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Songwriting is one of the most emotionally revealing activities a person can engage in because songs tell human stories through lyrics and sound arrangement. Songwriting can help songwriters discover the humanity of the mythical and actual people they compose about. So, who are the best songwriters of all time?

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Photo: Harry, JC, Chuck (modified by author)
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Songwriters are an essential component of the music industry. They create song lyrics and melodies and frequently assist in developing the songs into fruitful albums. Songwriters not only have a large impact on the achievement of a music career, but they also have a significant impact on the music sector in general.

10 best songwriters of all time

Many factors contribute to a great song, including songwriting, melody, lyrics, and production. That is why having a good songwriter by your side will save you a lot of time. So, who are the best songwriter of all time?

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1. Bob Dylan

Best songwriters of all time
Bob Dylan performs on a double bill with Neil Young at Hyde Park in London, England. Photo: Dave J Hogan
Source: Getty Images

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Robert Allen Zimmerman, better known as Robert Dylan, is a well-known American singer-songwriter. Many consider him one of the best songwriters of all time. Throughout his more than 60-year-career, Dylan has been a prominent figure in the music scene.

Much of his most famous work dates from the 1960s when songs like The Times They Are A-Changin (1964) and Blowin’ in the Wind (1963) became constitutional rights and pacifist anthems.

During this time, his lyrics incorporated various political, social, intellectual, and literary influences, challenging pop music conferences and enticing the rapidly growing counterculture.

2. Paul McCartney

Best songwriters of all time
Paul McCartney performs on The Pyramid Stage during day four of the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm, Pilton in Glastonbury, England. Photo: Harry Durrant
Source: Getty Images

Sir James Paul McCartney is an English singer, songwriter, and musician. He rose to fame as an associate of the Beatles, where he played the bass guitar, shared basic songwriting, and led vocal duties with John Lennon.

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McCartney, one of the most successful songwriters and performers of all time, is known for his melodic bass approach, musical eclecticism, versatile and wide tenor vocal range, exploring styles ranging from pre-rock ‘n’ roll pop to classical and electronica. His songwriting collaboration with John Lennon is still the most viable in history.

3. John Lennon

Best songwriters of all time
Former Beatle John Lennon arrives at the Times Square recording studio in New York City, New York. Photo: Vinnie Zuffante
Source: Getty Images

John Winston Ono Lennon was an English songwriter, singer, musician, and peace activist. In his music, writing, and drawings, as well as on film and interviews, the famous guitarist was known for his rebellious nature and caustic brilliance. His collaboration with Paul McCartney was among the most successful in history.

4. Chuck Berry

Best songwriters of all time
American R&B and Rock musician Chuck Berry perform onstage at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. Photo: Chuck Fishman
Source: Getty Images

Charles Edward Anderson Berry was an American singer, songwriter, and guitarist who helped to establish rock and roll. With songs like Maybellene (1955) and Roll Over Beethoven (1956), he refined and enhanced rhythm and blues into the major components that contributed to rock and roll being distinctive.

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Berry greatly influenced subsequent rock music, writing lyrics about adolescence and consumer culture and evolving a musical style incorporating guitar solos and showmanship.

5. Smokey Robinson

Best songwriters of all time
Smokey Robinson speaks during a ceremony honouring Judge Greg Mathis​ with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Hollywood, California. Photo: JC Olivera
Source: Getty Images

William Smokey Robinson Jr. is a singer, songwriter, record producer, actor, and former record executive director from the United States. Robinson founded and fronted the Motown vocal group the Miracles, for which he also served as chief songwriter and producer.

He led the group from its inception as the, Five Chimes in 1955 until 1972, when he declared his retirement to pay attention to his role as Motown’s vice president.

6. Mick Jagger and Keith Richards

Best songwriters of all time
Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones perform live on stage during a concert of The Rolling Stones at the Johan Cruijff Arena in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Photo: Sven Hoogerhuis
Source: Getty Images

The songwriting partnership of English musicians Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones is known as Jagger-Richards. They are one of history’s most successful songwriting teams. In addition to their songwriting collaboration, Jagger and Richards have co-produced multiple Rolling Stones albums under the alias The Glimmer Twins.

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7. Carole King and Gerry Goffin

Best songwriters of all time
Carole King and Gerry Goffin during The 46th Annual GRAMMY Awards at California Science Center in Los Angeles, California, United States. Photo: R. Diamond
Source: Getty Images

Gerald Goffin was a lyricist from the United States. He co-wrote many global pop hits of the early and mid-1960s, such as the US No.1 hits Will You Love Me Tomorrow and Take Good with his first wife, Carole King.

Goffin’s gift was finding words that conveyed what many youthful people were experiencing but could not express. After his divorce from King, Goffin collaborated with other composers such as Barry Goldberg and Michael Masser.

8. Paul Simon

Best songwriters of all time
Paul Simon performs on the Pyramid stage during the fourth and final day of Glastonbury Festival 2011 at Worthy Farm in Glastonbury, United Kingdom. Photo: Tabatha Fireman
Source: Getty Images

Paul Frederic Simon is a six-decade-long American musician, singer, songwriter, and actor. He is among the most famous and talented songwriters in popular music.

9. Joni Mitchell

Best songwriters of all time
Canadian singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell arrives for the 64th Annual Grammy Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Photo: ANGELA WEISS
Source: Getty Images

Roberta Joan Mitchell CC is a Canadian-American painter and singer-songwriter. Mitchell’s songs draw on folk, pop, rock, classical, and jazz influences.

Her songs frequently reflect on social and philosophical ideals, along with her thoughts about romance, womanhood, disillusionment, and joy. She is the recipient of ten Grammy Awards and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.

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10. Stevie Wonder

Best songwriters of all time
Stevie Wonder attends the Los Angeles Premiere Of Apple’s “They Call Me Magic” at Regency Village Theatre in Los Angeles, California. Photo: Gregg DeGuire
Source: Getty Images

Stevland Hardaway Morris, better known as Stevie Wonder, is an American singer-songwriter who is regarded as a pioneer and influenced by musicians working in genres such as rhythm and blues, pop, soul, gospel, funk, and jazz.

Wonder’s utilisation of synthesisers and other electronic musical instruments as a virtual one-person band during the 1970s reinvented R&B conventions.

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FAQs

  1. Is Taylor Swift the best songwriter of all time? She is a phenomenal composer. She has released over 150 songs in her career. Some of the songs she has co-written with other songwriters. Her songs include Bad Blood, All Too Well and You Belong With Me.
  2. Who is the biggest songwriter right now? Jack Harlow was labelled songwriter of the year for the second year in a row at the 2022 SESAC Music Awards, which were held at The London in West Hollywood.
  3. Who is the richest singer-songwriter of all time? Paul McCartney is the world’s richest songwriter, with a net worth of $1.2 billion. He was a founding member of The Beatles before embarking on a solo career that was as successful as the band.
  4. Who is considered the best songwriter ever? Bob Dylan is considered the best songwriter of all time.
  5. Which songwriter has written the most hit songs? Regarding number one singles, John Lennon and Paul McCartney are the most effective songwriters.
  6. What does songwriter mean? A songwriter is an individual who creates popular song lyrics, music, or both.
  7. Can a songwriter also sing? Several songwriter-musicians write lyrics to perform themselves. Some also prefer selling their music and melodic ideas to other artists.

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Above are the best songwriters of all time. Although this is not an exhaustive list, songwriters are important music industry members because they contribute to creating song lyrics and melodies and frequently assist in developing songs into successful albums.

Yen.com.gh released an interesting piece about the biggest artist in Ghana. The Ghanaian music industry has grown, with new talent emerging and veterans leading the way.

The Ghanaian entertainment industry is home to several well-known artists. They are well-known for their unrivalled talents and ability to produce hit after hit. While a few have been in the sector for many years, others are new to the scene.

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