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Top Ten Most Prolific Musical Acts

Updated on February 19, 2020

In the world of music many great acts have come and gone. Only a few of these great acts have left an incredible impact on culture and society as a whole. The world is full of amazing musicians. Today, we will discuss these musicians impact and commercial success. Here is a list of the top ten most prolific musicians of all time.

#10 Sade

Sade started her music career in the early 1980s. She quickly became an icon of her generation with prolific hits songs such as Smooth Operator, Sweetest Taboo, Nothing Can Come Between Us and Cherish the Day. The jazz legend is the most successful Female British artist of all time with more than hundred and fifty million records sold to date. Sade is best known for her unique one of a kind raspy voice.

#9 Prince

Prince was a 1980s music legend. He was a prolific guitarist and songwriter. His many iconic hit songs include Purple Rain, I Wanna be Your Lover, Kiss, When Doves Cry among numerous other hit singles. Prince is a member of the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. His career have spanned over three decades now. The music legend recently passed away in 2016 at the age of 57.

He inspired a generation of musical performers such as Alicia Keys, Frank Ocean, Andre 3000 of Outcast among numerous other musicians.

#8 James Brown

American soul legend James Brown have been thrilling audiences for more than five decades. He was known as the Godfather of Funk and soul music. Brown list of hit records include Sex Machine, A Man's World, Papa Got A Brand New Bag among numerous other hit records. Brown was a Kennedy Center honoree. The music icon has inspired numerous artists such a Michael Jackson, Chris brown and others. James brown was also inducted into Rock n Roll Hall of Fame.

#7 Elvis Presley

Elvis began his prolific career in the 1950s. He used influences from many black rock n roll artists. Elvis is known as the king of Rock n Roll. He was a great dancer and musician. His onstage antics often left his fans dazzled and amaze by his showmanship. The music icon have had movies made after him and his home Graceland is open to the public.

Presley reportedly sold more than a billion records worldwide making him the most successful artist in history.

#6 Whitney Houston

Whitney Houston was simply known as the voice. She is widely considered to be the greatest female singer in history. Whitney inspired a generation of female singers which includes Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears, Brandy, Lady Gaga, Jennifer Hudson and many others. The diva is the most awarded female artists in history with more than 400 recognized awards. This year she will join the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. It is her first year of eligibility.

#5 Madonna

Madonna is widely known as the queen of pop. Her career spans over three decades now. She have sold more albums than any other female artist with more than 300 million records sold to date. Her laundry list of hit records include Holiday, Get Into The Groove, Material Girl, Music among numerous other hit singles. Madonna is also an actress.

#4 Janet Jackson

Janet Jackson is pop music icon. Her career spans four decades. The diva belongs to the most successful musical family in history, the Jackson family. She has made a remarkable impact on American pop culture. Janet is an successful actress as well. Her music defined an era. Jackson has her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame alongside her famous brother Michael.

#3 Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey is a one of a kind artist. She has more number one hits than any other female performer. The diva has inspired a generation of female singers which include Ariana Grande, pink and others. She is tied with the Beatles for the most number one singles from a musical act. Mariah is best known for her five octave voice and laundry list of hit records which included Honey, Vision of Love, Someday and Heart breaker among numerous other successful singles. The diva have sold over 300 million records worldwide just like Madonna.

#2 The Beatles

There is no group like the Beatles. They are credited with changing the sound of Rock n Roll from a soul to pop sound. The Beatles are members of the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. The have more number one hits than anyone in history. Their American success was dubbed Beatlemania. It was a turning point in history and a true cultural shock. The Beatles were able to influence style as well.

They're the most iconic pop group of all time. The Beatles had a prolific effect on British and American pop culture. Their albums sales to date stand at four hundred million.

What can one say about the gloved one. He is the best musical performer in history. Michael was the ultimate showman. His fans often fainted by the sight of him and his prolific dancing ability. The music icon was credited with changing video and radio formats. Michael also influenced style with his signature iconic glove, penny loafer shoes and black hat.

Jackson belongs to twelve musical halls of fame which include the Dance Hall of Fame and the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. He was also a great philanthropist giving more than 375 million dollars of his earnings to charitable causes. No one comes close to the impact of Michael Jackson. He truly had a global impact with his profound music. No other artists has been able to reach such heights of success and fame. Jackson was known as the King of Pop.

Who do you crown the greatest musical act of all time?

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    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      4 months ago from UK

      This is an interesting list. Do you rate prolific by the total number of songs produced or albums sold? I was disappointed not to see Abba in the list.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      4 months ago from Sunny Florida

      You certainly listed a great variety of muscians. I think Aretha Franklin sh, but should have been in the list. I do think Elvis changed the course of music but I do think many of the others did the same thing. This is a very interesting article.

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