Popular Musical artists
The Top 30 Jewish Musicians
Christmas classics may vastly out-number Hanukkah hits, but there's been no shortage of Jewish artists that have topped the Billboard charts over the years. With Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of lights, beginning on the evening of Wednesday, November 27, now is the perfect time to celebrate the Jewish musicians who have made the biggest impact on the Hot 100 over the decades. We've gathered the Tribe's biggest Billboard stars on our top 30 countdown.
The ranking is based on actual performance on the weekly Billboard Hot 100 since the chart launched in August 1958. Songs are ranked based on an inverse point system, with weeks at No. 1 earning the greatest value and weeks at No. 100 earning the least. Prior to the Hot 100's implementation in 1991 of enhanced radio and sales information from Nielsen BDS and Nielsen SoundScan, songs had shorter reigns at No. 1 and shorter chart lives. To ensure equitable representation of the biggest hits from the past 55 years, earlier time frames were each weighted to account for the difference between turnover rates from those decades and the turnover rates that have occurred since the advent of Nielsen Music data.
30. David Guetta
The French DJ, whose Moroccan father is Jewish, helped EDM make a mainstream crossover with hit productions such as the Black Eyed Peas' 2009 track "I Gotta Feeling" and his own smash "Turn Me On, " which features Nicki Minaj.
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hits: "Turn Me On" (No. 4, peak date: Feb. 4, 2012); "Without You" feat. Usher (No. 4, peak date: Nov. 26, 2011)
29. Lenny Kravitz
Kravitz, whose dad is Jewish and mom is Christian, fired up a vintage rock sound that earned multiplatinum status on albums such as 1993's "Are You Gonna Go My Way" and 1998's "Five."
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "It Ain't Over 'Til It's Over" (No. 2, peak date: Aug. 24, 1991)
Both Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley of the larger-than-life hard-rock act are Jewish. The group exploded after 1975 live set "Alive!, " bringing songs such as "Rock and Roll All Nite" - and the band's ever-present glam-rock makeup - to an audience of millions. "Beth" brought Kiss to the top 10 of the Hot 100 in 1976; "Forever, " which peaked at No. 8, returned them to the top 10 club in 1990.
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "Beth" (No. 7, peak date: Dec. 4, 1976)
27. Donald Fagen (Steely Dan)
Co-founded by Fagen, Steely Dan stands as of the '70s' most enigmatic groups. The band infused their sharp, sometimes sarcastic rock with jazz chops and studio perfectionism on albums such as key 1975 set "Katy Lied."
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "Rikki Don't Lose That Number" (No. 4, peak date: Aug. 3, 1974)
26. Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits)
Knopfler and Dire Straits hit the top 10 of the Hot 100 with 1979's "Sultans of Swing" but the MTV-era brought the rockers their biggest hit, "Money For Nothing, " which name-checks the music channel and features backing vocals by Sting.
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "Money For Nothing" (No. 1 for 3 weeks, peak date: Sept. 21, 1985)
25. Bob Dylan
Few artists have carried more influence or been more provocative in the rock era than Dylan, born Robert Zimmerman, whose '60s protest songs gave way to an electric epiphany and later, a gospel period as 1979's "Slow Train Coming" marked his conversion to Christianity.
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hits: "Like A Rolling Stone" (No. 2, peak date: Sept. 4, 1965); "Rainy Day Women #12 & #35" (No. 2, peak date: May 21, 1966)
24. The J. Geils Band
A live juggernaut, the hard-touring group (of which four members are Jewish) drew upon soul, blues and rock throughout the '70s. The band's 1981 album "Freeze-Frame, " spawned two singles that reached the top five of the Hot 100: the title song and "Centerfold."
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "Centerfold" (No. 1 for 6 weeks, peak date: Feb. 6, 1982)
23. Eric Carmen
After '70s power-pop beginnings with the Raspberries (and a Hot 100 No. 2 solo hit with "All By Myself), the rocker wrote hits for the "Footloose" and "Dirty Dancing" soundtracks, hitting the top five with his own "Hungry Eyes" in 1988.
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "All By Myself" (No. 2, peak date: March 6, 1976)
22. Lesley Gore
The '60s singer was a successful solo voice during the girl-group era with songs such as "It's My Party" and 1964's "You Don't Own Me" - an influence on decades of independent women to come.
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "It's My Party" (No. 1 for 2 weeks, peak date: June 1, 1963)
21. Carole King
The prolific songwriter rose to fame notching hits for Aretha Franklin, the Crystals and other '60s stars, and she proved her solo chops with 1971's big-selling "Tapestry" and the smash "It's Too Late / I Feel The Earth Move."
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "It's Too Late / I Feel The Earth Move" (No. 1 for 5 weeks, peak date: June 19, 1971)
20. Bette Midler
The Divine Miss M showcased her many talents on stage and screen. Her biggest hit encompassed both talents: 1989's "Wind Beneath My Wings, " which reached No. 1, was from the film "Beaches, " in which the singer also co-starred.
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "Wind Beneath My Wings" (No. 1, peak date: June 10, 1989)
19. David Lee Roth (Van Halen)
Exuberant frontman David Lee Roth singing atop Eddie Van Halen's Olympic-level guitar solos helped the hard-rock act dominate the late '70s/early '80s rock scene, earning a No. 1 hit with "Jump" in 1984.
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "Jump" (No. 1, peak date: Feb. 25, 1984)
18. Chris Stein (Blondie)
New York punk/new wave rockers Blondie wouldn't have been Blondie without both Debbie Harry AND guitarist Chris Stein. From 1979 to 1981, the group scored a whopping four Hot 100 No. 1s including "Heart of Glass, " "Call Me, " "The Tide Is High, " and "Rapture."
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "Call Me" (No. 1 for 6 weeks, peak date: April 19, 1980)
The "Nothing Was The Same" MC, whose mom is Jewish, celebrated his heritage alongside Young Money label boss Lil Wayne in the Bar Mitzvah-themed video for "HYFR" last year. His biggest Hot 100 celebration so far has been his featured spot on Rihanna's No. 1 hit "What's My Name?"
Highest Charting Hot 100 Hit: "What's My Name?" Rihanna feat. Drake (No. 1, peak date: Nov. 20, 2010)