Best Piano Players of All Time

maggot-104

The Top Ten

1 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, baptised as Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart, was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical era, born in Salzburg.

Best of the Best!

He's not as good as Oscar Peterson

He is best piano player ever. He started playing at the age 4.

No way Chico Marx is! all the way!

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2 Ludwig van Beethoven Ludwig van Beethoven Ludwig van Beethoven was a German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential of all composers. His best-known compositions include 9 symphonies, 5 piano concertos, 1 violin concerto, ...read more.

Geezuz, he didn't MAKE SONGS. He COMPOSED actual MUSIC, no lyrics.

Obviously the GOAT. Greatest talent to this day.

He is amazing and made classic songs

Plays like a god - AliciaMae

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3 Thelonious Sphere Monk

Absolutely the greatest ever

Technically no, but his originality trumps technicalities. John Coltrane said if you miss a change it's like falling down an elevator shaft with Monk. His influence is gigantic in modern music.

One of the most famous Jazz musicians of all time. It is no coincedence that he plays piano either, he is great at it, he also has great music writing skills. All around very good piano player - maggot-104

His sense of time was very complex.

4 Liberace Liberace Władziu Valentino Liberace, mononymously known as Liberace, was an American pianist, singer, and actor.

Liberace had lots and lots of talent. Besides who is still living who ever heard Mozart, Bach, Beethoven, etc. ever play to know how well they played. Their written music may have been good, but that just tells how well they composed music.

Liberace is proof good marketing and no talent can still get you sucess

5 Billy Joel Billy Joel William Martin Joel is an American singer-songwriter, composer and pianist. Commonly nicknamed the "Piano Man", he has been making music since the 1960s, releasing popular albums throughout the '70s, '80s and '90s.

Made the piano truly a rock and roll instrument and introduced all the kids growing up in the 70s and 80s who thought the guitar was cool to another instrument. Easily one of the most influential piano artists and he always pays his dues to his piano heroes like Ray Charles, Duke Ellington, Beethoven, etc

Billy Joel is in the same category as a Mozart, Chopin, Beethoven. He writes the lyrics and the music AND sings. Pure absolute genius. Thank you Billy for bringing your music to the world. You will be remembered FOREVER!

I get that Mozart and all those classic piano players were musical geniuses and that they pioneered important piano styles, but let’s face it, would you rather listen to some old 1700s piano stuff or some awesome Billy Joel songs? I think we all know the obvious answer. Billy Joel was a modern piano genius and created many piano songs we all know and love.

Piano man is like Chopin on steroids. filipino everyone inequality music genre verisimilitude

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6 Herbie Hancock

The best

7 Duke Ellington Duke Ellington Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington was an American composer, pianist, and bandleader of a jazz orchestra, which he led from 1923 until his death in a career spanning over fifty years.
8 Nat King Cole Nat King Cole Nathaniel Adams Coles, known professionally as Nat King Cole, was an American singer who first came to prominence as a leading jazz pianist.

He makes my heart sore like a chicken in the mist
Juan

9 Erroll Garner

His instinctive gift to change tact in a tune but to maintain it as a one is his gift...as well as that left hand

10 Marasy8

He can play pretty much any song he wants to play even if it didn't originally have a piano in it.

Also he has a monkey with him in all his videos; people enjoy seeing that monkey up on the piano.

Having a monkey wrapped around his wrist while playing the piano won me over apparently.

Basically the Japanese genre God

The Contenders

11 Jerry Lee Lewis Jerry Lee Lewis Jerry Lee Lewis is an American singer-songwriter, musician, and pianist, often known by his nickname, The Killer.

The best ever period.

He should be higher.

I think he is one of the best that ever did it in music history and he is just so good you can't explain it

No one had more style than the killer

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12 Elton John Elton John Sir Elton Hercules John CBE is an English singer, pianist, and composer. He has worked with lyricist Bernie Taupin as his songwriting partner since 1967; they have collaborated on more than 30 albums to date.

I love his song "Saturday"

How is billy Joel ranked ahead of Elton when billy himself said “when it comes to the piano and all it can do, I’m not even in Elton’s league”!

13 Dave Bruebeck
14 Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach
15 Franz Liszt Franz Liszt Franz Liszt was a prolific 19th-century Hungarian composer, virtuoso pianist, conductor, music teacher, arranger, organist, philanthropist, author, nationalist and a Franciscan tertiary.

Transcendental Etude No. 5 'Feux Follets' by Liszt

Liberace better than liszt?

Franz Liszt is generally considered the greatest piano player in history. This list contains many great composers who were fine piano players, song writers and great musicians but virtuoso pianists

There are recordings of the last of Liszt's students, such as Arthur Friedheim, who specialized in Liszt's piano works. Frederic Lamond might give one an idea of what Liszt could teach, within the limitations of the pupil. I'm disappointed that this list's contributors have not noted great 20th century classical pianists, nor mentioned the great technician's of this century.

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16 Ray Charles Ray Charles Ray Charles Robinson, professionally known as Ray Charles, was an American singer, songwriter, musician, and composer.
17 Lyle Mays
18 Freddie Mercury Freddie Mercury Freddie Mercury (born Farrokh Bulsara, 5th September 1946 - 24th November 1991) was a Zanzibari-born British singer of Indian descent, songwriter and record producer, known as the lead vocalist and songwriter of the British rock band Queen. He also became known for his flamboyant stage persona and four-octave ...read more.

Freddie Mercury should be number 3. He was the best and still is. Legends never die!

Super piano player.

Should be higher.

This is for all you gaybos

19 Oscar Peterson

He and Tatum should have been in top 10.

20 Art Tatum

HE WAS BLIND AND COULD PLAY BETTER THAN ANY PIANIST EVER! -nothing more to be said...

If the vote was cast by the people on this list, Tatum would be #1. If you do a little web search on their quotes about his Play, you will find that his technical skill and musicianship are wildly considered unmatched. Rachmaninov, Horovitz, Rubinstein,Toscanini, Oscar Peterson, they all found him the greatest.

When it comes to piano, there is Art Tatum... then everybody else. The best pianists in the world don't even try to play the way he did.

Perhaps the greatest pianist ever, at least he's one of 'em.

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21 Victor Borge

Great when he wanted to play straight!

22 Li Yundi
23 Vladimir Horowitz
24 Yiruma

Best player ever. !

25 Mose Alison
26 Valentina Lisitsa
27 Sergei Rachmaninov

Really great pianist, he should be in top 5 at least. - Merkwurdigliebe

Piano Conerto No. 2 is beautiful.

28 Lang Lang

This guy is pretty sweet, he shows emotion in such a unique way.

29 Frédéric Chopin

Quite suprised to see him 33

How is Paul McCartney and Freddie Mercury above him? Good pianists, but nothing like this legend... - Alpha101

Really long fingers and almost only wrote piano enough said

I think he should be in the top 5...amazing pianist

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30 Animenz

Probably the best pianist in the genre of Anime whow ever existed. His skill and style are both truly amazing. Not to mention his ability to transcribe.

Best transcriber I know. Extremely talented and an idol of mine - Charlesman01

31 George Winston
32 Ray Manzarek Ray Manzarek Raymond Daniel Manczarek, Jr., better known as Ray Manzarek, was an American musician, singer, producer, film director, and author.

Should be higher up

Way to far back for such a talented man as THE Ray Manzarek countless classic including, The Crystal Ship, Light My Fire, Riders on the Storm, and so many more!

Should be way higher up

33 Jim Brickman

The best..

Brickman is a great pianist!

34 Paul McCartney Paul McCartney Sir James Paul McCartney is an English singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and composer . With John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr, he gained worldwide fame with the rock band the Beatles, one of the most popular and influential groups in the history of pop and rock music .
35 Kyle Landry

One of the, if not, the most, talented pianist on YouTube.

36 Eubie Blake
37 Stevie Wonder Stevie Wonder Stevland Hardaway Morris, known by his stage name Stevie Wonder, is an American musician, singer, songwriter, record producer, and multi-instrumentalist.

The most soul pianoest ever

Come on guys

38 Cyprien Katsaris

One of the best classical (and not so classical) living pianist. Both technically flawless and very expressive.

39 Johann Sebastian Bach Johann Sebastian Bach Johann Sebastian Bach was a German composer and musician of the Baroque period. He is known for instrumental compositions such as the Brandenburg Concertos and the Goldberg Variations as well as for vocal music such as the St Matthew Passion and the Mass in B minor.
40 Matt Bellamy Matt Bellamy Matthew James "Matt" Bellamy is an English musician, singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and compose most famous for being the main vocalist in alternative rock band Muse.
41 Tom Odell

One of the best pianist in our days

42 Lady GaGa Lady GaGa Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, known professionally as Lady Gaga, is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. ...read more.
43 Evgeny Kissin

HOW IS HE NOT HIGHER UP

44 Yanni
45 Chick Corea
46 Scott Joplin Scott Joplin
47 Jimmy 'The Rev' Sullivan
48 Mike Shinoda Mike Shinoda Michael Kenji "Mike" Shinoda is an American musician, rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer, graphic designer, manager and film composer.
49 Janne Wirman
50 Linda Spa

Multi-instrumentalist who was temporarily a part of Tangerine Dream... happened to be my music teacher in school. - Martin_Canine

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List Stats

500 votes
51 listings
8 years, 97 days old

Top Remixes

1. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
2. Ludwig van Beethoven
3. Duke Ellington
Kobe300
1. Liberace
2. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
3. Thelonious Sphere Monk
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