That's something I've always wanted to be sure, but never was. Guns N Roses perhaps has "classics" by each one of the "main" members: Paradise City (Duff), Patience (Izzy), Jungle (Slash) & November (Axl); there are more examples of course... but as far as I know not all of them hit charts at #1. I know November Rain was #1, no idea about the rest. And still a number of GnR members - e.g. the drummers - didn't write any hits. So that band "loses" in that matter.
As far as I know, Beatles members all had #1s as solo artists, but inside the band, Ringo didn't have any. At least in the UK, Octopus's Garden was never a single, I don't know if it was somewhere else, if so, do any of you know if it actually topped?
Led Zeppelin - Bonzo didn't write any full songs. Moreover the band never had a hit single so... (not that there's anything wrong with that, imo Led Zeppelin is the best band ever, but it's about charts I'm talking about in this thread). Perhaps Metallica?
I'm referring to charts in any country. Because counting the UK, I think only Fred & Brian would count in Queen (Bo Rhap, Innuendo, Under Pressure, and those covers of Somebody To Love & We Will Rock You).
How many bands do single credits? That might be a better way of going at it.
U2, for instance, usually take a band credit, though they might make the distinction between lyrics and music, ie Lyrics - Bono, Music - U2. Metallica, as best as I can remember, is usually Hetfield/Ulrich, particularly on the popular songs. But, just like Dr. Poopy Pants, I don't know Metallica that well.
Perhaps what's so amazing is not that every member of Queen had a number one hit, but that the band managed to stick together for all those years even though they fought over writing credits (which, as we know, meant royalities).
Duff wrote the chords of Paradise when he moved to LA. As for GnR chart positions, a friend just sent me the data of singles:
- It's So Easy (dnc)
- Sweet Child (US #1, UK #24)
- Welcome To The Jungle (US #7, UK #67)
- Paradise City (US #5, UK #6)
- Nightrain (US dnc, UK #17)
- Patience (#4 in US, #10 in UK)
- You Could Be Mine (US #29, UK #3)
- November Rain (#3 US, #4 UK)
- Don't Cry (#10 US, #8 UK)
- Live & Let Die (#33 US, #5 UK)
- Civil War (UK #11)
- Yesterdays (UK #8)
- Knocking On Heaven's Dorr (UK #2)
- Since I Don't Have You (UK #10)
- Ain't It Fun (UK #9)
I heard somewhere that November Rain was #1 in Colombia for over a year. But you know people tend to exaggeratte. In the case it did top the charts there, then we would still just have two actual #1 hits by the band, one written by Axl, and one by Axl, Izzy & Slash
Queen are indeed the only band to each individually have written a number one. but that's not the U.K charts, it's means it the whole world. In the U.K only Freddie (Bo Rhap), Queen and Bowie (Under Pressure) and Queen (Innuendo/TATDOOL) have written number ones. But worldwide I know that Radio Ga Ga was number one in about 18 countries, and AOBTD, AKOM, IWTBF, CLTCL etc, etc, etc.
Freddie's famous number one - Bo Rhap (U.K)
Roger's famous number one - Radio Ga Ga (loads)
John's famous number one - AOBTD (U.S)
Brian's famous number one - WWRY(France)
No Sebastian. All the popular 'Tallica songs were written by Hetfield/Ullrich. Sometimes Hammett/Newstead/Burton joined, but none of them co-worked on the real big songs I believe.
Too lazy to check the liner notes in my CD-booklets though[/edit]
In for example Fleetwood Mac, Genesis and Pink Floyd, all members wrote songs. Last two hardly had any hits, but I'm not really sure how the first one scored in hit charts apart from the three that I know of.
Only #1 in U.K. is Albatross (Green); Only #1 in U.S. is Dreams (Nicks); Only #1 in Holland is Go your own way (Buckingham)
I believe so, i read it in an article not to long ago. Even if they aren't, they are still the best #1's out of all bands of the history of excistance, because frankly, i love Queen, and no other band can compare to them.
-Laura Sullivan U.S.
Sorry to throw a spanner in the works - but I thought that all the Gibb brothers (or the Bee Gees to us) had also written number one singles - not only for themselves, but for others also (eg: Yvonne Elliman & Tavares), and that in terms of worldwide sales, were "bigger" than Queen.
I know that they were successfull in the 1960s, 70's, 80s, 90s and 2000, so they have been around the block a bit longer too.
I am not a Bee Gees fan - so is this true?
A quick look on my shelves learnt the following: In the early years, the Bee Gees sometimes had individual credits (mostly Barry), later (starting in the 70's, incl. Saturday Night Fever) they shared credits.
So I don't think all members wrote a #1-hit, or at least, it'll be hard to find out.
BTW: I'm not a fan ;-), just a music collector
Bee Gees were the first band which came to my mind when I thought of the question. The thing is that my favourite Bee Gee, Maurice (RIP), didn't actually compose very much. He arranged 99.99% of the songs, but the writing itself corresponded to his brothers. Except in some cases.
For general terms, Bee Gees had the Beatles rule: who wrote the song sings (although there are several exceptions in the case of Beatles). The other two put harmonies. With that in mind, the biggest hit Maurice wrote is Closer Than Close, which I really don't think went to number one, even if it's one of my big favourites, but it isn't such a big hit imo.
Robin and Barry do have interesting number ones each one, and also shared: I've Just Gotta Get A Message To You (both), Massachussetts (R), How Deep Is Your Love (B), etc. Also Barry wrote Grease's title theme, which was also #1 in the UK.