Top 10 Songwriters Of The 20th Century

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For a songwriter to make it to the top ten lists he /she should have composed songs which have stood the test of time. They should be sung by many singers and the songs should have become a part of our musical history. The purposes of this list we are only considering the songwriters who gave us popular rock and roll or country or pop music.

 

1. Bob Dylan:

He towers over everyone else with his musical genius. He gave us words which embodied the pathos and angst of his generation and where the listeners identified themselves with the feelings and emotions which were a part of the song. He is the most influential songwriter of his times and all of us are familiar with his compositions such as The Times they are a-changing and Blowing in the Wind.

 

2. Lennon/McCartney:

The amazing music that the Beatles gave us is the result of songs written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney. Music was never the same again after they burst on the scene and each song of theirs seems to be better than the last. Yesterday, Eleanor Rigby, the entire album of Sgt. Pepper’s  Lonely Hearts Club, the list just goes on and on. After the group broke up Lennon and McCartney continued to compose songs individually. Lennon’s genius was cut short by his murder but McCartney continues to write songs even today.

 

3. David Bowie:

A major figure for over 50 years in the field of rock music, David Bowie has not only been a singer, songwriter but also a record producer. The intellectual depth of his work sets him apart from the general run of the mill songwriters and he has been nominated among the Top 50 Rock Artistes of all times. His repertoire includes songs such as Let’s Dance, Ashes to Ashes and Under

Pressure.

4. Paul Simon:

A brilliant musician and songwriter, along with Garfunkel he gave us some of the most heart-warming songs of all times. Even after breaking up with Garfunkel he has continued to bring forth great songs. The film The Graduate owes a great deal to their inspiring music and to date we can hear Bridge Over Troubled waters and Sounds of Silence again and again.

 

5. Bruce Springsteen:

The Boss writes music which reflects the angst and frustration of the ordinary folks. He gives us pathos and dreams, he gives us anger and reflection and his songs are for all times. He is his own best performer since his voice seems to suit his words very well, but the fact remains that his words will probably live longer than his own singing.

 

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4 Responses

  1. paulc

    Where is Brian Wilson? The mere fact that you left Brian off YOUR list of YOUR “Top 10 Songwriters” invalidates any list YOU attempt to create.

    Some of YOUR other choices are not top 10 in most people’s minds either.

    Reply
  2. Brent

    Once again. Joni Mitchell forgotten. Carol King as good as she was, had songwriting help from her husband. Joni is the best of the females. When Led Zeppelin, Neil Young, Graham Nash, James Taylor wrote songs about you. You’re it. Some of their best songs too. “Going to California” “Hey Joni” “Our House” “Close Your Eyes”.

    Reply

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