Top 10 Greatest Rock Rebels

artist: misc date: 06/07/2013 category: entertainment
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Top 10 Greatest Rock Rebels
Rock music and rebellious behaviour have always gone hand-in-hand. In some cases it means defying the law or speaking out against the government for a greater good, and in others it's the sheer hedonism that puts some characters into either a history books or a grave.

This week we asked UG readers to nominate and vote for the greatest rock rebels of all time. Thousands of votes later, the results are in. Do you agree with the final top 10?

10. John Lennon (The Beatles)

Disrupting the world of music with the Beatles wasn't enough for Lennon. His solo lyrics were full of rebellious wit and charm, most notably in "Imagine" where he challenges listeners to picture a world without religion or countries - and to some, it makes a lot of sense.

9. Tony Iommi (Black Sabbath)

The Black Sabbath guitarist single-handedly invented the metal riff. No really, it was an injury on one hand where he lost two fingertips that guided his style of playing, which went on to inspire generations of musicians dressed in black ever since.

8. Elvis Presley

Presley's appearance on NBC in the mid 1950s caused a hailstorm of controversy when he halted a performance of "Hound Dog" to grind and gyrate in front of a teenage audience. "Presley is a definite danger to the security of the United States," read an urgent message to the FBI's J. Edgar Hoover. "[His] actions and motions were such as to rouse the sexual passions of teenaged youth."

7. Lemmy (Motorhead)

Born as Ian Fraser Kilmister, Lemmy went on to front the fast and hard-rockin' Motorhead. A 2005 documentary claims he's bedded over 2,000 women, though he's since gone on record to say they inflated his "over 1,000" number. Lemmy claims to drink a bottle of Jack Daniels every day, besides whatever else his tank-like body can manage. But his most rebellious move? Ignoring normal conventions like getting huge warts removed from your face - Lemmy wears his like a badge of honor.

6. Ozzy Osbourne (Black Sabbath)

Christian groups have always targeted Ozzy for his supposedly satanistic influence on teenagers, but he disagrees. "We were never really into the occult," he said in an interview this week. "It was a hobby, until we started getting invites to black-magic rites in cemeteries. Then I got accused of doing this and biting that and there would be people picketing the arena with banners. But if you listen to the lyrics, there's nothing that's pro-black magic or pro-satanic worship."

5. Jim Morrisson (The Doors)

A prominent member of the so-called "27 Club" whose entrants died at the untimely age of 27. On one hand he was charismatic, attractive and a gentleman; on the other he was a hard-drinking womaniser who was arrested for indecent exposure and drink-driving on separate occasions. His confidence was unparalleled , and Morrison proclaimed himself the "King of Orgasmic Rock."

4. Kurt Cobain (Nirvana)

Kurt wanted Nirvana to be the biggest band in the world, but on his own terms. He brought loud, rowdy grunge rock to the mainstream and connected with disparate youth in a way few bands have done before or since, but the resulting success became his downfall and Cobain took his own life in 1994.

3. Dee Snider (Twisted Sister)

A surprise entry at number three. Dee Snider might not look like the third most rebellious rock figure in history, but UG voters are a solid authority on these matters so we'll take their word for it. Unless, of course, it's another attempt to nudge Snider to the top spot, as with our famous Top 10 Rock Chicks poll where he won. Good effort, pranksters!

2. Zach De La Rocha (Rage Against the Machine)

Rage Against the Machine were one of the most politically charged bands in history, and De La Rocha's powerful roar remains an iconic sound. Unconfirmed rumors claim he has links to guerrilla fighters in South America, but one thing is certain: La Rocha will never sell out on his political views, and only signed to a major label to amplify his views to a wider audience.

1. Johnny Cash

The original outlaw musician. Cash's early years were a torrent of drug abuse, and he could have dropped completely off the radar if he didn't comeback with the live "Folsom Prison Blues" which put him back at the top of the charts. In his older years, Cash made a triumphant return with producer Rick Rubin at the helm, and recorded some of his greatest work, including the moving Nine Inch Nails cover "Hurt."

That's the end of our top 10 rock music rebels. Do you agree with the results? Who would you add to the top 10 to improve the list? Let us know in the comments.
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