Who Are America’s Most Important Musical Artists?

July 20, 2013 7:00 am
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If you had to pick one musician to represent America, who would it be?

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According to a poll conducted by iHeart Radio, 26 percent of voters chose Bruce Springsteen as the most quintessential American Musical Artist.

Over 40 years of making music, he’s racked up 17 studio albums (12 awarded platinum status in the U.S. alone), 20 Grammys, two Golden Globes, and an Academy Award for Best Original song for the movie Philadelphia. The man is nicknamed the Boss for a reason, as he is known to play concerts well over the three-hour mark and book multiple shows in the same city.

Bruce is featured in a new documentary, Springsteen and I, which has a one-day run in theaters on July 22 in select theaters nationwide.

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Here are the top seven artists according to the poll and what you need to know about them.

1) Bruce Springsteen 26.6%

Songs you need to know: Born to Run, Born in the U.S.A, Dancing in the Dark, Thunder Road
Songs you should know: The Rising, Glory Days, Hungry Heart, Badlands
Deeper cuts to learn: I’m Goin’ Down, Cynthia, She’s the One

2)  Lynyrd Skynrd  24.3%

Songs you need to know: Sweet Home Alabama, Free Bird, Simple Man, Tuesday’s Gone
Songs you should know: What’s Your Name?, That Smell, Gimme Three Steps, Saturday Night Special
Deeper cuts to learn: Swamp Music, Roll Gypsy Roll, Searchin’

3) Elvis Presley 19%

Songs you need to know: Jailhouse Rock, All Shook Up, Suspicious Minds, Hound Dog
Songs you should know: Heartbreak Hotel, Can’t Help Falling in Love, Burning Love, A Little Less Conversation
Deeper cuts to learn: Mean Woman Blues, My Baby Left Me, I Need You So

4) Carrie Underwood 9%

Songs you need to know: Blown Away, Before He Cheats, Cowboy Casanova, Jesus Take the Wheel
Songs you should know: See You Again, Two Black Cadillacs, All American Girl, Undo It
Deeper cuts to learn: One Way Ticket, Twisted, That’s Where It Is

5)  Jay-Z 8.7%

Songs you need to know: Empire State of Mind, N****s in Paris, Dirt Off Your Shoulder, 99 Problems
Songs you should know: Holy Grail, No Church in the Wild, Big Pimpin’, Brooklyn Go Hard
Deeper cuts to learn: Parking Lot Pimpin’, A Week Ago, Coming of Age

6) Taylor Swift 7.4%

Songs you need to know: You Belong With Me, Love Story, We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together, I Knew You Were Trouble
Songs you should know: The Story of Us, 22, Everything Has Changed, Red
Deeper cuts to learn: Breathe, I’m Only Me When I’m With You, The Outside

7)  Madonna 5.1%

Songs you need to know: Like a Virgin, Hung Up, Like a Prayer, 4 Minutes
Songs you should know: Material Girl, Vogue, Holiday, Borderline
Deeper cuts to learn: Beautiful Stranger, I Know It, Keep it Together


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