Top 10 Rock and Metal Singers Whose Voices Aged Well

Metal_Treasure
Voice is the most delicate music instrument. While some famous singers has never actually had great and powerful voices, some others still sounded great even after a certain age.
Aging is a natural process - phisical body ages as well as the voice. Signs of aged and tired voices - vocal range shrinks and usually it's harder to hit high notes, unwanted rasp appears, power of the voice is not the same, and so on.

This list is about singers whose voices were still good and even great after 40, and especially after 50 and 60. This part of the vocal skills is called endurance and is one of aspects used in breakdowns to compare singers' abilities and decide who's a better singer (besides range, power, versatility, etc).

What to take into account here:
1) age - if two singers sounded equally good on two selected songs, the older one wins (if the first one sang the song at 45 and the second one at 49)
2) difficulty of the material they have sung
3) whether the material is potentially harmful to the vocal folds (for example, metal material is the most harmful)
4) how often and for how long the singer has performed live - frequent live shows exhaust the voice more than recording in the studio because you don't record new albums every day.

The Top Ten

1 Freddie Mercury Freddie Mercury Freddie Mercury (5th September 1946 - 24th November 1991) was a Tanzanian-born British singer, songwriter and record producer, known as the lead vocalist and songwriter of the rock band Queen. He also became known for his flamboyant stage persona and four-octave vocal range. Before he became a singer ...read more.

Such a shame he had to pass away at 45 but even when he was dying his voice was incredible proving how great of a vocalist he truly was and probably is the greatest singer ever - christangrant

He died at 45. When he sang 'The Show Must Go On' he was already dying and was barely able to walk but his voice was still there - huge and incredible. - Metal_Treasure

2 Ian Gillan Ian Gillan Ian Gillan is an English singer and songwriter. He originally found success as the lead singer and lyricist for Deep Purple, and the original singer on the rock opera concept album Jesus Christ Superstar by Andrew Lloyd Webber, where Gillan had the leading role (Jesus Christ).

Hands down. He sounded very good at 65 and pretty decent at 70+.
His voice at 48:
Deep Purple - The Battle Rages On, Anya (1993). Moreover, most of the songs on this album were intended for another singer (i.e., not written for Gillan voice but he nailed it).
His voice at 55:
Live albums from 2000-2001 prove it (In Concert with The London Symphony Orchestra, Live at the Rotterdam Ahoy). - Metal_Treasure

3 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 ...read more.

Yes on the song "Metal Will Never Die" which was the last dio song recorded he still sang incredibly - christangrant

At 65, several months before his death of cancer, he still sounded very good even live. - Metal_Treasure

4 Hansi Kürsch Hansi Kürsch Hansi Kürsch, born Hans Jürgen Kürsch, is the lead singer, lyricist, co-composer and bassist for German power metal band Blind Guardian . Heavily influenced by Freddie Mercury, he creates a huge choir effect by overdubbing his own voice multiple times in complex, overlapping vocal harmonies. He records ...read more.

In fact id say he gotten better with age :). Just listen to At the Edge of Time and Beyond the Red Mirror albums his voice is so incredible - christangrant

I agree very much with christangrant, at least several aspects of Hansi singing got better. I noticed some unusual things (and other people noticed them, too):
1) after 30 he widened his vocal range (after 1996)
2) after 35 he started singing mostly in his higher register (after 2000)
3) after 35 his voice sounded more agile
4) after 40 his vocal harmonies got better (2006 onwards) - Metal_Treasure

His voice was incredibly fresh at 48, after 30 years of singing difficult metal material with high-pitched gritty vocals and brutal screams - these 2 vocal styles are very harmful but he obviously has a very good vocal technique that saved his voice.
His voice:
At 40, Blind Guardian - Fly, Another Stranger Me
At 44, Blind Guardian - Wheel Of Time
At 48, Blind Guardian - Miracle Machine, The Throne (songs recorded in 2014).
The beginning of Miracle Machine demonstrates everything you need to know about his voice endurance - smooth clean voice that sounds like spring water. - Metal_Treasure

5 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.
6 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.

In 2014, at 56, he recorded an album with tongue cancer. He sounded very good for a metal singer at his age and with the serious health problem he had, which was related to the singing ability. - Metal_Treasure

Just incredible. I took my wife to her first Maiden show in 2008. She couldn't believe he was that athletic running around on stage and never pitchy once in the show and that's he was 50 at the time. - stmalice

7 Michael Kiske Michael Kiske Michael Kiske is a singer best known as the former lead vocalist for the German power metal band Helloween.

He has always sounded great, since the 80s now (he's 50 in 2017). Currently Michael Kiske and Hansi Kürsch sound equally good but I put Hansi higher for 3 reasons:
1) Kiske never sang material that is potentially very harmful while Hansi did
2) Kiske never did gritty vocals and brutal screams while Hansi did them very often
3) Kiske was a very active live performer only for 6-7 years (1987-1993), whereas Hansi has toured non-stop for 30+ years. Kiske wasn't a very active live performer in the 90s because he left Helloween. Again, in the 2000s and 2010s Hansi had more live shows than Kiske. - Metal_Treasure

8 Chris Cornell Chris Cornell 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. He died on May 17, 2017.

Hands down. At 50 he sounded great even live. His material is less harmful than metal material but still. - Metal_Treasure

9 Joe Lynn Turner Joe Lynn Turner Joe Lynn Turner is an American singer, known for his works with hard rock/metal bands Rainbow, Yngwie Malmsteen and Deep Purple.

At 32, Rainbow - Can't Let You Go
at 39, Deep Purple - Fortuneteller, The Cut Runs Deep, Love Conquers All
at 62, Avantasia - The Watchmakers' Dream (2013) - Metal_Treasure

10 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 .

His singing material is very safe - it isn't potentially harmful but his voice was very good even after 50 so I had to add him. - Metal_Treasure

The Contenders

11 David Coverdale David Coverdale David Coverdale is an English rock singer most famous for his work with Whitesnake, the commercially successful hard rock band he founded in 1978. Before Whitesnake, Coverdale was the lead singer of Deep Purple from late 1973 to 15 March 1976, when he resigned from the band and established his solo ...read more.
12 Klaus Meine Klaus Meine

Oh yes definitely he has been singing since 1969 and he still sounds good to this day what a great singer possibly the best singer for Ballads - christangrant

13 Chuck Billy Chuck Billy Charles "Chuck" Billy is an American vocalist, who is best known as the vocalist for the thrash metal band Testament.
14 Jon Oliva Jon Oliva John Nicholas Oliva, known as Jon Oliva, is an American composer, multi-instrumentalist and singer. Co-founder of the metal band Savatage and the rock opera Trans-Siberian Orchestra. He's got a real 4 octave range, able to morph the sound of his voice to any style, from John Lennon and Freddie Mercury, ...read more.

He was born in 1960 so:
His voice at 41, Savatage - Morphine Child (2001)
His voice at 50, Avantasia - Death Is Just a Feeling (2010) - Metal_Treasure

15 Tina Turner Tina Turner Tina Turner, née Anna Mae Bullock, is a singer, dancer, actress and author, whose career has spanned more than half a century, earning her widespread recognition and numerous awards.

Not a typical rocker but she has sung some rock songs so she's eligible. - Metal_Treasure

16 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.
17 Bonnie Tyler Bonnie Tyler Bonnie Tyler is a Welsh singer. She is known for her distinctive husky voice, resulting from an operation to remove vocal nodules in the mid-1970s.

Her powerful and extremely husky voice hasn't lost anything of its unique sound and she still sounds great live
(She has done pop as well but was rock when she worked with Jim Steinman). - Martin_Canine

18 Ralf Scheepers Ralf Scheepers Ralf Scheepers is the vocalist for German heavy metal band Primal Fear. He has a relatively high-pitched tenor-esque singing voice and sometimes uses a shriek reminiscent of Judas Priest's Rob Halford, although it is his baritone lows which give him a near four-octave range in the modal register.

At 46 (in 2011) he covered a Judas Priest ballad that Rob Halford had sung at 27 and Ralf sounded pretty amazing (Scheepers - Before the Dawn). - Metal_Treasure

19 Jeff Scott Soto Jeff Scott Soto Jeff Scott Soto is an American rock singer of Puerto Rican descent. He is most well known for being the lead singer for the group Talisman from 1990 till the end of Talisman in 2007, the vocalist on Yngwie Malmsteen's first two albums, and the lead vocalist for Journey on their 2006–2007 tours after ...read more.

He provided vocals for Yngwie's debut album Rising Force (1984) and 20 years later, in 2003, he sang LIVE Queen's The Show Must Go On. This song is very hard to sing and while his vocals aren't better than Freddie's, his rendition is one of the best Queen covers vocal-wise. And it was live. - Metal_Treasure

20 Corey Taylor Corey Taylor Corey Todd Taylor was born in December 8, 1973. He is an American musician, author, and actor best known as the lead singer and lyricist of the Nu-metal band Slipknot and hard rock/alternative metal band Stone Sour.
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