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Taking Back The Sound: 5 Legendary Black Rock Stars

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Jimi Hendrix was a Black rock icon, one of the greatest guitarist everWith the dominance of hip-hop & R&B over mainstream culture, it can be pretty easy for music lovers to forget the contributions African-Americans have made to other genres. Most notably rock music, which during its prime in the 1950s was an amalgamation of other Black genres like blues, jazz and gospel. Rock now remains a white-dominated household, but here are five legendary Black rock artists who’s strummed guitars and energy will radiate forevermore. —Roenny Hernandez

Jimi Hendrix

Arguably the best electric guitarist of all time, the legend began to play the guitar at the young age of 15, and ever since has created some of the best sounds any guitarist has strummed to date. The instrumentalist has managed to put out four classic records, and has been awarded for his musical legacy by Billboard and Rolling Stones, remaining one of the few musicians alongside Tupac that has put out more records posthumously than while alive.

OutKast member Andre 3000 will be starring as Hendrix in the biopic All is By My Side set to debut this spring. When it comes to rock, Prince is still the baddest


This Minneapolis-based rocker has been composing hits since the 1970s. The flamboyant performer first made a splash in the scene with hits like “Why you Treat Me So Bad?” and solidified his career with the release of Purple Rain in the mid-80s. Prince has been most respected for his creative endeavors of combining rock, with his explicit sexual lyrics and other elements of funk/dance music. Ever since, Prince has kept a consistency of releasing never-failing albums and is still blessing the stage around the world.

Read the top 5 reasons why you should be excited for Prince this year Tina Turner is the queen of rock

Tina Turner

We couldn't talk about legendary rock artists without mentioning the queen herself. The Southern-bred hit machine is infamously known for her controversial relationship with Ike Turner, but in the words of the queen herself: What’s Love Got to do with it? Ms.Turner stands in the shadow of no man with the multi-decade long career producing classic hits like “River Deep – Mountain High” and releasing a collection of over ten albums since the world fell head-over-heels for her in the 1960’s.

Watch Tina and legend in-the-making Beyoncé tear up the 2008 Grammy Awards:

Slash is still a heavyweight in rock


Saul Hudson, better known as guitarist Slash, has been all guns blazing ever since his debut with Guns N’ Roses in the late 1980’s. Beyond their collective success, the British-American rocker has worked on his solo projects, like forming his own group Velvet Revolver, which solidified him as a solo performer. In 2010 he released his first Solo self-titled album, and followed-up in 2012 with Apocalyptic Love. He clearly isn't slowing down anytime soon; check out his latest project, as he now ventures into film production. Chuck Berry is a true rock pioneer

Chuck Berry

Here is an original pioneer who, like Hendrix, has paved the way for many performers. Chuck Berry fathered the rock sound as its primary creator in the 1950’s. The rock and roller never achieved as much fame as counterparts like Elvis Presley (who many feel had jacked his style) primarily due to his ethnicity in a time when the Civil Rights Era was just beginning to take place and many racial sentiments prevented black artists from holding the spotlight. Chuck proved to have been no less talented however, with hits like “Maybellene” and “Roll over Beethoven” that are still classics and a testament to credit the sound that still is topping today’s charts.

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