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Who is the Greatest Musical Artist of all Time?



Who is the greatest musical artist of all time? This is a question that’s been asked and debated fiercely all around the world with big names like The Beatles, Kanye West, Michael Jackson, and Elvis Presley always being involved in such debates. With so many different opinions and beliefs, will the world ever settle on who the greatest musical artist of all time is?

First off what truly makes someone a great artist? What are the qualities that really launch someone to “great artist” status? Elijah Avila, 9th grader, says, “Their ability to express themselves freely on a beat, also be able to deliver for a long time unlike these one-hit-wonders nowadays.” Jordani, a 12th grader, says, “Versatility, having a range of different voices, being able to expand from projects before him and after him.”

Many different websites have many different choices on who the greatest artist of all time is, but there’s one that sticks out the most. Rolling Stone magazine, which has over 60 million views per month, has “The Beatles” number 1 on their list of the greatest artists of all time. Likewise, Billboard has “The Beatles “number 1 on their list. On the other hand, Top Ten magazine declares Michael Jackson as the greatest artist of all time.

That’s the internet, but what do the people think? I interviewed 71 people in total, ages ranging from 11-63, all genders, and all ethnicities. Out of the top 5 most common artists selected, the most preferred is Kanye West. In the exact order, people’s choices were: 1st Kanye, 2nd Drake, 3rd Frank Ocean, 4th Michael Jackson, 5th The Beatles.

The common trend is people ages 11-34 are most likely to pick Kanye or drake. And people from 35-50 are most likely to pick Michael Jackson.  People 60+ are most likely to pick The Beatles.

When asked to list 5 reasons on why Kanye is the greatest artist of all time, 12 grader Jordani stated, “Fashion – he’s been the best dressed rapper since he started out. His soul – he puts everything into his work. History – he came from a rough life in Chicago and made it all the way to the top. Lastly, his personality – he’s been one the biggest names for a very long time.”

Similarly, Leonardo Mendoza, a freshman, stated, “Kanye is just extremely influential in every aspect of life, fashion, lifestyle, and especially music. All your favorite artists are Kanye fans, having influenced the next generation of hip hop artists in style, sound, and personality. He deserves the title of the greatest artist of all time.”

Kanye and the Beatles are the two names I’ve seen mentioned the most. Kanye being a fan favorite for teens and young adults, and the Beatles being a favorite of the media and elders.

Now we’re going to compare their careers to help finally settle the debate, “Who is the greatest artist of all time?” In terms of accolades, according to the website for the Grammy Awards <>, The Beatles as a collective won 7 Grammys in total and were nominated for 23.

On the other hand, Kanye West himself has won 24 Grammys with a total of 75 nominations. Kanye has sold also 160 million records compared to the Beatles’ 183 million records.

Now the question you’ve been waiting for an answer to: Who is the greatest artist of all time? Well, that’s up to you to decide.

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