Top 10 Greatest Rock Voices

The Top Ten
1 Axl Rose William Bruce Rose Jr., better known as 'Axl Rose', is an American singer born on February 6, 1962, in Lafayette, Indiana. He Is the founder and lead singer of the hard rock band Guns N' Roses. He is a celebrated but controversial figure in the world of rock.

What defines a great voice is what the singer can do with it. One of the most important things for a voice in rock is being able to sing loud. And I think we all know how loud Axl can be. But what makes him so special is how he seems to feel the song. You can hear the anger in Out Ta Get Me, and in Paradise City, you sense how much he wanted to go home when the song was written. Even in Don't Cry, no matter which version, he seems to reach out to the listener and tell them that no matter how bad something feels at the moment, it will get better. That's what makes his voice so amazing. It would be able to convey the song's message even if it didn't have any lyrics at all.

2 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

Thinking of a list of the top ten rock voices, you would think that Freddie Mercury would come in at #1. Actually, no. Somehow, Axl Rose managed to snatch that spot. I like Guns N' Roses and I think Axl is a good singer, but not nearly as good as Mercury. Who put him at #2? Or was it a group contribution? You should go listen to some Queen songs and then compare the vocals to some Guns N' Roses songs. You will find that Rose's vocals are not nearly as good as those of Mercury.

Anyone who places Freddie Mercury lower than #1 is just kidding himself. You either never listened to him or you never listened to someone who was trying to sing one of his songs. I dare you to do both of those things and then come share your opinion here again. Chances are, you will hear your rock idol trying to sing Freddie's song and feel sorry for him. Just watch The Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert from 1992 and you will get my point.

To be able to make a fair comparison, watch Queen's performance at Live Aid from 1985 or any other concert of theirs and draw your conclusions. I won't even go into the topic of singing in different styles, because then it wouldn't be fair at all to the rest of the contenders on this list (or any other list for that matter). King Freddie - always in our hearts!

3 Robert Plant Robert Anthony Plant (born 20 August 1948) is an English musician, singer, and songwriter best known as the lead singer and lyricist of the rock band Led Zeppelin.

I don't know what it is, but it's just so magical the way he sings. I can't imagine anyone else singing Zeppelin besides him. And wow, what a shock that Steve Perry is #1 on this list. He is a close #2 to Plant, but come on, are there really that many Journey fans out there? Don't get me wrong, I like them, but they are overrated. Most people like Don't Stop Believin', and that's it. What's with Heart? Everyone on this site seems to like them. I like Barracuda, but not much more. They are kind of like Journey in that way. I used to think that there were a ton of Bon Jovi fans out there, but I guess I'm wrong. There are a lot of Richie Sambora fans. For the record, I listened to him, and he sucks at singing. Bon Jovi rocks, though. But yeah, Plant's the best.

4 Steve Perry Stephen Ray "Steve" Perry is an American singer, songwriter, and record producer. He is known as the lead singer of the rock band Journey during their most commercially successful periods from 1977 to 1987 and again from 1995 to 1998.

The fun we saw in 1994, while he was performing in NYC without Journey, showed a different side of Steve. He had fun and looked like he had the weight lifted off his shoulders. His silky-smooth voice was even more soulful than ever before. When he sang I'll Be Alright Without You/Cupid, it was one of the best interactions with the audience and one of my favorite videos.

No one will ever come close to that silky-smooth voice, and no one will ever touch our hearts the way Steve did. Every song takes you back to a place in time, and that is what a true singer/songwriter is all about. I hope he sings for us soon. His voice is missed more than he will ever know. We miss you, Steve. Thank you for all the memories you have given us and hope to hear from you soon. Faithfully.

5 Bruce Dickinson Paul Bruce Dickinson, known professionally as Bruce Dickinson, (born 7 August 1958) 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.Outside his career in music, Dickinson has pursued a number... read more

Bruce Dickinson is such an amazing singer. He has an incredible ability to hit those high notes without sounding like fingernails on a chalkboard. He can sing with such power and still have a lot of finesse. It's like he doesn't have to put any effort into his singing, and yet he still sounds amazing. That is why he is my favorite singer.

He is definitely one of the greatest rock voices. Like an air raid siren, he can do amazing things with that voice. I almost voted for Gillan, Dio, and Brian Johnson - all amazing vocalists. I think a rock voice should be hard and meaty, and I'm afraid Steve Perry is too soft for my liking. Go Bruce!

6 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.

Crazy-ass MOFO! Rob always seems to challenge himself, and he has the guts to perform his wild vocal attacks live. That's what blows my mind. Just listen to Painkiller, the best metal song of all time.

Hey, what the hell is Rob Halford doing at a position like 10? He should be number one! Rob is the God of Heavy Metal and all kinds of music. This guy has the best and most powerful falsetto voice ever heard in music, and a vocal range over six multi-octaves. Come on, people, he should be number one everywhere. All hail the Metal God!

7 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

I really enjoyed Bon Jovi's songs. He's not only a legend but also a kind person, especially towards his fans while on stage. His attitude reminds me of other great people. He's versatile. He can sing various songs. I've always liked him, not just for his rock genre, but because his songs are genuinely enjoyable. They're the kind you can sing along with others. He's known around the world, even as far as Malaysia. Despite his age, he continues to perform, and I hope to hear him sing again. I first discovered Bon Jovi in 2016. I may only know a little about him, but his voice is definitely great. Always is a fantastic song.

At its prime, which I would say was around '88-'95, his voice was untouchable. He had a bit of raspiness along with the ability to hit high notes, and no nasal voice back then. He's extremely underrated. Just listen to Blaze of Glory at the Oscars ceremony in 1991, and Always live from London.

8 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

Down at #10? Thanks for letting me know your ears don't work, guys. Chris Cornell is obviously #1, head and shoulders above all. Axl Rose just sounds like an old rusty tea kettle, and his voice is always the same. Freddie Mercury also sounds the same pretty much on every song, and I don't care that he can do opera and all. His voice is pretty boring to me.

Listen to the Badmotorfinger album. I fear no vocalist, but Cornell - he scares me! There is not a voice more powerful than his. No one can scream like him. He can go super low and super high like no one else (listen to Beyond the Wheel to hear his range). Read his lyrics! Feel his emotion!

9 Steven Tyler Steven Tyler is an American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and former television music competition judge, best known as the lead singer of the Boston-based rock band Aerosmith, in which he also plays the harmonica, and occasional piano and percussion.

Are you joking? Bon Jovi over Steven Tyler? Anyone can sing like JBJ.

Tyler is really better than Steve Perry, even Axl Rose. I understand if you prefer another band over Aerosmith, but there is no denying that with his range and gritty voice, which still holds up after all these years, Steven Tyler has the best voice in music, period.

There is not one other lead singer who can sing like him, including Rose or Perry.

Steven Tyler should be number 1, no question.

Steven Tyler is a beast. He should at least be in the top 5. You should listen to him often. He's not only good, he's great live. No one can sing his songs better than him. He's the best. And he's 65 years old and can still hit those high notes, which a kid would find hard to hit.

10 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

From Elf, to Rainbow, to Black Sabbath, to his own band, R.J. Dio never failed to deliver. He could sing melodically or unleash a growling gruffness, depending on the emotions he wanted to provoke. Others in the music business have nothing negative to say about the man and often comment that he was a kind gentleman.

First, I scrolled down and saw Axl really low, so I was going to vote for him. But then I scrolled a bit more and saw Bruce Dickenson and thought, NO, he needs to be in the top 5. However, I scrolled even further and saw Dio. I had to pick Dio for being 40th. Numbers 1 and 3 are the only ones that are correct, but reverse the order.

The Contenders
11 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

This is the most incredible voice in the history of Rock and Roll I have ever heard. She will be 64 in June. Go see Heart live. If you like Heart, you know what I mean. As for the rest, you have to be kidding me. This is obviously voted on by people who have no recollection of the fifties. Little Richard had the most incredible voice of that era, not Elvis, who really had a great voice. Axl Rose, give me a body of work, not just one album. Isn't it amazing that the greatest female singer, to me, had Blondie go into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame ahead of Heart? That just shows the hypocrisy of that deal. I have been listening to Rock & Roll since I was 9 in 1955. Somebody give me a voice who can sing Rock like Ann Wilson. I don't need to hear about Aretha or Whitney, because we are talking about a different genre.

12 Sebastian Bach Sebastian Philip Bierk, known professionally as Sebastian Bach, is a Canadian heavy metal singer who achieved mainstream success as frontman of Skid Row from 1987-96. Since his departure from Skid Row, he has had many television roles, acted in Broadway plays, and leads a solo career.

I do really like several artists on this list and would have to agree that the order seems to reflect the popularity of the band more than the specific voice. Additionally, the band's popularity seems to carry heavier weight than the singer. It appears that it's around a 70%-30% band-vocalist split, respectively. Moreover, it would be difficult to completely remove the band's influence, so ultimately the ratio should be flipped the other way around so that the vocalist achieves at least 70%. Of course, my conjecture is totally subjective, just like every other comment or vote. Some people might actually fight over something like this. I say we just sit back, crank up the volume, and reminisce while enjoying our favorite artists. Someone like Sebastian can raise the hair on the back of my neck all while I'm trying to sing along and failing miserably. Take care!

13 Bon Scott Ronald Belford "Bon" Scott was a Scottish-born Australian rock musician, best known for being the lead singer and lyricist of Australian hard rock band AC/DC from 1974 until his death in 1980. He was born in Forfar and lived in Kirriemuir, Scotland, for 5 years before moving to Melbourne, Australia,... read more

Bon Scott had an incredible tenor range. He hit every note perfectly. He also had that Little Richard scream. AC/DC had every teenage girl wanting to chase this naughty, adventurous, diminutive frontman urging you to be bad. The power he had! He sang every note powerfully. It's so sad that he died when they could have easily carried his little body up the stairs.

With his singing, there was no trying or screaming involved. It just came out hard. And with the Angus Brothers - oh man!

Bon Scott, along with the Young brothers' amazing riffs, defines hard rock. They literally gave birth to the guitar shredding and headbanging everyone loves today. As Malcolm Young said, "Other bands love to rock, but we love to rock 'n' roll."

14 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 Cobain, along with Nirvana, changed the music industry drastically. They ended the Metal era of the 1980s and influenced the modern bands we hear today.

Most people like to talk about his death - whether he was killed, whether he committed suicide, etc. This very fact alone might have made him a legend to many people. But to me, he's a legend because he made great, influential music - music that rock wouldn't survive without. Nirvana is the core and heart of the rock body. Embrace him, not his death. Kurt Cobain was the singer of Nirvana.

15 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

Any list where Layne Staley is 31st is probably not a list I would take a lot of stock in, especially with some of the people ahead of him. That said, everyone has an opinion. But if you are not familiar with Layne Staley, listen to Man in the Box, Bleed the Freak 1991, and Nutshell unplugged, and you will treat your ears to the most emotionally powerful singer ever. I don't mean screaming with angst. I mean he'll still give you goosebumps the 50th time you've heard the song.

For a peek behind the curtain, listen to Mad Season Wake Up or River of Deceit and prepare to shed tears. Not many in the 1-30 range can say that!

16 Brian Johnson Brian Johnson is an English singer and songwriter. Since 1980, he is the lead singer of the Australian rock band AC/DC, with whom he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2003. As of April 2016, Johnson is not participating in the remainder of the Rock or Bust World Tour due to hearing... read more

Is this a joke? I like his band, but his voice sucks. BADLY.

17 Sammy Hagar Samuel Roy "Sammy" Hagar, also known as The Red Rocker, is an American rock vocalist, guitarist, songwriter, musician and entrepreneur.

By voice alone, Sammy Hagar pushes notes and maintains a pitch that many others on this list would outright fail to match. One only needs to hear his opening war cry in Van Halen's song "A.F.U." to recognize his ability.

I would say that at his peak, Hagar is pound-for-pound the greatest live singer the hard rock genre has ever seen. The Van Halen live double album is out of this world.

I liked his solo career more than when he was with Van Halen. He has a good voice overall.

18 John Lennon John Winston Ono Lennon, MBE (9 October 1940 - 8 December 1980) was an English singer and songwriter who rose to worldwide fame as a co-founder of the Beatles, the most commercially successful band in the history of popular music. He was assassinated by Mark David Chapman on December 8, 1980 at age... read more

How is John Lennon not even in the Top 10!? Without a doubt, he belongs in the top 5. When you hear his Liverpool accent, you'd never imagine in a million years that such a passionate singing voice could come out of him. He may not have had a very wide vocal range, but when he hit high notes, he hit them so well.

People voting are too young to know, but let the numbers speak. John Lennon has produced such a mass level of great music that the rest on the list could only dream of achieving. Really, Lennon at 56?

From Twist and Shout to Instant Karma, or the live version of Come Together in New York (where he hits a B4 belting high note), John Lennon was rock 'n' roll. And if you consider songs such as Imagine, In My Life, You've Got to Hide Your Love Away, and All You Need Is Love, I would say he was the songwriter of the century.

19 Jim Morrison James Douglas "Jim" Morrison was an American singer, songwriter, and poet best remembered as the lead singer of the Doors.

HAHAHA, you're joking, right? I'm sure you don't seriously think all of these 3rd-rate wannabes are better than Jim Morrison. The only reasonable choices above him are Robert Plant and Roger Daltrey. But Jim should be number one. No one had a more powerful, loud, and soulful voice. My top 10 would be:

1. Jim Morrison
2. Robert Plant
3. Janis Joplin
4. Roger Daltrey
5. Grace Slick
6. Mick Jagger
7. Roger Hodgson
8. Freddie Mercury
9. Jon Anderson

Only Elvis before him was as perfect a rock frontman as Jim Morrison. Everybody from Axl Rose to Linkin Park grew up with a Doors poster on the wall and even copied their swagger after him.
Of course, Morrison is also a charter member of the "27 Club."
RIP, Lizard King.

20 Roger Daltrey Roger Harry Daltrey, is an English singer and actor. In a music career spanning more than 50 years, Daltrey came to prominence in the mid 1960s as the founder and lead singer of the English rock band The Who, which released fourteen singles that entered the Top 10 charts in the United Kingdom during... read more

Roger Daltrey has amazing range, but more importantly, a range of expression. His voice can be rough and powerful, such as on Who Are You or Love Reign O'er Me, but also capable of much beauty, such as on See Me, Feel Me. He's a high baritone, more than capable of holding his own in the tenor range. Plus, he's arguably in his prime now at 70+ years. He should be number one.

Another singer who should be comfortably in the Top 10 but isn't, for some stupid reason, is Roger Daltrey. Listen to the song Love Reign O'er Me, and you'll be convinced that he belongs in the Top 3. The fact that Roger Daltrey put so much pressure on his voice with his emotional screams from the early days, yet still sounds good at age 76, proves he is way too low on this list.

21 Ian Gillian 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, none better! Could sing better in his 50s than most on this list in their prime.

Powerful, beautiful, gentle, amazing - Ian Gillan.

I am going to quote Trump: "He is the best."

22 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.

He's got a unique voice, probably caused by smoking and drinking since he was like 3. And Lemmy from Motorhead - still, they rule and should be number 1.

He has the richest and, to me, the most beautiful voice in heavy metal. Number one - James all the way!

I think James is the definition of rock. With his natural, harsh voice, he controls the mic awesomely without hurting you. It's incredible how he makes rough seem smooth. Unforgivingly, nothing else matters than James.

23 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.

At least she's in the top 20s. But honestly, she can hit a range of 4 octaves with power in her voice. She can also make her voice calm and relaxing, and she can put force into it. Her voice is smooth, and without a doubt, she should be in the top 10.

She is just amazing! She has so much feeling and power in her voice. It's too bad she's turning into a pop princess, but I hope she will never give up her way of singing, no matter which genre she chooses. Go Amy!

She's just so amazing. Her voice is flawless. You can tell it comes straight from the heart when she sings. She's absolutely an amazing singer, and I would vote for her any day. Pure, raw emotion in her voice is what makes her one of the greatest.

24 Arnel Pineda Arnel Campaner Pineda is a Filipino singer and songwriter. He came to prominence in the Philippines during the 1980s and internationally in 2007 as the lead singer of the American rock band Journey.

Arnel Pineda sings with passion. He doesn't only hit the high notes as in the original but really sings from his heart, full of soul. He is a total performer as seen in his concerts, inciting his audience.

In my opinion, Arnel is the real "VOICE." His versatile and powerful voice is truly the best. Others tried to replicate the great Steve Perry, but not one came close until AP came along and rejuvenated the true sound of Journey.

Arnel Pineda is a true singer's singer with unlimited talent. He can sing any song and make it sound better, while other artists can only sing certain styles and are very limited.

25 Myles Kennedy Myles Richard Kennedy is an American musician, singer and songwriter best known as the lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist of the rock band Alter Bridge, and as the lead vocalist in Slash's current band: Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and The Conspirators.

This man, Myles Kennedy, has been my inspiration for a long time now. He just keeps getting better every day. Whether it's Mayfield Four, Alter Bridge, Guns N' Roses, or Slash, this guy never lets our hopes down.

Amazing vocal quality, extraordinary vocal range, and perfect control over high as well as low notes. Also, he is an amazing guitarist too. If I become a rock star someday, and people ask me who inspired me, Myles Kennedy will be one of the few names, including Jimmy Page and Robert Plant.

He has rock in his blood, his soul, his voice.

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