Chaka Khan, I Think I Love You

Even as she carefully crafts her comeback, some of music's most powerful producers, songwriters and singers have clamored to work with her. John Legend, R. Kelly and are just a few of the names attached to her new project.

And how about the gritty, grungy, garage-inspired music of today?

Blame it on the Sex Pistols, the London punk band that formed in 1975 and only existed for a few short years, before vocalist Johnny Rotten left the band in 1978 (and a year later, bassist Sid Vicious would die dramatically of a heroine overdose). But with only three years as a group, the Pistols, along with the Clash and the Ramones, helped to create and mold the punk scene for generations to come.

As a response to 1970's disco and pop, the Sex Pistols gave us "God Save the Queen," a scathing criticism of the English monarchy. While it was in no way the first critique by a band of its government, its controversial nature was a groundbreaking harbinger of punk's in-your-face style.

Where would the bands Green Day, Offspring or Rancid be without these vanguards? Jonny Rotten not only made gruff and rough vocals a standard in punk, his singular style spawned a mimicry of English accents in singers from Billie Joe of Green Day to Jack White of the White Stripes and the Raconteurs.

With only one album and a few singles ever released, the Sex Pistols prove that it's quality, not quantity.

At this point calling the Beatles the "Fab Four" is an understatement. This band not only produced record-breaking albums and continuously changed their musical style, they starred in movies and even served as the inspiration for a television show, "The Monkees," that sought to capture the magic and the energy of a hugely famous pop quartet.

Who carries their legacy? Perhaps a more appropriate question is, Who doesn't? Oasis', lead singer, Liam Gallagher, sounds like a direct vocal descendant of Beatles legend John Lennon, but the link doesn't stop there. Oasis' drummer, Zak Starkey, is the actual son of Beatles' drummer Ringo Starr, giving Oasis not only a stylistic link, but a genetic one.

The Beatles' rock legacy continues in bands such as the Arctic Monkeys and the Killers, both of whom give props to the Fab Four for pioneering a sound worth keeping around.

Diana Ross is one supreme lady. Named Female Entertainer of the Century in 1976 by Billboard magazine, this vocal phenomenon has not one but two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame -- one for her involvement with the Supremes, the other as a solo artist.

With the release of the 2006 film "Dreamgirls," a whole new generation witnessed the phenomenon that was the Supremes, led by the hugely talented Ross from 1959 to 1968. Acted by Beyonce Knowles, who played the part of Deena Jones - the fictionalized Ross - the movie drew a direct link from the diva of the past to the diva of the present.

Beyonce's group, Destiny's Child, took the crown for "best-selling female group ever" from the Supremes by selling over 50 million records. She lists Ross' grace, ability to act and amazing vocals as an inspiration to her generation.

Fans and fellow musicians will always have an "Endless Love" for this vocalist.

  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
  • |
  • 4
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...