Music Makers Encyclopedia: W

Click on a letter to choose an act (“S” for Bruce Springsteen, “B” for Beatles, etc.). Shown with the act are its major awards, short bios for select acts (generally adapted from Joel Whitburn’s Pop Memories 1890-1954 and Top Pop Singles: Billboard books), and links to albums and songs reviewed by the DMDB.


You can also check the search engine for names, albums, songs, and other content on this site:

Chad Wackerman

Richard Wagner

Classical composer and pianist born Wilhelm Richard Wagner on 5/22/1813 in Leipzig, Germany. Died 2/13/1883

Der Fliegende Hollander (aka 'The Flying Dutchman') (opera: 1843)
Tannhauser (opera: 1845)
Lohengrin (opera: 1850)
Tristan Und Isolde (opera, 1859)
Die Meistersinger Von Nurnberg (The Master-Singers of Nuremburg) (opera: 1868)
The Ring Cycle (Der Ring Des Nibelungen) (opera, 1848-1874)

Robert Wagner

Porter Wagoner

Country singer born 8/12/1927 in West Plains, MO. Recorded as a duo with Dolly Parton from 1967-1976. Died 10/28/2007.

Bea Wain

My Reverie (1938) – see Larry Clinton
You Go to My Head (1938) – see Larry Clinton
Our Love Is Here to Stay (1938) – see Larry Clinton
Deep Purple (1939) – see Larry Clinton

John Waite

Born 7/4/1952 in Lancaster, Lancashire, England

Rock singer/songwriter. Member: the Babys (74-81) and Bad English.

“Change” (1982)
“Missing You” (1984)
Bad English “When I See You Smile” (1989)

The Waitresses

Christmas Wrapping (1981)

Tom Waits

Gravelly-voiced monolgue song stylist/actor/songwriter/experimental rocker born 12/7/1949 in Pamona, CA in the back of a taxicab. Appeared in movies Rumblefish, Down by Law, Ironweed, and Dracula. Married Irish playwright Kathleen Brennan on 12/13/91 with whom he co-wrote the 1988 musical Frank’s Wild Years. Composed the movie soundtracks One from the Heart and Night on Earth.

Downtown Train (1985)

Swordfishtrombones (1983)
Rain Dogs (1985)
Mule Variations (1999)

Jimmy Wakely

American country singer born 2/16/1914. Died 9/23/1982.

Slipping Around (1949) – see Margaret Whiting

Rick Wakeman

Rock keyboardist with Yes.

Bob Walkenhorst

Born 6/1/1953

American roots-rock singer/songwriter with the Rainmakers.

The Beginner (2003)
No Abandon (with Jeff Porter, 2009)

Alan Walker

Faded (2015)

Billy Walker

Country singer born William Marvin Walker on 1/14/1929 in Ralls, TX. Died 5/21/2006.

Cindy Walker

Frank Walker

George Walker

Good Morning, Carrie (1902) – see Bert Williams

Joe Louis Walker

Junior Walker (& the All-Stars)

Born 6/14/1931. Died 11/23/1995

American R&B singer.

Shotgun (1965)

T-Bone Walker

Blues singer/songwriter, guitarist, and pianist born Aaron Thibeaux Walker on 5/28/1910 in Linden, TX. Died 3/6/1975.

Call It Stormy Monday (1948)

The Complete 1940-1954 (1954)
T-Bone Blues (1959)

Jo Walker-Meador

Walk the Moon

Shut Up and Dance (2014)

Sippie Wallace

Blues singer born Beulah Belle Thomas on 11/1/1898 in Plum Bayou, Jefferson County, AR. Died 11/1/1986.

Fats Waller

Jazz singer, composer, and musician born Thomas Wright Waller on 5/21/1904 in New York City, NY. Died 12/15/1943. One of the country’s most popular entertainers in the 1930s, with his playful, high-spirited vocals, distinctive stride piano style, and jazz accompaniment. Worked as a piano and organ accompanist during the 1920s until his first big break, collaborating on Broadway musical scores Keep Shufflin’ and Hot Chocolates (including his classic “Ain’t Misbehavin’”). Bill Coleman (trumpet), Gene Sedric (clarinet/tenor sax) and Rudy Powell (clarinet) were his top sidemen. Died shortly after his hit movie appearance in Stormy Weather. The late-‘70s hit Broadway musical Ain’t Misbehavin’ celebrated his great songs and spirit.

Ain’t Misbehavin’ (1929)
Honeysuckle Rose (1935)
It's a Sin to Tell a Lie (1936)
Jitterbug Waltz (1942)

Ain’t Misbehavin’ (cast: 1978)

The Wallflowers

One Headlight (1996)

Wall of Voodoo

Mexican Radio (1983)

Van “Piano Man” Walls

Joe Walsh

Rocky Mountain Way (1973)

Bruno Walter


Active: 1969- Members: Lonnie Jordan (k), Howard Scott (g), Charles Miller (sax; fatally shot by a robber in 1980), Morris “B.B.” Dickerson (b: 69-79), Harold Brown (?: 69-), and Thomas “Papa Dee” Allen (percussion; died onstaqge on 8/30/88 of a brain hemorrhage), and Lee Oskar (harmonica), Alice Tweed Smyth (v: 78-82), Luther Rabb (b – Ballin’ Jack; War: 79-), Pat Rizzo (horns: 79-), Ron Hammond (percussion – Aalon; Ballin’ Jack; War: 79-), Rae Valentine (94), Charles Green (94), Kerry Campbell (94), Tesuya Nakamura (94), and Sal Rodriquez (94).

Latin-style funk band formed in Long Beach, CA. Eric Burdon’s backup band until 1971.

Slippin’ into Darkness (1971)
Low Rider (1975)

The World Is a Ghetto (1972)
Anthology (compilation: 1970-94)

Anita Ward

Ring My Bell (1979)

Bill Ward

Rock drummer with Black Sabbath (68-80,83-86,97-99).

Clara Ward & the Ward Singers

How I Got Over (1950)

Helen Ward

Goody Goody (1936) – see Benny Goodman
These Foolish Things Remind Me of You (1936) – see Benny Goodman

Samuel A. Ward

Shayne Ward

That’s My Goal (2005)

Andy Warhol

Member of ABBA.

Steve Wariner

Country singer born 12/25/1954 in Noblesville, IN.

Fred Waring

Musician born Frederick Malcolm Waring 6/9/1900 in Tyrone, PA. Died 7/29/1984.

Ah! Sweet Mystery of Life (with Tom Waring, 1928)
Little White Lies (with Clare Hanlon; w. by Walter Donaldson & Gus Kahn; 1930)
I Found a Million Dollar Baby in a Five and Ten Cent Store (with Clare Hanlon, 1931)

Tom Waring

Ah! Sweet Mystery of Life (1928) – see Fred Waring

Janne Warman

Rock keyboardist with Children of Bodom and Warmen.

Jennifer Warnes

Pop/AC singer born on 3/3/47 in Seattle and raised in Orange County, CA. Lead actress in the L.A. production of Hair. Also recorded as Jennifer Warren and simply as Jennifer.

It Goes Like It Goes (1979)
Up Where We Belong (with Joe Cocker, 1982)
I’ve Had the Time of My Life (with Bill Medley, 1987)

The War on Drugs

Under the Pressure (2014)

Lost in the Dream (2014)


Heaven (1989)
Cherry Pie (1990)

Diane Warren

Pop songwriter born Diane Eve Warren on 9/7/1956 in Van Nuys, CA.

Song(s) written by Warren:
Diane Warren: Top 30 Songs
Look Away (1988) – see Chicago
Because You Loved Me (1996) – see Celine Dion
Un-Break My Heart (1996) – see Toni Braxton
How Do I Live (1997) – see LeAnn Rimes
I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing (1998) – see Aerosmith

The DMDB Blog:
Best-of List: The Top 30 Songs by Diane Warren (10/30/11)

Harry Warren

42nd Street (composed with Al Dubin, cast: 1980)

Rusty Warren

Knockers Up! (1960)

Dee Dee Warwick

Dionne Warwick

R&B/pop singer born Marie Dionne Warwick on 1212/1940 in East Orange, NJ. In church choir from age 6. With the Drinkard Singers gospel group. Formed the Gospelaires trio with sister Dee Dee Warwick and their aunt Cissy Houston. Attended Hartt College of Music in Hartford, CT. Did much backup work in NY during the late ‘50s. Added an “e” to her last name for a time in the mid-70s. Was composers Burt Bacharach’s and Hal David’s main “voice”. Co-hosted TV’s Solid Gold (80-81,85-86). Has hosted TV informercials for the Psychic Friends Network since the early ‘90s. Is a cousin of Whitney Houston.

Don’t Make Me Over (w. Burt Bacharach and Hal David, 1962)
Walk on By (w. Burt Bacharach and Hal David, 1964)
Alfie (w. Burt Bacharach and Hal David, 1967)
That's What Friends Are For (Dionne & Friends: Elton John, Gladys Knight, Stevie Wonder; w. Burt Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sager, 1985)

Dinah Washington

R&B/blues singer born Ruth Lee Jones on 8/29/1924 in Tuscaloosa, AL. Died 12/14/1963.

Am I Asking Too Much (1948)
Teach Me Tonight (1954)
What a Diff'rence a Day Makes (1959)
Unforgettable (1959)

Grover Washington, Jr.

Just the Two of Us (with Bill Withers., 1981)

Justine “Baby” Washington

Kamasi Washington

Heaven and Earth (2018)

Ned Washington

The Waterboys

The Whole of the Moon (1985)

Dick Waterman

Ethel Waters

Born 10/31/1896. Died 9/1/1977

American blues singer.

Dinah (1926)
Am I Blue? (1929)
Stormy Weather (Keeps Rainin' All the Time) (1933)

Muddy Waters

Blue singer, guitarist, and harmonica player born McKinley Morganfield on 4/4/1915 (some sources say 1913) in Rolling Fork, MS. Died 4/30/1983. Pivotal figure in the development of the Chicago blues style. Self-taught harmonica in the early 1920s, guitar in the early ‘30s. First recorded for Library of Congress in 1941. Moved to Chicago in 1943.

I Feel Like Going Home (1948)
Rollin’ Stone (1950)
Hoochie Coochie Man (1954)
Mannish Boy (1955)
Got My Mojo Working (1957)

Best of (compilation: 1947-55, released 1958) – see His Best 1947-55
His Best 1947-55 (compilation: 1947-55, released 1997)
At Newport (live, 1960)
Folksinger (1964)
The Real Folk Blues (compilation: 1947-64, released 1966)
Down on Stovall’s Plantation (1966)
McKinley Morganfield (aka “Muddy Waters”) (1971)
The Anthology 1947-1972 (compilation: 1947-72)
The Chess Box (1972)
Can’t Get No Grindin’ (1973)
Hard Again (1977)
The Complete Plantation Recordings (1993)

Roger Waters

Rock singer/songwriter and bassist born George Robert Waters on 9/6/1944 in Great Bookham, Surrey, England. With Pink Floyd. Also a solo artist.

Amused to Death (1992)
Is This the Life We Really Want? (2017)

Doc Watson

Born 3/3/1923. Died

Bluegrass guitarist and vocalist.

Black Mountain Rag (1964)

Doc Watson (1964)

Gene Watson

Country singer born Gary Gene Watson on 10/11/1943 in Palestine, TX.

Johnny “Guitar” Watson

Blues guitarist born John Watson, Jr. on 2/3/1935 in Houston, TX. Died 5/17/1995.

Mike Watt

Andre Watts

Charlie Watts

Rock drummer born 6/24/1941 in London. With Blues Incorporated, The Rolling Stones (63-), and Wille & the Poorboys (85).

Jeff Wayne

War of the Worlds (1978)

Mabel Wayne

The Weather Girls

It’s Raining Men (1982)

Weather Report

Birdland (1977)
A Remark You Made (1977)

Heavy Weather (1977)

Jim Weatherly

The Weavers

Goodnight Irene (w. by Huddie “Leadbelly” Ledbetter, performed with the Gordon Jenkins’ Orchestra, 1950)
On Top of Old Smoky (1951)

At Carnegie Hall (live, 1957)
Best of the Decca Years (compiliation, 1996)

Chick Webb

Jazz big band leader and drummer born William Henry Webb on 2/10/1905 in Baltimore, MD. Died 6/16/1939.

A-Tisket, A-Tasket (1938) – see Ella Fitzgerald

Clifton Webb

Easter Parade (1933) – see Leo Reisman

Jimmy Webb

Songwriter born Jimmy Layne Webb on 8/15/1946 in Elk City, OK.

Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber

Musical theater composer born on 3/22/1948 in Kensington, London, England.

Songs written with Tim Rice:
I Don’t Know How to Love Him (w. with Tim Rice, from Jesus Christ Superstar, 1971) – see Yvonne Elliman
I Don’t Know How to Love Him (w. with Tim Rice, from Jesus Christ Superstar, 1971) – see Helen Reddy
Superstar (from Jesus Christ Superstar, 1971) – see Ben Vereen
Close Every Door (from Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, 1972)
Don’t Cry for Me Argentina (from Evita, 1976) – see Julie Covington
Don’t Cry for Me Argentina (from Evita, 1996) – see Madonna

Other Songs by Webber:
Memory (from Cats, w. with T.S. Eliot, 1981) – see Barbara Streisand
Music of the Night (from The Phantom of the Opera, performed by Michael Crawford, 1986)
All I Ask of You (from Phantom of the Opera, 1986) – see Sarah Brightman
The Phantom of the Opera (from The Phantom of the Opera, 1986)

Jesus Christ Superstar (composed with Tim Rice; studio: 1970, cast: 1971: soundtrack: 1973)
Evita (composed with Tim Rice; 1976, stage debut: 1978, soundtrack: 1996)
Cats (composed with T.S. Eliot, cast, 1981)
Phantom of the Opera (composed with Charles Hart/Richard Stilgoe, cast, 1986)
Phantom of the Opera – Highlights (1988)
Sunset Boulevard (composed with Don Black & Christopher Hampton, cast: 1993)

Joan Weber

Let Me Go Lover (1954)

Ben Webster

Jazz musician born Benjamin Francis Webster on 3/27/1909 in Kansas City, MO. Died 9/20/1973. Les

Paul Francis Webster

Dave Weckl

The Weeknd

Can’t Feel My Face (2015)
The Hills (2015)
Starboy (with Daft Punk, 2016)

Trilogy (2012)
Starboy (2016) Ran Weeks

With a Song in My Heart (1929) – see Leo Reisman

Ted Weems

Bandleader and musician born Wilfred Theodore Wemyes on 9/26/1901 in Pitcaim, PA. Died 5/6/1963. Led Chicago-based dance band whose blockbuster 1947 hit “Heartaches” was a 14-year-old reissue. Perry Como got his first major exposure with the band in the late ‘30s.

Somebody Stole My Gal (1924)
Heartaches (with Elmo Tanner, 1947)


12 Golden Country Classics (1996)


Buddy Holly (1994)
Undone (The Sweater Song) (1994)

Weezer (aka “The Blue Album”) (1994)

Wei Wei

Born Zhang Ju Xia Wei on 8/21/1963. Died

Mongolian/Chinese Mandopop singer.

Cynthia Weil

Songwriter born 10/18/1940 in New York City, NY. Worked frequently with Barry Mann, whom she married in 1961. Worked in the legendary Brill Building, known for housing some of pop music history’s most famous songwriters and publishers.

Songs written by Cynthia Weil:
Top 30 Songs
On Broadway (1963) – see the Drifters
You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’ (1964) – see Righteous Brothers

Scott Weiland

Born Scott Richard Kline on 10/27/1967 in San Jose, California. Died 12/3/2015 in Bloomington, Minnesota, from a drug overdose.

Rock singer with Stone Temple Pilots (1992-2003, 2008-13), Velvet Revolver (2003-08), and Magnificent Bastards (1995). Also recorded as a solo artist.

Scott Weiland: Top 20 Songs

Kurt Weill

Classical songwriter born Kurt Julian Weill on 3/2/1900 in Dessau, Germany. Died 4/3/1950.

Song(s) composed by Weill:
Mack the Knife (1955) – see Louis Armstrong
Mack the Knife (1959) – see Bobby Darin
Mack the Knife (1960) – see Ella Fitzgerald

The Threepenny Opera (1928)
Lost in the Stars (composed with Maxwell Anderson, cast, 1949) – see Kurt Weill

George Wein

Max Weinberg

Bobby Weinstein

Frank Weir

The Happy Wanderer (1954)

George David Weiss

Gillian Welch

Revival (1996)
Time (The Revelator) (2001)

Pete Welding

Lawrence Welk

Jazz/big band leader born 3/11/1903 in Strasburg, ND. Died 5/17/1992. Hosted his own music TV show.

Calcutta (1961)

Calcutta! (1961)

Paul Weller

English alternative rock singer/songwriter and guitarist born John William Weller, Jr. on 5/27/1958 in Woking, Surrey, England. With The Jam (“A Town Called Malice”, All Mod Cons) and The Style Council (“Shout to the Top”) before becoming a solo artist (1995’s Stanley Road).

Wild Wood (1993)

Stanley Road (1995)

Junior Wells

Blues singer and harmonica player born Amos Wells Blakemore, Jr. on 12/9/1934 in Memphis, TN. Died 1/15/1998.

Hoodoo Man Blues (1965)
Blues Hit Big Town (1977)
It’s My Life, Baby! (year?)

Kitty Wells

Country singer born Ellen Muriel Deason on 8/30/1919 in Nashville, TN. Died 7/16/2012.

It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels (1952)

Mary Wells

My Guy (1964)

E.W. “Bud” Wendell

Percy Wenrich

Pete Wentz

Reinald Werrenrath

Baritone singer born 8/7/1883 in Brooklyn, New York. Died 9/12/1953. With the Haydn Quartet, Orpheus Quartet (1914-19), and Victor Opera Quartet.

Dottie West

Country singer born Dorothy Marie Marsh on 10/11/1932 in Smithville, TN. Died 9/4/1991.

Kanye West

Rap singer, producer, and record executive (Roc-A-Fella) born Kanye Omari West on 6/8/1977 in Atlanta, GA.

Slow Jamz (2003) – see Twista
Through the Wire (2003)
Jesus Walks (2004)
Gold Digger (with Jamie Foxx, 2005)
Diamonds from Serra Leone (2005)
Stronger (with Daft Punk, 2007)
Good Life (with T-Pain, 2007)
Run This Town (2009) - see Jay-Z
All of the Lights (with Drake & Rihanna, 2010)
E.T. (2010) – see Katy Perry
Runaway (with Pusha T, 2010)
Niggas in Paris (2011) - see Jay-Z

The College Dropout (2004)
Late Registration (2005)
Graduation (2007)
808’s and Heartbreak (2008)
My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (2010)
Watch the Throne (2011) – see Jay-Z
Yeezus (2013)

Paul Westerberg

Cliff Weston

Alone (1936) – see Tommy Dorsey

Kim Weston

Paul Weston

Born Paul Westein on 3/12/1912. Died 9/20/1996

American jazz/big band leader.

Dream (with the Pied Pipers, w. Johnny Mercer and Harold Arlen, 1945)
Come Rain or Come Shine (1946) – see Margaret Whiting

John Wetton

Rock singer and bassist born 6/12/1949 in Willington, Derbyshire, England. Died 1/31/2017. In King Crimson (b/v: 73-75) and Asia (v: 81-90, 07-17).

Wet Wet Wet

Love Is All Around (1994)

Jerry Wexler

Record executive and producer born Gerald Wexler on 1/10/1917 in the Bronx, NY. Died 8/15/2008. Signed and/or produced Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Led Zeppelin, the Allman Brothers, Wilson Pickett, and Dusty Springfield. Credited with coining the term “rhythm and blues.” With Ahmet and Nesuhi Ertegun, he built Atlantic Records into a major record company.

Tina Weymouth


Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go (1984)
Careless Whisper (1984) – see George Michael
Last Christmas (1984)
Everything She Wants (1985)

Make It Big (1984)

Anna Wheaton

Till the Clouds Roll By (with James Harrod, 1917)

Peetie Wheatstraw

Blues singer born William Bunch on 12/21/1902 in Ripley, TN. Died 12/21/1941.

When in Rome

The Promise (1989)


Saturday Night (1994)


Stranger’s Almanac (1997)

The Whispers

Alan White

Barry White

R&B singer and producer born Barry Eugene Carter on 9/12/1944 in Galveston, TX. Died 7/4/2003.

You’re the First, the Last, My Everything (1974)
Can’t Get Enough of Your Love, Babe (1974)

Ultimate Collection (compilation, 1988)

Bukka White

Blues guitarist and singer born Booker T. Washington White on 11/12/1909 in Houston, MI. Died 2/26/1977.

Fixin’ to Die (1940)

Parchman Farm (year?)

Jack White

Rock singer and guitarist born John Anthony Gillis on 7/9/1975 in Detroit, Michigan. With the White Stripes, one of the prominent garage rock revival bands of the early 21st century. He also helmed the Ractoneurs and the Dead Weather.

Portland, Oregon (with Loretta Lynn, 2004)

Blunderbuss (2012)

The DMDB Blog:
Jack White on track for first #1 album (5/1/12)

Josh White

Maurice White

Born 12/19/1941 in Memphis, TN. Died 2/3/2016

Founder of Earth, Wind & Fire. Chicago-bred singer/songwriter/producer/percussionist/kalimba player. Session drummer for Chess records; Ramsey Lewis Trio; Salty Peppers.

White Lion

Wait (1987)

Paul Whiteman

Big-band leader Paul Whiteman was born on 3/28/1890 in Denver, Colorado, to musical parents. His mother was a former opera singer and his father supervised music for the Denver Public Schools for 50 years. He died 12/29/1967. The media called him “The King of Jazz” although critics said his music lacked the improvisational techniques associated with the genre. In Joel Whitburn’s Pop Memories 1890-1954, he’s called “the most popular bandleader of the pre-swing era.”

Whiteman joined the Denver Symphony Orchestra as a viola player in 1907 and the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra in 1914. In 1918, he conducted a 12-piece U.S. Navy band. He moved to New York City in 1920 and directed groups up to 35 at a time when most dance bands consisted of 6-10 men. He worked with RCA Victor (20-28, 31-37), Columbia (28-30), and Capitol. He produced more than 600 recordings and provided music for six Broadway shows. He launched the career of Bing Crosby, who sang with the orchestra from 1925 to 1930.

Paul Whiteman: Top 100 Songs
Whispering (1920)
The Japanese Sandman (1920)
Wang Wang Blues (1920)
My Mammy (1921)
Say It with Music (1921)
Stumbling (1922)
Hot Lips (He's Got Hot Lips When He Plays Jazz) (1922)
Three O'Clock in the Morning (1922)
I’ll Build a Stairway to Paradise (1922)
Parade of the Wooden Soldiers (1923)
What'll I Do? (1924)
Rhapsody in Blue (1924) – see George Gershwin
Somebody Loves Me (1924)
Linger Awhile (1924)
Limehouse Blues (1924)
Oh, Lady Be Good (1925)
All Alone (w. Irving Berlin, 1925)
The Birth of the Blues (with Jack Fulton, Charles Gaylord, & Austin Young, 1926)
Valencia (A Song of Spain) (with Franklyn Baur, 1926)
Side by Side (with the Rhythm Boys, 1927)
Among My Souvenirs (with Jack Fulton, Charles Gaylord, & Austin Young, 1928)
My Heart Stood Still (with Al Rinker, Jack Fulton, Charles Gaylor, & Austin Young, 1928)
Lover, Come Back to Me (with Jack Fulton, 1929)
Without a Song (with Bing Crosby, 1929)
Great Day (with Bing Crosby, 1929)
Body and Soul (1930)
Grand Canyon Suite (1931)
Willow Weep for Me (with Irene Taylor, 1932)
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes (with Bob Lawrence, 1933)
Lover (with Jack Fulton, 1933)
You’re the Top (with Peggy Healy, 1934)
Anything Goes (1934)

Masterpieces (compilation: 1920-27, released 2015)

The DMDB Blog:
Best-of List: Bing Crosby’s First Trip to #1 – and Paul Whiteman’s Top 100 Songs (3/31/12)


Hard-rock group (1977-90, 97, 06-). Members: David Coverdale (v), Roger Glover (b: 77), Jon Lord (k: 78-84), and Ian Paice (d: 79-81), Mick Moody (g: 77-83), Deslie Harper (b: 77), Tim Hinkley (k: 77), Simon Phillips (d: 77), Ron Aspery (sax: 77), Bernie Marsden (g: 78-81), Neil Murray (b: 78-81), Brian Johnson (k: 78, 84-85), David Dowell (d: 78-79), Pete Solley (k: 78), Mel Galley (g: 82-85), Colin "Bomber" Hodgkinson (b: 82-84), Cozy Powell (d: 82-85), John Sykes (g: 84-88), Vivian Campbell (g: 87-88), Steve Vai (g: 89-90), Adrian Vandenberg (g: 89-90), Rudy Sarzo (b: 89-90), Aynsley Dunbar (d: 89-90), Tommy Aldridge (d: 89-90). Coverdale, Glover, Lord, & Paice were in Deep Purple.

Here I Go Again (1987)
Still of the Night (1987)

The White Stripes

One of the most important bands in the early 21st century. Helmed a garage rock revival.

Active: 1997-2011 Members: Jack White (v/g/k) and Meg White (d)

Fell in Love with a Girl (2002)
Seven Nation Army (2003)

The White Stripes (1999)
De Stijl (2000)
White Blood Cells (2001)
Elephant (2003)
Get Behind Me Satan (2005)
Icky Thump (2007)

Verdine White

David Whitfield

Cara Mia (1954) – see Mantovani

Norman Whitfield

R&B songwriter and producer born 5/12/1940 in Harlem, NY. Died 9/16/2008. Best known for his work with Motown acts such as The Temptations and Gladys Knight & the Pips.

Song(s) written by Norman Whitfield with Barrett Strong:
Ain't Too Proud to Beg (1966) – see the Temptations
I Heard It Through the Grapevine (1968) – see Marvin Gaye
War (1970) – see Edwin Starr
Just My Imagination Running Away with Me (1971) – see the Temptations
Papa Was a Rollin' Stone (1972) – see the Temptations

Margaret Whiting

Country musician born 7/22/1944 in Detroit, Michigan. Died 1/10/2011.

Come Rain or Come Shine (with the Paul Weston Orchestra, 1946)
A Tree in the Meadow (1948)
Slipping Around (with Jimmy Wakely, 1949)
Baby, It’s Cold Outside (1949) – see Johnny Mercer

Richard Whiting

Slim Whitman

Country singer born Otis Dewey Whitman, Jr. on 1/20/1923 in Tampa, FL. Died 6/19/2013.

Rose Marie (1955)

Roger Whittaker

The Last Farewell (1975)

The Who

Links: DMDB page - official site - Facebook - Wikipedia

Rock group formed in London. Developed stage antics of destroying their instruments. 1969 rock opera album Tommy became a movie in 1975. 1973 rock opera album Quadrophenia became a movie in 1979. The Who’s biographical movie The Kids Are Alright was released in 1979. Eleven fans trampled to death at 12/3/79 Cincinnati concert. Regrouped at "Live Aid" in 1986 and reunited again in 1989 for a 25th anniversary tour. Reunion tours in 1996, 1997, and 2002 also. Daltrey, Townshend, & Entwistle were all in The Detours together and then Moon joined them and they became The Who; briefly changing their name to The High Numbers before reverting back to The Who.

Active: 1964-82, 1989, 1996-97, 2002, 2006- Members: Roger Daltrey (v: 64-82, 89, 06-), Pete Townshend (g/v: 64-82, 89, 06-), John Entwistle (b/v: 64-82, 89), Keith Moon (d: 64-78), Kenney Jones (d: 78-82, 89), Zak Starkey (d: 06), Pino Palladino (b: 06), John “Rabbit” Bundrick (k: 06), Simon Townshend (backing v: 06)

The Who: Top 30 Songs
My Generation (1965)
Substitute (1966)
Go to the Mirror Boy (1969)
Won't Get Fooled Again (1971)
Baba O’Riley (1971)
Behind Blue Eyes (1971)
Who Are You? (1978)

The Who: Top 10 Albums
My Generation (1965)
A Quick One (1966)
Sell Out (1967)
Tommy (1969)
Meaty, Beaty, Big and Bouncy (compilation: 1965-70, released 1971)
Live at Leeds (live, 1970)
Who’s Next (1971)
Quadrophenia (1973)
By Numbers (1975)
Who Are You (1978)
Face Dances (1981)
It’s Hard (1982)
Endless Wire (2006)

The DMDB Blog/Facebook Note(s):
Now Presenting the Half Time Show Starring the Theme Songs of CSI (2/8/10)

Richard Wilbur

Candide (cast: 1956) – see Leonard Bernstein


Being There (1996)
Mermaid Avenue (with Billy Bragg, 1998)
Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (2002)

Wild Cherry

Play That Funky Music (1976)

Kim Wilde

Alec Wilder

The Wildhearts

Earth Vs. the Wildhearts (1993)

Geeshie Wiley

Last Kind Word Blues

Leon Wilkeson

Rap singer with Black Eyed Peas. Born William James Adams on 3/15/1975 in Los Angeles, CA.

OMG (2010) – see Usher

Willy William

Mi Gente (2017) – see J. Balvin

Andy Williams

Adult contemporary singer born Howard Andrew Williams on 12/3/1927 in Walt Lake, IA. Died 9/25/2012.

Moon River (1962)
It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year (1963)
O Holy Night (1963)

Moon River & Other Great Movie Themes (1962)
Days of Wine and Roses (1963)

Bert Williams

Vaudeville entertainer born Egbert Austin Williams in Nassau, Bahamas on 11/12/1875. Died 3/4/1922. Preeminent entertainer and comedian of the Vaudeville era and the best-selling black recording artist before 1920.

Good Morning, Carrie (with George Walker, 1902)
Nobody (1906)
He’s a Cousin of Mine (1907)
Play That Barber-Shop Chord (1910)

Evan Williams

Because (1910)

Big Joe Williams

Blues singer born Joseph Lee Williams on 10/16/1903 in Crawford, Mississippi. Died 12/17/1982.

Baby Please Don’t Go (1941)

Piney Woods Blues (1958)

The Williams Brothers

Can’t Cry Hard Enough (1991)

Two Stories (1987)
The Williams Brothers (1991)
Harmony Hotel (1993)

The Williams Brothers Quartet

Swinging on a Star (1944) – see Bing Crosby

Clarence Williams

Wild Cat Blues (1923)

Cliff Williams

Don Williams

Country singer/songwriter (“I Believe in You”) born 5/27/1939 in Floydada, TX. Died 9/8/2017.

Hank Williams

Country singer/songwriter and guitarist born Hiram King Williams on 9/17/1923 in Mount Olive, AL. Died from alcohol/drug abuse on 1/1/1953. Hosted own radio show on WSFA in Montgomery; billed as “The Singing Kid.” Formed his own band, The Drifting Cowboys, as a teenager. Married Audrey Sheppard in 1944; their son is country singer Hank Williams Jr. First recorded for Sterling in 1946. Regular on the Louisiana Hayride from 1948-49; with the Grand Ole Opry from 1949-52. In 1952, he divorced Audrey, was fired from the Opry in August, and married Billie Jean Jones Eshlimar, who later married Johnny Horton. Also recorded as Luke the Drifter.

Move It on Over (1947)
Honky Tonkin’ (1948)
Lovesick Blues (1949)
I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry (1949)
Cold, Cold Heart (1951)
Hey, Good Lookin' (1951)
Jambalaya on the Bayou (1952)
Your Cheatin' Heart (1953)

40 Greatest Hits (compilation: 1947-53, released 1978)
Turn Back the Years: The Essential Collection (box: 1947-53)

The DMDB Blog:
Hank Williams charts for the first time: August 9, 1947 (8/9/11)

Hank Williams, Jr.

Country singer (“All My Rowdy Friends Have Settled Down”, “Are You Ready for Some Football? (Theme from Monday Night Football)”) born Randall Hank Williams on 5/26/1949 in Shreveport, LA. Son of singer Hank Williams.

All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight (1984)

J. Mayo Williams

Jody Williams

Joe Williams

Everyday I Have the Blues (1955) – see Count Basie

John Williams

Classical/film score composer born John Towner Williams on 2/8/1932 in Floral Park, NY.

Star Wars (Main Title) (1977)

Star Wars (soundtrack, 1977)

Larry Williams

Bony Maronie (1957)

Lucinda Williams

Pineola (1992)
Car Wheels on a Gravel Road (1998)

Lucinda Williams (1988)
Car Wheels on a Gravel Road (mixing by Rick Rubin, 1998)

Marion Williams

Packing Up (1958)

Mary Lou Williams

Jazz pianist, composer, and arranger born Mary Elfrieda Scruggs on 5/8/1910 in Atlanta, GA. Died 5/28/1981.

Night Life (1930)

Zodiac Suite: Town Hall Concert (1945)

Maurice Williams & the Zodiacs

Stay (1960)

Paul Williams

Paul “Hucklebuck” Williams

Pharrell Williams

R&B/pop singer born Pharrell Lanscilo Williams on 4/5/1973 in Virginia Beach, VA.

Half of The Neptunes production team.

Drop It Like It’s Hot (2004) – see Snoop Dogg
Money Maker (2006) – see Ludacris
Blurred Lines (2013) – see Robin Thicke
Get Lucky (2013) – see Daft Punk
Happy (2013)

Ralph Vaughan Williams

Classical composer born 10/12/1872 in Down Ampney, Gloucestershire, England. Died 8/26/1958.

Robbie Williams

Pop singer born Robert Peter Williams on 2/13/1974 in Stoke-on-Tent, Staffordshire, England. Started out with boy band Take That before becoming hugely successful international solo star.

Angels (1997)
Strong (1998)
She’s the One (1999)
Rock DJ (2000)

Life Thru a Lens (1997)
I’ve Been Expecting You (1998)
Greatest Hits (compilation: 1997-2004, released 2004)

Robert “Pete” Williams

Angola Prisoners’ Blues (Robert Pete Williams et al, 1959)

Roger Williams

Pianist born Louis Jacob Weertz on 10/1/1924 in Omaha, NE. Died 10/8/2011.

Autumn Leaves (1955)
Born Free (1966)

Spencer Williams

Tex Williams

Smoke! Smoke! Smoke! That Cigarette (1947)

Tony Williams

Jazz drummer born Anthony Tillmon Williams on 12/12/1945 in Chicago, IL. Died 2/23/1997.

Vanessa Williams

R&B singer and actress who was a former Miss America. Born Vanessa Lynn Williams on 3/18/1963 in Chappaqua, NY.

Save the Best for Last (1992)
Colors of the Wind (1995)

Sonny Boy Williamson #1

Blues singer born John Lee Williamson on 3/30/1914 in Jackson, TN. Died 6/1/1948.

Good Morning Little School Girl (1937)

Sonny Boy Williamson #2

Blues musician born Aleck Ford on 12/5/1899 in Tallahatchie County. Died 5/25/1965. Also known as Rice Miller and Aleck Miller.

Down and Out Blues (1959)

Allee Willis

Chuck Willis

C.C. Rider (1957)

Bob Wills (& His Texas Playboys)

Country songwriter and bandleader born James Robert Wills on 3/6/1905 in Limestone, TX. Died 5/13/1975. Called “The King of Western Swing.”

Steel Guitar Rag (1936)
San Antonio Rose (1939)
New San Antonio Rose (1940)
Faded Love (1950)
Take Me Back to Tulsa (year?)

Meredith Willson

Musical theater songwriter born Robert Meredith Reiniger on 5/18/1902. Died 6/15/1984

Seventy Six Trombones (Robert Preston, from The Music Man, 1957)
Till There Was You (Anita Bryant, from The Music Man, 1959)

The Music Man (cast: 1957, soundtrack: 1962)

B.J. Wilson

Brian Wilson

Singer/songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist born Brian Douglas Wilson on 6/20/1942 in Ingelwood, CA. With the Beach Boys (61-85, 96). His daughters, Carnie and Wendy, were in the pop group Wilson Phillips.

Smile (2004)
Reimagines Gershwin (2010)

Charlie Wilson

Dooley Wilson

As Time Goes By (1942)

Eileen Wilson

My Foolish Heart (1950) – see Gordon Jenkins

Gretchen Wilson

Here for the Party (2004)

Jackie Wilson

R&B singer born Jack Leroy Wilson, Jr. on 6/9/1934 in Detroit, Michigan. Died 1/21/1984. Had success with the Dominoes (53-57) before embarking on a solo career.

Lonely Teardrops (1958)
Your Love Keeps Lifting Me Higher and Higher (1967)

Nancy Wilson

Jazz singer born 2/20/1937 in Chillicothe, OH.

How Glad I Am (1964)

Teddy Wilson

Jazz/big band leader and pianist born Theodore Shaw Wilson on 11/24/1912 in Austin, TX. Died 7/31/1986.

Sweet Lorraine (1935)

Wilson Phillips

Hold On (1990)

Bebe & Cece Winans

Addictive Love (1991)

Amy Winehouse

Links: - official site - Facebook - Wikipedia - All Music Guide

British blue-eyed soul singer with well-publicized battles with substance abuse. Born Amy Jade Winehouse on 9/14/1983 in London, England. Died 7/23/2011.

Rehab (2006)

Frank (2003)
Back to Black (2006)

The DMDB Blog:
Amy Winehouse Dead at 27 (7/23/11)


Seventeen (1988)


– see Paul McCartney

Septimus “Sep” Winner

The Winstons

Color Him Father (1969)

Johnny Winter

Blues guitarist born John Dawson Winter III on 2/23/1944 in Beaumont, TX. Died 7/16/2014.

The Progressive Blues Experiment (1968)

Hugo Winterhalter

Canadian Sunset (1956)

Steve Winwood

Links: DMDB page - official site - Facebook - Wikipedia

Rock singer/songwriter and keyboardist born Stephen Lawrence Winwood on 5/12/1948 in Handsworth, Birmingham, England. With the Spencer Davis Group, Traffic, and Blind Faith (“Can’t Find My Way Home”). Also a solo artist (“While You See a Chance”).

Gimme Some Lovin' (1966) – see Spencer Davis Group
Dear Mr. Fantasy (1967) – see Traffic
Valerie (1982)
Higher Love (1986)
Roll with It (1988)

Mr. Fantasy (1967) – see Traffic
Heaven Is in Your Mind (1968) – see Traffic
Blind Faith (1969) – see Blind Faith
John Barleycorn Must Die (1970) – see Traffic


12 X U (1977)

Pink Flag (1977)

Nicky Wire

Mac Wiseman

Bill Withers

R&B singer/songwriter born William Harrison Withers, Jr. on 7/4/1938 in Slab Fork, WV.

Ain't No Sunshine (1971)
Lean on Me (1972)
Just the Two of Us (with Grover Washington, Jr., 1981)

Jimmy Witherspoon

R&B/blues singer born James Witherspoon on 8/8/1923 in Gurdon, AR. Died 8/18/1997.

Scott Wittman

You Can’t Stop the Beat (performed by Hairspray Cast, from Hairspray cast: 2002, soundtrack: 2007) – see Marc Shaiman

Hairspray (cast: 2003) – see Marc Shaiman

Wiz Khalifa


Payphone (2012) – see Maroon 5
See You Again (with Charlie Puth, 2015)

Jah Wobble

Judd Woldin

Raisin (composed with Robert Brittan, cast: 1973)


For Lovers (with Pete Doherty, 2004)

Chris Wolstenholme

Bobby Womack

R&B singer/songwriter (“It’s All Over Now”) born Robert Dwayne Womack on 3/4/1944 in Cleveland, OH. Died 6/27/2014.

The Poet II (1984)
The Bravest Man in the Universe (2012)

Lee Ann Womack

I Hope You Dance (with Sons of the Desert, 2000)

Stevie Wonder

R&B singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer born Stevland Hardaway Morris né Judkins on 5/13/1950 in Saginaw, Michigan. He was a child prodigy who was blind since shortly after his birth. He signed with Motown at age 11; initially doing backup work. He started recording in 1962 as “Little Stevie Wonder” and became the youngest artist (age 13) to top the Billboard Hot 100 with “Fingertips.”

Married to Syreeta Wright from 1970-72. When he turned 21, he reworked his Motown contract for more artistic freedom. Near-fatal auto accident on 8/16/73. He has won 25 Grammys, the most ever by a solo artist.

Stevie Wonder: Top 100 Songs
Uptight (Everything's Alright) (1965)
Superstition (1972)
You Are the Sunshine of My Life (1973)

Living for the City (1973)

Master Blaster (Jammin’) (1980)

Ebony and Ivory (1982) – see
Paul McCartney
I Just Called to Say I Love You (1984)
That's What Friends Are For (1985) – see Dionne Warwick
For Your Love (1995)

True to Your Heart (with 98 Degrees, from Mulan, 1998)

The Jazz Soul of Little Stevie (1962)
A Tribute to Uncle Ray (1962)
With a Song in My Heart (1963)
Stevie at the Beach (1964)
Uptight, Everything’s Alright (1966)
Down to Earth (1966)
I Was Made to Love Her (1967)
Someday at Christmas X (1967)
Eivits Rednow (aka “Alfie”) (1968)
For Once in My Life (1968)
My Cherie Amour (1969)
Signed, Sealed, & Delivered (1970)
Where I’m Coming From (1971)
Music of My Mind (1972)
Talking Book (1972)
Innervisions (1973)
Fulfillingness’ First Finale (1974)
Songs in the Key of Life (1976)
Journey Through the Secret Life of Plants (1979)
Hotter Than July (1980)
The Woman in Red (soundtrack, 1984)
In Square Circle (1985)
Characters (1987)
Jungle Fever (soundtrack, 1991)
Conversation Peace (1995)
A Time to Love (2005)

The DMDB Blog/Facebook Note(s):
13-Year-Old Stevie Wonder hits #1: August 10, 1963 (8/10/11)

Donna Wood

I Don’t Want to Set the World on Fire (1941) – see Horace Heidt

Ronnie Wood

Rock musician born Ronald David Wood on 6/1/1947 in Hillingdon, Middlesex, England. With The Birds (g: 64), The Creation, the Jeff Beck Group (b: 67-69), The Faces (b: 69-73), solo (74-), The Rolling Stones (75-).

Harry M. Woods

Ilene Woods

A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes (from Cinderella, 1950)
Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo (from Cinderella, 1950)
So This Is Love (from Cinderella, 1950)

Eric Woolfson

Born 3/18/1945. Died 12/2/2009

Scottish singer/songwriter, musician, and co-founder of the Alan Parsons Project.

Freudiana (1990)
The Alan Parsons Project That Never Was (2009)

The DMDB Blog:
Farewell, Eric Woolfson (12/3/09), also on Facebook.

Victor Wooten

Henry C. Work

John W. Work III

World Party

Ship of Fools (Save Me from Tomorrow) (1986)

Link Wray (& His Ray Men)

Singer/songwriter and guitarist born Fred Lincoln Wray, Jr. on 5/2/1929 in Dunn, NC. Died 11/5/2005.

Rumble (1958)

The Wrecking Crew

Betty Wright

Where Is the Love (1975)

Edythe Wright

The Music Goes 'Round and 'Round (1935) – see Tommy Dorsey
Music, Maestro, Please (1938) – see Tommy Dorsey

Frank Edwin “Tré Cool” Wright III

Horace Wright

My Own Iona (with Rene Dietrich, 1917)

Richard Wright

Rock keyboardist and songwriter with Pink Floyd. Born Richard William Wright on 7/28/1945 in Hatch End, London, England. Died 9/15/2008.

Richard Wright

Broadway composer.

Kismet (cast: 1953) – see Alexander Borodin

Samuel E. Wright

Under the Sea (from The Little Mermaid, 1989)
Kiss the Girl (from The Little Mermaid, 1989)

Allie Wrubel

Wu-Tang Clan

C.R.E.A.M. (Cash Rules Everything Around Me) (1994)

Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) (1993)
Wu-Tang Forever (1997)

Robert Wyatt

Shipbuilding (1982)

Rock Bottom (1974)

Zakk Wylde

Bill Wyman

Rock bassist born 10/24/1936 in London. With the Rolling Stones (63-92), Wille and the Poorboys (85).

Tammy Wynette

Country singer born Virginia Wynette Pugh on 5/5/1942 in Tremont, Mississippi. Married to George Jones from 1969-75. Died 4/6/1998.

Stand by Your Man (1968)

D-I-V-O-R-C-E (1968)
Stand by Your Man (1969)
Golden Ring (1976) – see George Jones

Click on a letter to choose a recording act (“S” for Bruce Springsteen, “B” for Beatles, etc.). Shown with the act are its major awards, short bios for select acts (generally adapted from Joel Whitburn’s Pop Memories 1890-1954 and Top Pop Singles: Billboard books), and links to albums and songs reviewed by the DMDB.


You can also check the search engine for names, albums, songs, and other content on this site:

Last updated February 8, 2020.