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    The 30 Best Metal Musicians of All Time

    best metal musicians

    If you are just developing an interest in metal music or already love it, this article will guide you in choosing the musicians that will help develop your love for metal music. There is a large number of amazing metal music, and therefore, this list might not mention all the metal musicians that you know. If a musician is left out, it does not mean that they are not one of the best in the industry.

    1. Daron Malakian

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    Daron Malakian is a songwriter, record producer, and singer who has made a huge impact on metal music. Daron is the vocalist of the band named System of a Down. He is also the band’s guitarist and songwriter.

    The Greatest Heavy Metal Guitarists of All Time ranked him the 30th of the world’s top 100 metal musicians. Daron is also the songwriter, lead guitarist, multi-instrumentalist, and the lead vocalist of the Scars on Broadway.

    2. Diamond Head

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    Although this list is about the best metal musicians, Diamond Head is one of the best metal bands of amazing musicians. The band was formed in 1976 in England and was one of the heavy metal movements that have made a huge impact on the history of metal music. Bands such as Megadeth and Metallica acknowledge Diamond Head as one of the bands that hugely influenced metal music.

    3. Jason Curtis

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    Born in 1963, Jason Curtis is well-known as the bassist of one of the most famous metal bands known as Metallica. He played in this band from the year 1986 to the year 2001.

    Jason began his career playing thrash metal music and was accepted into the Metallica band to replace Cliff Burton after his death. He made a lot of appearances on Metallica’s albums.

    4. Dave Mustaine

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    Dave Mustaine is one of the American musicians well-known in the metal music industry. In 1961, Dave was the lead songwriter, guitarist, co-founder, and vocalist of Megadeth’s most famous metal bands. Before forming the Megadeth metal band, Dave was the lead guitarist of yet another metal band known as Metallica.

    Dave co-wrote six songs during his time in this band but was never a part of the album. In a recent interview, the musician shared his sentiments and claimed that the two bands could have done better in his absence.

    5. Jon Oliva

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    Jon Olivia was born in 1960 and is remembered for being one of the best composers, singers, and multi-instrumentalists. He is best known as the co-founder of the Savatage band. He is also the band’s lead vocalist.

    From 1996, his music career has gained a lot of fame as the best vocalist. He was kicked out of high school, and he joined the famous band known as the Metropolis. The band used to play Alice Cooper and Bad Company cover songs, which motivated him further to pursue a career in music.

    Jon developed an interest in music while living with his family and pursued the dream with his brother. Therefore, this list would not be complete without including this iconic musician of the 2000s and 2010s.

    6. Paul Gray

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    In 1972, Paul Gray was remembered as the founder of the metal band Slipknot and played as a bassist, backing vocalist, and songwriter. His work inspired a lot of people, since he believed that his music greatly changed his life.

    Paul was introduced to music by his big brother. Paul died in 2010 and is still considered an icon and metal musician.

    7. James Hetfield

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    This list would not be complete without mentioning the iconic musician and songwriter James Hetfield. The musician is well-known as the co-founder of one of the most famous bands in history, Metallica. He is also considered one of the best vocalists and guitarists in history.

    In the 1980s, James played an important role in ESP Guitars’ success and has also been one of the main endorsers. James was also famous for intricate rhythm playing and would occasionally play solos and lead guitar roles.

    8. Serj Tankian

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    Born in 1967, Serj Tankian is best known as the co-founder of the System of a Down band. He was a songwriter, singer, and record producer.

    Serj is also considered one of the best metal vocalists in history, and therefore, he would not be a part of this list. If you are beginning to fall in love with metal music, his songs would be an ideal option for you.

    Apart from being a metal musician, Serj Tankian was also a political activist. He co-founded Axis of Justice, which was a non-profit organization. It contributed to his fame as a metal musician.

    9. Robert Trujillo

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    Born in 1964, Robert Trujillo is one of the well-known metal musicians who play for Metallica’s American metal band. Robert trained and developed an interest in music while a child, contributing to how well he played his role in Metallica. He is also a songwriter and rose to fame as the bassist of the band Suicidal Tendencies from the year 1089 to the year 1995.

    After leaving the Suicidal Tendencies band, Robert played with Ozzy and the heavy metal band known as the Black Label Society. Robert joined the band in 2003 and has been the longest-serving bassist since its formation.

    10. Christoph Schneider

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    Christoph was born in 1966 and is well-known as a singer and the drummer of the Neue Deutsche Härte band Rammstein. His music career began from the 1990s to the present. His parents wanted him to pursue a music career, and therefore, they sent him to a music school.

    He first learned how to play the trumpet because it is easy to learn, and this market was a step towards the beginning of his music career. Years later, he learned how to play the orchestra and it has helped him build a career as a metal musician.

    11. Zakk Wylde

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    Zakk Wylde was born in 1947 and is remembered as one of the best songwriters, singers, and guitarists. Zakk was the lead guitarist of the Ozzy Osbourne band. He is also the lead singer, co-founder, and guitarist of the Black Label Society band.

    His passion for metal began at a very early age. He started playing the guitar while he was a child, and during his teen years, he was already playing in bands. Apart from his music career, Zakk Wylde also sells amplifiers and custom guitars.

    12. Judas Priest

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    Judas Priest is another metal band considered to be one of the greatest metal bands of all time. The band was formed in 1969 in Birmingham and has since sold more than 50 million copies of their different albums. In the late 1970s, the band was struggling with commercial success.

    However, in 1980, the band made a huge success in the industry when they produced the British Steel album. The band has been nicknamed the Metal Gods because of the influence it has caused on the world of metal music.

    13. Vinnie Paul

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    Born in 1964, Vinnie Paul was one of the well-known musicians, composers, and drummists. He also co-founded the Pantera metal band.

    Vinnie Paul was a member of the Hellyeah band for 12 years. During this period, he released six albums, working alongside Chad Gray.

    Vinnie used to play the tuba, but his father directed him to play drums. His father made him believe that there was no career for a person who played the tuba. As a result, his passion for metal music began, and his father bought him his first drum.

    14. Euronymous

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    Born in 1968, Euronymous, also known as Oystein Aarseth, was one of the best metal musicians of his era. His songs are among the most listened to metal songs in today’s world.

    Euronymous is remembered as the pioneer of the Black-Metal circuit, a Norwegian band. He also co-founded the Mayhem band and was the band’s lead guitarist.

    Apart from being a musician, he launched a record label known as Deathlike Silence Productions. He also launched Helvete, a black-metal record shop.

    Euronymous is also famous for being one of the self-proclaimed Satanists during his era. He was later killed by Varg Vikernes, his bandmate.

    15. Andy Biersack

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    Born in 1990, he is one of the most famous metal musicians in today’s world. He has won several awards and is the founder of the Black Veil Brides rock band. He is also a pianist, singer, and songwriter.

    In 2014, he made a breakthrough in his career by starting a solo music project. He worked on the project using the Andy Blackband, and in 2016, he released an album named the Shadow Side. Andy is the last original member of the Black Veil Brides band.

    Born into a Catholic family, Andy developed an interest in music at a very young age. He would listen to the most famous brands, such as The Misfits and The Damned. In 2012, he featured fourth in Kerrang’s list of the best rock stars in the world.

    16. Rob Halford

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    Rob Halford was born in 1951 and was one of the most famous singers of his era. He is also known as the lead vocalist of the Judas Priest rock band. He also received various awards for being the best metal performer.

    Among such awards is the 21010 Grammy Award for the best metal performer. He has created a trademark for his operatic voice. Rob is also known for his unique clothes of leather and studs.

    Rob has also been involved in various side projects, such as the Fight. His singing style is highly influential and can be easily recognized without necessarily seeing the song’s video.

    He has influenced a lot of musicians to pursue a career in the metal genre. His early influence on music included Robert Plant, Janis Joplin, and Little Richard.

    17. Shawnee Smith

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    Born in 1969, he is among the famous singers that can also not be left out of this list. Acting is her main career, but she is also remembered for being part of the Fydolla Ho rock band and has toured the world.

    She has also sung in musical arenas and won various awards as a singer and an actress. A large number of people consider her as the idol of the upcoming or younger generation.

    18. Joey Tempest

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    Joey Tempest is a metal musician well-known for being the lead singer and songwriter for a European rock band. He has written various hit songs that are still being played by today’s generation.

    He is considered an inspiration in the music industry. The well-known hit songs are The Final Countdown, Superstitious, Cherokee, and Rock the Night.

    At the age of 8, Joy would sit in front of the radio or television holding a recorder to record some of the best music from the UK and the US. His father’s friend also taught him to play the piano, which motivated him to pursue a music career.

    19. Dylan Carlson

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    Born in 1968, Dylan Carson is a famous guitarist and singer who has grown a huge fan base over the years. He is the founder and guitarist of the metal band known as Earth. He is also known for his solo project Drcarlsonalbion.

    Dylan took his inspiration from various British bands such as the Deep Purple and Black Sabbath. In the early 1990s, Dylan rose to fame while singing in the rock band known as Earth.

    20. Simone Simons

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    Simone was born in 1987 and is well-known as a singer and a songwriter. She is also known as the lead singer for the Dutch rock band known as Epica. She joined this band at the age of 17 years, when she toured the world and released eight albums.

    Simone has collaborated with various bands such as the Ayreon, Primal Fear, Kamelot, and Leaves during her singing career. She also works as a blogger on her website named SmoonStyle.

    21. Chris Adler

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    Chris Adler was born in 1972 and is best known as the founder of the most famous rock band known as the Lamb of God. The band lasted from 1994 to 2019.

    He was also a Grammy-winning member of Megadeth, where he played percussion on their 15th album. He also toured several areas in support of the album.

    Chris would play with sticks in the backyard while he was young, and his parents knew he had a passion for music. His mother was a singer and a pianist, and she taught him how to play the instrument. While in middle school, Chris learned acoustic guitar and alto saxophone.

    22. Jerry Only

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    Born in 1959, Jerry is well-known as the bassist of the rock band called Misfits. He later became the vocalist of the same band, which led to the growth of his huge fan base. His songs remain to be one of the most listened to songs in today’s world.

    He is the only member of the band who is allowed to appear in all the Misfits lineup. Jerry is also one of the band’s founding members and invented the Devilock hairstyle. His band has a famous YouTube channel that has more than 1.5 million subscribers.

    Matt Cameron began playing drums while young, and he has since developed his career in music while playing drums, writing songs, and singing. When he was 13 years old, he played in a rock band named Kiss together with his friends.

    23. Jeff Hanneman

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    Jeff was born in Oakland in 1964 and is remembered as one of the best guitarists, songwriters, and musicians. He is also known as the founding member of the Slayer. He was also the band’s lead guitarist.

    Before his death in 2013, Jeff Hanneman was known for composing all the songs for the Slayer band. Jeff also has a signature guitar, and this remains as a remembrance of his contribution to music.

    His songs are still being listened to in today’s world. Due to his impact on the metal music industry, I have to mention him on this list.

    24. Tommy Shaw

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    Tommy Shaw was born in 1953 and is remembered as a guitarist, songwriter, and singer. Tommy Shaw played in various bands during his early years, which led to the growth of his music career. He was also known as the Frontman and guitarist for a rock band called Styx.

    While playing in the band, he also played in other groups. Among them are Shaw Blades and Damn Yankees. Tommy also released various solo albums, which has contributed to the fame of his music career.

    25. Vinnie Vincent


    Vinnie was born in 1952, and he is best remembered as one of the most famous songwriters and singers of his era. In 1882, he became a member of the rock band named Kiss. He was also the last person to wear the unique uniform of the Ankh Warrior.

    Vinnie began playing the guitar at an early age and was inspired by rock and roll and Bluegrass. The one famous musician he worked with was Felix Cavaliere in the band Treasure. In 1977, an album with the same name was released due to Vinnie working in this band.

    26. Lzzy Hale

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    Lzzy Hale was born in Pennsylvania in 1983 and is well-known as the best singer and songwriter of the time. Lzzy began her music career at a young age and is a lead singer in the Halestorm band.

    She was also the band’s rhythmic guitarist. Lzzy founded the Halestorm band together with her brother in the year 1997.

    Hale began writing music in 1997 and has gained a lot of fame in her music career. She has made guest appearances alongside other musicians such as Lindsey Stirling, Black Stone Cherry, and Machine Gun Kelly. These appearances have contributed a lot to her huge fan base as a metal musician.

    27. Jake Cannavale

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    Jake is another young musician who was born in 1995. If you are a young person and a lover of metal music, the chances are high. You already know a lot about this musician.

    The younger generation worships his songs, and he has gained fame in the industry for his inspiration to the younger generation. Many people know him as an actor, and this fame has also helped grow his career in music. He was born into a family of celebs, and this has also helped in making him famous.

    28. Suzuka Nakamoto

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    Suzuka, born in 1997, is one of the youngest and most famous metal musicians in the industry. If you are a lover of metal music, the chances are high that you have already listened to her music. She is a singer and a model and is best known as a member of the Babymetal band.

    Suzuka’s parents motivated her to pursue a career in music because she showed interest in the same at an early age. Over her music career, Suzuka has grown a huge fan base in different parts of the world.

    29. Sebastian Bach

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    Sebastian was born in 1968 and is best known for his works with Ronnie James. He is a metal vocalist and has done a lot of work in the industry.

    Sebastian is also a songwriter and grew a huge fan base by being a frontman in the metal band known as Skid Row. Sebastian’s songs are still being listened to in today’s world.

    30. Shavo Odadjian

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    Shavo Odadjian was a metal musician and a part of the System of the Down metal band. Shavo played as the bass vocalist of the team, and he contributed to the band’s commercial success.

    The band’s work earned them a Grammy Award, and they produced various singles that became some of the best metal music during their time. Among such singles are Hypnotize, Question, and Lonely Day.

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