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Rolling Stone Have Updated Their Top 500 Albums List, With Marvin Gaye Taking The Top Spot

Rolling Stone has published a new edition of their Top 500 Albums of All-Time list. The most notable difference between it and its original 2003 version is a significant increase in the amount of records by women and people of colour in its top spots.

The list’s original top five included three albums by The Beatles alone, punctuated by The Beach Boys‘ Pet Sounds at the #2 spot and Bob Dylan‘s Highway 61 Revisited at #4. Marvin Gaye’s 1971 opus What’s Going On, which originally appeared at #6 on the list, now sits at the #1 spot.

New additions to the top 10 list include Joni Mitchell‘s Blue at #3, Stevie Wonder‘s Songs in the Key of Life at #5, Nirvana‘s Nevermind at #6, Fleetwood Mac‘s Rumours at #8, Prince and the Revolution‘s Purple Rain at #9 and Lauryn Hill‘s The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill at #10.

The new list was formulated with input from 300 musicians, producers, journalists and other music industry figures. Artists involved in the voting process included Beyoncé, Wayne Coyne, Billie Eilish, Carly Rae Jepsen, Adam Horovitz, Stevie Nicks, Raekwon, Kevin Shields, Robert Smith and many more. You can see the full list of voters here.

Check out the updated top 50 below. You can see the full, new Top 500 list here, and the 2003 version here.

Rolling Stone’s Top 50 Albums of All Time (2020)

1. Marvin Gaye – What’s Going On
2. The Beach Boys – Pet Sounds
3. Joni Mitchell – Blue
4. Stevie Wonder – Songs in the Key of Life
5. The Beatles – Abbey Road
6. Nirvana – Nevermind
7. Fleetwood Mac – Rumours
8. Prince and the Revolution – Purple Rain
9. Bob Dylan – Blood on the Tracks
10. Lauryn Hill – The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill
11. The Beatles – Revolver
12. Michael Jackson – Thriller
13. Aretha Franklin – I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You
14. The Rolling Stones – Exile on Main Street
15. Public Enemy – It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back
16. The Clash – London Calling
17. Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
18. Bob Dylan – Highway 61 Revisited
19. Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp a Butterfly
20. Radiohead – Kid A
21. Bruce Springsteen – Born to Run
22. The Notorious B.I.G. – Ready to Die
23. The Velvet Underground & Nico – The Velvet Underground
24. The Beatles – Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
25. Carole King – Tapestry
26. Patti Smith – Horses
27. Wu-Tang Clan – Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)
28. D’Angelo – Voodoo
29. The Beatles – White Album
30. The Jimi Hendrix Experience – Are You Experienced?
31. Miles Davis – Kind of Blue
32. Beyoncé – Lemonade
33. Amy Winehouse – Back to Black
34. Stevie Wonder – Innervisions
35. The Beatles – Rubber Soul
36. Michael Jackson – Off the Wall
37. Dr. Dre – The Chronic
38. Bob Dylan – Blonde on Blonde
39. Talking Heads – Remain in Light
40. David Bowie – The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars
41. The Rolling Stones – Let It Bleed
42. Radiohead – OK Computer
43. A Tribe Called Quest – The Low End Theory
44. Nas – Illmatic
45. Prince – Sign O’ the Times
46. Paul Simon – Graceland
47. Ramones – Ramones
48. Bob Marley and the Wailers – Legend
49. OutKast – Aquemini
50. Jay-Z – The Blueprint


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