BuzzFeed has mapped out each state’s most critically acclaimed musicians using data from Acclaimed Music, a website that crunches and compiles best-of lists to determine critics’ general consensus. The disparity between heavily populated states with a strong musical tradition and the rest of the country meant there were many widely celebrated artists from states like California, Michigan, and New York who had no shot of making the map, while the bar to represent Alaska, Montana, or Wyoming was much lower. Here are the 50 artists:
1. Alabama: Hank Williams
Born in Mount Olive, Ala.
2. Alaska: Jewel
Grew up in Homer, Alaska.
3. Arizona: Alice Cooper
Went to high school in Phoenix.
4. Arkansas: Al Green
Born in Forrest City, Ark.
5. California: The Beach Boys
Formed in Hawthorne, Calif.
6. Colorado: John Grant
From Parker, Colo.
7. Connecticut: MGMT
Met at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Conn.
8. Delaware: George Thorogood & the Destroyers
Born and raised in Wilmington, Del.
9. Florida: Lynyrd Skynyrd
Formed in Jacksonville, Fla.
10. Georgia: R.E.M.
Met at the University of Georgia in Athens, Ga.
11. Hawaii: Bette Midler
Born and raised in Honolulu.
12. Idaho: Built to Spill
Based in Boise, Idaho.
13. Illinois: Kanye West
Raised in Chicago.
14. Indiana: Michael Jackson
Born and raised in Gary, Ind.
15. Iowa: Slipknot
Formed in Des Moines, Iowa.
16. Kansas: Janelle Monáe
Born in Kansas City, Kan.
17. Kentucky: Bonnie “Prince” Billy
From Louisville, Ky.
18. Louisiana: Frank Ocean
Raised in New Orleans.
19. Maine: Patty Griffin
From Old Town, Maine.
20. Maryland: Animal Collective
Born and formed in Baltimore.
21. Massachusetts: Pixies
Formed in Boston.
22. Michigan: Stevie Wonder
Born in Saginaw, Mich.; raised in Detroit.
23. Minnesota: Bob Dylan
Born in Duluth, Minn.; raised in Hibbing, Minn.
24. Mississippi: Elvis Presley
Born in Tupelo, Miss.; raised in Tupelo and Memphis.
25. Missouri: Ike & Tina Turner
Met and began performing in St. Louis.
26. Montana: The Decemberists
Lead singer Colin Meloy was born in Helena, Mont., and attended the University of Montana in Missoula.
27. Nebraska: Bright Eyes
Based in Omaha, Neb.
28. Nevada: The Killers
Formed and based in Las Vegas.
29. New Hampshire: Tom Rush
Born in Portsmouth, N.H.
30. New Jersey: Bruce Springsteen
Born in Long Branch, N.J.; raised in Freehold, N.J.
31. New Mexico: The Shins
Formed in Albuquerque, N.M.
32. New York: The Velvet Underground
Formed in New York City.
33. North Carolina: The Drifters
Originally formed to serve as a backing group for Clyde McPhatter, who was born in Durham, N.C.
34. North Dakota: Peggy Lee
Born and raised in Jamestown, N.D.
35. Ohio: Scott Walker
Born in Hamilton, Ohio
36. Oklahoma: The Flaming Lips
Formed in Norman, Okla.
37. Oregon: Elliott Smith
Raised in Portland, Ore.
38. Pennsylvania: Nine Inch Nails
Lead singer Trent Reznor was born and raised in Mercer, Penn.
39. Rhode Island: Throwing Muses
Formed in Newport, R.I.
40. South Carolina: John Phillips
Born in Parris Island, S.C.
41. South Dakota: Shawn Colvin
Born in Vermillion, S.D.
42. Tennessee: Johnny Cash
Began his recording career and lived in Memphis.
43. Texas: Buddy Holly & The Crickets
Born and raised in Lubbock, Texas.
44. Utah: The Osmonds
Born and raised in Ogden, Utah.
45. Vermont: Phish
Formed at the University of Vermont in Burlington.
46. Virginia: Missy Elliott
Born in Portsmouth, Va.
47. Washington: Jimi Hendrix
Born and raised in Seattle.
48. West Virginia: Bill Withers
Born in Slab Fork, W.V.; raised in Beckley, W.V.
49. Wisconsin: Bon Iver
Based in Eau Claire, Wis.
50. Wyoming: The Avett Brothers
Scott Avett was born in Cheyenne, Wyo.
- The person suspected of shooting several people at a Planned Parenthood in Colorado Springs is in police custody, officials said. ›
- At least 15 people were killed after a suicide bomber attacked a Shiite Muslim procession of hundreds of people in Nigeria. ›
- And how well do you know what happened in the news this week? Take our quiz. ›