Michael Jackson, the Beatles, Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin and the Rolling Stones Top VH1's '100 Greatest Music Artists of All Time' List

VH1's "100 Greatest Artists of All Time" Premieres Monday, September 6 at 10/9c

VH1 Personality Jim Shearer to Host 4-Night Special

Go to TheGreatest.Vh1.com to Vote Your Favorites

Aug 25, 2010, 06:00 ET from VH1

NEW YORK, Aug. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- VH1 goes back to its music roots and revisits the age-old question: "Who is the greatest music artist for all time?" Determined by a poll of well-known music artists and music experts in the industry, VH1 will reveal this definitive (and sure-to-be highly controversial) list declaring who is the greatest of the great. Hosted by Jim Shearer (VH1's "Top 20 Video Countdown"), the 4-night special, VH1's "100 Greatest Artists of All Time," premieres Monday, September 6 at 10/9c with a 2-hour premiere.

This definitive countdown covers all genres of music – from rock to pop to rap to metal – to answer who is worthy to possess the title as "the greatest music artist of all time." Over the 200 musicians including Alicia Keys, Ozzy Osbourne, Sean "Diddy" Combs, Iggy Pop, Nas, Rob Halford (Judas Priest), Geddy Lee (Rush), Alex Lifeson (Rush), Michael Diamond (Beastie Boys), Daryl Hall, John Oates, Noel Gallagher (Oasis), Gene Simmons (KISS), Adam Levine (Maroon Five), 50 Cent, Nelly Furtado, Mandy Moore, Carrie Underwood, Adam Clayton (U2) and many more voted on who they believe deserves this highly coveted title.

In 1998, VH1 launched the same list as the channel's first countdown special; however; much has changed since the dawn of the new millennium. VH1 puts this debate up for a vote again to see which rock pioneers still matter and which new acts rate in the age of download-to-own music and ever-changing pop culture. The countdown will include special, rarely-seen performance footage along with brand new, totally original interviews with music's most famous faces including interviews by Adele, Backstreet Boys, Brandy, Bret Michaels, Chris Daughtry, Hall & Oates, Keane, Ozzy Osbourne, Ray J, Sheryl Crow, Usher, Whitney Houston and many more.

VH1's "100 Greatest Artists of All Time" has changed since its first poll in 1998. Some notable changes include:

  • Michael Jackson was number 40 in the 1998 poll; however, in the current list Jackson is in the top 5.

  • Artists from the 1960s and 1970s are still relevant with today's artists. Younger musicians like Adam Levine, Jason Mraz, Chris Daughtry and Carrie Underwood cast votes for classic acts like the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin and Stevie Wonder.

  • Contemporary artists like Beyonce, Jay-Z, Alicia Keys, Eminem, Coldplay and Green Day are in the Top 100. However, current headliners Lady Gaga, Kanye West, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Lil' Wayne and The White Stripes failed to make the cut.  

  • The poll reflects changing tastes. The list features over 30 artists who did not make the cut in 1998 including ABBA, Journey, Hall and Oates, Rush, George Michael, Mariah Carey, Sade and Cheap Trick.

  • The 1998 list included very few Hard Rock artists. This time, Black Sabbath, AC/DC, Metallica, Judas Priest and Def Leppard made the list.

  • The 1998 list ignored Hip Hop entirely. Now Jay-Z, OutKast, Run-DMC, Public Enemy, Tupac Shakur, Notorious B.I.G., LL Cool J and N.W.A. are in the top 100. However no hip hop artist broke the top 40. Jay-Z was highest at #47.  

TheGreatest.VH1.com will have exclusive extras including interviews and commentary. Additionally, online visitors will be able to participate by using VH1's voting tool that allows users to pick their favorite artists, weigh in their opinions and socially broadcast their take on the list through Twitter.com and Facebook.com.

"VH1's 100 Greatest Artists of All Time" List:


1.  The Beatles

2.  Bob Dylan

3.  Michael Jackson

4.  Led Zeppelin

5.  Rolling Stones


6.  Jimi Hendrix

7.  Prince

8.  Elvis Presley

9.  James Brown

10. Stevie Wonder

11. Bob Marley

12. David Bowie

13. The Who

14. Nirvana

15. The Beach Boys

16. Madonna

17. Queen

18. Pink Floyd

19. U2

20. Marvin Gaye

21. Bruce Springsteen

22. The Clash

23. AC/DC

24. The Velvet Underground

25. Chuck Berry

26. Neil Young

27. Aretha Franklin

28. Elton John

29. Radiohead

30. Aerosmith

31. John Lennon

32. Black Sabbath

33. Guns N' Roses

34. Tina Turner

35. Johnny Cash

36. Paul McCartney

37. Fleetwood Mac

38. Sly & The Family Stone

39. The Kinks

40. The Police

41. Van Halen

42. Metallica

43. Ray Charles

44. Joni Mitchell

45. Al Green

46. Ramones

47. Jay-Z

48. Rage Against The Machine

49. Parliament-Funkadelic

50. Sade

51. Billy Joel

52. Beyonce

53. Little Richard

54. Public Enemy

55. Peter Gabriel

56. KISS

57. Iggy & The Stooges

58. Cheap Trick

59. Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers

60. Whitney Houston

61. Cream

62. Genesis

63. Notorious B.I.G.

64. Talking Heads

65. The Doors

66. Justin Timberlake

67. Coldplay

68. Otis Redding

69. Tupac Shakur

70. Def Leppard

71. R.E.M.

72. Janis Joplin

73. Van Morrison

74. The Cure

75. Rush

76. Run-D.M.C.

77. Lynyrd Skynyrd

78. Judas Priest

79. Eminem

80. Mary J. Blige

81. ABBA

82. Steely Dan

83. Earth, Wind and Fire

84. Curtis Mayfield

85. The Band

86. N.W.A.

87. George Michael

88. Bee Gees

89. Beastie Boys

90. Elvis Costello

91. Green Day

92. LL Cool J

93. Pearl Jam

94. Mariah Carey

95. OutKast

96. Journey

97. Pretenders

98. Depeche Mode

99. Hall & Oates

100. Alicia Keys


VH1 connects viewers to the music, artists and pop culture that matter to them most with TV series, specials, live events, exclusive online content and public affairs initiatives. VH1 is available in 95 million households in the U.S. VH1 also has an array of digital channels and services including VH1Classic, VH1 Soul, VH1 Mobile, VH1Games and extensive broadband video on VH1.com. Connect with VH1 at VH1.com.

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