our musical mt. rushmore
Ken Hoffman chisels Beyoncé into Houston's musical Mt. Rushmore after her historic Grammy wins — and predicts who's next
By winning her 29th, 30th, 31st, and 32nd Grammy Awards on Sunday, February 5, Beyoncébecame the all-time Grammy champion and cemented her position as Houston’s greatest homegrown treasure.
Beyoncé stands alone for her entertainment and cultural impact. She isn’t just on our Mount Rushmore, she’s an entire mountain range by herself.
Ah, but who’s second on Houston’s musical landscape? (Though it’s a far distant second now — and Beyoncé is far from finished creating new art and performing for millions of fans.)
There are many performers who started here and spread their talents beyond Houston to Texas, the U.S., and the world. The nominees are … and who gets your vote for Vice-Superstar?
The rap icon, guest lecturer at Rice University, and Unofficial Mayor of Houston has released five albums, with his debut Trill reaching Top 5 in the U.S. He made history as the first Black male Houstonian to headline the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. His tastiest production? Trill Burgers, coming soon to the old James Coney Island location on South Shepherd and Richmond.
Megan Thee Stallion
The TSU grad has exploded on the scene and burned up the Billboard Hot 100 singles and Hot 200 albums charts in the past two years. Time Magazine included her on its list of 100 Most Influential People in the World. Recorded "Savage" with Beyoncé and "WAP" with Cardi B.
Last year hosted and was musical guest on Saturday Night Live. Won the Grammy for Best New Artist and four American Music Awards.
Recorded 13 albums and 25 singles. “Cowboy Man” reached No. 10 on the country singles chart. Once married to Pretty Woman Julia Roberts. Similar hairstyle to Cosmo Kramer.
The “Little Ol’ Band from Texas” recorded 15 albums and sold 50 million copies worldwide. They were inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in 2004. Their videos for “Sharp Dressed Man” and “Legs” were instrumental to MTV’s success in the 1980s. This is amazing, in 1991 the Texas House of Representatives named ZZ Top as “Official Heroes for the State of Texas.”
The Gambler boasts credits like Country music Hall of Fame, 120 singles on various hit charts around the world, more than 100 million records sold, starred in a series of TV movies based on his The Gambler character, co-founded Kenny Rogers Roasters restaurants that got the entire cast of Seinfeld hooked on chicken. “It’s the wood that makes it good.” In 1986 a national poll ranked Rogers as the “Greatest Singer of All-Time.”
The Houston native wrote, produced and performed “I Can See Clearly Now” in 1972, the first reggae song to hit No. 1 on Billboard’s singles chart.
Original member of The Monkees, one of the biggest acts of the 1960s, wrote “A Different Drum” for the Stone Poneys with lead singer Linda Ronstadt in 1967. Oh, and NBD but, his mother invented Liquid Paper. For real.
He had solo hit records like “That’s the Way God Planned It,” “Nothing From Nothing,” and “Will It Go Round In Circles.” He co-wrote “You Are So Beautiful” for Joe Cocker. Perhaps best known for being the only person to get credit on a Beatles recording at the Fab Four’s request. The label reads “Get Back by The Beatles with Billy Preston.”
Archie Bell and the Drells
They had a Top 10 single with Tighten Up in 1968. The song opens with, “Hi everybody, I’m Archie Bell of the Drells, from Houston, Texas and we don’t only sing, but we dance just as good as we walk. In Houston we just started a new dance called the Tighten Up.” That’s called representing.
Also receiving consideration:
You can make a case for Slim Thug, La Mafia, Machine Gun Kelly, The Geto Boys, Barbara Mandrell, Paul Wall, Destiny’s Child, Travis Scott, and B.J. Thomas.