20 Famous Musicians From Virginia

Virginia has been a fertile ground for some of the world’s most celebrated musicians, from pop to country, R&B to rock, and everything in between. The state has produced an impressive array of talented singers, songwriters, producers, and even rappers. Virginia’s music scene is rich, diverse, and continues to produce new talents who are making waves in the industry. 

In this article, let us explore some of the best musicians from Virginia, their influence, and their impact on the music world.

1. Ella Fitzgerald

Ella Fitzgerald was one of the most acclaimed jazz vocalists. Known for her impeccable pitch, phrasing, and improvisational skills in scat singing, she recorded over 200 albums and won 13 Grammy Awards.

Her vocal range and versatility made her an icon in the music industry, and her interpretations of standards like “Summertime” and “Mack the Knife” remain classics to this day.

2. Timbaland

Timbaland is a Grammy Award-winning producer, singer-songwriter, and rapper. He rose to prominence with his innovative production techniques and collaborations with artists like Aaliyah, Missy Elliott, and Justin Timberlake.

His use of sampling and unique sound design has made him one of the most sought-after producers in the music industry.

3. Patsy Cline

Patsy Cline was one of the most successful and influential female country singers of all time.

Known for her rich, expressive voice and emotional performances, she had hits like “Crazy,” “Walkin’ After Midnight,” and “I Fall to Pieces.” Her music continues to inspire new generations of country musicians and fans.

4. Bruce Hornsby

Bruce Hornsby is a singer, songwriter, and pianist known for his eclectic mix of jazz, rock, and bluegrass influences. He gained popularity in the 1980s with his band, Bruce Hornsby and The Range, and hits like “The Way It Is” and “Mandolin Rain.”

As a multiple Grammy Award winner, Hornsby’s musical style and technical ability on the piano have earned him critical acclaim and collaborations with artists like Don Henley and Bonnie Raitt.

5. Pharrell Williams

Pharrell Williams, the artist responsible for creating the hit song “Happy” featured in the ‘Despicable Me 2’ soundtrack, is a multi-talented musician, rapper, and producer who has collaborated with some of the most renowned names in the music industry.

He released successful solo albums and collaborated with Daft Punk on the hit song “Get Lucky.”

6. Chris Brown

As one of the biggest names in the R&B genre, Chris Brown is a singer, rapper, and actor known for his smooth vocals and energetic performances. He gained popularity in the mid-2000s with hits like “Run It!” and “Kiss Kiss” and has continued to release successful albums and singles. 

Brown’s music and dance moves have earned him numerous awards and nominations, and his collaborations with artists like Lil Wayne and Wiz Khalifa have solidified his status as a major player in the music industry.

7. Dave Grohl

Dave Grohl is a musician and songwriter best known as the previous drummer for the legendary rock band Nirvana and the frontman of the Foo Fighters.

His powerful drumming and songwriting skills have earned him critical acclaim and numerous awards, and his participation with artists like Paul McCartney and Queens of the Stone Age have further cemented his status as a musical icon.

8. Jason Mraz

Jason Mraz is a singer-songwriter known for his acoustic pop style and hit songs like “I’m Yours” and “Lucky” featuring Colbie Caillat.

He gained popularity in the early 2000s with his debut album, “Waiting for My Rocket to Come,” and has continued to release successful albums and collaborate with other artists in the industry.

9. Missy Elliott

A rapper, singer, songwriter, and producer, Missy Elliott is a pioneer in hip-hop and R&B music. She has won multiple Grammy Awards and is known for her hit songs like “Get Ur Freak On,” “Work It,” and “Lose Control.”

Her innovative music videos and unique style have made her a major influence on the music industry.

10. D’Angelo

Hailing from Richmond, Virginia, D’Angelo is a singer-songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist who gained popularity with his neo-soul style. He has released critically acclaimed albums such as “Brown Sugar” and “Voodoo,” which won Grammy Awards.

11. Trey Songz

Trey Songz is a singer, songwriter, and rapper known for his R&B and hip-hop music. He has released several successful albums and hit singles like “Can’t Help But Wait” and “Bottoms Up.” He has also acted in films and television shows, including “Texas Chainsaw 3D.”

12. Lamb Of God

Lamb of God is a heavy metal band known for their aggressive sound and politically charged lyrics. They have released numerous successful albums and have been nominated for multiple Grammy Awards. Over the years, they have performed in different music festivals and toured with the Ozzfest.

13. Kali Uchis

Kali Uchis is a singer-songwriter who blends elements of R&B, soul, and pop music. Her debut album “Isolation” was critically acclaimed and earned her a Grammy nomination for Best R&B Performance for the song “Get You.” 

14. The Statler Brothers

A country music vocal group formed in Staunton, Virginia, The Statler Brothers achieved major success with hit songs like “Flowers on the Wall” and “Elizabeth.” They were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame and are recognized as one of the most influential country music groups of all time.

15. Ruth Brown

Known as the “Queen of R&B,” Ruth Brown was born in Portsmouth, Virginia and was a prominent singer, songwriter, and actress in the 1950s. She is known for hit songs like “Teardrops from My Eyes” and “(Mama) He Treats Your Daughter Mean,” and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

16. Old Crow Medicine Show

Old Crow Medicine Show is a string band known for their old-time, folk, and Americana music. They gained popularity with their hit song “Wagon Wheel,” which was co-written with Bob Dylan. They have won two Grammy Awards and performed in various music festivals.

17. Steve Earle

Steve Earle is a singer-songwriter known for his country and rock music. He has released numerous albums and won multiple Grammy Awards, including Best Contemporary Folk Album for “The Revolution Starts Now.” 

18. N.E.R.D

Pharrell Williams, Chad Hugo, and Shay Haley formed the hip-hop and rock band N.E.R.D in Virginia Beach in 1999. They gained popularity in the early 2000s with hit songs like “Rock Star” and “She Wants to Move.”

19. Wayne Newton

Wayne Newton is a singer and actor known as “Mr. Las Vegas” for his performances at various Las Vegas venues. He is known for hit songs like “Danke Schoen” and “Red Roses for a Blue Lady.” He is famous for being a great cabaret entertainment and his singing talent.

20. Roy Clark


Roy Clark was a musician and television personality known for his country and rockabilly music. He hosted the television show “Hee Haw” and was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. He is known for hit songs like “Yesterday, When I Was Young” and “Thank God and Greyhound.”


Virginia has produced musicians who have become legends in their respective genres. From the soulful R&B of Ella Fitzgerald and D’Angelo, to the country twang of Patsy Cline and The Statler Brothers, Virginia’s musical diversity is undeniable.

The state has also given rise to some of the most innovative music producers and performers, including Timbaland and Pharrell Williams. With their unique styles and contributions, musicians in Virginia have a lot to offer for music fans all over the world.

Timbaland Featured Image (Top-Left) by: Collision Conf, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Pharrell Williams Featured Image (Top-Right) by: Sassy, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Dave Grohl Featured Image (Bottom-Left) by: Raphael Pour-Hashemi, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Missy Elliot Featured Image (Bottom-Right) by: Atlantic Records, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons