31 Hard Rock And Metal Performers Who Went Pop

  • Van Halen. (Photo: Wiki)

  • Hard rock icons Guns & Roses re-booted their career with the piano ballad “November Rain.” (Photo: Pinterest)

  • Sebastian Bach. (Photo: Pinterest)

  • KISS scored a hit with the country-pop “Hard Luck Woman” which was later covered by Garth Brooks. (Photo: Pinterest)

  • Queen. (Photo: Twitter)

  • Heart. (Photo: Wiki)

  • Noise-rockers Harvey Milk scored a hit with the Leonard Cohen-esqe “Old Glory.” (Photo: YouTube)

  • Triumph. (Photo: Pinterest)

  • Bad Company debuted as a Led Zeppelin clone, then mellowed into a pop act. (Photo: Wiki)

  • Robert Plant. (Photo: Twitter)

  • Alice Cooper, from spook to pop-rock songsmith. (Photo: Wiki)

  • Jon Bon Jovi. (Photo: Wiki)

  • Mike Patton. (Photo: Flickr)

  • Iggy Pop. (Photo: Flickr)

  • Grand Funk Railroad. (Photo: Flickr)

  • Bro Safari. (Photo: Flickr)

  • KId Rock. (Photo: Twitter)

  • Led Zeppelin broke it down with acoustic folk tracks often in their career. (Photo: Archive)

  • Tori Amos. (Photo: Wiki)

  • Bret Michaels. (Photo: Twitter)

  • Geddy Lee of Rush has called the band’s pop ballad “Lakeside Park” the “worst Rush song ever.” (Photo: Twitter)

  • Kill the Noise. (Photo: Flickr)

  • Jason Newstead of Metallica went firmly indie-pop after leaving the band. (Photo: Pinterest)

  • The Bloody Beetroots. (Photo: Pinterest)

  • Mantis. (Photo: Archive)

  • Adventure Club. (Photo: Twitter)

  • Def Leppard. (Photo: Wiki)

  • Hard rock band Tesla’s biggest hit was a version of the old folk song “Signs.” (Photo: Wiki)

  • Steven Tyler. (Photo: Pinterest)

  • From “Sunshine of your Love” to adult contemporary – Eric Clapton. (Photo: Wiki)

  • Aaron Lewis. (Photo: Twitter)

Van Halen. (Photo: Wiki)

Lady Gaga’s amazing Super Bowl halftime performance was one of the highlights of pop music in the past year. But her 15-minute, multi-genre tour de force highlighted a trend in the music world – artists diversifying their style to please an audience. Young listeners are becoming more open-minded, willing to listen to anything from classical to conga.

Once upon a time, it was considered taboo for a musician to step outside of their customary genre. Just think of legends such as Ricky Nelson getting booed in Madison Square Garden for daring to play a country song, or Bob Dylan plugging in and nearly causing a riot led by acoustic-guitar purist Pete Seeger.

But that hasn’t stopped even heavy metal artists from putting the spikes away, cutting their hair and exploring another sound, even folk or pop music. Here are 31 rock and metal performers who have toned down and recorded something softer – to the delight or revulsion of fans.


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