Most Iconic People In Heavy Metal


The Top Ten

1 Ronnie James Dio Ronnie James Dio Ronnie James Dio (born Ronald James Padavona; July 10, 1942 – May 16, 2010) was an American heavy metal singer, songwriter and musician. He fronted and/or founded numerous groups including Elf, Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Dio and Heaven & Hell. He is credited with popularizing the "metal horns" hand gesture more.

Only known about this man for 3 months, and he is already my favourite musician of all times. Incredible voice, lyrics that are so simple, yet carry such strong messages, and a presence unlike any other. One of my few regrets in life is that I never got to meet him.

Easily, Dio gets my vote. He set the bar for metal vocals very high!
And lets not forget about his incredible personality - he's known for paying attention to every fan who has approached him. He talked to fans for hours after the shows. So talented and committed to metal but so accessible. He is the greatest metal personality ever and could be a role model for everyone. His ethics was impeccable.
So sad Dio is lower than Ozzy on this list (and on most of the lists) because Dio is way more talented than Ozzy.
And by the way, I don't see Tony Iommi on this list and I will add him. Again, another musician who is way better than Ozzy but gets less credits. - Metal_Treasure

He created the metal horns! M/
He fronted pioneering Heavy Metal/Hard Rock bands Rainbow & Elf
He started and fronted his own Heavy Metal band, Dio
He replaced Ozzy Osbourne as frontman of Black Sabbath
He was in a short lived band with former Sabbath members called Heaven & Hell - ryanrimmel

2 Bruce Dickinson Bruce Dickinson Paul Bruce Dickinson, known professionally as Bruce Dickinson, is an English musician, airline pilot, and broadcaster. He is most well known for being the lead singer in heavy metal band Iron Maiden and his solo career.

When I think Heavy Metal, Iron Maiden is the first thing that pops into my mind. - truckturner

Really talented singer, amazing personality, great sense of humor, one of the most intelligent metal musicians.
Hehe, he's also the best pilot and the best fencer among the metal musicians.
He's my #2 after Dio. - Metal_Treasure

The legendary longtime frontman of Iron Maiden. That powerful voice helped inspire a subgenre of Heavy Metal, called Power Metal. - ryanrimmel

3 Ozzy Osbourne Ozzy Osbourne John Michael "Ozzy" Osbourne was born on December 3, 1948. He is also known as ''The Prince of Darkness''. Ozzy is an English singer, songwriter, and television personality. He rose to prominence in the early 1970s as the lead vocalist of the band Black Sabbath. Osbourne was fired from Black Sabbath more.

The Godfather of metal

He's simply the founder of Heavy Metal music. The living legend.

He's the Prince of Darkness and the Godfather of heavy metal for a reason, you know. Dio was the only worthy replacement, who still couldn't better replace Ozzy. - MetalPope


-He is the legendary frontman of the first Heavy Metal band, Black Sabbath, and eventually is successful solo career. - ryanrimmel

4 Rob Halford Rob Halford Robert John Arthur "Rob" Halford is an English singer and songwriter, who is best known as the lead vocalist for the Grammy Award-winning heavy metal band Judas Priest and famed for his powerful wide ranging operatic voice.

Just Rock God

Vocal icon for all generations of metal singers. It's difficult to beat his vocals. - Metal_Treasure

He fronted Judas Priest since they started in 1969 and is one of the very few openly gay metal frontmen. - ryanrimmel

5 Dave Mustaine Dave Mustaine David Scott "Dave" Mustaine (born September 13, 1961) is an American musician, singer, songwriter, actor and author. Mustaine is best known as a pioneer in Thrash Metal, being the former lead guitarist of Metallica before his dismissal in 1983, leading to finding and becoming the front man of his own more.

Founder of Metallica, guitar player with a overstanding technical level, founder of Megadeth and the only one who was able to join marty friedmann with nick menza and dave ellefson to make one of the most important cycles in thrash history and today still is out the thrashers community!

Former lead guitarist of Metallica, and now lead singer and lead guitarist of Megadeth. - ryanrimmel

6 James Hetfield James Hetfield James Alan Hetfield was born on August 3, 1963. He is an American musician, singer and songwriter known for being the co-founder, lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist and main songwriter for the American heavy metal band Metallica.

Why is dio #1

The longtime singer, songwriter, and rhythm guitarist of Metallica - ryanrimmel

Amazing singer and rhythm guitarist should be No. 5 though. - SionicRelations

7 Dimebag Darrell Dimebag Darrell Darrell Lance Abbott, also known as Diamond Darrell and Dimebag Darrell, was an American guitarist and songwriter best known as a founding member of two bands, Pantera and Damageplan, alongside his brother, Vinnie Paul. Abbott died in 2004 after he was shot by a mentally unstable fan.

Goat - lilrocketman

The legendary riffmaster and shredder and mastermind behind Pantera - ryanrimmel

The Greatest Guitarist Ever Sad To See Him Die R.I.P Dimebag - christangrant

8 Ritchie Blackmore Ritchie Blackmore Richard Hugh "Ritchie" Blackmore is an English guitarist and songwriter, best known for his work in the hard rock/metal bands Deep Purple and Rainbow. He was ranked number 16 on Guitar World's "100 Greatest Metal Guitarists of All Time" in 2004, and number 50 in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the more.

The mysterious Man In Black, Genius, Riffmaster and Pioneer of metal. The mastermind behind two legendary bands - Deep Purple and Rainbow. His riffs and solos are so powerful that can open your 3rd eye.
He discovered and hired Dio (later in Black Sabbath; Dio), and some other remarkable metal musicians:

Cozy Powell (later in Black Sabbath), Bob Daisley (later in Ozzy; Black Sabbath), Don Airey (later in Ozzy), Ian Gillan (later in Black Sabbath), Jimmy Bain (later in Dio), Joe Lynn Turner (later in Yngwie), Doogie White - frontrunner for Bruce Dickinson replacement in Iron Maiden (but they hired Blaze and maybe made a mistake).

No, Maestro Blackmore didn't work as a recruitment agent for Black Sabbath and Ozzy - he was just way more influential than most of the metalheads can imagine. And he was a great hunter of metal talents. - Metal_Treasure

9 Lemmy Lemmy Ian Fraser Kilmister, known as Lemmy, was an English musician, singer and songwriter who founded and fronted the rock band Motörhead. He was a bassist and a singer known for his raspy voice. He died in 2015 from cancer and other health problems.

The incredibly badass vocalist and bassist of Motorhead. - ryanrimmel

Needs to be in the top 3. Ian Frazier "Lemmy" Kilmister's menacing,gravelly singing voice is legendary among metal vocalists.

Most WWE fans know this guy because of Triple H's theme song, which they wrote - SionicRelations

10 Tony Iommi Tony Iommi Anthony Frank "Tony" Iommi is an English guitarist, songwriter and producer. Best known as lead guitarist and founding member of the pioneering heavy metal band Black Sabbath, he has been the band's sole continual member and primary composer. At age 17, he accidentally lost the fingertips of his middle more.

The Godfather

The Contenders

11 Dave Lombardo Dave Lombardo David "Dave" Lombardo is a Cuban American drummer, best known as a co-founding member of the American thrash metal band Slayer.

Amazing drummer - lilrocketman

One of the most iconic metal drummers. - Metal_Treasure

12 Chuck Schuldiner Chuck Schuldiner Charles Michael "Chuck" Schuldiner (1967-2001) was an American singer, songwriter, and guitarist, best known as the founder and vocalist, guitarist and bassist of the American heavy metal band Death. He is considered the most influential figure in Death Metal, with some publications referring to Chuck more.
13 Steve Harris Steve Harris Stephen Percy "Steve" Harris is an English musician and songwriter, known as the bassist, occasional keyboardist, backing vocalist, primary songwriter and founder of the British heavy metal band Iron Maiden.

Steve Harris is the brain behind Iron Maiden. He personally wrote dozens of their best songs. - IronSabbathPriest

Bruce Dickinson is a very charismatic frontman but actually Steve Harris is the mastermind there. Steve Harris is the primary songwriter in the band and you can't deny that Iron Maiden songs are very well written and it's their biggest advantage. - Metal_Treasure

Steve Harris is best described by another metal musician - Tobias Sammet:
"Vienna has got Mozart
Chopin they had in Paris (kind of)
The Catholics got the Pope
England's got the Beatles
And even more so:
England's got Steve Harris

England's got Steve Harris
And if that wasn't enough for you
England's got Bruce Dickinson
And of on top of it - the other ones
In Iron Maiden too, yes it's true" (Edguy - England, 2014, bonus track). - Metal_Treasure

14 Jeff Hanneman Jeff Hanneman Jeffrey John "Jeff" Hanneman was an American musician, best known as a founding member of the American thrash metal band Slayer.

Rip - lilrocketman

Riffmaster and longtime guitarist of Slayer - ryanrimmel

15 King Diamond King Diamond Kim Bendix Petersen, better known by his stage name King Diamond, is a Danish heavy metal musician. He is known for his extensive vocal range, usually sung in falsetto. King Diamond was originally known as the vocalist for Mercyful Fate, but has become notorious for his horror themed Concept albums more.
16 Cliff Burton Cliff Burton Clifford Lee "Cliff" Burton (February 10th 1962 - September 27th 1986) was an American musician, best known as the second bass guitarist for the American thrash metal band Metallica, recording three studio albums. He died in 1986 after getting crushed by a tour bus in Copenhagen whilst promoting Metallica's more.

He's giving God bass lessons right now - TIG1623

Greatest Metal Bassist Ever! It was the Darkest Day in Metal the Day that He Died... #Orion

17 Zakk Wylde Zakk Wylde Zakk Wylde is an American musician, singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and occasional actor who is best known as the former guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne, and founder of the heavy metal band Black Label Society.

Another amazing shredder, riffmaster, and frontman
-He played guitar for Ozzy Osbourne
-He is the frontman/guitarist of Black Label Society - ryanrimmel

18 Randy Rhoads Randy Rhoads Randall William "Randy" Rhoads was an American heavy metal guitarist who played with Ozzy Osbourne and Quiet Riot. He was killed in a plane crash.
19 Tom Araya Tom Araya Tomás Enrique "Tom" Araya Díaz is a Chilean American musician, best known as the bassist and vocalist of the American thrash metal band Slayer.
20 Nicko McBrain Nicko McBrain Michael Henry "Nicko" McBrain is an English musician, best known as the drummer of the British heavy metal band Iron Maiden, which he joined in 1982.
21 Bill Ward Bill Ward William Thomas "Bill" Ward is an English musician and visual artist, best known as the original drummer for the British heavy metal band Black Sabbath.
22 Lars Ulrich Lars Ulrich Lars Ulrich is a Danish drummer and one of the founding members of the American thrash metal band Metallica.

Metallica is a Great band with a asshole and lame drummer

23 Kirk Hammett Kirk Hammett Kirk Lee Hammett is the lead guitarist and songwriter for the heavy metal band Metallica and has been a member of the band since 1983. Before joining Metallica he formed and named the band Exodus.
24 Kerry King Kerry King Kerry Ray King is an American musician, best known as a guitarist for the American thrash metal band Slayer.
25 Jason Newsted Jason Newsted Jason Curtis Newsted is an American metal musician, known for being the third bass guitarist with the band Metallica from November 1986 until his departure in January 2001, he was also a part of Voivod and Flotsam and Jetsam.

The very reason metallica is my favorite band - TIG1623

26 Robert Trujillo Robert Trujillo Roberto Agustin Trujillo, better known as Robert Trujillo, is an American musician known for his role as the current bassist of heavy metal band Metallica.
27 Papa Emeritus II
28 Geezer Butler Geezer Butler Terence Michael Joseph "Geezer" Butler is an English musician and songwriter. Butler is best known as the bassist and primary lyricist of heavy metal band Black Sabbath.
29 Papa Emeritus I
30 Papa Emeritus III
31 Adam Nergal Darski
32 Alexi Laiho Alexi Laiho Alexi "Wildchild" Laiho is a Finnish guitarist, composer, and vocalist. He is best known as the lead guitarist, lead vocalist and founding member of the melodic death metal band Children of Bodom, and is also the guitarist for Sinergy, The Local Band and Kylähullut.
33 Alice Cooper Alice Cooper Alice Cooper is an American singer, songwriter, musician and occasional actor whose career spans over five decades.
34 Quorthon Quorthon Tomas Börje Forsberg, known by the stage name Quorthon (1966-2004), was a Swedish musician. He was the founder, songwriter, vocalist and guitarist of the band Bathory, which pioneered the black metal genre and is credited with creating the Viking metal style. A multi-instrumentalist, Quorthon wrote more.
35 Dee Snider Dee Snider Daniel "Dee" Snider is an American singer-songwriter, screenwriter, radio personality, and actor. Snider came to prominence in the early 1980s as lead singer of the heavy metal band Twisted Sister. He was ranked 83 in the Hit Parader's Top 100 Metal Vocalists of All Time.
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List Stats

100 votes
35 listings
4 years, 209 days old

Top Remixes (4)

1. Ronnie James Dio
2. Bruce Dickinson
3. Rob Halford
1. Ronnie James Dio
2. Dimebag Darrell
3. Bruce Dickinson
1. Ozzy Osbourne
2. Dimebag Darrell
3. Bruce Dickinson

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