Who are some of the greatest frontmen of all time? Being a frontman is all about having the personality and the skill to focus an audience’s attention, while being able to click with the rest of a band. Vocal endurance and physical fitness are also key for frontmen that are able to get through long shows. With this in mind, some of the greatest frontmen of all time, in no particular order, include:
Whether performing with the E Street Band or solo, ‘the Boss’ has 40 years of experience of leading a stage; even in his 60s, Springsteen still puts on energetic 4 hour shows, often playing until the power is pulled. Springsteen’s live performances have been a hallmark of his success since emerging in the 1970s.
The Rolling Stones frontman recently proved at Glastonbury that age is no barrier to putting on a great rock show. With a reportedly strict fitness regime, Jagger has been one of the world’s best rock singers since the 1960s, and shows no signs of slowing down.
During the 1970s, you’d be hard pressed to find a more charismatic on stage performer than Led Zeppelin’s Plant, whose great vocal range and harmony with guitarist Jimmy Page helped form one of the best live bands in history.
Whether or not you’re a fan of his music, it’s hard to deny the impact of Manson on stage, with elaborate costumes, stage shows, and a confrontational performance style making him more than just a shock artist.
Manson and other performers’ theatrical shows owe a debt to Cooper’s 1970s performance style, which involved everything from live snakes to influences from the circus and the French Grand Guignol.
From his early years with the Stooges to his present career as a solo artist, Iggy Pop is famous for his boisterous live shows, which have included cutting himself with glass and stretching his body to its limits. When he’s not appearing in insurance adverts of course.
Few frontmen of the 1970s and 1980s could quite command the stage like Mercury, who as the frontman for Queen was responsible for some of the most iconic live shows of the period. Highlights included Mercury’s performances during Live Aid, and his continuing commitment to live shows when ill.
So much of Metallica’s appeal depends on the passionate live performances of Hetfield, who manages to combine metal riffs with an intense singing style that hasn’t mellowed with age.
With Aerosmith, Steven Tyler has long established himself as one of rock music’s biggest personalities. Although not quite as prolific as some of the other frontmenon this list, his stage shows helped make Aerosmith a success from the 1970s onwards.
Like Iggy Pop, Osbourne’s stage act has been controversial, with highlights including biting the head off a live chicken. Away from these tactics, though, Ozzy is one of rock’s most assured performers, whether with Black Sabbath or fronting his own band.
Jenny Fonda is a blogger and musician with a lifelong love of rock music. She recommends checking out tutorial videos and specs before you buy guitars online. Jenny can be found sharing her passion for the guitar wherever she goes.
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