Award shows have always illustrated the disconnect between the fans and the voters. Year after year, talented artists have to be neglected and looked over in order for a champion to be crowned. Last year, America witnessed Macklemore win the Grammy over Kendrick Lamar, which resulted in the public storming Twitter and the rest of the internet in an outcry. This is the most recent example of how musicians must be able to take a side step for the sake of an award.
The list of names that make up the dubious list of Artists Who Have Never Won a Grammy is filled with some of the greatest rock-stars of all-time.
- The Doors – Established in 1965, The Doors began their careers placing 7 of their first 8 records into the Top 10 Best Selling list. With songs like “Light My Fire” and “Riders on the Storm”, The Doors cemented themselves into Rock and Roll lore. Rolling Stone named them the 41st greatest Rock Band of All-Time. Some may point to the band’s short stint as being a contributing factor to never winning a grammy. However, the popularity of their music coupled with the way The Doors embedded themselves in the counterculture of the 1960’s make them an astounding name to show up on this list.
2. Tupac Shakur – Tupac’s rise to the top of the Hip-Hop charts was swift. With the release of his first album, “Brenda’s Got a Baby” quickly rose to #3 on the Billboard Rap Single charts. As his career grew, Tupac affirmed his status as one of the best Rappers of all-time with numerous chart-topping singles and albums. His fame reached a fever pitch in the mid-1990’s when he was released from prison and recorded “All Eyez on Me”. This album debuted at the #1 spot on the charts and showed a deeper side of his music. Unfortunately, Tupac was shot 6 times in Las Vegas while attending a boxing match and died from the sustained injuries. His untimely death ended one of the most promising careers in the music industry and also prevented his musical genius from ever taking home a Grammy Award.
3. The Notorious B.I.G. – This list continues with another legendary rapper. From the moment his 1994 debut album, “Ready to Die”, struck the charts with a fury and B.I.G. never looked back. “Ready to Die” told the stories about his rise from drug dealer to rap star. Growing up in Brooklyn, B.I.G. was a centerpiece of the East Coast-West Coast feud that eventually led to his death in 1997. Numerous songs became smash hits, but none of them could garner Biggie the Grammy during his short lived career.
4. Journey – “Don’t Stop Believin”. This song has become somewhat of an anthem of karaoke bars and singers around the world. Like many of Journey’s songs, the infectious melodies coupled with the lyrics that resonate with so many people have made them into one of the most widely recognized bands in history. Although we may never stop believing, we must recognize the sad fact that even with Journey’s sustained success, they have never won the coveted Grammy.
5. Queen – Another band whose songs have become anthems for so many people, Queen’s career has been as steadily successful as any other band in history. With countless chart-topping singles, such as “Bohemian Rhapsody” (which is associated with one of the funniest scenes in Mike Myers’ and Dana Carvey’s career in “Wayne’s World”) and “We are the Champions”, Queen’s legacy will always live on, although with no Grammy to call their own.
6. Bob Marley – Arguably one of the most influential musicians of all-time, it astounds me everytime I think of Bob Marley not ever being recognized for his talents. His thoughts about peace and relaxation at times of war and calamity became rallying calls for various movements during the 1970’s. Songs like “Buffalo Soldier” and “Get Up, Stand Up” epitomized Marley’s ideas of the world. “Redemption Song” gave Marley a platform to vocalize his thoughts of what a world should live like.
7. Jimi Hendrix – Iconic bands like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Who and Eric Clapton were all admirers of Hendrix. Hendrix status as a rock icon only continued to rise with more incredible live performances. He won over American music fans with his stunning performance at the Monterey Pop Festival in June 1967, which ended with Hendrix lighting his guitar on fire. His rendition of the Star Spangled Banner captivated America as it showcased not only his unique talents but also portrayed a jagged emotion that swirled amongst the country during the 1960’s. His life was tragically cut short due to drugs, but Hendrix left a resounding influence on Rock and Roll that has and will carry on for generations.
8. Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin is undeniably one of the greatest acts to ever grace Rock and Roll. Each of their 9 studio albums placed on the Billboard Top 10 and 6 of their albums reached the coveted number-one slot on the charts. Their fourth album, featuring “Stairway to Heaven”, is one of the most popular and influential works in rock music. Led Zeppelin is widely considered one of the most successful and innovative rock groups in history. Despite all of Led Zeppelin’s accolades, they have never been awarded a Grammy.
9. The Who – Equipped with one of the greatest guitar players ever in Pete Townshed, finding The Who on this list is disturbing. They have accomplished nearly every feat imaginable including performing during the Super Bowl Halftime show, yet were unable to win a Grammy. Even though they are a part of this infamous list, The Who can definitely lay claim to being innovators in Rock and Roll music and helped pave the way for many artists today.
10. Snoop Dogg – He has been nominated a whopping 15 times, but unfortunately Snoop D-O-GG has never been able to take home one of the awards. Since the release of his first album “Doggystyle”, Snoop’s popularity has been undeniable. “Doggystyle” rose to #1 on the rap charts and Snoop has stayed high ever since.