8 Surprisingly Well-Educated Rock Stars

Rock music has traditionally been associated with rebellion and counterculture but not necessarily with intellectual pursuits or book learning. However, quite a few rock stars are pretty smart, with a whole range of educational qualifications, as shown in the following article. It features eight rock musicians whose educational achievements are remarkable and whose lack of conformity to stereotypes often led them to pursue artistic careers that broke the mold of the stereotypical rock star.

1.   Brian May (Queen)

Brian May, guitarist for the British rock band Queen, is not only a rock god but also an astrophysicist (some might argue the latter is more impressive). May gained his Ph.D. in astrophysics in 2007 from Imperial College London, some 30 years after he’d begun research – writing services like EssayShark.com would have done it years earlier! He’s published several scientific papers and worked in astronomy, and has notched up a number of hits in the process.

2.   Maynard James Keenan (Tool, A Perfect Circle)

Maynard James Keenan, the pixie-haired vocalist and visual artist of Tool, A Perfect Circle, who sings through an opaque veil of seductive mystery, bears a Bachelor of Fine Arts in visual arts and graphic design to his name from Kendall College of Art and Design. Students can easily follow in Keenan’s footsteps by getting research paper help for any kind of paper they’re working on so that their nurtured creative impulses have ample time to develop. Keenan also owns two wineries, Merkin Vineyards and Caduceus Cellars.

3.   Greg Graffin (Bad Religion)

The singer for the punk rock band Bad Religion, Greg Graffin, shows that academic life and the musical path can happily coexist. Graffin has a Ph.D. in zoology from Cornell University and has lectured in life sciences at the University of California, Los Angeles. Not surprisingly, his songs and lyrics, which often tackle sociopolitical ideas and intellectual issues, reveal his erudition.

4.   Tom Scholz (Boston)

Tom Scholz of the platinum-selling rock band Boston is renowned for his technical skill as a musician and producer. Before hitting the road with Boston, the mechanical engineering graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) designed innovative sound technologies that gave the group its trademark sound.

5.   Dexter Holland (The Offspring)

Despite having the looks and hipster cred of a lead singer of a 90s California punk band, Dexter Holland of The Offspring earned his Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of Southern California while he toured and recorded with his band. He also researched the relationships between nucleotides that make up the molecular structure of HIV.

6.   Rivers Cuomo (Weezer)

Weezer’s singer-songwriter and lead guitarist, Rivers Cuomo, is an academic high-flyer. Cuomo holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the Ivy League institution Harvard University. Much of his literary education makes its way into his lyrics, giving them a degree of self-questioning, half-serious-half-ironic intensity that is easily missed by less erudite songwriters.

7.   Greg Lake (Emerson, Lake & Palmer)

The late Greg Lake, bassist and vocalist of the progressive rock band Emerson, Lake Palmer, had an insatiable appetite for learning. In addition to finding early fame as a professional musician in bands such as King Crimson in his teens, he also went on to attend the University of Sussex, majoring in English literature. His lyrics with ELP are as scholarly and probing as one would expect from a fully-fledged classicist.

8.   Art Garfunkel (Simon & Garfunkel)

Art Garfunkel, one half of Simon & Garfunkel, the most successful folk-rock duo of all time, is a scholar and musical genius. He graduated from Columbia University in New York with a BA in art history. His scholarly interests complement his performing career; his live shows are delivered self-consciously, as though he’s delivering a lecture.

Education is a worthy endeavor for people from all walks of life

These eight rock stars who graduated college illustrate that rock musicians are not all ignorant and uneducated. Rock can be an excellent school for teaching people how to think and become talented in a variety of areas in this multidimensional life. These eight rock musicians aren’t shallow and stupid people; on the contrary, they are multitalented individuals who prove that the pursuit of a university degree does not adversely affect one’s ability to have a creative, vibrant, imaginative, intelligent, and mightily productive mind.

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