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Metallica was named one of the most influential heavy metal bands of all time, and is hailed as one of the "big four" of thrash metal, along with Slayer, Anthrax, and Megadeth. The band has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide, including 59 million in the United States. They were ranked by MTV as the third "Greatest Heavy Metal Band in History", fifth on VH1's 100 Greatest artist of hard rock, and number one on VH1's 20 greatest metak band list. On March 7, 1999, they were inducted in the San Francisco's Walk of Fame and the day was announced as the "Official Metallica Day" by Mayor Willie Brown of San Francisco. They were awarded the MTV Icon on 2003 and a tribute concert was held with different artists playing Metallica songs. Some of their songs was also included in the game Guitar Hero III, Guitar Hero World Tour, and Guitar Hero: Metallica, which featured a series of their songs.
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Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" was voted UK's favorite hit of all time in 2002 in a poll conducted by the Guinness World Records British Hit Singles Book, and in 2004, the song was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. According to Guiness Book of World Records, Queen's albums have spent a total of twenty six years on the UK album charts, more than any other musical acts. The band has released a total of eighteen number one albums, eighteen number one singles, and ten number one DVDs worldwide, making them one of the world's best-selling music artists. Queen have sold over 150 million albums, with some estimates in excess of 300 million albums worldwide, including 34.5 million in the United States alone as of 2004. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001, the band is also the only group in which every member has composed more than one chart-topping single, and all four members of Queen were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2003.
Rolling Stone ranked Queen at number 52 on its list of the "100 Greatest Artists of All Time", while ranking Mercury the 18th greatest singer, and May the twenty-sixth greatest guitarist. Queen were named 13th on VH1's 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock list, and in 2010 were ranked 17th on VH1's 100 Greatest Artists of All Time list.
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U2 first received Grammy Awards for The Joshua Tree in 1988, and have won 22 in total, from 34 nominations, more than any other band.These include Best Rock Duo or Group, Album of the Year,Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Rock Album. The British Phonographic Industry has awarded U2 seven BRIT Awards, five of these being for Best International Group. In Ireland, U2 have won 14 Meteor Awards since the awards began in 2001. Other awards include one AMA, four VMAs, eleven Q Awards, two Juno Awards, three NME Awards, and a Golden Globe Award. The band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in early 2005. In 2006, all four members of the band received ASCAP awards for writing the songs, "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For", and "Vertigo".
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Jimmy Page was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in recognition of his charity work in 2005 and Robert Plant was honoured as a Commander of the Order of the British Empire for his services to popular music in 2009. The band are ranked number one on VH1's 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock and Classic Rock's "50 Best Live Acts of All Time". They were awarded an Ivor Novello Award for "Outstanding Contribution to British Music" in 1977, as well as a "Lifetime Achievement Award" at the 42nd Annual Ivor Novello awards ceremony in 1997. The band were honoured with the "Best Live Act" prize for their one-off reunion at the 2008 MOJO Awards, where they were described as the "greatest rock and roll band of all time".
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Presley's rise to national attention in 1956 transformed the field of popular music and had a huge effect on the broader scope of popular culture. As the catalyst for the cultural revolution that was rock and roll, he was central not only to defining it as a musical genre but in making it a touchstone of youth culture and rebellious attitude. With its racially mixed origins—repeatedly affirmed by Presley—rock and roll's occupation of a central position in mainstream American culture facilitated a new acceptance and appreciation of black culture. In this regard, Little Richard said of Presley, "He was an integrator. Elvis was a blessing. They wouldn't let black music through. He opened the door for black music."Al Green agreed: "He broke the ice for all of us."Presley also heralded the vastly expanded reach of celebrity in the era of mass communication: at the age of 21, within a year of his first appearance on American network television, he was one of the most famous people in the world.
Presley's name, image, and voice are instantly recognizable around the globe. He has inspired a legion of impersonators. In polls and surveys, he is recognized as one of the most important popular music artists and influential Americans."Elvis Presley is the greatest cultural force in the twentieth century", said composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein. "He introduced the beat to everything and he changed everything—music, language, clothes. It's a whole new social revolution—the sixties came from it." Bob Dylan described the sensation of first hearing Presley as "like busting out of jail".
A New York Times editorial on the 25th anniversary of Presley's death observed, "All the talentless impersonators and appalling black velvet paintings on display can make him seem little more than a perverse and distant memory. But before Elvis was camp, he was its opposite: a genuine cultural force. ... Elvis's breakthroughs are underappreciated because in this rock-and-roll age, his hard-rocking music and sultry style have triumphed so completely."Not only Presley's achievements, but his failings as well, are seen by some cultural observers as adding to the power of his legacy, as in this description by Greil Marcus:
Elvis Presley is a supreme figure in American life, one whose presence, no matter how banal or predictable, brooks no real comparisons. ... The cultural range of his music has expanded to the point where it includes not only the hits of the day, but also patriotic recitals, pure country gospel, and really dirty blues. ... Elvis has emerged as a great artist, a great rocker, a great purveyor of schlock, a great heart throb, a great bore, a great symbol of potency, a great ham, a great nice person, and, yes, a great American.
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Dylan dropped out of college at the end of his freshman year. In January 1961, he traveled to New York City, hoping to perform there and visit his musical idol Woody Guthrie, who was seriously ill with Huntington's Disease in Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital. Guthrie had been a revelation to Dylan and was the biggest influence on his early performances. Describing Guthrie's impact on him, Dylan later wrote: "The songs themselves had the infinite sweep of humanity in them ... [He] was the true voice of the American spirit. I said to myself I was going to be Guthrie's greatest disciple."As well as visiting Guthrie in the hospital, Dylan befriended Guthrie's acolyte Ramblin' Jack Elliott. Much of Guthrie's repertoire was actually channeled through Elliott, and Dylan paid tribute to Elliott in Chronicles (2004)
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The Beatles' influence on popular culture was—and remains—immense. Former Rolling Stone associate editor Robert Greenfield compares the band to Picasso as "artists who broke through the constraints of their time period to come up with something that was unique and original.... [I]n the form of popular music, no one will ever be more revolutionary, more creative and more distinctive". From the 1920s, the United States had dominated popular entertainment culture throughout much of the world, via Hollywood movies, jazz, the music of Broadway and Tin Pan Alley and, later, the rock and roll that first emerged in Memphis, Tennessee. The Beatles not only sparked the British Invasion of the US, they became a globally influential phenomenon as well.
Their musical innovations and commercial success inspired musicians worldwide.Many artists have acknowledged their influence and enjoyed chart success with covers of their songs. On radio, their arrival marked the beginning of a new era; programme director Rick Sklar of New York's WABC went so far as to forbid his DJs from playing any "pre-Beatles" music. The Beatles helped to redefine the LP as something more than just a few hits padded out with "filler", and they were primary innovators of the modern music video. The Shea Stadium show with which they opened their 1965 North American tour attracted an estimated 55,600 people, then the largest audience in concert history; Spitz describes the event as a "major breakthrough...a giant step toward reshaping the concert business." Emulation of their clothing and especially their hairstyles, which became a mark of rebellion, had a global impact on fashion, wrote Gould.
According to Gould, the band changed the way people listened to popular music and experienced its role in their lives. From what began as the Beatlemania fad, the group grew to be perceived by many fans and cultural observers as an embodiment of the ideals shared by the era's sociocultural revolutions. As icons of the 1960s counterculture, Gould continues, they became a catalyst for bohemianism and activism in various social and political arenas, fuelling movements such as women's liberation, gay liberation and environmentalism. According to Peter Lavezzoli, after the "more popular than Jesus" controversy in 1966, all four Beatles felt considerable pressure to say the right things and "began a concerted effort to spread a message of wisdom and higher consciousness."
The Beatles are the best-selling band in history; EMI Records estimate that they have sold over one billion units around the world. They have had more number one albums on the British charts, 15, and sold more singles in the UK, 21.9 million, than any other act. They ranked number one in Billboard magazine's list of the all-time most successful Hot 100 artists, released in 2008 to celebrate the US singles chart's fiftieth anniversary. As of 2012, they hold the record for most number one hits on the Hot 100 chart with 20, and the Recording Industry Association of America certifies that the group have sold 177 million units in the US, more than any other artist. They were collectively included in Timemagazine's compilation of the 20th century's 100 most influential people.