Top 10 Most Powerful Lyricists

The Top Ten
1 Ville Valo Ville Hermanni Valo is a Finnish singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, best known as the lead vocalist and main songwriter of the Finnish gothic rock band HIM.

I like HIM mainly because of his lyrics. I appreciate figurative lyrics, and Valo's take me to other places, just like good writers do in literature. I must admit, I study literature and sometimes think about analyzing one of his songs in class. Unfortunately, not all my classmates speak English. Even though I can translate them, I feel that translating them can diminish some of their magic. He is undoubtedly the best, though not for all minds, and that's part of the magic too.

Definitely number 1, no competition. His lyrics are so deep and healing for all of us who yearn for true love and still believe in it despite many disappointments. He gives me comfort and hope. When I listen to his words, I'm in my own little world where I'm safe and sound. It's nice to know that someone like him exists in this cruel world. I just hope that someone like him waits for each and every one of us. The number one, peerless.

2 Serj Tankian Serj Tankian is a Lebanese-born Armenian-American singer-songwriter, composer, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, poet, and political activist. He's best known for being the lead singer of the Armenian/American rock band System of a Down. After System of a Down's hiatus in 2006 he began to release... read more

Serj is not just a songwriter. He is a messenger and protestor of the US not recognizing the Armenian genocide through his lyrics.

3 Michael Jackson Michael Jackson (Michael Joseph Jackson; August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009) was an American singer, dancer, and songwriter. He passed away from cardiac arrest caused by a propofol and benzodiazepine overdose on June 25, 2009. He donated (at least) a remarkable 500,000,000 dollars to charity. Michael... read more

Michael's lyrics held powerful messages for the listeners. He was trying to teach his fans and change the world. He made a powerful impact on the world and saved the lives of children with his contributions through his lyrics and the money he donated from writing his powerful lyrics.

He always put something more into his songs than the rest. That's maybe why he was (and will be) one of the best singers in the history of music, if not the best. He actually wrote his own songs, so a little part of the magnificence and power we saw in his dancing is in his lyrics too.

4 Ann Wilson Ann Dustin Wilson (born June 19, 1950) is an American musician, best known as the lead singer and songwriter of the hard rock band Heart. Ann is in the Rock Hall of Fame with Heart, and is listed as one of the best metal singers of all time by Hit Parader. She is widely viewed as one of, if not the... read more
5 Yoshiki Hayashi Yoshiki Hayashi is a Japanese musician, songwriter, composer and record producer. Better known by his stage name Yoshiki, he is best known as the leader and a co-founder of the heavy metal band X Japan, for which he is the drummer, pianist and main songwriter. The band achieved breakthrough success... read more

His lyrics are powerful, beautiful, poetic, and even cryptic. Art of Life is one of his masterpieces.

The lyrics of "Amethyst" are just so beautiful. And "Without You," I think, is so soulful.

6 Jerry Cantrell Jerry Fulton Cantrell Jr. is an American musician, singer-songwriter and guitarist best known as the founder, lead guitarist, co-lead vocalist and main songwriter of the rock band Alice in Chains.
7 Layne Staley Layne Thomas Staley was an American musician who served as the lead singer and co-songwriter of the rock band Alice in Chains, which he founded with guitarist Jerry Cantrell in Seattle, Washington in 1987. Alice in Chains rose to international fame as part of the grunge movement of the early 1990s... read more

Powerful should have been Layne's middle name. He sang with such passion, and his talent isn't matched by many on this list.

Pure and honest lyrics with the most powerful and beautiful voice to back them up.

8 Billie Joe Armstrong Billie Joe Armstrong is an American musician, singer, songwriter, and actor who is best known as the lead vocalist, primary songwriter, and guitarist of the punk rock band Green Day, which he co-founded with Mike Dirnt. He's also in side-project groups such as The Network, Foxboro HotTubs, Pinhead Gunpowder,... read more

He has an uncanny ability to write excellent lyrics about any topic. Be it the death of his father, teenage boredom, love, mental illness, or politics. His lyrics can be silly, poetic, and profound - they are all extremely clever.

You can pick up any Green Day song and read the lyrics.

He does not write romantic songs or songs with stories, usually considered good lyric songs, but his songs force one to think about oneself. They change your inner self. The songs benefit mankind.

9 Maynard James Keenan Maynard James Keenan, often referred to by his initials MJK, is an American musician, record producer, winemaker, and actor, best known as the vocalist for Grammy Award-winning progressive metal band Tool. He also is the singer of A Perfect Circle and Puscifer bands that vary in style.
10 Zack de la Rocha Zacharias Manuel "Zack" de la Rocha (born January 12, 1970) is an American musician, poet, rapper, and activist best known as the vocalist and lyricist of rap metal band Rage Against the Machine from 1991–2000, and after the band's reunion in 2007 until their last show in 2011. He left Rage Against... read more
The Contenders
11 Roger Waters George Roger Waters is an English singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and composer. He is mostly known for being the secondary lead vocalist and bassist of Pink Floyd.

Roger Waters is 23rd?

Come on. Just listen to The Wall, The Dark Side of the Moon, and Wish You Were Here. Every song in his albums has a story. His songs are about war, society, modern life, and so many other fields. He is the most powerful lyricist.

12 Tuomas Holopainen Tuomas Lauri Johannes Holopainen (born 25 December 1976) is a Finnish songwriter, multi-instrumentalist musician (but mainly keyboardist) and record producer, best known as the founder, leader, keyboardist and songwriter of symphonic metal band Nightwish. He also studied jazz and classical styles.
13 Kurt Cobain Kurt Cobain was born February 20, 1967, in Aberdeen, Washington. In 1987, he started the grunge band Nirvana, which became one of the most successful bands ever. He was a talented yet troubled grunge performer. Kurt Cobain became a rock legend in the 1990s with his band. He committed suicide at his... read more

Kurt is a god. He was a depressed soul who didn't care about the world. His lyrics remain morbid and will always be a mystery. She'll come back with fire and burn all the liars, leaving a blanket of ash on the ground. All hail Kurt Cobain.

14 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.

Have you heard Fade to Black? Once you hear that, you'll understand why he's the best. Not to mention countless other songs like Ride the Lightning, Creeping Death, Sad But True, One, and Justice for All.

This man wrote amazing lyrics like One, Sanitarium, Master of Puppets, etc.

YES, James deserves a place in the top 10, at least in front of Mercury. His lyrics are perfect for the guitar, the bass, and the drum, which makes him a legend of rock.

15 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

Okay, I don't know about you guys, but Freddie had THE BEST lyrics you could find. Sure, some songs didn't exactly make any sense, but if you looked deeper, you'd find much poetry and figure that Freddie was a genius.

No, no. He made the most meaningful songs ever. But listen: I have found the meaning of Seven Seas of Rhye! It was a fantasy land Freddie used to dream of as a kid.

16 Sharon den Adel Sharon den Adel, Dutch singer and the vocalist of symphonic rock band Within Temptation.

Together with her partner, Robert Westerholt, den Adel is one of the founding members of Within Temptation. She has defined their work as epic and cinematic. Her vocals play a major role in the band's sound,... read more
17 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... read more
18 Peter Lennodo Peter Lennodo is a British musician. He is also a composer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. He is best known as the vocalist, lead guitarist and main songwriter of the rock band The Arcana.
19 Amy Lee Amy Lynn Hartzler, known professionally as Amy Lee, is an American singer-songwriter, classically trained pianist and composer. She is also the lead singer to the Arkansas band Evanescence.
20 Matt Bellamy Matthew James "Matt" Bellamy is an English musician, singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and composer. He is most famous for being the main vocalist in alternative rock band "Muse".

He can touch my soul with a single song. He is very creative, poetic, haunting, and apocalyptic.

21 Jarvis Cocker
22 Chris Cornell Christopher John "Chris" Cornell was an American rock musician and singer-songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist, primary songwriter and rhythm guitarist for Seattle rock band Soundgarden and as former lead vocalist and songwriter for the supergroup Audioslave. His vocal range was C2 to A5, while... read more
23 Jon Bon Jovi John Francis Bongiovi, Jr., better known by his stage name Jon Bon Jovi, is an American singer-songwriter, record producer, philanthropist, and actor, best known as the founder and frontman of the hair band Bon Jovi from, which was founded by Jon and his pianist, David Bryan, in 1983. He is famous for... read more

You can listen to Bon Jovi when you are happy and when you are down! They have a song for every feeling in your life.

24 Chester Bennington Chester Charles Bennington (March 20th, 1976 - July 20th, 2017) was an American musician, singer, songwriter and actor, best known for being the lead singer of Linkin Park. Before he was known for Linkin Park, Bennington was the lead singer of post-grunge act Grey Daze who was heavily inspired by Stone... read more

His lyrics pierce the heart and touch the soul! Now that's called lyric writing!

The meanings of his songs are unbearably amazing and really touch your soul because they're about Chester's past. LP forever.

25 Chelsea Wolfe
8Load More
PSearch List