Top 10 Greatest Arena Rock Singers


Returning home from Zanesville, I was listening to the radio and a couple of old rock songs came on and it made me wonder…who do I consider to be the greatest arena rock voices of my generation? Okay…a couple of these guys span more than just MY generation, but still…I’ll bet if they were singing in a packed stadium, you couldn’t help but listen! Here they are…according to me, of course. Let the arguing begin!!!

10. Robert Smith (The Cure)
I’ve seen Smith in concert…and believe me, he’s VERY good. And his range is amazing! So for those of you who are not Cure fans, you should really hear him live first…’cause he would surprise you!

9. Tom DeLonge (Blink 182, Angels & Airwaves)
I haven’t seen him live…yet! But I plan too. I got a feeling this guy can blow the roof off!

8. Ann Wilson (Heart)
The only woman in this lineup, Ann could probably go toe to toe with just about anybody. From ballads to rockers, she does it best!

7. Axel Rose (Guns N’ Roses)
Just an amazing and unique vocalist. Getting him to the show is the hardest part! The raspiness and high pitch of his voice sets him apart from most. 

6. Zach de la Rocha (Rage Against The Machine)
Just an angry vocalist. I imagine him tearing up the stage while performing. I wish I had seen them live back when they were still together!

5. Steve Perry (Journey)
Oh man…just an enormous voice. He could hit just about any note and I can only imagine what he would have sounded like performing in front of screaming fans!

4. Bono (U2)
The charisma that he brings to the stage is unmatched! And his voice can soar with The Edge’s guitar riffs.

3. Brad Delp (Boston)
Another amazing talent and a sad story. Delp died recently but his legacy lives on! And I dare anyone to put on “Boston” or “Don’t Look Back” and turn it off…

2. Robert Plant (Led Zeppelin)
Seriously, if you’ve seen the man live, he has amazing stage presence as well as the awesome voice!

1. Freddie Mercury (Queen)
The consumate performer. With a range unequaled by anyone in my lifetime, I can’t imagine anyone having the voice or the sheer charisma that Freddie had. I only wish I could have seen him live.

And there ya have it! MY choices for the greatest arena rock singers. Any thoughts or additions?

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11 Responses to Top 10 Greatest Arena Rock Singers

  1. Red says:

    Okay .. Rage Against the Machine was one of the most energetic shows I have ever been to . The pit was amaaazingly fierce and hardcore. Scary stuff, but fun as hell!
    And Robert Smith?! Hells yes .. I think he’s dreamy.

  2. Brad Delp was a truly great singer! Wait till you hear the 2008 BOSTON summer tour. Michael Sweet and Tommy DeCarlo do Tom Scholz’ words and music proud!

    Band BOSTON Kicks Off Summer Tour on June 6, 2008
    Remastered Greatest Hits CD Release from Sony Legacy

    The legendary band BOSTON will headline the outdoor festival at Marina Park on Friday, June 6 in Thunder Bay, Ontario. The show kicks off a summer of stadium, concert and festival dates that will span the United States and Canada.

    Seasoned Stryper frontman Michael Sweet and new fan phenom Tommy DeCarlo join BOSTON veterans Jeff Neal, Kimberley Dahme, Gary Pihl and of course, Tom Scholz on stage this summer. Gary, the longest reigning member of BOSTON next to Tom, joined the band in 1985 to help complete “Third Stage,” and through his efforts, the band reemerged in 1987 for the Third Stage Tour, which set stadium records across the US.

    In the mid-70’s, Tom Scholz withdrew his life’s savings and used it to record several songs which he had written. By the process of overdubbing, Tom played all the instruments except drums, which were played by his friend Jim Masdea, and Brad Delp sang all of the vocal parts. The resulting demos included 4 songs which attracted the attention of three major record labels and two managers. Following completion of two additional demos which included “More Than a Feeling,” Brad and Tom were signed to Epic Records, which released the first album under the name BOSTON in 1976. The album, most of which was recorded by Tom in his basement studio included 5 of the 6 songs embodied on those demo tapes, and became the highest selling debut album of all time.

    Many remember where they were when they first heard “More Than a Feeling” or “Hitch a Ride” on the airwaves back in 1976. BOSTON’s self-titled first album has sold over 17 million copies to date, and has seen a resurgence in sales after it was remastered by Scholz, along with their second album, “Don’t Look Back,” in 2006. “Amanda,” from Third Stage in 1986, shot to the top of the charts and held a record-breaking stay at #1, in spite of being the only hit single that year not accompanied by a TV video.

    With over 30 million albums sold worldwide, hits like “Peace of Mind,” “Smokin’,” and “Rock & Roll Band” are still as ubiquitous on rock and roll radio as they were when they were new. Coinciding with the summer tour is a fully remastered Greatest Hits CD (Sony Legacy.) Lead-off singles from all five BOSTON albums will be included, as well as new photos from throughout the years and liner notes written by Tom Scholz.

    BOSTON will be performing many of their classics this summer, including some fan favorites that have not been on the set lists for many years. For complete show itinerary updates, band bios and photos, visit http://www.bandboston.com.

    **************

  3. Amber says:

    I’d have to add Steven Tyler to that list, and Robert Plant should be #1, but otherwise pretty good.

  4. Jason says:

    Sorry, but Paul Rodgers has to be on any top 10 greatest rock singers list. We can debate if he is #1, but he has to be in the top 10.

  5. ribon says:

    well, i’ll put robert smith to the number one..hehe

  6. Deiter says:

    The best singer is the one who sings the songs you love. In that sense, it’s more about a particular performance than the voice. If there’s anything we could’ve learnt from those Rockstar TV shows (INXS, Supernova) was that a good voice doesn’t make you a great singer. (Remember Jordis defiling Dream On?) A great rock singer may not necessarily have great technique. Most often the gift seems to be innate and not developed.

    Imagine someone else trying to sing these songs:

    Love Rain O’er Me – Roger Daltry
    Whole Lotta Love – Robert Plant
    So Real – Jeff Buckley
    Break on Through – Jim Morrison
    Someone to Love – Grace Slick
    Move Over – Janis Joplin
    Dream On – Steven Tyler

    Imagine a world without Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett, Sam Cooke, Bjork, Steve Winwood, Donald Fagen, Leon Russell, Paul Rogers, Minnie Riperton, Al Green, John Paul George and Ringo, Mick Jagger, on and on.

    Just enjoy it. Don’t try to figure it out!

    Loved this comment! And I’ll tell you why…because he is right! That being said, I think if he were to visit my site a little more often he would find that I DO love all kinds of musicians and artists and that this particular blog was just a fun topic which is one of many! However I certainly appreciate the he seems to have a love of the classics!

  7. ivana says:

    great choice. Freddie is really the best! -angel

    I agree Angel!

  8. Jeannine says:

    You’ve gotta have Janis Joplin, Grace Slick, and Jim Morrison, you just gotta! Fabulous rock singers, and they defined the sound of that place and time. How about David Crosby? David Lee Roth? Sammy Hagar? Peter Wolf and Roger Daltrey would also be on my list. And let’s not forget David Bowie. Y’know, I can’t do a Top TEN — it would have to be at least 20!

    I did get to see Freddie Mercury live, and YES! what a spectacular performer he was.

    Forget Clapton — ROBERT PLANT is God!

  9. chad says:

    i think bon jovi should have been up there

  10. vinny says:

    dude! where is mike matijevic from steelheart!!, if u dont no of him then look him up, the dude has an amazing voice…and also brad delp form boston

  11. Dawood says:

    Montserrat Caballe: “The difference between Freddie and almost all the other rock stars was that he was selling the voice.”

    Here I’ve tried to collect all notable tributes and quotes on Freddie Mercury from peers: http://www.tributespaid.com/quotes-on/f/freddie-mercury

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