of Congress.
       Mr. C is what he was often called but he really was Mr. Unusual. He was married to his wife Reselle for 65 years until her death. What you saw on television and on the big screen was what you got when he was off camera. When people say be for real, he was. He was a singer, actor, barber, radio and television personality and businessman.  He had his own clothing line and was a pioneer in television. He began his musical career in his home town of Cannonsburg, Pennsylvania as a member of a band directed by Stan Vinton, Bobby Vinton's father.  Above all he was a family man and he spent time with his grown son David in San Francisco and his daughter who lived in Jupiter Florida near where Perry and Roselle lived. He frequently visited South Bend, Indiana where his eldest son, Ronnie, lives. Lets see, no drug or alcohol abuse, no spousal abuse, no arrests,  no shootings, no stabbings or hateful feuds, My God how did this guy make in show business.  Isn't it great to know that GOOD GUYS can WIN. He was a Pop Standards singer who survived the Rock 'n' Roll avalanche by doing uptempo Pop songs and performing novelty tunes  -- "Hot Diggity (Dog Ziggity Boom)", "Papa Loves Mambo", "Chee Chee Oo Chee (Sang The Little Bird)", "Ko Ko Mo (I Love You So)" and "Juke Box Baby" -- that appealed to youth.  He was also a staple on television which kept his singing career viable. Some of his other plus one hundred hits included, "Tina Marie", "Round And Round", "Catch A Falling Star", "Till The End Of Time", "Prisoner Of Love", "Surrender", "When You Were Sweet Sixteen", "Because", "Some Enchanted Evening", "Don't Let The Stars Get In Your Eyes", "If", ""No Other Love", "Magic Moments", and "It's Impossible".

 29. Billy Joel
       "The Piano Man" has record sales around the 100 million mark and has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He is a singer and songwriter. He has been married three times and the most notable was actress and model Christie Brinkley. He has done battle with depression and substance abuse.  He single-handedily proved Doo Wop was not dead with the release of the "Innocent Man" album and the single "For The Longest Time". The following is a partial listing of his hits "Just The Way You Are", "Moving Out (Anthony's Song)", "My Life", ""Big Shot", "You My Be Right", "It's Still Rock And Roll To Me", "Allentown", "Tell Her About It", "Uptown Girl", "An Innocent Man", "Your Only Human (Second Wind)", "Modern Woman", "A Matter Of Trust", "We Didn't Start The Fire", and "River Of Dreams". He has been politically active supporting the Democrat Party.

 28. Cher/Sonny & Cher
Defaced 45 of Sonny & Cher's hit
"A Cowboys Work Is Never Done".
       She is a singer, actress and television host.  Her recordings include New Wave Rock, Rock, Disco/Electronic Music, Folk Rock. Pop Standards and Jazz. Her acting skills match her vocal talent and as such she has been very successful.  Her music career took off with her first husband, Sonny Bono. They had a string of hits which included  "I Got You Babe", "Baby Don't Go", "The Beat Goes On", "All I ever Need Is You", "A Cowboys Work Is Never Done" among-st others. They launched her TV career doing the "Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour".  After her split with Sonny it has been reported that she has had relationships with around a dozed men one of which she married briefly, Gregg Allman, who was the father of her son, Elijah Blue. Sonny went into the restaurant business and politics becoming a Republican Congressman from California. While in office he was killed in a skiing accident. Cher went on to have a string of hits which included but are not limited to "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)", "You Better Sit Down Kids", "Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves", "The Way Of Love", "Half-Breed", "Dark Lady", "Take Me Home", "I Found Someone", "After All" (with Peter Cetera) "If I Could Turn Back Time", "Just Like Jesse James", and "Believe". Sonny and Cher influenced fashion trends in the 60's and she has continued to have an impact since then. Her daughter Chastity has since undergone a sex change is now known as Chaz Bono. Unlike her first husband Cher is not a Republican, but has actively supported Democrat Party candidates and have had strong words about various Republican officials. She is an Global Artist 
For more on Cher CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs see song 75
2. Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans  see artist  7

Authors Note She should have been in decades ago as a member of Sonny & Cher.  She should be as a solo act.  I have to ask myself are those people involved with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame drinking some kind of spiked brain killing Kool-Aide.

 27. Nat King Cole - (1919 - 1965)
       His career began at dawn of the Electrofied Era.  It was this era that afforded him the ability to reach mass audiences through television.  He was the first Black American to have his own nationally televised show. His recordings were in Jazz, Pop Standards and Rock.  Although not known for Rock he did do a few songs in the genre and is in the Rock "n Roll Hall Of Fame. He was not only a singer but also an actor and TV host. His success as a recording artist put Capital Records on the map and helped pay for the famed Capitol Records building in Los Angeles. He was married twice and had numerous affairs.  It was with his second wife Maria that he had five children two of which were adopted.  His daughter Natalie Cole would become a successful singer. He was a chain smoker and died of Lung Cancer.  Some of his hit songs were "Straighten Up And Fly Right", "(I L"ove You) For Sentimental Reasons", "Nature Boy", "Mona Lisa", "Red Sails In The Sunset", "Pretend", "Answer Me my Love", "A Blossom Fell". "If I May", "Send For Me", "Looking Back", "Ramblin' Rose", "Those Lazy Hazy Crazy Days Of Summer", "That Sunday, That Summer", and "Unforgettable"(with Natalie Cole). He is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. 
Author's Note:  Nat King Cole personally experienced racism directed at him in Los Angeles and the South. He fought segregation quietly behind the scenes and by breaking new ground with his continued success in the entertainment world. Nat was human and had his flaws, but he was a courageous man who would not be denied. 

 26. Dionne Warwick
       Her family has a heritage on singing. She was a singer and television pitch person. Her cousin Whitney Houston was a top American singer.  Other family members were part of the Sweet Inspirations a popular session group and long time Elvis Presley backup singers.  Her biggest hits were with the song writing team of Burt Bacharach and Hal David. She has filled for bankruptcy protection due to a combined tax debt to California and the IRS of over 10 million dollars. Some of her hits were "Don't Make Me Over", "Walk On By", "Message To Michael", "I Say A Little Prayer", "Valley Of The Dolls", "Do You Know The Way To San Jose", "This Girl's In Love with You", "Then Came" You (with The Spinners) and "I'll Never fall In Love Again".
Authors Note: Who would believe she is not in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.  Call the Physic Hotline! The People in Cleveland need to be brought out of their catatonic trance.

 25. Paul Anka
 Video - Times Of Your Life
45 of "It's Time To Cry" by
Paul Anka
       He is a Canadian/American signer songwriter and actor. Paul is a Naturalized American citizen. He is equally famous for his song writing as his singing.  He wrote the theme to Johnny Carson's Tonight Show. He re-worked a French song giving it English lyrics and it became a huge hit for Frank Sinatra and then Elvis Presley, "My Way". He also wrote "She's A Lady" for Tom Jones. He co-wrote with Michael Jackson the hit song "This Is It".  He wrote the Buddy Holly hit "It Doesn't Matter Anymore" and songs for other artists as well. Some of his hits are "Diana", "You Are My Destiny", "Lonely Boy", "Put Your Head On My Shoulder", "It's Time To Cry", "Puppy Love", "You're Having My Baby", "One Man Woman/One Woman Man", " I Don't Like To Sleep Alone" and "Times Of Your Life".
Authors Note:  The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is just a joke.  Paul Anka is one of the greatest writers of Rock and one of it's earliest teen idols. His not being in the Hall diminishes it's credibility  This is a travesty to the Rock music world and to the historical calling of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

 24. Connie Francis
  Video - Lipstick On Your Collar
45 of  song about the assassination of
President Kennedy by Connie Francis,
"In The Summer Of His Years".
      She sang Pop Standards, R&B, Jazz, Rock and Disco.  Connie Francis has had a roller coaster life. Her singing career took off in the late fifties and soared to great heights in the mid sixties.  The British Invasion of the music world hurt her here in the United States but she had great success over seas.  She is a Global Artist and sings in multiple languages. Tragedy has been stalking her in the seventies.  She was raped in 1974  and 1977 she lost her voice as the result of nasal surgery   She had to under go further surgery to recover her voice.  She had to relearn to sing. Then in 1981 her brother was killed by Mafia hit men. Some of her many hits are "Who's Sorry Now", "Where The Boys Are", "Stupid Cupid", "Vacation", "My Happiness", Lipstick On Your Collar", "Among My Souvenirs", "Mama", "My Heart Has A Mind Of It's Own", "Many Tears Ago", "Don't Break The Heart That Loves You", and "Second Hand Love", She actively supported Republican Presidents Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan.
For more on Connie Francis CLICK
1. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see songs 80 & 2
2. Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans see Honorable Mention

Authors Note: The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame's reputation is at stake when a founding female performer of the genre is not in the Hall.  She was one of the primary movers in internationalizing American Rock 'n Roll by recording in Yiddish, Japanese, German, Spanish, Italian and other languages. Her crossover Pop Standard covers helped bring acceptance to Rock performers beyond teenie boppers and teens. Her Rock songs will stand up with the best of the era.

  23. Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons a.k.a. The Wonder Who
   Viseo - Hits Medley
       He has recorded, Pop Standards, Doo Wop, Rock and Disco/Electronic Music. Some members of the band have a checkered past with the law and the band had close contact with known Mafia figures in New Jersey. Valli and the original members of the band were inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. They are global artist with a strong following in Asia, Europe, Australia, and the Americas. The Musical "Jersey Boys" is based on Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons and has been made into a motion picture.  Productions are found in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America. The best known productions in the U.S. are found in New York and Las Vegas. Despite the onset of a physical disability in the early seventies Valli continued to record and chart.  Some of Valli's hits with the Four Seasons are  "Sherry", "Big Girls Don't Cry", "Walk Like A Man", "Dawn Go Away", "Candy Girl", "Ronnie", "Rag Doll", "Save It For Me", "Let's Hang On","Working My Way Back to You", "Tell It To The Rain", "C'mon Marianne", "Who Loves You", "December 1963 (Oh What A Night)" (1975), "December 1963 (Oh What A Night) (1994 Disco/Dance remix). Some of Frankie Valli's solo hits are "Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You", "I Make A Fool Of Myself", "My Eyes Adored You", "Swearing To God", "Our Day Will Come", "To Give" and "Grease". 
For more on Frankie Valli CLICK
   Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans  see artist 6
 22. Ricky/Rick Nelson - (1940 -1985)
  Video - One Night Stand
Much used 45 of "For You" by Rick Nelson 
       His band leader father and and his mother, a singer, launched Rick's career on their TV show, "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet". He was a singer songwriter and actor.  He performed Pop Standards, Rockabilly, Rock and Country Rock. He is in The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He was a pioneer in the creation of Country Rock. He and his father produced some of the earliest music videos for their TV show.  He was married to Kris Harmon they had four children, actress Tracey Nelson, Sam Nelson and twins Gunnar and Matthew Nelson .  Gunnar and Matthew made up the Rock band Nelson. Rick had his dark side which included drug abuse and he was a world class womanizer. He and Kris had a very messy and expensive divorce. Rick died in a crash landing of his tour plane near Dallas Texas.  While drugs were found in his body the cause of the crash has been directed at a faulty heater, but has not been confirmed.  Nelson was not flying the plane. Rick's hits include but are not limited to "A Teenagers Romance", "I'm Walking", "Be-Bop Baby", "Stood Up", "Believe What You Say", "Poor Little Fool", "Lonesome Town", "I Got A Feeling", Never Be Anyone else But You", "It's Late", "Just A Little Too Much", "Sweeter Than You", "Travelin' Man", "Hello Mary Lou", "Young World", "Teenage Idol", "It's Up To You", "Fools Rush In", "For You", "She Belongs To Me", and "Garden Party". 
For more on Rick Nelson CLICK
   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 37

 21. Neil Diamond
  Video - Sweet Caroline 
"You Make It Feel Like Christmas"
45 by Neil Diamond.
Note the bar code on this 1984 release.
       He is a singer songwriter who writes and performs Rock and Adult Contemporary.  He is in the Song Writers Hall Of Fame and The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. He married and divorced his high school sweetheart. He has married twice since them. He has four children from the marriages.  Two by his first wife and two by his second. Besides his wives he has had other love interests.  Diamond made it big as a writer penning songs that would be recorded by the elite in music business from the Monkees and Deep Purple to Elvis Presley. He worked in the Brill building where the likes of Carol King, Neil Sedaka, Burt Bacharach & Hal David a long with others composing hit songs. As a singer he has had numerous hits, among them are "Sweet Caroline", "Cherry Cherry", "Girl You'll Be A Woman Soon", "Holly Holy", "Cracklin' Rose", "I Am...I Said", "Song Sung Blue", "Longfellow Serenade", "You Don't Bring Me Flowers" (with Barbra Streisand), "Love On The Rocks", "Hello Again", "America", and "Heartlight". 
For More on Neil Diamond CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 20  
2. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see song 16

 20. The Temptations
  Video - My Girl
       The membership of the group has Changed over the years.  The group has performed Rock, R&B, Pop Standards, Disco, Psychedelic Rock/Soul, and Funk. a list of who's who have covered their songs, Rod Stewart, Bette Midler, The Rolling Stones, Duran Duran, to mention a few. Members of the group over the years were not immune to the pitfalls of drugs, womanizing and poor money management. They were one of the most influential Motown groups. Some of their hits were "My Girl", "Ain't Too Proud To Beg", "Beauty Is Only Skin Deep", "(I Know) I'm Losing You, "All I Need", "Your My Everything", "I Wish It Would Rain", "Cloud Nine", "I'm Gonna Make You love Me" (with The Supremes), "Runaway Child Running Wild", "I Can't Get Next To You", "Psychedelic Shack", "Ball Of Confusion (That's what the world is Today)', "Just My imagination (Running Away With Me)", "Papa Was A Rolling Stone", "Masterpiece", and "The Motown Song" (with Rod Stewart)
For more on David Ruffin (lead singer) - CLICK
Drugs, Booze, Death - American Musicians

 19. Fats Domino
  Video - Blueberry Hill

Fats Domino 45 of "I'm Ready".
Fats Domino with Pres. George W. Bush
Photo by White House photographer
Eric Draper
One of the most important and influential recording artists of the 20th Century. He is a singer songwriter and pianist.  He performs Cajun, R&B, Pop Standards, Rock and Soul. He is one of the founding fathers of Rock 'n' Roll. He has the coveted Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, National Medal of Arts presented by President Clinton and  replaced personally by President Bush (Photo) following it's loss in Hurricane Karina, and he has been inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. Fats Domino is a New Orleans resident and survived Hurricane Katrina. Some of his hits are "The Fat Man", "Ain't that A Shame:, "I'm In Love Again", "Blueberry Hill", "Blue Monday", "I'm Walkin'", "It's You I Love", "Valley Of Tears", "Whole Lot Of Loving", "I Want To Walk You Home", "Walking To New Orleans", and "Be My Quest". 
For more on Fats Domino CLICK
   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 2 

 18. Chicago
  Video - Colour My World
       The band plays Jazz and Rock often fusing the two.  They are one of the most successful American Rock bands in the last fifty years. There has been personnel changes over the years. Their hits inclued but are not limited to "Make Me Smile", "25 Or 6 Top 4". "Does Anybody Really Know What Time it is", "Beggingings", "Saturday In The Park", "Feelin' Stronger Every Day", "Just You 'N' Me", "(I've Been) Searching So Long", "Call On Me", "Old Days", "If You Leave Me Now", "Baby What A Big Surprise , "Hard To Say I'm Sorry", "Hard Habit To Break", "Will You Still Love me", "Look Away", "Your Not Alone", and "What Kind Of Man Would i Be". In 2016 they were inducted into The Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame.
For more on Chicago CLICK
   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 48

 17. Prince (1958 - 2016)
       Like so many of the artists on this list he came from a home where music played a big role.  His father was a jazz musician. He is a singer, songwriter, Instrumentalist, actor and businessman. He is in the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame and has an Academy Award. Many of his hits and most of his albums had strong sexual overtones and in some cases explicit lyrics. Some of his many hits are "I Wanna Be Your Lover", "1999", "Little Red Corvette", "Delirious", "When Doves Cry", "Let''s Go Crazy", "Purple Rain", "I Would Die For You", "Kiss", "Sign o' The Times", "U Got The Look" (with Sheena Easton), "Batdance", "Thieves In The Temple", "Cream", and "The Most Beautiful Girl In The World".
For more on Prince CLICK
   100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 32

 16. Diana Ross/Diana Ross and the Supremes
     Video - Super Bowl XXX Show
       Diana is a singer and actress. She is in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame as a member of the Supremes. She was the primary lead vocalist of the group. She has recorded Pop Standards, Rock, Soul and Disco/Electronic Music. She also has the coveted Lifetime Grammy Achievement Award. She was married twice and had other relationships. Some of her hits with the Supremes were "Where Did Our Love Go", "Baby Love", "Stop In The Name Of Love","Back In My Arms Again", "I Hear A Symphony", "You Keep Me Hanging On", "The Happening", "Reflections", "Love Child", and "Someday We Will Be Together". Some of the Songs where she was heard with other artists "U.S.A. For Africa", "Mo Money Mo Problems (with The Notorious B.I.G.), "Endless Love" (with Lionel Richie), "Ease On Down The Road" (with Michael Jackson), "My Mistake (Was To Love You)" (with Marvin Gaye), "All Of you" (with Juilio Eiglesias), "I've Got A Crush On You" (with Rod Stewart), and "We Are The World". Some of her solo hits are "Upside Down", "The Boss", "Ain't No Mountain High Enough", "Touch Me In The Morning", "Why Do Fools Fall In Love", "Missing You", "Love Hang Over", "I'm Coming Out" and "It's My Turn".
For more on Diana Ross CLICK
    100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 51

 15. Frank Sinatra - (1915 - 1998)
VIDEO - Frank Sinatra - That's Life
(Frank Sinatra's image is not in the video)
Eleanor Roosevelt & Frank Sinatra
For more on this photo visit
      He was a Singer and actor commonly called "ol' Blue Eyes'. His career began at the dawn of the Electrofied Era during the height of the Swing Era. He performed Jazz, Pop Standards and Soft Rock. He has been awarded the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award, Presidential Medal of Freedom by Pres. Ronald Reagan, the Congressional Gold Medal, the coveted Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and is a member of the Big Band and Jazz Hall of Fame among others.  The FBI kept a file on Sinatra due in part to his contact with prominent Mafia people, but there was never a trial much less a conviction for any alleged wrong doing.  He fought depression much of his life.  He was married three times and had three children with his first wife Nancy. They were Nancy, Frank Jr. and Tina.  Nancy and Frank Jr pursued singing careers.  Frank Sinatra and daughter Nancy Sinatra had a huge hit with "Something Stupid.".  Frank Jr. became a well known lounge act singing many of his dads songs. One Sinatra's wives was actress Mia Farrow and then he married Barbara Max in 1976 and they remained married until his death. He was a Democrat much of his life until the early seventies when he openly supported Ronald Reagan and visited the Nixon White House. Some of his hits were "All Or Nothing At All", "I'll Never Smile Again", "Stardust", "Without A Song", "Blue Skies", "Night And Day", "You'll Never Know", "Day By Day", "Nature Boy", "Goodnight Irene", "April In Paris", "Young At Heart", "Three Coins In The fountain', 'Learnin' The Blues", "Love And Marriage", "Softly As I Leave You", "It Was A very Good Year", "Strangers In The Night", "That's Life", "Summer Wind", "My Way", and "New York, New York".
For more on Frank Sinatra CLICK
    100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 19

 14. Beach Boys
 45 rpm of The Beach Boys'
cover hit, "Come Go With Me".
       Like most long term successful bands over the years there have been  personnel changes.  The band consisted of three brothers, Carl, Dennis, and Brian Wilson, a cousin, Mike Love, and a friend, Al Jardine. The band is in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall Of Fame. Brian was the the most creative of the group when it came to writing and producing songs.  All at one time or another contributed to composing and producing songs.  The single most important song they recorded was the Brian Wilson produced "Good Vibrations" considered by many as one of the crucial recordings of the Electrofied Era. Brian had mental issues that stalled his creative actives. These issues are believed to have been related to drug abuse. He is the father of singers Carnie and Wendy Wilson, members of Wilson Phillips. While most Rockers and certainly the Beach Boys would be loath to say they are Rock"s Barber shop group, their Harmonies and vocal style has a strong resemblance to the old fashioned Barber Shop Quartet. Now add electric instrumentation and electronic studio effects, Rock 'n' Roll rhythms and song structure, Walla - you have the Beach Boys. This set them apart from any other group and they pulled it off masterfully. Some of their hits were "Surfin' U.S.A.", "Come Go With Me", "Kokomo", "Help Me Rhonda", "California Girls", "Barbara Ann", "Wouldn't It Be Nice", "Rock 'n' Roll Music", "Wipe Out" (with The Fat Boys), "The Beach Boys Medley", "Shut Down", "Little Deuce Coupe", "Fun Fun Fun", "That's Why God Made Radio", and "Dance Dance Dance". 
Fore more on the Beach Boys CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs see song 6
2. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  78 & 42
3. Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans  see artist 5
45 of "Here We Go Again" by
Ray Charles

 13. Ray Charles - (1930 - 2004)
     He has been given the moniker "Genius" and it is not hype.  He performed Pop Standards, Jazz, Country, R&B, Soul, Blues and Rock.  Ray blended Big Band, R&B, Gospel, and Country to create his own soulful pop music. His personal life was a mess. He was a womanizer and battled drug addiction. When it came to his music his vision was 20/20. Ray was fearless in many ways. His willingness to keep the Big Band concept alive in his music gave him a dimension few artist had.  He broke traditional Black boundaries by crossing over and doing Country Music.  He challenged both Black and White bigots to pay attention to his Country Soul and they did. While Martin Luther King Jr. was calling for desegregation Ray was integrating the music world. He was the "Genius" that was Black and Blind.  What may surprise many is that Ray Charles was a Republican and appeared at the 1984 Republican Convention in support of Ronald Reagan.  He may have let it go to his head, but he had a lot to be proud of. His hits included but were not limited to "What i'd Say", "I Got A Woman", "Georgia On My Mind", "I'm Movin' On", "Ruby", "One Mint Julep", "Hit The Road Jack", "Unchain My Heart", "I Can't Stop Loving You", "You Don't Know Me", "Busted", "Makin' Whopee", "Crying Time", "Together Again", "Here We Go Again", and "Lets Go Get Stoned".
For more on Ray Charles CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see songs 38 & 31
2. Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans see artist 3
3. Top 100 American Instrumentals  see song 100
4. Top 40 Blind and Visually Impaired American Musicians see artist 2

 12. Whitney Houston - (1963 - 2012)
      She was a singer, actress and model. Her record sales are around 200 million. Her mother Cissy Houston was a well known session recording artist and recorded with the biggest names in music.  She was one of the Sweet Inspirations who toured and recorded with Elvis Presley.  Whitney's talent was in the genes. Her cousin was singer Dionne Warwick.  Whitney recorded Pop, Soul, Doo Wop and Disco/Electronic Music. She and her husband, Bobby Brown, battled drug abuse.  She and Bobby divorced. She died as a result of drowning in a bathtub. Toxicology report showed a variety of drugs in her system at the time of death. Her death was ruled an accident. Some of her hits were "You Give Good Love", "How Will I Know", "Greatest Love Of All", "I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)", "All The Man I Need", ""Star Spangled Banner", "I Will Always Love You", "I'm Every Woman", "Exhale (Shoop Shoop)", and "My Love Is Your Love".
For more on Whitney Houston CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 97
2. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see songs 10 & 1
3. Drugs, Booze, Death - American Musicians

Authors Note"  She has been eligible since 2009 and she is not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame yet.

 11. Marvin Gaye - (1939 - 1984)
       One of the greatest artist to come out of Motown. His untimely death came at the hands of his father.  It was a fatal gunshot wound to the body in the presence of his mother. Marvin like so many musicians had problems with drug abuse.  He was married to Barry Gordy's  (founder of Motown) sister in a troubled relationship. He is in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. He is one of the most influential of the Motown stable of artists. Some of his hits are "I Heard It Through The Grapevine", "Pride And Joy", "Can I Get A Witness" (with The Supremes),"How sweet It Is To Be Loved By You", "I'll Be Doggone", "Ain't That Peculiar", "Sexual Healing", "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" (with TamMi Terrell), "Your Precious Love" (with Tammi Terrell), "Your All I Need To Get By) (with Tammi Terrell), "Got To Get It Up Pt.I", "What's Going On", and "Let's Get It On". 
For more on Marvin Gaye CLICK
    100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 47

 10. Pat Boone
VIDEO - Pat Boone - Ain't That A Shame
VIDEO - Pat Boone - Love Letters In The Sand
File:Pat Suzuki Pat Boone Chevy Show 1959.JPG
Pat Boone with singer/actress Pat Suzuki on  ABC
Television show "The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom".
The soft Rock performed on this show helped older
Americans come to terms with the rise of Rock 'n' Roll.
 This photo is in the public domain and dates back to 1959
 and was a promotional item for ABC Television Network.
Photo is from Wikimedia Commons
      He comes from a legendary American Family and his daughter Debbie is a well known Christian Singer. In the early years of Rock 'n' Roll, Pat was viewed as the good clean cut alternative to Elvis "The Pelvis" Presley.  He is a singer, actor, author and television host. He is often accused of stealing (covering) material from lessor known Black artists and did not perform anything else. He did cover some songs by Black artists like the well known Inks Spots, Fats Domino and lesser known Flamingos, The Orioles and Ivory Joe Hunter and others. In this rush to judgement it is often over looked he also covered songs by Frank Sinatra, Bob Crosby & Kay Kyser, Lee Roy Abernathy, Ted Black Orchestra, Ben Bernie & his Orchestra. He also covered songs by Country artists such as Ernest Tubb, The Three Suns and Ferlin Husky. What is considered his biggest hit "Love Letters In The Sand" is a cover of little known White musicians Ted Black and his Orchestra. The point is his career was little different than Ray Charles in that Ray covered many Pop Standards and Country songs written and or recorded by little known White American composers and musicians. The truth is nearly all recording artists in the Rock 'n' Roll Era have covered songs by other artists regardless of race. Boone also had songs written for him and he wrote some of his own material. He was little different in that respect than many of his Black contemporaries. What can be said is his covers of R&B songs helped to spread the appeal of the music to a broader audience.  The same as Ray Charles introducing to Black audiences to Country Music. Boone has recorded Country, Pop Standards, Rock, R&B, Hard Rock and Gospel. Fats Domino's biggest hit "Blueberry Hill" was written by little know White American composers and recorded first by White musicians. It should be asked, is it fair to use a a double standard on Boone and exempt Domino? In fact neither artist should be judged for recording other peoples material since it is common practice.  Pat Boone is a staunch Christian and Conservative politically.  His views on abortion,  Gay rights and wealth redistribution run to the right of center and in some cases to the far right.  He generally supports Republicans. Now lets see, he has been married to his wife, Shirley since age 19 and no illegitimate children or affairs, no tax evasion, no drug or alcohol abuse, and no domestic violence. He hasn't been shot or shot anyone, no time in prison and there are no hateful feuds nor has he been charged with child molestation or convicted of rape. How did this guy make it? Perhaps it was integrity,a clear head and heart and of course TALENT.  Some of his hit songs are "Ain't That a Shame", "I Almost Lost My Mind","A Wonderful Time Up There", "Friendly Persuasion", "Don't Forbid Me", "Speedy Gonzales", "Moody River", "Walking The Floor Over You", "Why Baby Why", "Bernardine", "Remember Your Mine", "There's A Gold Mine In The sky", "April Love", "Sugar Moon", "If Dreams Come True", and "(Welcome) New Lovers". 
For more on Pat Boone CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 40
2. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see song 63

Authors note: Shame Shame Shame on the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.  Pat Boone is not in it. This is a crime to the Hall's integrity demeaning it and not Boone.  Why he should be in:

          1. He had over 50 hits.

          2. While some of his Rock was homogenized it opened doors and hearts to Rock that Elvis and others could not do.
          3. He pushed Elvis to be better as Elvis' biggest competitor.
          4. Covering R&B music, Country Music and Pop Standards was what Boone did and helped to open the door for other Rockers to do the same, and they did.
          5. As an early Rocker he helped to define the boundaries of Rock.
          6. He set the standards for the likes of Bobby Darin and Neil Diamond who followed and are in the Hall.

Induct this profoundly important early Rocker into the Hall. If for no other reason than he was challenging Elvis to do better.

CLICK -->  Get Pat Boone in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

  9. Aretha Franklin
      Dubbed the "Queen Of Soul" she performs Soul, Gospel, Jazz, R&B, Rock, and Disco/Electronic Music. She is the first woman inducted into The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. Pres. Bill Clinton presented her with the National Medal of Arts and President George W. Bush presented her the Presidential Medal Of Freedom and she has the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. She is one of the most influential recording artists of the 20th. Century. Her signature song "Respect" is considered one of the most important songs of the 20th. Century.  It has been viewed as an anthem for Civil Rights and Women's Rights. She has been married twice and has had more than a few relationships. Some of her hits are "Bridge Over Troubled Water", "Freeway Of Love", "Who's Zoomin' Who", "Sisters Are Doin' It For Themselves" (with The Eurythimics), "I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me) (with George Michael), "Jumpin' Jack Flash", "Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody", "I Never Loved A Man (The Way I Love You)", "Baby I Love You", "(Sweet Sweet Baby) Since You've Been Gone", "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman", "Chain Of fools", "Day Dreaming", "Spanish Harlem" and "Rock Steady".
For more on Aretha Franklin CLICK
    100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see songs 59 & 15

  8. Janet Jackson
      She is a singer and actress of the Gary, Indiana family that brought you the Jackson Five and Michael Jackson.  They no longer live in Gary but have become fixtures in greater Los Andeles and Las Vegas areas. Her father Joe Jackson lives in Las Vegas as well. She has been called the "Queen Of Pop". You decide if that is just hype. What there is no doubt about is, she is one of the greatest singers of the Electrofied Era. She performs R&B, Rock, Soul, Blues, Rap and Disco/Electronic Music. Aside from her fame as recording artist she is remembered for the now infamous "Wardrobe Malfunction"  during the performance of "Rock Your Baby" with Justin Timberlake, Super Bowl XXXVIII. Her music has evolved over the years but is increasingly thought of as sexually charged over shadowing her earlier more socially conscious work.  The Super Bowl incident has only helped to cement that thinking. Not to mention her signature song "NastY" Janet has been married three times to singer James DeBarge, Rene Elizondo Jr. and billionaire Qatar businessman Wissam Al Mana. Some of her hits are "Rhythm Nation", "Control", "Feedback", "What Have You Done For Me Lately", "Miss You Much", "All For You", "Diamonds" (with Herb Alpert & Lisa Keith), "We Are The World 25 For Haiti", "Doesn't Rreally Matter", "I Get Lonely" (with Backstreet), "Black Cat", "Escapade", "Any Time, Any Place", "Runaway", "The Pleasure Principle", "Come Back To Me, and "Again".
Authors Note: Janet is not in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame and most assuredly belongs there on the merits of the song "Black Cat" alone.

  7. James Brown - (1933 - 2006)
      He is known as the "Godfather of Soul". He is in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame and the Songwriters Hall Of Fame". He performed Blues, Funk, Soul and Disco/Electronic Music. He virtually invented Funk and guaranteed the popularity of Soul.  Next to Elvis Presley he had more hits than any other American artist. Brown re-invented stage presence for the modern Soul and Rock performer   He simply wrote the book. You just have to bow to the Great James Brown on stage presence. He was married three and one half times. There lingers great legal questions about the forth and last marriage. He had numerous children, including with women outside of his marriages, some of whom he never claimed. He was in an out of jail for a variety things but most frequently for domestic violence. He had a history of drug and alcohol abuse problems. James Brown was a Republican and a friend of the Strom Thurmond family using Strom Thurmond Jr. as one of his attorneys. Some of his hits are "Living In America", "Papa's Got A Brand New Bag", "Please, Please, Please", "I Got You (I Feel Good", "It's A Man's, Man's, Man's World", "Cold Sweat - Pt. I", "I Got the Feelin", "Hot Pants Pt. I", "Say It Loud - I'm Black And I'm Proud Pt. I", and "Licking Stick - Licking Stick Pt. I".
For more on James Brown CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see songs 61 & 23
2. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see song 24

  6. Stevie Wonder
      Stevie Wonder was a child prodigy rising to stardom at an early age.  He attended the Michigan School for The Blind and studied classical music.  He not only has had to over come poverty and blindness but also a devastating car accident in 1973 that put him in a coma and caused a partial loss of smell.  He is without a doubt one of the most important and influential singer songwriters of the 20th Century in R&B, Soul, Funk, and Rock. He has written modern Pop Standards of the Electrofied Era. Stevie has pushed many causes of the Democrat Party and has actively supported prominent Democrats. Some of his hits are "Fingertips", "Master Blaster (Jammin')", "I Just Called To Say I Love You", "Part-Time Lover", "Send One Your Love", "You Are The Sunshine Of My Life", "Living For The City", "Uptight (Everything's Alright)", "Blowin' In The Wind", "My Cherie Amour", "Superstition", "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours", "Yester-Me, Yester-You, Yesterday", "For Once In My Life", "Ebony And Ivory" (with Paul McCartney), "I Wish", "Sir Duke" and "If You Really Love Me".
For more on Stevie Wonder CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see song 28
2. Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans  see artist 2
3. Top 40 Blind and Visually Impaired American Musicians  see artist 1

Authors Note:  The Michigan School for the Blind closed in 1994 resulting in mainstreaming the blind in public schools across Michigan.  While mainstreaming works well for some blind students it is an utter disaster for most.  Other more enlightened states like Indiana to it's south has maintained a residential school for the blind. The Indiana School has classes on campus and has students involved in mainstreaming in nearby public schools, whose teachers are trained equipped and ready to teach the blind.  The students get the best of both worlds and as a result have a high graduation rate with many going onto college. What Michigan has done in the name of progressive education is a travesty to the blind and to the people of Michigan.

  5. Mariah Carey
VIDEO - Endless Love with Luter Vandross
Hollywood sends
      She is a singer songwriter and actress.  She writes most of her own songs which separates her from many of her contemporaries. She has a powerful voice with a wide range and is one of those rare artists who who can perform in the so called Whistle Registry. Being able to sing at such a high range gives her a unique sound and style. Her mother was an Opera singer and clearly Mariah inherited her abilities and mother indirectly influenced Mariah's style. Some of her hits are "Thank God I Found You", "Loverboy" (with Cameo), "We Belong Together", "Dreamlover", "Vision Of Love", "Heartbreaker" (with Jay-Z), "Touch My Body", "Shake It Off", "My All", "Honey", "One Sweet Day" (with Boyz II Men", "Without You", "Hero", and "Emotions".
For more on Mariah Carey CLICK
    100 Most Important and Influential American Songs see songs 79 & 64

  4. Michael Jackson/Jackson 5 - (1958 - 2009)
Michael Jackson, President and Mrs. Reagan
at the White House launching campaign
against drunk driving.
      He was a child prodigy spurred on by his parents.  He became a singer songwriter, actor, businessman, producer and choreographer. He performed Pop, Rock, Soul and Disco/Electronic Music.  He is in the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, and was given the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. He has been accused of Child sexual abuse but was never convicted. He married Lisa Marie Presley (daughter of Elvis Presley) and it was a short lived marriage. His second wife was Deborah (Debbie) Jeanne Rowe which resulted in two children Michael Jackson Jr. (Prince Jackson) and Paris Jackson. A third child Michael Jackson II (Blanket) was born by an unidentified surrogate artificially inseminated as claimed by Michael.  He had a drug problem which put stress on his relationships. Las Vegas doctor Conrad Murray was charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of Michael Jackson. Some of Michael's hits with his brothers The Jackson 5 are "ABC", "I want You Back", "Never Can Say Goodbye", "I'll Be There", and "Dancing Machine". Some of his solo hits are "Thriller", Bad", "Billie Jean", "Rockin' Robin", "Rock With You", "Off The Wall", "Beat It", "Wanna Be Startin' Something", "Smooth Criminal", "You Are Not Alone", "You Rock My World", and "Human Nature".  Some of his hits with other artists "Scream" (with Janet Jackson), "The Girl Is Mine" (with Paul McCartney), "Muscles" (with Diana Ross), and "Say Say Say" (with Paul McCartney).
for more on Michael Jackson CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs  see songs 62, 52 and 25
2. Musicians with Disabilities Top 25 Americans see artist 1
3. Drugs, Booze, Death - American Musicians

  3. Madonna
VIDEO - Madonna - Give It To Me
      Thank you Donna Summer!  You not only opened the door for her but you set the stage as well!!!  She's been called the "Queen Of pop" - Oops so has Janet Jackson.  Well no one wants to call Madonna the "Queen Of Disco", with the death of Donna Summer maybe we should. While Donna has past on the musical art form is still with us disguised under several euphemistic names. Disco never died it simply changed names to protect the innocent. Madonna doesn't give credit to Donna Summer. Why? DISCO remains a dirty word in the minds of some. Disco has had less evolutionary changes than Rock. Madonna learned from Donna Summers and others that SEX SELLS. Using strong dance beats and gutter lyrics she has managed to make herself into one of the most enduring singers of the last half of the 2oth. Century and into the 21st. Century. Madonna's hits "Bedtime Story", "Justify My Love" and "Erotica" were with out a doubt influenced by Summer's "Love To Love You Baby"  When it came to songs about women and sex Donna was there with the likes of "Hot Stuff", "Bad Girls", and "She Works Hard For The Money" to name a few. Madonna, her producers and record companies certainly were in part influenced by these songs.  Madonna deserves credit for her changing styles and incorporating Hip Hop into some of her hits.  She has never lost track of the importance of good dance beats.  Even though mobile DJ's play are not remotely tracked they play a major role in promoting music popularity in the schools at school dances all across America. Madonna's material is very dance-able. Her vocal talents and styling allows her to sound like the near innocent teenie bopper to the sexually mature vamp. 
For more on Madonna CLICK
    100 Most Important and Influential American Songs see song 60

  2. Bing Crosby - (1903 - 1977)
      The ultimate Crooner from the twenties, thirties, forties and fifties with the biggest Christmas hit of all time, "White Christmas". This song alone has sold well over 100 million recordings and continues to sell well. As an actor his films where he was the primary star has sold over one billion tickets.  He was a singer and actor. He performed Jazz, Country and Pop Standards. His record sales are in excess of one half billion. He played a major role in the development and marketing of the first reel to reel tape recorder.  It was this machine that Les Paul would use in developing multitrack recording. He pioneered prerecorded radio shows and developed the "laugh Track"(prerecorded laughter inserted in show to enhance the program) which is still used today. He has an Academy Award for Best Actor, Grammy for Global Achievement Award, Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and a star in the Hollywood Walk Of Fame. He was married twice.  His first Dixie Lee died of Ovarian Cancer. The were married 22 years and had four sons and a daughter. After having several relationships including actress Grace Kelly who became Princess Grace of Monaco   He then married Kathryn Grant and had three children two boys and a girl. It has been alleged that he was cruel to his children, but that is in dispute. Bing was a Republican and supported the party. Here are some of his hits pre-Electofied Era "Side By Sde", "My Blue Heaven", "Makin' Whopee", "Just A Gigalo", "Stardust", "Where The Blue Of The Night (Meets The Gold Of The Day)", "Sweet Georgia Brwon", "Temptation", "Pennies From Heaven", "Alexander's Ragtime Band", and "There's A Goldmine In The Sky". Here are some hits from the Electorfied Era "Only Forever", "Deep In The Heart Of Texas", "Moonlight Becomes You", "I'll Be Seeing You", "Swinging On A Star", "Don't Fence Me In" (with The Andrews Sisters), "Ac-cent-chu-ate The Positive" (with The Andrews Sisters), "If I Loved You", "Now Is The Hour", "Far Away Places", "Some Enchanted Evening", "True Love" (with Grace Kelly), and "Changing Partners".
For more on Bing CLICK
    100 Most Important and Influential American Songs see song 4

  1. Elvis Presley - (1935 - 1977)
VIDEO - Elvis Presley - Jailhouse Rock
Elvis - U.S. Army in Germany
        It's plain and simple he is not only the King of Rock he is the King of Recorded Music.  His sales exceed ONE BILLION world wide. NO other American artist is remotely close. His career was interrupted by being drafted into the United States Army and serving two years in Germany at the height of his popularity.  This one, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame got right. He is not only in it, he was in the first class to be inducted. He was a singer and actor. The latter has been questioned but never the former. He was consistently discriminated against by the Grammy awards when he exploded onto the music scene.  The people doing the judging were not fans of Rock 'n' Roll.  They came from the Swing and Pop Standard Eras which Rock 'n' Roll was destroying. The result was he has few Grammys to his name. He was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. He sang Pop Standards, Rock, (possibly recorded the first Hard Rock song, "Jailhouse Rock") Country, Rockabilly, Blues, Jazz, Soul, R&B and Gospel. He was the first true Global Artist with a strong fan base on every
Photo by Ollie Atkins, Nixon
White House photographer.
M-G-M photo still to promote
the film "Jailhouse Rock".
continent in the world. His sexual antics on stage immediately had him labeled as the BAD BOY. His stage presence and power vocals virtually defined the Rock singer. Everything after Elvis is epilogue  The book had been written and published. Elvis has seven songs (#'s 85, 80, 78, 53, 36, 9, and 3) on the 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs. (CLICK -  100 Most Important and Influential American Songs) People talk about how the likes of Dylan, Jackson, Springsteen, Prince and others changed American culture. Elvis and several of his early contemporaries were "Provocateurs" they were  "Proactive Subversives",  whereas Dylan and his contemporaries were "Reactive Revolutionaries"  and chroniclers of the era. In the end what they did was fine tune what Elvis had already achieved. No other musician in recording history has so profoundly not only changed music but culture itself. There can be strong arguments this change was for the good and strong arguments it was bad.  There is no argument he nearly single-handedly made the change. His presence on the national scene challenged sexual mores, spurred rebellious independence, challenged racial barriers, curried equality, inspired individual aspirations and provided hope to the emotionally and socially lost. His impact on American society is beyond measure.  It is nearly the same the world over.  The fear he struck in the hearts of hard-line Communists in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union is mind boggling. He was later in life denied awards because, "why give it to someone who really doesn't need it, and give it to someone who does".
For more on the King CLICK
1. 100 Most Important and Influential American Songs see songs 85, 90, 78, 53, 36, 9, and 3

2. Top 100 (United States) Songs of American Patriotism  see songs 33, 23, 8, and 3
3. Drugs, Booze, Death - American Musicians See artist #1

5. About this list
     The list goes back over 100 years. It is not restricted by genre or era That is to say it is not restricted to the Rock Era or the Electrofied Era.  Country, Swing, Rock, Disco etc are represented on the list. 

6. Criteria, Weights and Standards

     1. All Artists must be American
     2. This is an ALL-TIME list of recording artists. This list is not limited to genre, the Rock Era or the Electrofied Era. It is limited to the time of recorded music.
     3. The artist must have had a substantial number of hits and high record sales.
     4. Artist status is measured by The population of the United States and the World Using primarily the United States Census. The Population of the United States was around 165 Million in 1955 and in 2015 the population is over 319 million.  The population then was nearly half of what it is today consequently we have to look at the scope of the artists success relative to the Population.  Selling a million songs then was nearly twice as difficult as it is today. If we look at World population in 1955 it was two and three quarters billion, and today it is seven billion. Over two times what it was.
     5 Artist were graded by whether they were National Artists, International Artists or Global Artists.

         National Artist - Popularity and recognition is primarily in the United States and Canada (Canada due to U.S. media bleeding into Canadian markets since the bulk of the Canadian population live within 100 miles of the U.S. border)
         International Artist - Performers who have a fan base in numinous counties but restricted to three or fewer continents.
         Global Artist - Performers known the world over and have strong fan basses on more than three continents

     6 Inflation factor. If you bought something for $1.00 in 1955 based on inflation it would cost today over $8.00.  Discretionary spending for music would have been much less. 
     7. Blending/merging of  recording artists is done when the primary performer of the group is also a solo performer.  Such examples are Diana Ross & The Supremes, Michael Jackson and The Jackson 5, Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. 

7. Artists To Watch

Snoop Dogg
        Snoop is a Rapper and songwriter. He is an International Artist, but has found himself banned from entering several countries due to his history of drug problems and criminal charges which has plagued him for nearly two decades.
Lady Gaga on The Monster Ball Tour
Photo by loveyousave
This photo is from flickr and Wikimedia

Lady Gaga
        One of Americas fastest rising singing sensations that has already
 reached Global Status.  She is the continuation of Donna Summer and Madonna music trend. Disco is dead, long life Disco/Electronic Music.

        He is a Rapper and actor.  He is an American recording star who has gained fame by performing songs of a controversial nature.  Some of his music has had lyrics that have been viewed by many as politically over the top and other songs have been seen as degrading women, praising drugs and violence. This has actually helped his sales in the United States, but has hurt him in getting and keeping product endorsements.

8. Electrofied Era

The "Electrofied Era' began in 1940 the beginning of a decade that saw the recording studios not just capturing sound but also altering it. It is also based on the development of Les Paul's, "Log Guitar", and the maturing of electric media.   Recordings, Jukebox and radio play plus use in motion pictures began to have a broader impact on music popularity than sheet music sales, live performances, and Broadway. The word "electrofied" is coined to point out the artists, record producers, sound engineers and inventors did much more than just add and use electricity in the music industry. They unleashed a whole new creative spirit, an "Oh Wow" effect. Electrified cannot be used to define the new studio production capabilities or the diverse means of how music is disseminated. Electricity added new dimensions to live performances from the size of the audiences to the creative nature of the productions, to the instruments and the music itself.  To say the music is electrified is neither appropriate or enough.
     The dissemination of popular music has changed and continues to expand since the beginning of the Electrofied Era.  The advent of television, (Black and white TV was invented before 1940 and color TV in 1940, but did not find general usage until after World War II) the satellite, and the Internet changed how music is created and disseminated and how people receive and use popular music.  New art forms sprung out of the technology bringing us Rock 'n' Roll, modern Soul, Disco, and the Music Video to name just a few. Technology changed where, how,and when we use music in our daily lives.  It has also impacted how, where, and size of space we store our music.  The transistor radio, 45 and 33 1/3 RPM recordings, CD's, television, computers, the Internet, the Walkman, mp3 players and i-pods are just some of the changes impacting the music industry.