Artist and Band Biographies



To learn about popular music and playing the guitar you have to study the big songs. The songs that everybody knows, the hits.

To write guitar parts, vocal melodies, chord progressions, and arrange songs, you must learn from the big names behind the big songs.

You must dig deep and find out how they did it.

Behind every single song you learn in the step by step guitar courses, there’s an artist or band with an entire catalog of music. Let the songs they’ve written guide you to success.

To find out more about these great women and men, follow the links below.


10cc

With influences such as the late Beatles and Frank Zappa, 10cc was not your average middle-of-the-road band.

Similar to Supertramp, 10cc was prog/rock/pop with long instrumental sections and many styles mixed. Hits include Dreadlock Holiday and I’m Not In Love.

Go to 10cc biography.


Al Green

Al Green is an American gospel and soul singer who has enjoyed great popularity since the early 70s.

Among his hits, you’ll find Let’s Stay Together and Take Me To The River as well as covers of A Change Is Gonna Come, Unchained Melody, Light My Fire, and My Girl.

Go to Al Green biography.


Albert King

With his upside-down Flying V, huge bends, and imposing nature, Albert King is a legend among legends.

Most great blues guitar players cite the Velvet Bulldozer as one of their main influences.

Go to Albert King biography.


Alicia Keys

Alicia had instant success with her debut album Songs In Am, mainly down to its single Fallin’.

Following this, she has firmly established herself with hits such as If I Ain’t Got You, This Girl Is On Fire, and Empire State Of Mind.

Go to Alicia Keys biography.


Ann Peebles

Ann Peebles is an internationally acclaimed singer and songwriter, best known for her popular Memphis soul albums of the 70s on Hi Records.

Two of her better-known songs are I’m Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down and I Can’t Stand The Rain.

Go to Ann Peebles biography.


Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul. Considered by most critics and peers as the greatest singer of all time.

Born in Detroit and looking for a record deal in 1960, Aretha seemed like the perfect match for Berry Gordy’s label Motown. However, Aretha’s father had other ideas.

Go to Aretha Franklin biography.


Barrett Strong

Barrett Strong was the first artist on the Motown label to have a hit. The song was Money (That’s What I Want). Performed by Barrett, it was written by the president of the label and a sign of what was to come.

As well as his own solo career, Barrett also wrote many of Motown’s biggest hits.

Go to Barrett Strong biography.


B.B. King

The King Of The Blues, B.B. King is easily the most famous blues artist around.

With hits like The Thrill Is Gone and Paying The Cost To Be The Boss, B.B. will forever be known as one of the original blues giants.

Go to B.B. King biography.


The Beatles

The Beatles biography.

The Beatles are the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed band in the history of popular music.

As the leaders of the so-called British Invasion, their catchy Rock & Roll infused pop songs took America by storm, creating hysteria everywhere they went.

Go to The Beatles biography.


Ben Harper

Ben Harper is an American roots musician who stretched his appeal around the globe by recording covers of Sexual Healing and The Drugs Don’t Work.

Harper’s first album, Welcome To The Cruel World (94), was followed by Fight For Your Mind only a year later.

Go to Ben Harper biography.


Berry Gordy

Berry Gordy is the man behind the hit factory that was Motown. The idea behind the label came from working in a car factory.

Housing the label, the studio, and a house band all in the same building proved to be a masterstroke as Berry set out to discover the greatest superstars of our time.

Go to Berry Gordy biography.


Bessie Smith

Bessie Smith was an American blues singer who was nicknamed The Queen Of Blues and later upgraded to Empress.

Smith is often regarded as one of the greatest singers of her era (the 20s and 30s) and along with Louis Armstrong, a major influence on subsequent jazz vocalists.

Go to Bessie Smith biography.


Bill Withers

Bill Withers was an American singer-songwriter who performed and recorded from the late 60s until the mid-80s.

Some of his best-known songs include Ain’t No Sunshine, Use Me, Lovely Day, Lean on Me, Grandma’s Hands, and Just The Two Of Us.

Go to Bill Withers biography.


Bob Dylan

Widely regarded as the most influential artist in popular culture, Bob Dylan has been covered and copied by almost everyone who ever attempted to write a song.

Some might even say he invented modern songwriting.

Go to Bob Dylan biography.


Bob Marley

Bob Marley was a Jamaican singer, songwriter, guitarist, and activist.

Marley is the most widely known performer of reggae music and is regarded by many as a prophet of the Rastafarian religion. Few artists have had such widespread recognition as Bob Marley.

Go to Bob Marley biography.


Booker T. & The M.G.’s

Led by piano and organ player Booker T. Jones, the Stax Records house band played behind numerous legendary artists.

Hits include Green Onions, Born Under A Bad Sign, (Sittin’ On) The Dock Of The Bay, Ain’t No Sunshine, Soul Man, Hold On I’m Coming, Knock On Wood, and Respect.

Go to Booker T. & The M,G.’s biography.


Burt Bacharach

One of the most important composers of the last century, Burt Bacharach’s songs have been recorded by over 1000 artists.

Unforgettable hits include Close To You, Walk On By, Arthur’s Theme, That’s What Friends Are For, What The World Needs Now, and I Say A Little Prayer.

Go to Burt Bacharach biography.