10 Rock Artists Who Achieved Hit Songs in Their Teens

10 Rock Artists Who Achieved Hit Songs in Their Teens | Society Of Rock Videos

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Before boy bands and pop sensations took over, some of rock’s future legends were already making chart-topping hits in their teenage years. These artists went on to have remarkable careers, with Grammy Awards and Platinum albums, but tragically, some were taken from us too soon.

Here are 10 rock artists who achieved Hit Songs before the age of 20.

1. Alex Chilton (The Box Tops)

Alex Chilton was just 16 years old when he delivered his growling vocals on the Box Tops’ 1967 #1 hit, “The Letter.” His talent was undeniable, and he continued to shine in the music world until his untimely death at the age of 21.

2. Rick Derringer (The McCoys)

Rick Derringer, born Ricky Dean Zehringer, was only 17 when his band, The McCoys, released the iconic hit “Hang On Sloopy” in 1965. Derringer would go on to pen the classic rock track “Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo” and collaborate with legendary musicians like Johnny Winter and Edgar Winter.

3. Maurice Gibb and Robin Gibb (The Bee Gees)

The fraternal twins, Maurice and Robin Gibb, were just 17 when they joined forces with their older brother Barry Gibb, who was 20 at the time, for their debut American single, “New York Mining Disaster 1941.” The Bee Gees’ incredible songwriting and singing talents led to multiple hits before they turned 20.

4. Lulu

Scottish singer Lulu was a mere 18 years old when her song “To Sir, With Love” became the #1 single of 1967. Her remarkable voice and talent were evident from a young age, and she continued to make waves in the music industry.

5. Peter Noone (Herman’s Hermits)

Peter Noone, known as “Herman” in Herman’s Hermits, was just 16 when the band recorded their first single, “I’m Into Something Good,” in 1964. The song reached #1 in the UK, kicking off a successful career with hits like “Mrs. Brown, You’ve Got a Lovely Daughter” and “I’m Henry VIII, I Am.”

6. The Edge and Larry Mullen Jr. (U2)

The Irish rock band U2 was formed in 1976, with Bono and Adam Clayton barely 20 at the time. Their guitarist, The Edge, and drummer, Larry Mullen Jr., were still only 19 when they recorded their debut album, “Boy.”

7. Ritchie Valens

Ritchie Valens had a promising career cut short when he tragically perished in the 1959 plane crash known as “The Day the Music Died.” His hit single, “Donna,” had reached #3 on the charts, showcasing his talent at a young age.

8. Steve Winwood (Spencer Davis Group)

Steve Winwood was a mere 14 when he, along with his older brother Muff Winwood and Peter York, joined the Spencer Davis Group in 1963. By the age of 18, he contributed to U.K. #1 hits like “Keep on Running” and “Somebody Help Me.”

9. Stevie Wonder

Motown legend Stevie Wonder achieved an astonishing nine Top 10 pop hits before turning 20. Classics like “Fingertips-Part 2,” “Uptight (Everything’s Alright),” and “For Once In My Life” showcased his immense talent from an early age.

10. Eddie Cochran

The guitarist was just 18 when he reached the Top 20 with “Sittin’ in the Balcony” in 1957 and was months shy of his 20th birthday when he recorded and released his only Top 10 single, “Summertime Blues,” which he co-wrote. One wonders where his talents would have taken him; he was just 21 when he died in a car crash.

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