You may have heard that Rolling Stone issued their 100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time. You may have also heard the usual well deserved griping (too old, too white, too male). While all the people on this list certainly deserved to be there, I think many of the songwriters that have had tremendous success writing songs for other artists should have been emphasized. It’s expected that artists write songs for themselves now. It’s a real skill to create a hit song for someone else.
I think karaoke-ability is also a huge factor in finding a good songwriter. We love to sing along to all these songs.
Here are three examples of highly successful songwriters that should have been on the Rolling Stone list
Sia-Besides writing her own songs specifically “Chandelier” she wrote songs for Beyoncé, Flo Rida and Rihanna. She had a top 5 hit with David Guetta
Linda Perry Some might know her from her band 4 Non Blondes and the song “What’s Up” but she’s also created numerous hits for a wide variety of artists including massive hits for Gwen Stefani “What You Waiting For” and Christina Aguilera “Beautiful”.
Robert John “Mutt” Lange-Not just a producer extraordinaire but also wrote songs for Bryan Adams, Def Leppard, Heart and Huey Lewis & The News. How could Rolling Stone have missed this guy? I should also mention his tremendous success with his ex-wife Shania Twain. This just goes to show you sometimes lyrics can be silly but it works if the songwriter has created a great melodic hook