As stupid as it may sound, given that the role generally involves copious amounts of sex and partying, being a lead singer is hard work. While the rest of your bandmates can hide behind guitars, drum kits and keyboards, you have to stand there and sing, which means figuring out something to do with your hands while singing and your whole body when not (good luck if you’re not capable of so much as a single dance move). And if you do play an instrument, you’ve got to do that and remember your lyrics simultaneously, which for some is like patting your head while rubbing your stomach. What’s more, if you write songs that mean something to you, every night is not just a gig but a long trip down memory lane, which can be emotionally draining (not much successful rock is built on pleasant life experiences).
Some made this list for their skill, some for their style, but all are worthy of going down in history among the best lead singers ever. So here we present the 50 best to step up to a mic stand.
Some ground rules:
1. No solo artists. Thus no David Bowie, Elton John, etc.
2. No people from bands in which everyone sings and there is no clear leader. Thus no members of The Beach Boys, The Beatles, The Zombies, The Band…
3. No people who are mainly known for their work on instruments. Thus no Jimi Hendrix, Bill Nelson, etc.
By Daniel Margolis
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