Can You Name the Musician if We Give You Three of Their Songs?

By: Gavin Thagard

7 Min Quiz

Image: Wikicommons by Ernst Vikne

About This Quiz

It's the weekend, and there's a cover band who plays classic songs putting on a performance in town. The band covers a variety of music from the folk and blues of the '60s to the rock & roll of the '70s to the pop craze that arose in the '80s. Sure, you might recognize the songs and even be able to sing along word for word to a few, but will you know which musician these songs belonged to? 

If you follow music from the '60s through the '80s, you'll notice the evolution of several genres. This evolution included everything from vocals to musical instruments, as the era defined what it meant to be a musical artist. However, it was not only the styles that evolved but so too did the role of the musicians in mainstream culture. Musicians were no longer local celebrities playing at bars and nightclubs. Now, they were global icons recognized around the world.

Do you know which musicians received widespread fame with their popular hits, becoming household names and influencers for their time? From songwriters to lead vocalists, there are a variety of musical artists covered in this quiz. Why don't you play along and see how high a score you can get?

One of the top selling musicians of all time, who sung "Your Song," "Tiny Dancer" and "Levon"?

Elton John was quite productive in his early career and even released four albums in just over one calendar year between 1970 and 1971. Those albums included "17-11-70," a live album recorded in New York City.


After a successful career as part of one of the biggest bands in history, who launched their solo career with songs like "Maybe I'm Amazed," "Every Night" and "That Would Be Something"?

Proficient with multiple instruments and gifted with a wide vocal range, there's little that Paul McCartney can't do as a musician. However, his greatest skill might be his songwriting ability, as he's written many iconic jams like "Yesterday," "Maybe I'm Amazed" and "Hey Jude."


"Theme from Mahogany," "Reach Out and Touch" and "Love Hangover" helped define which musician as a solo artist?

Before her solo career took off, Diana Ross was a member of The Supremes, serving as the lead vocalist of the all-female group. The Supremes reached heights that few bands have in history, helping define Motown Records in the '60s.


Can you identify the musician who spoke for the counterculture movement of the '60s with songs like "Blowin' in the Wind," "Masters of War" and "With God on Our Side"?

Bob Dylan's music and songwriting influenced generations of musicians that came after him, many of whom would cover some of his most famous songs time and time again. Dylan was recognized for the influence he had in 2016 with a Nobel Prize in Literature.


What's the name of the musician who helped define hard rock in the '80s with hits like "Runaway," "You Give Love a Bad Name" and "Livin' on a Prayer"?

Though he was already having some success, Jon Bon Jovi really hit it big when his band, Bon Jovi, released their third album in 1986 titled "Slippery When Wet." The album reached the No. 1 spot in the U.S. Billboard 200 chart at the end of October, 1986.


Do you know the singer that poured her soul into songs like "Me and Bobby McGee," "Piece of My Heart" and "Summertime"?

Before her early death, Janis Joplin reached the top of the music world in only a few years, quickly establishing herself as one of the greatest vocalists of her time. Even her fourth album, "Pearl," which was released after her death, was a huge success for the blues icon.


The pop world found its icon when which artist put out "Like a Virgin," "Material Girl" and "Dress You Up"?

Madonna's cultural influence went well beyond music, as her fashion sense was one of the defining trends of the '80s. Madonna's style can be largely credited to Maripol, a fashion designer who crafted much of the jewelry Madonna wore during her "Like a Virgin" tour.


Are you familiar with the musician who released "Heroes," "Joe the Lion" and "Sense of Doubt" while signed with RCA Records?

Aside from his music, David Bowie was easily recognized by his unique eyes, which appeared to be different colors. However, the music legend didn't actually have different colored eyes. Instead, one of his pupils was permanently dilated due to a fight he got in as a kid.


How well do you know the singer who wrote many of her own songs like "Edge of Seventeen," "Leather and Lace" and "After the Glitter Fades"?

Though it wasn't the start of her career, Stevie Nicks was really introduced to the world when she joined the band Fleetwood Mac. One of the earliest songs she wrote, "Rhiannon," made it onto her first album with the band.


Can you name the musician who used songs like "Give Peace a Chance," "Imagine" and "Happy Xmas" to promote peace?

John Lennon will forever be known for his time with the Beatles, who he performed with from 1960 through 1970. The Beatles were credited with bringing British music to the United States during a time that was known as the British Invasion.


Identify the musician who reached the peak of his fame in the '60s with several hits including "Hey Joe," "Purple Haze" and "The Wind Cries Mary."

Jimi Hendrix was one of the musicians who defined the now infamous Woodstock Music and Art Fair in 1969. His rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner" left attendees in awe and was one of the most iconic performances from the festival.


Will you be able to match "River Deep — Mountain High," "A Fool in Love" and "Nutbush City Limits" to the singer who popularized them?

"A Fool in Love" was the first single released by Anna Mae Bullock under the name Tina Turner, hitting the airwaves in 1960. The song helped Turner overcome the racial barrier that separated African-American music from mainstream music at the time.


"Saving All My Love for You," "How Will I Know" and "Greatest Love of All" were three of the biggest hits on the debut album of which artist?

Whitney Houston came from a family of musicians, which included her mother. Houston often followed her mother around while she toured and even performed with her occasionally, which gave Houston the chance to develop her voice in front of a crowd.


Can you name the musician who spoke about American struggles with songs like "Born in the U.S.A.," "This Hard Land" and "Glory Days"?

Bruce Springsteen's nickname, "The Boss," is often attributed to his performance style, which is filled with energy and connectivity. However, Springsteen has said before that he actually got the name because bandmates would come to him for their paychecks.


As great a songwriter as she was a musician, who sung "Diamonds and Rust," "Here's to You" and "Sweet Sir Galahad"?

Joan Baez was one of the most recognized music activists of the '60s and '70s, using her music to oppose wrongs she saw in the world like the Vietnam War. She often led marches against the war and even supported those who resisted the draft.


The world was caught off guard when "Beat It," Billie Jean" and "Thriller" were turned into music videos, influencing the future of music. Do you know whose songs they were?

Recognized as "The King of Pop," Michael Jackson redefined the music world with his powerful voice and unique dance moves. His live performances were particularly captivating, as they incorporated movement and energy to draw audiences in.


What's the name of the artist who became an immediate success with songs like "Girls Just Want to Have Fun," Time After Time" and "She Bop"?

Cyndi Lauper has extended her talents to television, where she's appeared on shows like "Mad About You" and "That's So Raven." In 1995, she won an Emmy Award as a guest actress on "Mad About You."


The band Queen mesmerized the world with hits like "Bohemian Rhapsody," Somebody to Love" and "We Are the Champions" while being led by which singer?

Freddie Mercury is often credited as having one of the greatest voices in the history of music. That voice has been honored on several occasions, as he's been elected into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the UK Hall of Fame among many other recognitions.


Are you familiar with the singer who released "Mad About You," "I Get Weak" and "Leave a Light On" to widespread acclaim?

Before her solo career began in 1985, Belinda Carlisle was the lead singer of the Go-Go's. The band released their debut album in 1981 titled "Beauty and the Beat," which helped redefine the American rock genre.


How well do you know the musician who showed he could mix genres brilliantly with songs like "Burning Love," "Jailhouse Rock" and "Always on My Mind"?

Pulling from influences that included country music and rhythm and blues, Elvis Presley helped create classic rock and roll. Combining these musical influences with a dance style that was ahead of its time, Presley became one of the first rock stars.


Name the singer who rocked the world by releasing major hits like "Hit Me with Your Best Shot," "Love Is a Battlefield" and "Invincible."

"Hit Me with Your Best Shot" was Pat Benatar's first song to make it into the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. The song was released on her second album, "Crimes of Passion," which became the best selling album of her career.


Country music found its outsider when who released "Ring of Fire," "A Boy Named Sue" and "I Walk the Line"?

As his career progressed, Johnny Cash began to identify more and more with stories of sorrow and redemption, which became prevalent in his music. Those themes are evident in his song "Man in Black," a nod to the reason he always dressed in black attire.


Do you know which singer used her gospel upbringing to produce these songs: "Respect," "Chain of Fools" and "I Never Loved a Man"?

Aretha Franklin became such an iconic symbol in American culture that she was asked to perform during the inaugurations of three different presidents. She first performed during Jimmy Carter's inauguration and later at Bill Clinton's and Barack Obama's.


The raspy voice of which musician worked perfectly when he sang "Turn the Page," "We've Got Tonight" and "Night Moves"?

Born in Detroit in 1945, Bob Seger never forgot his roots as his musical career progressed. He helped found a band to accompany his own individualistic style in 1973, which was made primarily of musicians out of his home city.


Can you match "Jolene," "I Will Always Love You" and "9 to 5" to the twangy singer that captured them so brilliantly?

In an effort to give back to her home state of Tennessee, Dolly Parton invested in her own theme park called Dollywood. However, despite the numerous thrill rides throughout the park, Parton has never gotten on one because of her motion sickness.


Music had a soul anytime which musical artist was on the piano performing "Georgia On My Mind," "Hit the Road Jack" and "Unchain My Heart"?

In 2004, the movie "Ray" came out to recognize the life, career and struggles of Ray Charles, who was played by Jamie Foxx. For his portrayal of Charles, Foxx was awarded an Academy Award.


What's the name of the singer who released "Together Again," "Sweet Dreams" and "One of These Days" on her album "Elite Hotel"?

Emmylou Harris earned her first of 14 Grammy Award in 1977 for her album "Elite Hotel." It was her third studio album as well as her third Grammy Award nomination, though her first two nominations came for the songs "If Only I Could Win Your Love" and "Here, There and Everywhere."


Usually playing his signature harmonica, who released hits like "Harvest Moon," "Heart of Gold" and "Sugar Mountain"?

One of the most recognized voices of his time, Neil Young has twice been elected into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His first entry was as a solo artist, and he was later added as a member of the band Buffalo Springfield.


Disco had plenty of flair when which singer put out "Love to Love You Baby," "I Feel Love" and "Last Dance"?

Initially released in the Netherlands before receiving a worldwide release, "Love to Love You Baby" was one of the most successful and widely acclaimed songs of Donna Summer's career. The song was also one of the longest of her career, running nearly 17 minutes.


Are you familiar with the musician who brought songs like "The Boys of Summer," "The End of the Innocence" and "New York Minute" to the airwaves?

Don Henley reached international stardom as a founding member of the Eagles, a group he joined in 1971. While with the band, Henley served as the drummer and was a co-lead vocalist. Though the band has since got back together, they did part ways in 1980, and Henley sought out a solo career during that time.


Identify the musician who started her solo career with an album that included "You Are My Friend," "Joy to Have Your Love" and "I Think About You."

Patti LaBelle was one of the original members of the group Patti LaBelle and the Bluebelles. The group later changed its name to Labelle, which included a change in style that incorporated more funk rock that was becoming increasingly popular.


How well do you know the musician who released hits like "Fire and Rain," "Something in the Way She Moves" and "Country Road"?

James Taylor is known for his work on the guitar, an instrument he incorporated regularly throughout his career. However, the first instrument he learned to play was the cello, partly influenced by his mother who was an opera singer.


What singer top the charts with her album "Tapestry," which included "It's Too Late," "I Feel the Earth Move" and "A Natural Woman"?

Aside from her own career as a singer, Carole King has worked with many other popular musicians as a writer. She helped Mariah Carey write the song "If It's Over" in 1991, which Carey later performed on "MTV Unplugged."


Do you know the musician who took control of his career in 1973, releasing "Freedom to Stay," "Lay it Down" and "Gone to Denver" on his album "Lonesome, On'ry and Mean"?

Early in his career, Waylon Jennings served as a bass player for the legendary Buddy Holly. During this time, Jennings was supposed to be on the plane that killed Holly, but he offered up his seat and was sparred the same fate as his icon.


Reinvention was a defining characteristic of which artist who put out songs like "Gypsys, Tramps &Thieves," "Dark Lady" and "Wasn't It Good"?

Cher's influence on pop culture has extended well beyond the music realm. Aside from hosting a comedy show in the '70s, Cher has starred in various movies including "Mask," "The Witches of Eastwick" and "Moonstruck."


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