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Irving Berlin
Irving Berlin
Irving Berlin (May 11, 1888 – September 22, 1989) was a Russian-born American composer and lyricist, and one of the most prolific American songwriters in history. Berlin was one of the few Tin Pan Alley/Broadway songwriters who wrote both lyrics and music for his songs. Although he never learned to read music beyond a rudimentary level, with the help of various uncredited musical assistants or collaborators, he eventually composed over 3,000 songs, many of which (e.g. "God Bless America", "White Christmas", "Anything You Can Do", "There's No Business Like Show Business") left an indelible mark on music and culture worldwide. He composed seventeen film scores and twenty-one Broadway scores.
The Beatles
The Beatles
The Beatles were a pop and rock group from Liverpool, England formed in 1960. Primarily consisting of John Lennon (rhythm guitar, vocals), Paul McCartney (bass guitar, vocals), George Harrison (lead guitar, vocals) and Ringo Starr (drums, vocals) throughout their career, The Beatles are recognised for leading the mid-1960s musical "British Invasion" into the United States. Although their initial musical style was rooted in 1950s rock and roll and homegrown skiffle, the group explored genres ranging from Tin Pan Alley to psychedelic rock. Their clothes, styles, and statements made them trend-setters, while their growing social awareness saw their influence extend into the social and cultural revolutions of the 1960s. After the band broke up in 1970, all four members embarked upon solo careers.

The Beatles are one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed bands in the history of popular music, selling over a billion records internationally. In the United Kingdom, The Beatles released more than 40 different singles, albums, and EPs that reached number one, earning more number one albums (15) than any other group in UK chart history. This commercial success was repeated in many other countries; their record company, EMI, estimated that by 1985 they had sold over one billion records worldwide. According to the Recording Industry Association of America, The Beatles have sold more albums in the United States than any other band. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked The Beatles number one on its list of 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. According to that same magazine, The Beatles' innovative music and cultural impact helped define the 1960s, and their influence on pop culture is still evident today. In 2008, Billboard magazine released a list of top-selling Hot 100 artists to celebrate the chart's fiftieth anniversary; The Beatles reached #1 again.
Cecile Chaminade
Cecile Chaminade
Cécile Louise Stéphanie Chaminade (August 8, 1857 – April 13, 1944) was a French composer and pianist.

Born in Paris, she studied at first with her mother, then with Félix Le Couppey, Augustin Savard, Martin Pierre Marsick and Benjamin Godard, but not officially, since her father disapproved of her musical education.
Her first experiments in composition took place in very early days, and in her eighth year she played some of her sacred music to Georges Bizet, who was much impressed with her talents. She gave her first concert when she was eighteen, and from that time on her work as a composer gained steadily in favor. She wrote mostly character pieces for piano, and salon songs, almost all of which were published.

She toured France several times in those earlier days, and in 1892 made her début in England, where her work was extremely popular.

Chaminade married a music publisher from Marseilles, Louis-Mathieu Carbonel, in 1901, and on account of his advanced age the marriage was rumored to be one of convenience. He died in 1907, and Chaminade did not remarry.

In 1908 she visited the United States, and was accorded a very hearty welcome from her innumerable admirers there. Her compositions were tremendous favorites with the American public, and such pieces as the Scarf dance or the Ballet No. 1 were to be found in the music libraries of many lovers of piano music of the time. She composed a Konzertstück for piano and orchestra, the ballet music to Callirhoé and other orchestral works. Her songs, such as The Silver Ring and Ritournelle, were also great favorites. Ambroise Thomas, the celebrated French composer and writer, once said of Chaminade: "This is not a woman who composes, but a composer who is a woman." In 1913, she was awarded the Légion d'Honneur, a first for a female composer. In London, 1903, she made gramophone recordings of six of her compositions for the Gramophone and Typewriter Company; these are among the most sought-after piano recordings by collectors. Before and after World War I, Chaminade recorded many piano rolls, but as she grew older, she composed less and less, dying in Monte Carlo on April 13, 1944.
Vanessa Carlton
Vanessa Carlton
Vanessa Lee Carlton (born August 16, 1980) is an American soft rock/Piano pop singer, songwriter, and pianist best known for the Billboard top five, Grammy-nominated single "A Thousand Miles" from her debut album, Be Not Nobody which was released April 30, 2002, and certified platinum in the U.S.

Her music, along with that of her contemporary Michelle Branch to whom she is sometimes compared, has had an influence on female solo pop singer-songwriters in the 21st century, including Kate Voegele, Lights, Sara Bareilles (another piano pop artist), Colbie Caillat and Tristan Prettyman.

Carlton's second album, Harmonium (released November 9, 2004), debuted at number 33 on the U.S. Billboard 200 and had sold 179,000 copies as of February 2006, with the single "White Houses," peaking at 86 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. She subsequently parted company from her record label A&M, though she still holds a dedicated fanbase.

Her third album, Heroes and Thieves, was released on October 9, 2007 by the The Inc./Universal Motown record labels.
Gary Jules
Gary Jules
Gary Jules (born March 19, 1969 in Fresno, California as Gary Jules Aguirre) is an American singer-songwriter, best known for his cover of Tears for Fears' third single "Mad World", which he recorded together with friend Michael Andrews for the cult film Donnie Darko. It became the UK Christmas Number One single of 2003. Since then it has been used on popular American TV shows, and most recently in the commercial for the Xbox 360 video game Gears of War.

Some of his early projects / bands were The Ivory Knights, Our Town Pansies, Woodenfish, Kofi, The Origin, "Invisible", "No poetry," and "Heroes and Heroin."
Harold Arlen
Harold Arlen
Harold Arlen (February 15, 1905 – April 23, 1986) was an American composer of popular music. Having written over 500 songs, a number of which have become known the world over. In addition to being the composer of The Wizard of Oz, Arlen is a highly regarded contributor to the Great American Songbook. His 1938 song "Over the Rainbow” was voted the twentieth century's No. 1 song by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).
The Temptations
The Temptations
The Temptations are an American vocal group that achieved fame as one of the most successful acts to record for Motown. The group's repertoire has included, at various times during its five-decade career, R&B, doo-wop, funk, disco, soul, and adult contemporary music.

Formed in Detroit, Michigan in 1960 as The Elgins, the Temptations have always featured at least five male vocalists/dancers. The group, known for its recognizable choreography, distinct harmonies, and flashy onstage suits, has been said to be as influential to soul as The Beatles are to pop and rock. Having sold tens of millions of albums, the Temptations are one of the most successful groups in music history and were the definitive male vocal group of the 1960s. In addition, they have the second-longest tenure on Motown behind Stevie Wonder, as they were with the label for a total of 40 years: 16 years from 1961 to 1977, and 24 more from 1980 to 2004 (from 1977 to 1980, they were signed to Atlantic Records). As of 2009, the Temptations continue to perform and record for Universal Records with the one living original member, co-founder Otis Williams, still in its lineup.
The original group included members of two local Detroit vocal groups: from The Distants, second tenor Otis Williams, first tenor Elbridge "Al" Bryant and bass Melvin Franklin; and from The Primes, first tenor/falsetto Eddie Kendricks and second tenor/baritone Paul Williams (no relation to Otis). Among the most notable future Temptations were lead singers David Ruffin and Dennis Edwards (both of whom became successful Motown solo artists after leaving the group), Richard Street (another former Distant), Damon Harris, Ron Tyson, Ali-Ollie Woodson, Theo Peoples, and G. C. Cameron. Like its sister female group, the Supremes, the Temptations' lineup has changed frequently particularly in recent decades.

Over the course of their career, the Temptations have released four Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles and 14 Billboard R&B number-one singles. Their material has earned them three Grammy Awards, while two more awards were conferred upon the songwriters and producers who crafted their 1972 hit "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone". The Temptations were the first Motown act to earn a Grammy Award. Six Temptations (Dennis Edwards, Melvin Franklin, Eddie Kendricks, David Ruffin, Otis Williams, and Paul Williams) were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989. Three classic Temptations songs, "My Girl", "Ain't Too Proud to Beg", and "Papa Was a Rollin' Stone", are among The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.
Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John CBE (born Reginald Kenneth Dwight on 25 March 1947) is an English pop/rock singer, composer and pianist.

In his four-decade career, John has been one of the dominant forces in rock and popular music, especially during the 1970s. He has sold over 200 million records, making him one of the most successful artists of all time. He has more than 50 Top 40 hits including seven consecutive No. 1 U.S. albums, 59 Top 40 singles, 16 Top 10, four No. 2 hits, and nine No. 1 hits. He has won five Grammy awards and one Academy Award. His success has had a profound impact on popular music and has contributed to the continued popularity of the piano in rock and roll. In 2004, Rolling Stone ranked him #49 on their list of the 100 greatest artists of all time.

Some of the characteristics of John's musical talent include an ability to quickly craft melodies for the lyrics of songwriting partner Bernie Taupin, his former rich tenor (now baritone) voice, his classical and gospel-influenced piano, the aggressive orchestral arrangements of Paul Buckmaster among others and the flamboyant fashions, outlandishly excessive eyeglasses, and on-stage showmanship, especially evident during the 1970s.

John was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994. He has been heavily involved in the fight against AIDS since the late 1980s, and was knighted in 1998. He entered into a civil partnership with David Furnish on 21 December 2005 and continues to be a champion for LGBT social movements. On April 9, 2008, John held a benefit concert for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, raising $2.5 million.
Coldplay
Coldplay
Coldplay are a rock band formed in London, England in 1997. The group comprises vocalist/pianist/guitarist Chris Martin, lead guitarist Jonny Buckland, bassist Guy Berryman, and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Will Champion. Coldplay have sold 34.6 million albums, and are also known for their hit singles, such as "Yellow", "The Scientist", "Speed of Sound", "Fix You", "Viva la Vida" and the Grammy Award-winning "Clocks".

Coldplay achieved worldwide fame with the release of their single "Yellow", followed by their debut album, Parachutes (2000), which was nominated for the Mercury Prize. Its follow-up, A Rush of Blood to the Head (2002) won multiple awards such as NME's Album of the Year and was later included on Rolling Stone magazine's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list, ranking at #473. Their next release, X&Y (2005), received a slightly less enthusiastic yet still generally positive reception. The band's fourth studio album, Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (2008), was produced by Brian Eno and released again to largely favourable reviews. All of Coldplay's albums have enjoyed great commercial success.

Coldplay's early material was compared to acts such as Jeff Buckley, U2, and Travis. Coldplay have been an active supporter of various social and political causes, such as Oxfam's Make Trade Fair campaign and Amnesty International. The group have also performed at various charity projects such as Band Aid 20, Live 8, and the Teenage Cancer Trust.
Tori Amos
Tori Amos
Tori Amos (born Myra Ellen Amos on August 22, 1963) is a pianist and singer-songwriter of dual British and American citizenship. She is married to English sound engineer Mark Hawley, with whom she has one child, Natashya "Tash" Lórien Hawley, born on September 5, 2000.

Amos was at the forefront of a number of female singer-songwriters in the early 1990s and was noteworthy early in her career as one of the few alternative rock performers to use a piano as her primary instrument. She is known for emotionally intense songs that cover a wide range of subjects including sexuality, religion and personal tragedy. Some of her charting singles include "Crucify", "Silent All These Years", "Cornflake Girl", "Caught a Lite Sneeze", "Professional Widow", "Spark", and "A Sorta Fairytale".

Amos had sold 12 million records worldwide as of 2005 and has also enjoyed a large cult following. Having a history of making eccentric and at times ribald comments during concerts and interviews, she has earned a reputation for being highly idiosyncratic. As a social commentator and sometimes activist, some of the topics she has been most vocal about include feminism, religion, and sexuality.
Benjamin Britten
Benjamin Britten
Edward Benjamin Britten, Baron Britten of Aldeburgh, OM CH (22 November 1913 – 4 December 1976) was an English composer, conductor, and pianist. Showing prodigious talent from an early age – he composed his Quatre Chansons françaises for soprano and orchestra at the age of fourteen – he first came to public attention with the a cappella choral work A Boy Was Born. With the premiere of his opera Peter Grimes in 1945 he leapt to international fame, and for the next fifteen years he devoted much of his compositional attention to writing operas, several of which now appear regularly on international stages. Britten's interests as a composer were wide-ranging; he produced important music in such varied genres as orchestral, choral, solo vocal (much of it written for the tenor Peter Pears), chamber and instrumental, as well as film music. He also took a great interest in writing music for children and amateur performers, and was considered a fine pianist and conductor.
Shirley Temple
Shirley Temple
Shirley Temple (born April 23, 1928) is an American actress and public servant. The daughter of George and Gertrude Temple, she began her screen career in 1932 at the age of three with comedy shorts and bit parts in feature films. Following her breakthrough film Stand Up and Cheer! in 1934, she skyrocketed to superstardom the same year with the Christmas release of Bright Eyes, a feature film designed specifically for her talents. Star status was confirmed with an Academy Award in February 1935, and blockbusting super hits such as Curly Top and Heidi followed year after year during the mid to late 1930s. Licensed merchandise that included dolls, dishes, and clothing capitalized on her image.She is the youngest person ever to be awarded an Oscar (age 6), she was awarded the inaugural (now retired) non-competitive Academy Juvenile Award in 1934. Temple's popularity waned in her teens and she left Twentieth Century-Fox at the age of twelve to attend high school. She appeared in a few films of varying quality in her mid to late teens, and retired completely from the silver screen in 1950 at the age of twenty-one. She starred in twenty-four films for Twentieth Century-Fox, and was the top box-office draw four years in a row (1935–1938) in a Motion Picture Herald poll.

Temple's parents were powerful forces in their daughter's rise to stardom and success. Gertrude Temple enrolled her daughter in dance school, doggedly made the rounds of casting offices, read scripts to her daughter, crafted her emotional, physical, and vocal expressions, monitored her daughter's performance from a chair placed beside the camera, conducted her own interviews, and received a paid position at Twentieth Century-Fox as Temple's coach and hairdresser. Temple's father was a bank employee who managed his daughter's wealth through astute investments. In 1945, against her parents' better judgment, seventeen-year-old Temple married Army Air Force sergeant John Agar, who, after being discharged from the service, entered the acting profession. The couple made two films together before Temple divorced him on the grounds of mental cruelty in 1949, receiving custody of their daughter Linda Susan and the restoration of her maiden name in the process. In January 1950, Temple met the conservative scion of a patrician California family and United States Navy Silver Star recipient Charles Alden Black. She married him in December 1950 following the finalization of her divorce and retired from films the same day to become a homemaker. Charles Alden Black, Jr. was born in 1952 and Lori Alden Black in 1954. In 1972, Shirley Temple Black was one of the first prominent women to speak openly about breast cancer after undergoing a modified radical mastectomy.

In 1958, Temple returned to show biz with Shirley Temple's Storybook, a live-action television anthology series featuring fairy tale adaptations. Temple played hostess and narrated or acted in episodes. Stars Charlton Heston, Claire Bloom, Elsa Lanchester, Rod McKuen, Joel Grey and others appeared on the show. The series chalked up a single season, left the air for a season, and returned for its final season in color in 1960 as The Shirley Temple Show. The reprise included adaptations of material other than fairy tales such as Ludwig Bemelmans's Madeline, and Nathaniel Hawthorne's The House of the Seven Gables. Temple made guest appearances on various television shows in the early 1960s and filmed a sitcom pilot that was never released. Temple sat on the boards of many corporations and organizations including The Walt Disney Company, Del Monte Foods, and the National Wildlife Federation. In the mid 1960s, she entered public life, ran unsuccessfully for United States Congress in 1967, and received appointments as United States Ambassador to Ghana in 1974 and to Czechoslovakia in 1989. In 1988, she published her autobiography, Child Star. Temple has received many awards and honors over her lifetime including Kennedy Center Honors and a Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award.
Arthur Sullivan
Arthur Sullivan
Sir Arthur Seymour Sullivan MVO was an English composer. He is best known for 14 operatic collaborations with the dramatist W. S. Gilbert, including H.M.S. Pinafore, The Pirates of Penzance and The Mikado.
John Lee Hooker
John Lee Hooker
John Lee Hooker (August 22, 1912 or 1917 – June 21, 2001) was an American blues singer, songwriter, and guitarist. The son of a sharecropper, he rose to prominence performing an electric guitar-style adaptation of Delta blues. Hooker often incorporated other elements, including talking blues and early North Mississippi Hill country blues. He developed his own driving-rhythm boogie style, distinct from the 1930s–1940s piano-derived boogie-woogie. Hooker was ranked 35 in Rolling Stone's 2015 list of 100 greatest guitarists.
Ryan Cayabyab
Ryan Cayabyab
Ryan Cayabyab (born Raymundo Cipriano Pujante Cayabyab on May 4, 1954 in Manila, Philippines but known as Mr. C) is a Filipino musician and was the Executive and Artistic Director of the defunct San Miguel Foundation for the Performing Arts. He was also a resident judge for the only season of Philippine Idol in 2006.
His works range from commissioned full-length ballets, theater musicals, choral pieces, a Mass set to unaccompanied chorus, and orchestral pieces, to commercial recordings of popular music, film scores and television specials.
Traditional
Traditional
Ben Folds
Ben Folds
Benjamin Scott Folds (born September 12, 1966 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina) is an American singer and pianist. He originally gained fame as a member of the rock band, Ben Folds Five. Ben has released three solo albums: Fear of Pop: Volume 1, Rockin' the Suburbs, and Ben Folds Live. Fear of Pop was released while Ben Folds Five were still together; Suburbs and Live were released afterwards. Since Fear of Pop is highly experimental and Live is a collection of live solo recordings of mostly songs originally recorded with Ben Folds Five, Rockin' the Suburbs is Ben's first proper solo release. In late 2003 two solo EPs: Speed Graphic and Sunny 16 were released, with a third entitled Super D released in mid-2004. He currently resides in Adelaide, Australia with his wife, Frally Hynes, and two children, Louis and Grace. He tours Japan and the United States, as well as other parts of the world periodically.

Folds also produced and arranged the most recent William Shatner album, Has Been (2004); he previously worked with Shatner on the songs 'In Love' and 'Still in Love' for Fear of Pop.

Folds described his former band, Ben Folds Five, as 'punk rock for sissies,' and his oddball lyrics often contain nuances of depression, melancholy and self-conflict. While he was with the band Ben Folds Five and since his departure, Folds also provided a number of songs for films soundtrack. Some of these include 'Lonely Christmas Eve' for the film How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (2000) and a rendition of the Beatles' 'Golden Slumbers' for the film I Am Sam (2001).

On a planned tour of Australia, Folds teamed up with fellow namesakes Ben Kweller and Ben Lee to travel the country together as The Bens, at the suggestion of a fan on Ben Kweller's official website. The trio also went on to record an four-track EP together, entitled The Bens.

In summer of 2004, Folds co-headlined an American tour with fellow rockers Rufus Wainwright and Guster. His fourth solo album entitled 'Songs for Silverman' is slated for release on April 26, 2005.
Mozart
Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, full name Johann Chrysostom Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (27 January 1756 – 5 December 1791) was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical era. His over 600 compositions include works widely acknowledged as pinnacles of symphonic, concertante, chamber, piano, operatic, and choral music. Mozart is among the most enduringly popular of classical composers, and many of his works are part of the standard concert repertoire.

Mozart's music, like Haydn's, stands as an archetypal example of the Classical style. His works spanned the period during which that style transformed from one exemplified by the style galant to one that began to incorporate some of the contrapuntal complexities of the late Baroque, complexities against which the galant style had been a reaction. Mozart's own stylistic development closely paralleled the development of the classical style as a whole. In addition, he was a versatile composer and wrote in almost every major genre, including symphony, opera, the solo concerto, chamber music including string quartet and string quintet, and the piano sonata. While none of these genres were new, the piano concerto was almost single-handedly developed and popularized by Mozart. He also wrote a great deal of religious music, including masses; and he composed many dances, divertimenti, serenades, and other forms of light entertainment.

The central traits of the classical style can be identified in Mozart's music. Clarity, balance, and transparency are hallmarks of his work.
Christina Aguilera
Christina Aguilera
Christina María Aguilera (born December 18, 1980) is an American R&B/pop singer and songwriter. She was signed to RCA Records after recording "Reflection" A Latin pop album, Mi Reflejo, and several collaborations followed which garnered Aguilera worldwide success, but she was displeased with the lack of input in her music and image.

After parting from her management, Aguilera took creative control over her second studio album Stripped (2002), Aguilera's third studio album Back to Basics (2006), included elements of soul, jazz, and blues music, and was released to positive critical reception.

Aguilera is currently in the studio working on her forthcoming album. Aguilera's work has earned her numerous awards including five Grammy Awards amongst eighteen nominations. She has become one of the most successful recording artists of the decade, racking up sales of more than 37 million albums worldwide.
Katy Perry
Katy Perry
Katy Perry (born Katheryn Elizabeth Hudson; October 25, 1984) is an American singer-songwriter. She has risen to prominence with her 2008 single "I Kissed a Girl" which has become a worldwide hit topping the charts in more than 20 countries, including United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Ireland, and the United States, where it was the 1000th Billboard Hot 100 number 1. Perry has stated in the press that it's thanks to successful British singer-songwriters Amy Winehouse and Lily Allen that more female artists had been appearing on the charts. She went on to say that Winehouse and Allen "have introduced America to great music". She is known for her unconventional style of dress, often humoristic, bright in color and reminiscent of different decades, as well as her frequent use of fruit-shaped accessories, mainly watermelon as part of her outfits. Perry has a contralto vocal range.
Carl Maria von Weber
Carl Maria von Weber
Carl Maria Friedrich Ernst von Weber was a German composer, conductor, pianist, guitarist and critic, and was one of the first significant composers of the Romantic school.
Schubert
Schubert
Franz Peter Schubert (January 31, 1797 – November 19, 1828) was an Austrian composer. He wrote some 600 lieder, nine symphonies (including the famous "Unfinished Symphony"), liturgical music, operas, and a large body of chamber and solo piano music. He is particularly noted for his original melodic and harmonic writing.

While Schubert had a close circle of friends and associates who admired his work (including his teacher Antonio Salieri, and the prominent singer Johann Michael Vogl), wider appreciation of his music during his lifetime was limited at best. He was never able to secure adequate permanent employment, and for most of his career he relied on the support of friends and family. Interest in Schubert's work increased dramatically in the decades following his death and he is now widely considered to be one of the greatest composers in the Western tradition.

While he was clearly influenced by the Classical sonata forms of Beethoven and Mozart (his early works, among them notably the 5th Symphony, are particularly Mozartean), his formal structures and his developments tend to give the impression more of melodic development than of harmonic drama. This combination of Classical form and long-breathed Romantic melody sometimes lends them a discursive style: his 9th Symphony was described by Robert Schumann as running to "heavenly lengths". His harmonic innovations include movements in which the first section ends in the key of the subdominant rather than the dominant (as in the last movement of the Trout Quintet). Schubert's practice here was a forerunner of the common Romantic technique of relaxing, rather than raising, tension in the middle of a movement, with final resolution postponed to the very end.
Adele
Adele
Adele Laurie Blue Adkins (born 5 May 1988 in Enfield, North London), She is the first recipient of the Brit Awards Critics' Choice, which was given to artists who, at the time, had yet to release an album. She debuted at number one with her Mercury Prize nominated debut album 19 in the UK album chart and has since then been certified platinum with sales over 500,000 copies.
Aerosmith
Aerosmith
Aerosmith is an American hard rock band, sometimes referred to as "The Bad Boys from Boston" The band was formed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1970. Guitarist Joe Perry and bassist Tom Hamilton, originally in a band together called the Jam Band, met up with singer Steven Tyler, drummer Joey Kramer, and guitarist Ray Tabano, and formed Aerosmith. By 1971, Tabano was replaced by Brad Whitford, and the band began developing a following in Boston.

They were signed to Columbia Records in 1972 and released a string of multi-platinum albums, beginning with their 1973 eponymous debut album. In 1975, the band broke into the mainstream with the album Toys in the Attic, and their 1976 follow-up Rocks cemented their status as hard rock superstars. The band did not fare well between 1980 and 1984, releasing a lone album, Rock in a Hard Place, which only went gold, failing to match the successes of their previous efforts.

Although Perry and Whitford returned in 1984 and the band signed a new deal with Geffen Records, it wasn't until the band sobered up and released 1987's Permanent Vacation that they regained the level of popularity they had experienced in the 1970s. After 38 years of performing, the band continues to tour and record music.
Black Eyed Peas
Black Eyed Peas
The Black Eyed Peas is an American hip hop group from Los Angeles. The group is currently composed of will.i.am, apl.de.ap, Taboo and Fergie. Since their breakout album Elephunk in 2003, they have seen international fame for their pop/dance-oriented style of hip hop music. Black Eyed Peas have sold an estimated twenty-seven million albums and singles worldwide.
David Lee Roth
David Lee Roth
David Lee Roth (born October 10, 1953) is an American rock vocalist, songwriter, actor, author, and former radio personality, best known as the original and current lead singer of Van Halen. In addition to his work with Van Halen, Roth is a successful solo artist, having released several platinum and gold solo albums. Sometimes referred to as Diamond Dave, Roth rejoined Van Halen in 2007 for a North American tour that became the highest grossing tour in the band's history.
Aqua
Aqua
Aqua is a Danish dance-pop group, perhaps best known for their 1997 breakthrough single "Barbie Girl". The group formed in 1989, and achieved huge success across the globe in the late 1990s and early 2000s. The group managed to top the UK Singles Chart with their first three singles, a feat few artists have achieved. The group released two albums: Aquarium in 1997 and Aquarius in 2000, before splitting up in July 2001. The group sold an estimated 30 million albums and singles, making them the most successful Danish band ever. The band was formed by Lene Nystrøm Rasted (vocals), Rene Dif (vocals), Søren Rasted (keyboard) and Claus Norreen (guitar).

In their prime, Aqua's singles managed to chart top ten in a number of countries where European pop acts would not normally succeed, including the United States, Australia, and Japan. The group also caused controversy with the double entendres in their "Barbie Girl" single, with the Barbie doll makers Mattel filing a lawsuit against the group. The lawsuit was finally rejected in 2002.

Since their 2001 split, Nystrøm, Dif and Rasted have all achieved solo chart success, and Norreen has continued in the music industry remixing other artists' material.

The group has announced the upcoming release of a compilation album featuring new material, and the four original members have confirmed Aqua will reunite for a tour in 2008. This was confirmed at a press event Friday on October 26, 2007.
Cat Stevens
Cat Stevens
Yusuf Islam, (born Steven Demetre Georgiou on 21 July 1948), best known by his former stage name Cat Stevens, is a British musician of Greek Cypriot and Swedish ancestry. He is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, educator, philanthropist and prominent convert to Islam.

As Cat Stevens, he sold over 60 million albums around the world since the late 1960s. His albums Tea for the Tillerman and Teaser and the Firecat were both certified as Triple Platinum by the RIAA in the United States (three million sales each); his album Catch Bull at Four sold half a million copies in the first two weeks of release alone, and was Billboard's number-one LP for three consecutive weeks. His songwriting has also earned him two ASCAP songwriting awards for "The First Cut Is the Deepest," which has been a hit single for five different artists, and has been instrumental for others in establishing their musical careers.

Stevens converted to Islam at the height of his fame in 1977. The following year, he adopted his Muslim name Yusuf Islam, sold all his instruments and awards for charity, and left his music career to devote himself to educational and philanthropic causes in the Muslim community. He turned to his mother to help him decide the best candidate to wed, and thus, in an arranged marriage, took his vows with Fauzia Mubarak Ali, eventually producing five living children from the union.

He has been given several awards for his work in promoting peace in the world, including 2003's World Award, the 2004 Man for Peace award, and the 2007 Mediterranean Prize for Peace. In 2006, he returned to pop music, with his first album of new pop songs in 28 years, entitled An Other Cup.

He lives with his wife, children and grand-child in London. Yusuf Islam spends part of each year in Dubai.
Celine Dion
Celine Dion
Céline Marie Claudette Dion (born March 30, 1968 in Charlemagne, Quebec) is a Canadian singer, and occasional songwriter and actress.

Dion had first gained international recognition in the 1980s by winning both the 1982 Yamaha World Popular Song Festival and the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest.

Dion's music has been influenced by genres ranging from rock and R&B to gospel and classical, and while her releases have often received mixed critical reception, she is renowned for her technically skilled and powerful vocals.
Switchfoot
Switchfoot
Switchfoot is an American alternative rock band from San Diego, California. The band's members are Jon Foreman (vocals, guitar), Tim Foreman (bass guitar, backing vocals), Chad Butler (drums, percussion), Jerome Fontamillas (guitar, keyboards, backing vocals), and Drew Shirley (guitar). Known for their energetic live shows, the three guitarists in the line-up often operate simultaneously, building on the pop sensibilities of Jon's songwriting, and, rounded out by Jerome's work on the synthesizer, bringing his industrial roots to the sound, the band works up "the Switchfoot sound"– a melodic crunch of densely layered sound featuring some electronic experimentation, and often driven by hard-charging guitar riffs, while throwing in a few softer, spacey ballads as well.

Switchfoot first gained mainstream recognition after the inclusion of four of their songs in the 2002 movie A Walk to Remember. This recognition led to their major label debut, The Beautiful Letdown, which was released in 2003. It went on to sell over 2.6 million copies and produced the band's best-known singles, "Meant to Live" and "Dare You to Move".

According to Jon Foreman, the name "Switchfoot" is a surfing term. "We all love to surf and have been surfing all our lives so to us, the name made sense. To switch your feet means to take a new stance facing the opposite direction. It's about change and movement, a different way of approaching life and music".
Antonio Carlos Jobim
Antonio Carlos Jobim
Antonio Carlos Brasileiro de Almeida Jobim (January 25, 1927 in Rio de Janeiro – December 8, 1994 in New York City), also known as Tom Jobim, was a Grammy Award-winning Brazilian songwriter, composer, arranger, singer, and pianist/guitarist. A primary force behind the creation of the bossa nova style, Jobim is acknowledged as one of the most influential popular composers of the 20th century. His songs have been performed by many singers and instrumentalists within Brazil and internationally.
Dreamgirls
Dreamgirls
Dreamgirls is a 2006 American musical film, directed by Bill Condon and jointly produced and released by DreamWorks Pictures and Paramount Pictures. The film debuted in three special road show engagements beginning December 15, 2006, with a nationwide release on December 25, 2006 and a home video release on May 1, 2007. Dreamgirls won three awards at the 64th Golden Globe Awards ceremony in 2007, including Best Picture - Musical or Comedy, and won two Oscars at the 79th Academy Awards.

A period piece set in the 1960s and 1970s with a primarily African-American cast, Dreamgirls is adapted from the 1981 Broadway musical of the same name. The musical was based on the history and evolution of American R&B music during the eras of doo-wop, soul, the Motown Sound, funk, and disco. In addition, the stage musical contains several allusions to the lives and careers of Motown Records act The Supremes, a connection the film version expands upon. Dreamgirls follows the lives of Effie White, Deena Jones, and Lorrell Robinson, three young women who form an R&B singing trio from Detroit, Michigan called "The Dreamettes". Thanks to manipulative agent and record executive Curtis Taylor, Jr., the Dreamettes become famous as the backing group for soul singer James "Thunder" Early. Conflict arises when Curtis transforms "The Dreamettes" into the pop-friendly "Dreams," particularly when he has Deena replace Effie as both lead singer of the group and as his romantic interest.

The film adaptation of Dreamgirls stars Jamie Foxx, Beyoncé Knowles, Eddie Murphy, and Jennifer Hudson, who won the 2007 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of Effie White. The film also features Danny Glover, Anika Noni Rose, Keith Robinson, Sharon Leal, and Hinton Battle. Produced by Laurence Mark, Dreamgirls was adapted for the screen by director Bill Condon from the original Broadway book by Tom Eyen and the Broadway songs by Eyen and Henry Krieger. Four new songs, composed by Krieger with various lyricists, were added for this film.
Guiseppe Verdi
Guiseppe Verdi
Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco Verdi (Italian pronunciation: ; 10 October 1813 – 27 January 1901) was an Italian Romantic composer, mainly of opera. He was one of the most influential composers of the 19th century. His works are frequently performed in opera houses throughout the world and, transcending the boundaries of the genre, some of his themes have long since taken root in popular culture - such as "La donna è mobile" from Rigoletto, "Va, pensiero" (The Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves) from Nabucco, "Libiamo ne' lieti calici" (The Drinking Song) from La traviata and the "Grand March" from Aida. Although his work was sometimes criticized for using a generally diatonic rather than a chromatic musical idiom and having a tendency toward melodrama, Verdi’s masterworks dominate the standard repertoire a century and a half after their composition.

Verdi's predecessors who influenced his music were Rossini, Bellini, Giacomo Meyerbeer and, most notably, Gaetano Donizetti and Saverio Mercadante. With the exception of Otello and Aida, he was free of Wagner's influence. Although respectful of Gounod, Verdi was careful not to learn anything from the Frenchman whom many of Verdi's contemporaries regarded as the greatest living composer. Some strains in Aida suggest at least a superficial familiarity with the works of the Russian composer Mikhail Glinka, whom Franz Liszt, after his tour of the Russian Empire as a pianist, popularized in Western Europe.
Throughout his career, Verdi rarely utilised the high C in his tenor arias, citing the fact that the opportunity to sing that particular note in front of an audience distracts the performer before and after the note appears. However, he did provide high Cs to Duprez in Jérusalem and to Tamberlick in the original version of La forza del destino. The high C often heard in the aria Di quella pira does not appear in Verdi's score.
Meat Loaf
Meat Loaf
Michael Lee Aday (born Marvin Lee Aday; September 27, 1947), better known by his stage name Meat Loaf, is an American rock musician and actor of stage and screen. He is noted for the Bat out of Hell album trilogy that he created consisting of Bat out of Hell, Bat out of Hell II: Back into Hell, and Bat out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose and several famous songs from popular films. The Neverland Express is the name of the band he fronts as its lead singer. In 2001, he changed his first name to Michael. Despite setbacks (including multiple bankruptcies), Meat Loaf has had a successful music career, spawning some of the largest-selling albums, and breaking several records for chart duration. Bat out of Hell, the debut album which had been four years in the making, has sold over 37 million copies. After almost 30 years, it still sells an estimated 200,000 copies annually, and stayed on the charts for over 9 years. Each of the seven tracks on the album eventually charted as a hit single.

Although he enjoyed success with Bat out of Hell and Bat out of Hell II: Back into Hell, Meat Loaf experienced some initial difficulty establishing a steady career within his native United States; however, he has retained iconic status and popularity in Europe, especially the UK, where he ranks 23rd for number of weeks overall spent on the charts, and is one of only two artists with an album never to have left the music charts. With the help of his New York collection of musicians — John Golden, Richard Raskin and Paul Jacobs — his European tours enjoyed immense popularity in the 1980s. In Germany, Meat Loaf became notably popular following the release of Bat out of Hell II but has enjoyed most of his success among pop/rock fans. He ranked 96th on VH1's '100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock'.
Ewan MacColl
Ewan MacColl
James Henry Miller, better known by his stage name Ewan MacColl, was a British folk singer, songwriter, communist, labour activist, actor, poet, playwright and record producer.
Hillsong United
Hillsong United
The Hillsong United band is an Australian rock and worship band, a part of Hillsong Church's youth ministry Hillsong United. Their music is a contemporary style of praise and worship tempered with mainstream rock.

Current members of the Hillsong United band include Jonathon Douglass (J.D.), Jadwin "Jad" Gillies, Holly Watson, Annie Garratt, Bec Gillies, and Michelle Fragar, daughter of Russell Fragar. Michael Guy Chislett plays guitar and Matthew Tennikoff plays bass guitar. Former original drummer Luke Munns made a transition from the drums to front the rock/indie band LUKAS. Popular New Zealand artist Brooke Fraser recently joined the band when she joined the church, first appearing on United We Stand.

The annual Hillsong United CD/DVD was recorded over many years during their October youth conference Encounterfest, with the album released in the first quarter of the following year. The 2007 album All of the Above was the first album to be fully studio recorded, containing videos of songs on the DVD. The band has toured in a number of countries, leading worship to thousands in North and South America, Europe and Asia.
Robbie Williams
Robbie Williams
Robert Peter Maximilian Williams (born 13 February 1974) is a Grammy Award-nominated, 15-time BRIT Award-winning English singer-songwriter. His career started as a member of the pop band Take That in 1990. He left Take That in 1995 to begin his solo career, after selling 25 million records with the group.

His album sales stand at over 55 million, with singles sales over 17 million.

Williams entered the The Guinness Book of World Records when in just one day he sold more than 1.6 million tickets for his 2006 world tour. He has been the recipient of many awards, including fifteen BRIT and six ECHO awards. In 2004, he was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame, after being voted as the Greatest artist of the 1990s.

Robbie Williams is the artist who is currently featured the most times in the UK Now That's What I Call Music! series. In the first 68 Now!s he has appeared 29 times (including 4 times with Take That). His first appearance was with Take That on Now 22 and his most recent appearance was on Now 66 with "She's Madonna".
Bill Withers
Bill Withers
Bill Withers (born July 4, 1938 in Slab Fork, West Virginia) is an American singer-songwriter who performed and recorded from the late 1960s until the mid 1980s. Some of his best-known songs are "Ain't No Sunshine," "Use Me," "Lovely Day," "Lean on Me", "Grandma's Hands" and "Just the Two of Us".
Ace of Base
Ace of Base
Ace of Base is a pop band from Gothenburg, Sweden, comprising Ulf Ekberg (Buddha) and siblings Jonas Berggren (Joker), Jenny Berggren (and, formerly, Malin "Linn" Berggren). They released their debut album in 1993 and went on to achieve major chart success throughout the 1990s, their most popular songs being "Beautiful Life", "The Sign", "Don't Turn Around" and "All That She Wants." The departure of former lead singer Linn Berggren was revealed in 2007 after years of declining participation in the group. The three remaining members are currently on a world tour and plan to release a new studio album later in 2008.
Guns N' Roses
Guns N' Roses
Guns N 'Roses is an American rock band founded in 1985 in Los Angeles, California. Axl Rose, Slash, Izzy Stradlin, Duff McKagan, and Steven , Genres: Hard rock, Heavy metal, Blues rock, Glam rock They started their music life in Los Angeles, California, USA (1985) Albums: Appetite for Destruction, Use Your Illusion I
Joseph Kosma
Joseph Kosma
Joseph Kosma was a Hungarian-French composer. Date of birth: October 22, 1905, Budapest, Hungary Date and place of death: August 7, 1969, France
Colbie Caillat
Colbie Caillat
Colbie Marie Caillat (born May 28, 1985 in Newbury Park, California) is an American pop singer-songwriter and guitarist from Malibu, California. Her father, Ken Caillat, co-produced Fleetwood Mac's Rumours and Tusk albums; Caillat recalls being around the likes of Mick Fleetwood and John McVie as a child.

The popularity of Caillat's MySpace profile led her to become the number-one unsigned singer in her genre for four months. Her popularity on the social network was partially due to her song "Bubbly," and the songs on her profile have been played more than forty-two million times (as of May 31, 2008). For the week of July 17, 2007, "Bubbly" was featured on the iTunes Store as the free "Single of the Week". The promotion coincided with the release of Coco, her debut studio album. Caillat was also spotlighted by Rhapsody during the 2007 Black Friday Sale at Best Buy.

According to her MySpace profile, Caillat was first inspired to start singing at age 11 when she first heard the Fugees' 1996 version of the song "Killing Me Softly", made famous by Roberta Flack in 1973. Her MySpace profile also states that, though trained at piano from an early age, Caillat did not begin playing guitar until age nineteen. She also auditioned at least once for the television show American Idol, but never made it to the Hollywood rounds.

In May 2008, Caillat recorded a duet with Jason Mraz, called "Lucky," on his album, We Sing, We Dance, We Steal Things. The same month, Caillat recorded a cover of the song "Kiss the Girl" from The Little Mermaid for Disney's DisneyMania vol. 6 CD.

Caillat is currently shooting another music video in Hawaii for her song "The Little Things."

After touring with The Goo Goo Dolls and Lifehouse in 2007, she is now the supporting act for John Mayer in his 2008 Summer Tour.

Rihanna
Rihanna
Rihanna (born Robyn Rihanna Fenty; February 20, 1988) is a Barbadian singer, model and fashion designer. She is the second artist, and first female, from Barbados to have received a Grammy Award (the first being Jimmy Senya Haynes). Rihanna is currently signed to the Def Jam Recordings label. She has attained four Billboard Hot 100 number ones thus far ("SOS", "Umbrella", "Take a Bow", and "Disturbia"), tying her with Mariah Carey and Beyoncé as the female solo artist with the most number ones this decade.

Rihanna came to fame in 2005 with the release of her debut album Music of the Sun, which featured her breakthrough single "Pon de Replay". Less than a year later, Rihanna released A Girl Like Me and gave her first number one single, "SOS". In 2007, Rihanna released her third studio album, Good Girl Gone Bad. The album has yielded six hit singles including five worldwide number one singles "Umbrella", "Don't Stop the Music" and "Take A Bow". Since the release of her debut album, Rihanna has amassed eleven top 40 hit singles in the U.S.
Jim Steinman
Jim Steinman
James Richard Steinman is an American composer, lyricist, record producer, and playwright. He has also worked as an arranger, pianist and singer. His work has included songs in the adult contemporary, rock and roll, dance, pop, musical theater and film score genres
Monteverdi
Monteverdi
Claudio Giovanni Antonio Monteverdi (May 15, 1567 (baptized) – November 29, 1643), was an Italian composer, gambist, and singer.

Monteverdi's work, often regarded as revolutionary, marked the transition from the music of the Renaissance to that of the Baroque. Enjoying fame in his lifetime, he wrote one of the earliest operas, L'Orfeo, which is still regularly performed.

Monteverdi composed at least eighteen operas, but only L'Orfeo, L'incoronazione di Poppea, Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria and the famous aria, Lamento, from his second opera L'Arianna have survived. From monody (with melodic lines, intelligible text and placid accompanying music), it was a logical step for Monteverdi to begin composing opera, especially for a dramatically inclined composer who loved grand effect. In 1607, the premiere of his first opera, L'Orfeo, took place in Mantua. It was normal at that time for composers to create works on demand for special occasions, and this piece was part of the ducal celebrations of carnival. (Monteverdi was later to write for the first opera houses supported by ticket sales which opened in Venice). L'Orfeo has dramatic power and lively orchestration and is arguably the first example of a composer assigning specific instruments to parts in operas. It is also one of the first large compositions in which the exact instrumentation of the premiere has come down to us.
Muse
Muse
Muse are a British rock band formed in Teignmouth, Devon, United Kingdom in 1994 under the alias of Rocket Baby Dolls. The band comprises Matthew Bellamy (vocals, guitar and piano), Christopher Wolstenholme (bass guitar and backing vocals) and Dominic Howard (drums and percussion). Muse's style can be considered as a mixture of many musical genres, most notably alternative rock, classical music and electronica. Muse are known best for their energetic and visually dazzling live performances and on June 16th & 17th, 2007 became the first band to sell out the newly built Wembley Stadium in London. Muse have released four studio albums with their first, Showbiz, released in 1999, followed by Origin of Symmetry in 2001 and Absolution in 2003. The most recent, Black Holes & Revelations (2006), was also the most critically acclaimed, garnering the band a Mercury Prize nomination and a third place finish in the NME Albums of the Year list for 2006. Muse have won various awards throughout their career including 5 MTV Europe Music Awards, 5 Q Awards, 4 NME Awards and 2 Brit awards.
Creed
Creed
Creed was an American post-grunge band from Tallahassee, Florida that became popular in the late 1990s and early 2000s. The band won a Grammy Award for Best Rock Song for the song "With Arms Wide Open" in 2001. The band broke up in 2004 after three multiplatinum albums.
Bela Bartok
Bela Bartok
Béla Viktor János Bartók (pronounced /ˈbɑrtɒk/ (Wells 1990), Hungarian pronunciation: ) (March 25, 1881 – September 26, 1945) was a Hungarian composer and pianist. He is considered to be one of the greatest composers of the 20th century and is regarded, along with Liszt, as his country's greatest composer (Gillies 2001). Through his collection and analytical study of folk music, he was one of the founders of ethnomusicology.
Franz Schubert
Franz Schubert
Franz Peter Schubert (German pronunciation: ; January 31, 1797 – November 19, 1828) was an Austrian composer. He wrote some 600 Lieder, nine symphonies (including the famous "Unfinished Symphony"), liturgical music, operas, some incidental music, and a large body of chamber and solo piano music. He is particularly noted for his original melodic and harmonic writing.

Schubert was born into a musical family, and received formal musical training through much of his childhood. While Schubert had a close circle of friends and associates who admired his work (amongst them the prominent singer Johann Michael Vogl), wide appreciation of his music during his lifetime was limited at best. He was never able to secure adequate permanent employment, and for most of his career he relied on the support of friends and family. He made some money from published works, and occasionally gave private musical instruction. In the last year of his life he began to receive wider acclaim. He died at the age of 31 of "typhoid fever", a diagnosis which was vague at the time; several scholars suspect the real illness was tertiary syphilis.

Interest in Schubert's work increased dramatically in the decades following his death. Composers like Franz Liszt, Robert Schumann and Felix Mendelssohn discovered, collected, and championed his works in the 19th century, as did musicologist Sir George Grove. Franz Schubert is now widely considered to be one of the greatest composers in the Western tradition.
Sam Cooke
Sam Cooke
Samuel Cook (January 22, 1931 – December 11, 1964), known professionally as Sam Cooke, was an American singer, songwriter, and entrepreneur.

Influential as both a singer and composer, he is commonly known as the King of Soul for his distinctive vocals and importance within popular music. His pioneering contributions to soul music contributed to the rise of Aretha Franklin, Bobby Womack, Al Green, Curtis Mayfield, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and Billy Preston, and popularized the likes of Otis Redding and James Brown. AllMusic biographer Bruce Eder wrote that Cooke was "the inventor of soul music", and possessed "an incredible natural singing voice and a smooth, effortless delivery that has never been surpassed".
Queen
Queen
Queen were an English rock band formed in 1970 in London by guitarist Brian May, lead vocalist Freddie Mercury, and drummer Roger Taylor, with bass guitarist John Deacon completing the lineup the following year. While it is uncertain how many albums the band has sold, estimations range from 130 million to over 300 million albums worldwide.

The band is noted for their musical diversity, multi-layered arrangements, vocal harmonies, and incorporation of audience participation into their live performances. Their 1985 Live Aid performance was voted the best live rock performance of all time in an industry poll.

Queen had moderate success in the early 1970s, with the albums Queen and Queen II, but it was with the release of Sheer Heart Attack in 1974 and A Night at the Opera the following year that the band gained international success. They have released fifteen studio albums, five live albums, and numerous compilation albums. Eighteen of these have reached number one on charts around the world.

Following Mercury's death in 1991 and Deacon's retirement later in the decade, May and Taylor have performed infrequently under the Queen name. Since 2005 they have been collaborating with Paul Rodgers, under the moniker Queen + Paul Rodgers.
The Fray
The Fray
The Fray is a Grammy Award-nominated four-piece piano rock American band from Denver, Colorado. Formed in 2002 by schoolmates Isaac Slade and Joe King, the band released their debut album How to Save a Life in 2005. The band is best known for the song "How to Save a Life", which charted in the top three of the Billboard Hot 100 and was also a top 5 single in Canada, Australia, Ireland, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. The Fray also found national success with the song "Over My Head (Cable Car)", which became a top ten hit in the United States and Canada. How to Save a Life was certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America and was also certified platinum in Australia and New Zealand.

The Fray was formed in 2002, and currently consists of Isaac Slade (vocals and piano), Joe King (guitar and vocals), Dave Welsh (guitar) and Ben Wysocki (drums and percussion). While the band has no official bass guitarist, Dan Lavery of Tonic has been the touring bassist since March 2007. Prior to Dan joining the touring fold, Jimmy Stofer, also a member of the band Hello Kavita, was employed as the band's touring bassist from 2005 through February 2007.
Leonard Cohen
Leonard Cohen
Leonard Norman Cohen, CC, GOQ (born September 21, 1934) is a Canadian singer-songwriter, musician, poet and novelist. Cohen published his first book of poetry in Montreal in 1956 and his first novel in 1963. His work often deals with the exploration of religion, isolation, sexuality and complex interpersonal relationships. Famously reclusive, spending years in a Zen Buddhist monastery, and possessing a persona frequently associated with mystique, he is extremely well-regarded by critics for his literary accomplishments and for producing an output of work of high artistic quality over a five-decade career.

Musically, Cohen's earliest songs (many of which appeared on the 1967 album, Songs of Leonard Cohen) were rooted in European folk music. In the 1970s, his material encompassed pop, cabaret and world music. Since the 1980s his high baritone voice has evolved into lower registers (bass baritone and bass), with accompaniment from a wide variety of instruments and female backing singers.

Over 2,000 renditions of Cohen's songs have been recorded. Cohen has been inducted into both the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame and is also a Companion of the Order of Canada, the nation's highest civilian honour. While giving the speech at Cohen's induction into the American Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on March 10, 2008, Lou Reed described Cohen as belonging to the "highest and most influential echelon of songwriters".
Barbra Streisand
Barbra Streisand
Barbra Streisand (born April 24, 1942) is an American singer, film and theatre actress. She has also achieved some note as a composer, political activist, film producer and director. She has won Academy Awards for Best Actress and Best Original Song as well as multiple Emmy Awards, Grammy Awards, and Golden Globe Awards.

She is one of the most commercially and critically successful female entertainers in modern entertainment history and one of the best selling solo recording artists in the US, with RIAA-certified shipments of over 71 million albums. She is the highest ranking female artist on the Recording Industry Association of America's (RIAA) Top Selling Artists list.

Streisand is a member of the short list of entertainers with the distinction of having won an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar and a Tony award.
Faith Hill
Faith Hill
Audrey Faith Perry McGraw, known professionally as Faith Hill (born September 21, 1967), is an American country and pop singer, known both for her commercial success and her marriage to fellow country star Tim McGraw. Hill's voice (described as both soulful and raspy) and careful song selection have helped her to sell more than 35 million records and accumulate eleven number-one singles on the Country charts.

Hill has been honored by the Country Music Association, the Academy of Country Music, the Grammy Awards, the American Music Awards and the People's Choice Awards. Her Soul2Soul II Tour 2006 with husband McGraw became the highest-grossing country tour of all time. In 2001 she was named one of the "30 Most Powerful Women in America" by Ladies Home Journal.
Vivaldi
Vivaldi
Antonio Lucio Vivaldi (March 4, 1678 – July 28, 1741), nicknamed il Prete Rosso ("The Red Priest"), was a Venetian priest and Baroque music composer, as well as a famous virtuoso violinist; he was born and raised in the Republic of Venice. The Four Seasons, a series of four violin concerti, is his best-known work and a highly popular Baroque piece.

Many of Vivaldi's compositions reflect a flamboyant, almost playful, exuberance. Most of Vivaldi's repertoire was rediscovered only in the first half of the 20th century in Turin and Genoa and was published in the second half. Vivaldi's music is innovative, breaking a consolidated tradition in schemes; he gave brightness to the formal and the rhythmic structure of the concerto, repeatedly looking for harmonic contrasts and innovative melodies and themes. Moreover, Vivaldi was able to compose nonacademic music, particularly meant to be appreciated by the wide public and not only by an intellectual minority. The joyful appearance of his music reveals in this regard a transmissible joy of composing; these are among the causes of the vast popularity of his music. This popularity soon made him famous in other countries such as France which was, at the time, very independent concerning its musical taste.

Vivaldi is considered one of the composers who brought Baroque music (with its typical contrast among heavy sonorities) to evolve into a classical style. Johann Sebastian Bach was deeply influenced by Vivaldi's concertos and arias (recalled in his Johannes Passion, Matthäuspassion, and cantatas). Bach transcribed a number of Vivaldi's concerti for solo keyboard, along with a number for orchestra, including the famous Concerto for Four Violins and Violoncello, Strings and Continuo (RV 580).
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