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Hip-Hop News: Music's 100 Most Influential People
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Posted by Robert
Rap News Network
6/29/2004 7:56:11 AM

Tags and topics realted to this article include Dr. Dre and Eminem.

We all know the names that sell albums, but who are the figures behind the names?

He started life in a trailer park, has been sued by his mother for claiming she smokes more dope than he does and strikes curious poses with chainsaws.

It might not be the typical profile of a mogul, but in a new survey Marshall Bruce Mathers III, aka Eminem, has been voted the most powerful person in the music industry.

The famously foulmouthed rapper burst onto the music scene in 1999 with his Slim Shady album, but away from his bad boy image Eminem has shown cool business prowess, launching Shady-wear clothing.

He recently used his massive popular appeal to persuade 75,000 young people to register to vote for the first time at the Hip Hop Summit Action Network in Detroit in May.

"There's a generation of people who listen to what he has to say in the same way as the great spokespeople for previous generations, such as Bob Dylan and John Lydon," said Gareth Grundy, the deputy editor of Q magazine, which has compiled a list of the 100 most powerful people in music.

"These are the kind of people who can get what they want just by making a phone call. How much can they get just by picking up the phone? With someone like Bono - he can get through to the White House," Mr Grundy added.

Bono, who combines managing the U2 mega-brand with campaigning on global issues - he recently testified to the US Congress on why President George Bush should put more money into fighting Aids - is at number nine.

Americans dominate the list, with about half of the top 100 hailing from the US.

The highest placed Brit, at number eight, is Sir Howard Stringer, the rugby-loving, Oxford-educated Welshman who is the chairman and chief executive of the Sony Corporation. But Sir Howard, whose next big task is to oversee the launch of Sony's online music store in the UK and Europe, moved to the US in the 1960s.

"It reflects the state of the global music industry, which is dominated by US multinationals," Mr Grundy said.

Traditionalists will be relieved to see Sir Paul McCartney, who headlined the main stage at Glastonbury on Saturday night, at 16; Bob Dylan, who recently played the London Fleadh 42 years after the release of his debut album, at 23; and David Bowie at 45.

John Lennon's widow, Yoko Ono, also makes it onto the list at 32, because "without her there'd be nobody to say 'No' to Paul McCartney". Keith Richards and Mick Jagger, who have generated $750m from Rolling Stones tours since 1989, are ranked at 53.

The cream of the British music scene is recognised, including Coldplay frontman Chris Martin (10), Radiohead's Thom Yorke (30), Dido (40) and her producer, co-writer and brother, Rollo, placed at 98.

Mainstream pop artists including Kylie Minogue (79), Madonna (27), Britney Spears (17), George Michael (56) and Robbie Williams (55), are also included.

The list was drawn up by a 17-strong panel of rock royalty, including the Primal Scream frontman Bobby Gillespie, Universal Music's UK chief, Lucian Grainge, the hop-hop DJ, Tim Westwood, the Glastonbury founder, Michael Eavis, and School of Rock star Jack Black.

Perhaps one of the greatest surprises is the presence of the Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, and his creative sidekick Jonathan Ive at number two on the list. The high positioning of the computer industry executives reflects the burgeoning online music sales industry, with the recent relaunch of Napster and Apple's iTunes.

"Their move into the music business is what everybody's looking at," Mr Grundy said. "They've really shaken things up with iPods and iTunes. It looks as though they're going to turn out to be as important as the compact disc. It seems to be a seismic shift in the way we consume music."

1 Eminem Bad-boy rapper Marshall Mathers III has sparked controversy with his extreme lyrics and

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