The 50 Greatest Album Covers of All Time (2023)

Table of Contents
50. Taylor Swift, ‘1989’ (2014) 49. Young Thug, ‘Jeffery’ (2016) 48. Lady Gaga, ‘The Fame Monster’ (2009) 47. Janet Jackson, ‘Rhythm Nation 1814’ (1989) 46. Funkadelic, ‘Maggot Brain’ (1971) 45. Cardi B, Invasion of Privacy (2018) 44. Whitney Houston, ‘Whitney Houston’ (1985) 43. Fleetwood Mac, ‘Rumours’ (1977) 42. Nicki Minaj, ‘The Pinkprint’ (2014) 41. No Doubt, ‘Tragic Kingdom’ (1995) 40. Beyonce, ‘Beyonce’ (2013) 39. Johnny Cash, ‘American IV: The Man Comes Around’ (2002) 38. Ariana Grande, Sweetener (2018) 37. Madonna, ‘True Blue’ (1986) 36. Joni Mitchell, ‘Hejira’ (1976) 35. Metallica, ‘Master of Puppets’ (1986) 34. The Slits, ‘Cut’ (1979) 33. Kanye West, ‘My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy’ (2010) 32. Lizzo, Cuz I Love You (2019) 31. Sex Pistols, ‘Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols’ (1977) 30. FKA Twigs, ‘LP1’ (2014) 29. Aretha Franklin, ‘I Never Loved a Man the Way I Loved You’ (1967) 28. Bruce Springsteen, ‘Born in the U.S.A.’ (1984) 27. Janis Joplin, ‘Pearl’ (1971) 26. Grace Jones, ‘Island Life’ (1985) 25. David Bowie, ‘Aladdin Sane’ (1973) 24. The Rolling Stones, ‘Sticky Fingers’ (1971) 23. Miles Davis, ‘Bitches Brew’ (1969) 22. Drake, If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late (2015) 21. Duran Duran, ‘Rio’ (1982) 20. Joy Division, ‘Unknown Pleasures’ (1979) 19. Judas Priest, ‘British Steel’ (1980) 18. The Roots, ‘Things Fall Apart’ (1999) 17. Santana, ‘Abraxas’ (1970) 16. The Clash, ‘London Calling’ (1979) 15. Nas, ‘Illmatic’ (1994) 14. Blink-182, ‘Enema of the State’ (1999) 13. Kendrick Lamar, To Pimp a Butterfly (2015) 12. Hole, ‘Live Through This’ (1994) 11. The Beatles, ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ (1967) 10. Elvis Presley, ‘Elvis Presley’ (1956) 9. Public Enemy, ‘Fear of a Black Planet’ (1990) 8. Cyndi Lauper, ‘She’s So Unusual’ (1983) 7. Nirvana, ‘Nevermind’ (1991) 6. Pink Floyd, ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ (1973) 5. Led Zeppelin, ‘Led Zeppelin’ (1969) 4. The Notorious B.I.G., ‘Ready to Die’ (1994) 3. Patti Smith, ‘Horses’ (1975) 2. The Beatles, ‘Abbey Road’ (1969) 1. The Velvet Underground and Nico, ‘The Velvet Underground & Nico’ (1967) FAQs Videos

Music isn’t just about the music. Sure, the sounds are certainly the most essential element, but you can’t ignore the role of cover art in making a brilliant album. From the fold-out gatefolds of the vinyl era to pull-out liner notes in CD jewel cases to the small icon on a digital player, cover art has changed over the years, but it still defines how we look at a particular album. Photographic portraits, paintings, collages — all these and more are on Billboard‘s list of the 50 greatest album covers of all time, reaching back to Elvis Presley’s self-titled debut to and going up to present day.

  • 50. Taylor Swift, ‘1989’ (2014)

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    Taylor Swift’s fifth studio album 1989 was a departure for the singer, so it only makes sense that thecover broke with tradition as well. Shaped as a Polaroid photo from the era, Swift’s face is cut off, highlighting an ’80s sweatshirt while evoking memories of a different time. The cover was instantly replicated all over the Internet, with thousands of fans putting their own spin on various homages to what will likely become one of the most identifiable works of her career.

  • 49. Young Thug, ‘Jeffery’ (2016)

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    Few rappers played more convincingly or compellingly with either identity or gender over the course of the 2010s as Young Thug. So no surprise that his best-remembered album cover was this Garfield Lamond-photographed shot of a face-covered Thug in a long, flowing dress designed by Alessandro Trincone for hisJefferyproject — an image that would’ve been unthinkable in hip-hop decades earlier, and unforgettable for decades after.

  • 48. Lady Gaga, ‘The Fame Monster’ (2009)

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    Portrait shots can be iconic when done just right, and if there’s one artist who knows about iconic imagery, it’s Lady Gaga. For the re-release of her debut The Fame, Mother Monster — framed by a white wig — went black and white, rocking a shiny, angular coat that shrouded the lower half of her face.

  • 47. Janet Jackson, ‘Rhythm Nation 1814’ (1989)

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    Eschewing a friendly, fun image more conducive to ’80s pop chart success, Janet Jackson adopted a militaristic tone for her instantly iconic black-and-white Rhythm Nation 1814 cover art. With Janet’s face only partially emerging from the shadows and her body clad in a nondescript soldier’s uniform, the artwork made label execs uneasy, but in the end, she was right. This cover photo perfectly complements the increased social consciousness of the album, and it would go on to become her most recognizable album art.

  • 46. Funkadelic, ‘Maggot Brain’ (1971)

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    A screaming Barbara Cheeseborough (who was Essence’s first cover model) possesses the “maggot brain” in question on the cover of Parliament’s classic 1971 album of the same name. Buried up to her neck, the real twist comes when you turn the album over — where her head is on the front, there’s a skull on the back.

  • 45. Cardi B, Invasion of Privacy (2018)

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    Brash, bold, badass and whatever other “B” words generally applied to Cardi B’s rise to prominence in 2017 also worked for the cover of her 2018 debut LP,Invasion of Privacy. Captured by photographer Jora Frantzis, Cardi sneers in cat-eyes sunglasses, mustard-blonde hair and a checkered long-sleeve coat — dazzling and unignorable, just as the accompanying album would soon prove to be on theBillboardcharts.

  • 44. Whitney Houston, ‘Whitney Houston’ (1985)

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    Although he’s best (worst?) remembered for taking nude photos of a veryunderage Brooke Shields, Garry Gross’ cover photo for Whitney Houston’s self-titled debut stands out as a beautifully less-is-more image in the visually explosive MTV era. Wearing a simple, timeless toga with pearls, she announced herself to the world as a class act whose elegant ferocity went beyond any fashion trend.

  • 43. Fleetwood Mac, ‘Rumours’ (1977)

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    Oddly enough, only 40 percent of Fleetwood Mac’s then-lineup is featured on the cover to their biggest selling album, Rumours. Only the band’s Stevie Nicks (caught mid-swirl with a shawl flowing behind her) and Mick Fleetwood (with a pair of toilet-chain balls dangling between his legs) are pictured, photographed by Herbert W. Worthington. The album was designed by Desmond Strobel, while Worthington conceived the cover concept with the band.

    (Video) Top 50 Most Iconic Album Covers Of All Time

  • 42. Nicki Minaj, ‘The Pinkprint’ (2014)

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    Nicki Minaj has always embraced her inner weirdo, extending her limbs on the cover of her debut album Pink Friday and splashing her face with paint for its sequel. But for The Pinkprint, the Harajuku Barbie tapped Kanye’s Donda for an image that borderson high art without shedding her identity, showing a fingerprint crushed into pink powder.

  • 41. No Doubt, ‘Tragic Kingdom’ (1995)

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    In the wake of Seattle grunge and rise of rap, No Doubt arrived in the mainstream crosshairs with the ska-inflected Tragic Kingdom, an album equal parts sheen and punk-lite ferocity. The cover echoes its content: there’s the pretty — lead singer Gwen Stefani channels ‘50s pinup poster girl imagery — and the ugly, a wilting tree with rotting oranges and flies circling the bruised fruit.

  • 40. Beyonce, ‘Beyonce’ (2013)

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    The lasting significance of the cover art for Beyoncé’s 2013surprise releaseBeyoncéshould come as no surprise at all. Not just because anything the ***Flawless female does becomes instantly iconic, but because the simple pink knockout typeface over a plain black background is what contemporary design dreams are made of. The color-font combo became a classic and found its way to shirts, mugs and memes the world over.

  • 39. Johnny Cash, ‘American IV: The Man Comes Around’ (2002)

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    This black-and-white cover is made all the more heartbreaking given that this was Cash’s final album before he died less than a year after its release. This was the perfect artwork for the Man in Black’s fade to black.

  • 38. Ariana Grande, Sweetener (2018)

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    It wouldn’t be too much of an exaggeration to say that Ariana Grande’s entire world got turned upside down in the three years in between 2015’sDangerous Womanand its2018 follow-up. So when Ariana appeared Spiderman-style on the cover ofSweetener, it felt right — and the sweetly unassuming confusion of the imagery also fit the musical change-up of the thoughtful, delirious, R&B-heavy set it accompanied beautifully.

  • 37. Madonna, ‘True Blue’ (1986)

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    Madonna’s third studio album, True Blue, was covered by a striking image of the diva photographed by celebrated photographer Herb Ritts. (He would later re-team with Madonna for both the You Can Dance and Like a Prayer covers.) Before his death in 2002, Ritts would also direct a number of music videos — including Madonna’s“Cherish”— and earn an MTV Video Music Award nomination.

  • 36. Joni Mitchell, ‘Hejira’ (1976)

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    Joni Mitchell’s streak of classics continued with the 1976 folk-jazz album Hejira, which boasted her best artwork. Set against Wisconsin’s Lake Mendota after an ice storm, winter-clad Mitchell stares down the viewer as an open highway extends mysteriously into her person (via a superimposed photo), suggesting the freedom and limitless possibilities contained within her music.

  • 35. Metallica, ‘Master of Puppets’ (1986)

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    Unlike metal bands concerned with Satan and the occult, Metallica commented on real-life evil with their masterful Master of Puppets album cover. Seemingly endless rows of dead soldiers extend into the blood-red horizon, with each grave connected to a string pulled by a faceless master in the sky. It’s the visualization of Black Sabbath’s similarly political “War Pigs.”

  • 34. The Slits, ‘Cut’ (1979)

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    Though technically, yes, it’s an image of three topless women caked in mud, there’s nothing remotely sexualized about this album cover. Instead, the three main women of post-punk outfit The Slits are portrayed as unflinching tribal warrior women. As Viv Albertine later told The Guardian, “We knew, since we had no clothes on, that we had to lookconfrontational and hard. We didn’t want to be inviting the male gaze.” It’s safe to say they succeeded.

  • 33. Kanye West, ‘My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy’ (2010)

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    After a handful of album covers featuring the Dropout Bear and a simple, Kaws-designed image for 808s & Heartbreak, Kanye West transitioned into high-concept art for My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. Teaming with artist George Condo for a series of paintings, the rapper matched the widescreen brilliance of the album’s music with boundary-cracking art, including a controversial image of a demonic West being straddled by a nude angel.

    (Video) The 50 Greatest Album Covers of All Time

  • 32. Lizzo, Cuz I Love You (2019)

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    If anyone found Lizzo to be a disruptive presence in the music mainstream as a plus-sized woman of color, she made it extremely clear with theCuz I Love Youcover that she wasn’t about to let that deter her one bit. Posing entirely nude on an otherwise blank album cover, she presented herself as the pop superstar she already knew herself to be — and that the rest of the world would very soon recognize her as.

  • 31. Sex Pistols, ‘Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols’ (1977)

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    Just as lyrics to “God Save the Queen” had British authorities up in arms, the word “Bollocks” strewn across the album’s cover prompted mass censorship. It didn’t stick, since this burst of punk artwork quickly became iconic. The album art controversy even fed into its advertising campaign, with some ads reading, “The album will last. The sleeve may not.”

  • 30. FKA Twigs, ‘LP1’ (2014)

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    Leading up to her debut album, the genre-blurring FKA Twigs made a name for herself on stunning visuals: music videos, EP covers, and even magazine shoots. This porcelain-sheen headshot was an exquisite introduction to the wonder of her music.

  • 29. Aretha Franklin, ‘I Never Loved a Man the Way I Loved You’ (1967)

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    Aretha Franklin’s best album, I Never Loved a Man the Way I Loved You, shows her dressed in an exceedingly elegant gown with a gauzy old Hollywood haze bordering the photo. But it’s her expression — and the canted angle of the photo — that make this so important. In 1967, representation of black women in pop culture was political whether intentionally or not, and Aretha’s quiet, un-posed album cover speaks volumes. Unlike many female pop stars of the era, she doesn’t smile invitingly at the viewer, attempting to please or impress or even seduce —she simply exists, exuding confidence and a quiet sense of majesty.

  • 28. Bruce Springsteen, ‘Born in the U.S.A.’ (1984)

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    Everything about Springsteen’s persona is conveyed in this one image. There’s the Americanflag backdrop, the worn-in jeans, the white T-shirt, and red hat hanging out of his back pocket after a long day of work. The Boss is the epitome of blue collar America on this unforgettable album cover.

  • 27. Janis Joplin, ‘Pearl’ (1971)

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    Janis Joplin’s final album, released after her death at age 27, features one of the era’s most iconic images. Joplin drapes herself over a Victoria Era loveseat, decked out in eye-catching San Francisco hippie garb, cradling a drink and a huge smile. The image is bittersweet: Alcohol reportedly played a role in Joplin’s fatal heroin overdose, yet her radiant smile seems to transcend the sadness of the impending tragedy.

  • 26. Grace Jones, ‘Island Life’ (1985)

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    Grace Jones and frequent collaborator Jean-Paul Goude (yes, the man who tried to “break the Internet” with a nude Kim Kardashian) partnered to create one of the decade’s most memorable covers for 1985’s Island Life. Featuring a nearly nude Jones in a seemingly superhuman pose, the art was actually a composite of the singer in a series of different poses, cut-and-pasted together for an unforgettable result.

  • 25. David Bowie, ‘Aladdin Sane’ (1973)

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    While this isn’t the album that introduced the world to Bowie’s space-man alter ego, when music fans think of Ziggy Stardust, this is the image they see. The lightning-bolt eye makeup, the red mullet — this is quintessential Bowie.

  • 24. The Rolling Stones, ‘Sticky Fingers’ (1971)

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    In 1969, artist Andy Warhol was approached by the Rolling Stones to create the cover art for their upcoming greatest hits album, Through the Past, Darkly (Big Hits Vol. 2). Whatever Warhol created for the set was seemingly never used, but his concept of employing a working zipper on an album cover came to fruition on the cover of Sticky Fingers. With photographs by Warhol (focused on the bulging jeans of a still-unidentified male model) and graphic design by Craig Braun, the set would earn a Grammy Award nomination for best album cover.

  • 23. Miles Davis, ‘Bitches Brew’ (1969)

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    The surrealist art for Bitches Brew was created by German painter Mati Klarwein, who was also responsible for the art on Santana’s Abraxas, another entry on this list. A study in contrasts, the full gatefold cover shows a modified negative rendition of the more familiar front cover — together, they embody Davis’ searching musical manifesto.

    (Video) Top 30 Greatest Album Covers of all time

  • 22. Drake, If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late (2015)

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    The title of Drake’s 2015 “mixtape” certainly proved apt, as the unexpected release kicked off one of his most commercially dominant years of the 2010s, cementing him as a superstar on the level of any other contemporary top 40 idol. But itsminimalist cover art was similarly impactful, becoming one of the first such images to become a Twitter phenomenon in its own right, as fans substituted their own scrawled messages into its format and made it an unmissable mid-’10s music meme.

  • 21. Duran Duran, ‘Rio’ (1982)

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    Artist Patrick Nagel was commissioned by Duran Duran’s then-manager, Paul Berrow, to create the cover art for the band’s Rio album. The group’s bassist, John Taylor, wrote in his autobiography In the Pleasure Groove: Love, Death and Duran Duran, that when they received the “massive” “five foot by five foot” canvas, he thought, “there she was, the girl who was dancing on the sand” (a reference to the lyrics of the set’s title track).

  • 20. Joy Division, ‘Unknown Pleasures’ (1979)

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    Designer Peter Saville’s decision to go with pulsar radio waves is right up there with Martin Hannett’s spellbinding production in making this album a goth classic. Disney’s Mickey Mouse shirt parody four decades later only reaffirmed its legend.

  • 19. Judas Priest, ‘British Steel’ (1980)

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    One of metal’s most iconic album covers, Judas Priest’s British Steel — depicting a hand emerging from studded leather holding a razor blade — is also one of its most fascinating. How is the hand holding the blade without bleeding? Does this cover capture the moment just before the blood bursts out and covers the blade? While many metal bands would compete to out-gross each other throughout the rest of the ’80s, this simple, menacing image outlives them all.

  • 18. The Roots, ‘Things Fall Apart’ (1999)

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    As art director Kenny Gravallis put it, “The concept of ‘visual failure in society’ on the cover of an album called Things Fall Apart just made sense.” One of five original covers, the image that stuck was a Civil Rights-era photo of two black teenagers running from police in riot gear in Bedford-Stuyvesant — a powerful image of the inequality the group was trying to address through their music.

  • 17. Santana, ‘Abraxas’ (1970)

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    Taken from a Mati Klarwein painting (he also did the cover for Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew), the cover for Santana’s Abraxas album is a gorgeously surreal psychedelic feast for the eyes. Inspired by the Biblical story of the Annunciation, this painting gives us a naked, black Virgin Mary and a red angel with a conga between her legs. One of the priestesseson the back cover also appears on the back cover of his Bitches Brew art.

  • 16. The Clash, ‘London Calling’ (1979)

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    The London Calling cover simultaneously pays tribute to Elvis Presley while also blowing up his version of rock n’ roll. The pink-and-green title letters mimic Presley’s 1956 self-titled album cover, but the King probably never smashed a bass guitar on stage.

  • 15. Nas, ‘Illmatic’ (1994)

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    The image of seven-year-old Nas superimposed over a Danny Clinch photo of the rapper’s native Queensbridge housing projects has been burned into many a hip-hop hed’s memory. “The projects used to be my world,” he told MTV of the meaning behind the Aimee Macauley-designed art in 1994, “until I educated myself to see there’s more out there.”

  • 14. Blink-182, ‘Enema of the State’ (1999)

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    For the cover of their mainstream breakthrough LP, Blink-182 enlisted adult actress Janine Lindemulder to put a highly suggestive — and literal — spin on the album title. It’s an image that was burned into the mind of every TRL viewer, one that became instantly iconic.

  • 13. Kendrick Lamar, To Pimp a Butterfly (2015)

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    The closest incendiary equivalent the 21st century has produced to Sly & The Family Stone’s original bullet-hole-filled American flag cover for 1971’sThere’s a Riot Goin’ On. The image is of a celebratory photo of dozens of mostly shirtless black men rejoicing in front of the White House — with a white judge, gavel in hand, lying motionlessat the bottom of the photograph. Confrontational, exciting, joyful, disturbing and timely, it was as provocative and evocative a cover as one of the best rap albums of the last decade could ask for.

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  • 12. Hole, ‘Live Through This’ (1994)

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    The most iconic grunge album cover after Nirvana’s Nevermind, Hole’s Live Through This depicts a sobbing beauty queen with mascara running down her face. The desperation on the woman’s face reveals the tragic self-doubt fueling the beauty industry, but she’s not made to look entirely ridiculous —we’re still forced to view her as a human instead of a broad parody of an archetype. This is the rare satiric album cover that still manages to be empathetic.

  • 11. The Beatles, ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ (1967)

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    Where to begin with this album cover? The image features the Beatles, in their Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band military getups, standing in front of dozens of celebrities, including Marilyn Monroe, Bob Dylan, Marlon Brando and Sonny Liston, as well as wax figures of themselves. While listeners try to discern the secret meaning of the high-minded music, they can also try to identifythe 60-plus faces on the crowded cover.

  • 10. Elvis Presley, ‘Elvis Presley’ (1956)

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    Elvis knew what a killer combo green and neon pink were some 20 years before the Clash copped the cover style for London Calling. There’s something about that mid-strum snapshot of a vocal howl that gets us every time — it visually introduced rock n’ roll to an unsuspecting America even before the needle hit the vinyl.

  • 9. Public Enemy, ‘Fear of a Black Planet’ (1990)

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    A nod to the Afrofuturism of artists like SunRa, the artwork for Fear of a Black Planet was conceived by Chuck D, who imagined the titular black planet eclipsing earth. Appropriately, given the interplanetary concept, the group hired NASA illustrator B.E. Johnson to draw the final design.

  • 8. Cyndi Lauper, ‘She’s So Unusual’ (1983)

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    Cyndi Lauper informed the world that “Girls Just Want To Have Fun” on her classic 1983 debut, and one look at the cover of She’s So Unusual would convert any non-believer. Photographed by Annie Leibovitz in front of a derelict wax museum in Coney Island, Lauper strikes a willfully weird pose wearing a second-hand prom dress, fishnets and a mish-mash of clashing jewelry. Tellingly, her heels are kicked off to the side. More so than any album cover from a female pop queen, this remains the ultimate rallying cry to stay strangeand love yourself for it.

  • 7. Nirvana, ‘Nevermind’ (1991)

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    One of the most recognizable album covers of all time features an underwater naked baby reaching for a dollar bill on a string. It’s a sad statement about the values our society passes on to our youth — and oh, btw, that baby is a twenty-something man now.

  • 6. Pink Floyd, ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ (1973)

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    This simple art says so much. The light going through a prism and coming out as a rainbow was meant to convey the band’s stage lighting and the album’s lyrics. And, as evidenced by the number of t-shirts bearing this image today, the prism has become synonymous with Floyd itself.

  • 5. Led Zeppelin, ‘Led Zeppelin’ (1969)

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    Somehow the image of a burning airship erupting into flames just moments before plummeting to the ground and claiming dozens of lives is the perfect visual introduction to Led Zeppelin’s debut masterpiece. Whether you see it as an indication of the explosive music within the sleeve, or a heartless shock tactic capitalizing on a real-life tragedy, this black-and-white rendering of the Hinderburg disaster has become of the most indelible images in hard rock.

  • 4. The Notorious B.I.G., ‘Ready to Die’ (1994)

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    The innocence of a baby-sized Biggie on the cover of his classic debut Ready to Die vastly contradicted the content contained inside. But that was the point: the album traced his life from beginning to a mournful, foreshadowing end, using the innocence of a child to illustrate how a cruel world imprints on unmolded minds.

  • 3. Patti Smith, ‘Horses’ (1975)

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    Aside from the critical acclaim for Smith’s beat poetry-infused lyrics mixed with punk rock,Horses’cover is a visual masterpiece. Photographed by close friend and fellow artistRobert Mapplethorpe, the photo of Smith was considered by critic Camille Paglia asone of the greatest photographs ever taken of a woman. With Smith describing her look as Sinatra-like, all elements combined to create one of the greatest album covers (and rock photographs) ever.

    (Video) The 50 Greatest Album Covers of All Time

  • 2. The Beatles, ‘Abbey Road’ (1969)

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    Does any other album cover on this list stop traffic? It’s a testament to the lasting impression of this street-crossing photo that hundreds of fans re-create it every day outside Abbey Road Studios. There’s even a webcam live feed of the attraction. Another notable fact: It’s the first Beatles cover that doesn’t feature the band’s name or album title.

  • 1. The Velvet Underground and Nico, ‘The Velvet Underground & Nico’ (1967)

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    This iconic Andy Warhol banana picture with “peel slowly and see” instructions is a great cover on its own, but the original version actually included a peel-off sticker revealing a flesh-colored banana beneath. A perfect combination of art,music and humor.


The 50 Greatest Album Covers of All Time? ›

Ever wanted to Shazam an album cover? Glitch's new Record Player app, designed by Patrick Weaver, might do the trick. By connecting the Google Cloud Vision API and the Spotify API, the Record Player app recognizes cover art and matches it with the album on the streaming service.

How do you find a song when you only know the album cover? ›

Ever wanted to Shazam an album cover? Glitch's new Record Player app, designed by Patrick Weaver, might do the trick. By connecting the Google Cloud Vision API and the Spotify API, the Record Player app recognizes cover art and matches it with the album on the streaming service.

Who was the pop artist that created of 50 album covers? ›

Prior to his death in 1987, Warhol had designed more than 50 album covers. He was heavily influenced by famous musicians and the music industry, and vice versa. At the young age of 21 years old, Andy Warhol designed his first ever album cover in 1949 for Mexican composer, conductor and music theorist, Carlos Chávez.

Is there an app to identify album covers? ›

The Shazam of album art is ideal for diligent crate diggers

The new app is called Record Player and it was designed with Glitch by Patrick Weaver. The app utilizes Google Cloud Vision API and the Spotify API to automatically recognize album cover artwork and direct you to the album on Spotify.

Who designed Rolling Stones album covers? ›

Craig Braun was the go-to designer of innovative album covers in the 1960s and '70s. His work includes the original concept art of the working Andy Warhol zipper on the Rolling Stones' album “Sticky Fingers.” Craig Braun was the go-to designer of innovative album covers in the 1960s and '70s.

Can Shazam recognize covers? ›

Tap the notification to open the song's track screen in Shazam. Touch and hold the notification to display the song's cover art, then tap the cover art to open the song's track screen in Shazam (or tap Listen on Apple Music to open the song in Apple Music).

How can I find a song with no information? ›

Use Shazam or MusicID.

If you've got Shazam on your phone and hear a song you can't identify and don't know anything about, activate the app and hold it toward the audio source and wait for a result. You can also use MusicID or Google Assistant to identify songs that are playing in your environment.

What was the first album cover art? ›

33 1/3 RPM Records, 1948

The earliest work of album art came about in 1938, when Columbia Records hired its first art director, Alex Steinweiss. Steinweiss' illustrated covers for musicians like Beethoven led to a huge soar in sales, and in turn began the tradition of decorated album covers that we know today.

Is it legal to print album covers? ›

Book covers, album covers, and movie covers are copyrightable. However, fair use, a provision of U.S. copyright law, gives users the right to use copyrighted material without permission under certain circumstances. If a use is fair, the user need not notify or seek permission from the copyright holder.

What album covers have a banana? ›

The album cover for The Velvet Underground & Nico is recognizable for featuring a Warhol print of a banana. Early copies of the album invited the owner to "Peel slowly and see", and peeling back the banana skin revealed a flesh-colored banana underneath.

How do I find the artist of an album cover? ›

Craigslist. Surprisingly, if you hit up the “community > artists” section of Craigslist, you can find some artists in your area who have a fair amount of talent. You can usually preview their work as well, and you might even find someone who is just starting out in the professional world, but still has a lot of talent.

Who had the most Rolling Stone covers? ›

The United States cover of Rolling Stone magazine has featured various celebrities. Many are musicians, but politicians, actors, comedians, sports figures, and fictional characters are also sometimes included. The Beatles, as individuals or as the band, have appeared over 30 times.

Who has the most Rolling Stone covers? ›

Over the years Mick Jagger, John Lennon and Paul McCartney have each graced the cover 17 times, either by themselves or with their band mates or spouses; Bob Dylan has appeared 13 times and Bruce Springsteen 11.

Who did the Rolling Stones steal music from? ›

Blues pioneers such as Howlin' Wolf, John Lee Hooker, Elmore James, Muddy Waters, Chuck Berry, Big Bill Broonzy, and Robert Johnson had a huge impact on the young Rolling Stones, influencing Richards' guitar licks and Mick Jagger's vocals and songwriting.

Can Shazam hear your phone? ›

Shazam needs access to the microphone on your device to hear what you're listening to. On iPhone or iPad, open Settings, scroll down to the installed apps, tap Shazam, then turn on Microphone. If you don't see an option for Microphone, you might have restrictions turned on for Privacy settings.

Can Shazam understand humming? ›

Answer: Yes, there are a few apps that can identify a song by humming. You can try Shazam, Musixmatch, or SoundHound.

How do you remember a song that is stuck in your head? ›

Starting a conversation, listening to talk radio or simply listening to another song can help distract people from their earworms. The reason behind this method is similar to Beaman's gum chewing scenario. Listening to other music or talk, Jakubowski said, uses similar brain resources as the earworm.

How do you hum a song to find out the name? ›

Ask Google Assistant to name a song

Ask "What's this song?" Play a song or hum, whistle, or sing the melody of a song. Hum, whistle, or sing: Google Assistant will identify potential matches for the song. Select one of them to view the Search results page and listen to the song, read lyrics, or view the music video.

How do I find a song with humming? ›

  1. On your iPhone or iPad, open the Google app .
  2. In the search bar, tap the mic .
  3. Ask "What's this song?" or tap Search a song.
  4. Play a song or hum, whistle, or sing the melody of a song. Play a song: Google will identify the song. Hum, whistle, or sing: Google will identify potential matches for the song.

What is the most bought album ever? ›

Michael Jackson's Thriller, estimated to have sold 70 million copies worldwide, is the best-selling album ever. Jackson also currently has the highest number of albums on the list with five, Celine Dion has four, while the Beatles, Pink Floyd, Madonna and Whitney Houston each have three.

What is the most expensive album cover? ›

A Beatles sleeve featuring the faces of music executives in place of the band has been declared the world's most valuable record cover. The adapted artwork for the Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album is valued at around £70,000, according to a study by Record Collector magazine.

What is the oldest album in the world? ›

Sometime in 1889, Emile Berliner recorded the first album in the history of the world. Then, that record by the father of the gramophone was destroyed. Today, Patrick Feaster, a sound historian at Indiana University, recreated the album using just a printed photograph of the album.

Who was the first artist on vinyl? ›

In 1939 a twenty-three-year-old Alex Steinweiss (1917–2011) was working at Columbia Records when inspiration struck.

What is the first song of the album called? ›

A lead single (or first single) is the first single to be released from a studio album by an artist or a band, usually before the album itself is released and also occasionally on the same day of the album's release date.

Who is considered the greatest male singer of all time? ›

25 Of The Greatest And Most Famous Male Singers Of All Time
  • Michael Jackson.
  • Freddie Mercury.
  • Mick Jagger.
  • John Lennon.
  • Stevie Wonder.
  • Elvis Presley.
  • Frank Sinatra.
  • Kurt Cobain.

Who is the most popular singer in history? ›

The 200 greatest singers of all time according to Rolling Stone as of January 2023
Aretha Franklin1
Whitney Houston2
Sam Cooke3
Billie Holiday4
181 more rows
Jan 12, 2023

Who was King of Pop in the 50's? ›

The first musician to be known as the "King of Pop" was Bing Crosby, who, in the mid-1940s, dominated with the rhythm of his songs and his singing style. Frank Sinatra was one of the pop icons in the 50s.

What is not allowed on an album cover? ›

No pornographic imagery or a URL for a website that contains or links to pornography. No images from other copyright holders without written permission. No references to physical packaging, digital packaging, or retailers (for example, vinyl or CD). No parental advisory logo if the release is not explicit.

Is it illegal to get a tattoo of an album cover? ›

Yes, but you'll need to obtain the permission of the copyright holder first. The best way to do that is to reach out and explain your intention. You may also want to consider finding an artist who specializes in recreating copyrighted images as tattoos.

What can you not put on an album cover? ›

Do NOT include the following:
  • Contact info.
  • Advertising messages (“Buy my new single!”)
  • References to contextual time (“Brand new!” “Just released!”)
  • UPC barcodes (those go on the back cover of a physical product)
  • References to product format (CD, vinyl, digital single, rpm, etc.)
Jan 20, 2022

Who has covered the most songs? ›

The most cover versions combined
  • John Lennon: 20,163 to 22,146 (top solo song “Imagine” – over 500 versions)
  • Paul McCartney: 19,999 to 21,871. ...
  • Bob Dylan: 6,679 to 7315 (“Blowin' in the Wind” – close to 400 versions)
  • Stevie Wonder: 3,599 to 3863 (“You Are the Sunshine of My Life” over 310)
Feb 4, 2023

Who has the most covers of their songs? ›

The most covered songs written by a single recording artist
  • Bob Dylan: 352/357 songs.
  • Paul McCartney: 331/341 songs.
  • John Lennon: 244/269 songs.
  • David Bowie: 220/220 songs.
  • Frank Zappa: 208/209 songs.
  • Tom Waits: 196/198 songs.
  • Bruce Springsteen: 186/194 songs.
Sep 17, 2022

What album cover has a butterfly? ›

Butterfly (Mariah Carey album) | Album Covers Wiki | Fandom.

Do album cover artists get paid? ›

According to Ziprecruiter, Album Cover Designers make a national average of $53,881 or $25.90 an hour (as of May 2022). In general, entry-level designers make around $21,500 annually, with senior-level designers making $98,500 a year.

Do you have to put artist name on an album cover? ›

Put your artist and album name on the cover

So, if it doesn't have any names on it, it'll be hard to know who made the release and your album cover will be less memorable. That's why it's a very good idea to at least include the name of your project on the cover.

Where can I sell my album covers? ›

Art Grab allows musicians, designers, producers, and pretty much anyone else to easily find and license your artwork for use in their projects. You'll have your artwork seen on album covers, posters, beverage labels, clothing, and more.

Who is more famous queen or Rolling Stones? ›

16 more rows
Nov 3, 2012

What is the most famous magazine cover? ›

Format: (What on the cover), (magazine).
  1. 1 Muhammad Ali, Esquire. ...
  2. 2 Donald Trump and little child, TIME. ...
  3. 3 Twin Towers, The New Yorker. ...
  4. 4 Glamour's First Black Model, Glamour. ...
  5. 5 Adolf Hitler as Person of The Year, TIME. ...
  6. 6 John Lennon and Yoko Ono, Rolling Stone. ...
  7. 7 Martin Luther King as Man of The Year, TIME.

What rock band has the most covers? ›

And while Presley may not top the list with the most covers, the King of Rock and Roll does sit near the top. The Beatles are at the top of the list with the most covers. Many many artists over the years, from all over the world, covered as many as 200 Beatles songs, with a total of 20,185 covers.

What was the 1st #1 hit Rolling Stones? ›

'(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction': The Rolling Stones' First US No. 1.

How many No 1 hits have Rolling Stones had? ›

The Rolling Stones have scored 37 top-10 albums (9 No. 1 albums) on the Billboard 200 and 8 No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100.

Did paul McCartney like the Rolling Stones? ›

Despite their status as rival bands, the members have never exactly hated each other. McCartney admires the Stones' work, telling Esquire his favourite tracks he'd want to see most if watching them perform. The first is their iconic hit '(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction', released in 1965.

What song was ripped off from the Rolling Stones? ›

The Rolling Stones have been sued over allegations that their 2020 track 'Living In A Ghost Town' rips off not one but two earlier songs.

Who wrote most of the music for the Rolling Stones original material? ›

Jagger–Richards (spelled Jagger–Richard from 1963 to 1978) is the songwriting partnership between English musicians Mick Jagger (born 1943) and Keith Richards (born 1943), founder members of rock band the Rolling Stones. They are one of the most successful songwriting partnerships in history.

How do I find a song from background music? ›

Identify songs by sound like Shazam, Genius and Musixmatch ( which integrates ACRCloud Music Recognition Services ). Play some music and click the button to recognize songs now. Please use Chrome, Firfox or Opera and allow our site to use your microphone.

How do you find a song when you don't know the lyrics? ›

Use Shazam to identify songs that are playing in the background. Hum the tune to Google or Midomi and they'll search the web to find potential matches. Try describing it on reddit or WatZatSong if an app or search engine can't help you find the song, and someone will help you out.

How do you find a song from the background of a show? ›

7 Ways to Find Music and Songs From TV Shows
  1. Tunefind. You may recall HeardOnTV. ...
  2. WhatSong. Another TV music finder worth checking out is WhatSong. ...
  3. ...
  4. IMDb. ...
  5. Shazam. ...
  6. Adtunes. ...
  7. StreamingSoundtracks.
Apr 9, 2020

Can Google identify background music? ›

You can ask your Google Assistant to identify songs that play around you. You can play the song for Google Assistant to identify or you can hum, whistle, and sing the melody of a song. Important: Some features aren't available in all languages, countries, or eligible Android devices.

Is there an app that helps you find a song? ›

Shazam will identify any song in seconds. Discover artists, lyrics, videos & playlists, all for free.

How can I extract background music from a song online for free? ›

Online Vocal Remover
  1. Upload Audio/Video FIle Click the upload button to select audio or video file, or you can drag the file directly to the upload area.
  2. Remove Vocal The AI algorithm will accurately separate the vocal and instrumental from the music.

Can Shazam recognize humming? ›

Answer: Yes, there are a few apps that can identify a song by humming. You can try Shazam, Musixmatch, or SoundHound.

Can Google recognize humming? ›

Simply hum (or whistle) the melody of any part of the song, and Google will display the most relevant results. Yes, some apps (like SoundHound) can do this, but they can't match Google's accuracy. However, there's no need to install third-party software for Android phones, and using this feature is easy.

How can I trace a song? ›

Use Shazam to identify what you're hearing on the radio, in a store, or anywhere else you hear a song. Shazam saves songs you've identified, which you can preview to discover new music.

How can I find a song from a video without lyrics? ›

To find the name of a song that is used in a video, you can:
  1. Use a song recognition app such as Shazam or SoundHound.
  2. Google the lyrics of the song.
  3. Use a digital assistant like Siri or Alexa.
  4. Search the video description or read the comments of the video.

What is the app that identifies records? ›

The official Discogs App is the best way to catalog your music collection, find that hidden gem, check pricing and buy music from the world's largest discography of physical music. Search millions of artists and albums. Find an album by its barcode.


1. The Most Iconic Album Covers of All-Time
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5. LET'S ARGUE: Best Album Covers of All Time
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