Musical collaborations are unique by nature. The most memorable ones often take artists from different genres or eras and mash them together to create something new (or re-do something old). But combining two or three massive artists into one song isn’t exactly a recipe for success (just ask Brad Paisley and LL Cool J). So let’s look at six times that the collaboration worked with our 6 best musical collaborations in JACK history.

#6 Daft Punk, Nile Rodgers and Pharrell Williams – “Get Lucky”

The robots teamed up with CHIC super producer Nile Rodgers and Pharrell to create one of the best party songs of the 21st century… and beyond! Hard to imagine that Daft Punk could sound so disco-ey, but thanks to the CHIC effect, this song sounds like it came out before they were born!


#5 Philip Bailey & Phil Collins – “Easy Lover”

Ah, Phil and Phil. When Phil Collins (of Genesis fame) teamed up with Philip Bailey (of Earth Wind & Fire fame) we knew it would be good, but when we first saw the wacky “video within a video” we knew it was a collaboration between two of the greatest Phil’s who had ever lived. All apologies to Uncle Phil.


#4 Michael Jackson & Eddie Van Halen – “Beat It”

You could listen to this song a hundred times and not even know that Eddie Van Halen played a role in its success. But listen to that guitar solo again. Yep, that’s the one and only Eddie Van Halen! While Eddie wasn’t paid for the gig, he is one of the few who can say that they played a part in creating the BIGGEST ALBUM OF ALL-TIME!


#3 David Bowie & Queen – “Under Pressure”

Kind of hard to believe that one of the most iconic songs from both Queen and David Bowie was actually an accidental collaboration between the two. They had been working together on another song (titled “Feel Like”) but it ended up becoming “Under Pressure” instead. It became Queen’s 2nd #1 song in the UK (after “Bohemian Rhapsody”) and remained a staple of their live concerts up until Freddie’s death (with Bowie’s part always sung by Queen drummer Roger Taylor).

PS it might feature of the greatest basslines of all-time. Just ask Vanilla Ice.


#2 Tom Petty & Stevie Nicks – “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around”

When Stevie Nicks was looking for a producer to record her first solo album she ending up choosing her boyfriend, Jimmy Iovine. It’s a good thing too because Jimmy had produced records for Tom Petty & The Heartbreaker’s and he knew Tom had a song that would be perfect for Stevie. While Stevie wasn’t keen on recording a Tom Petty song at the expense of one of her own, she relented, and it went on to become one of her most recognizable solo songs and was her biggest hit on the album. A classic collaboration between two artists we wish had put out an entire album of music together.


#1 Run D.M.C. & Aerosmith – “Walk This Way”

The collaboration to end all collaborations. Remember, when this song came out in 1986, Aerosmith was waning in popularity and Hip-Hop was just emerging as a new popular sound outside of New York City. Run D.M.C. flipped all that with this song. Run D.M.C. gave Aerosmith some street credibility and a second wind (which they eventually parlayed into a third wind), while Aerosmith gave Run D.M.C. a familiar, bonafide hit and access to a larger, more mainstream audience. It became one of the biggest break-out singles of the ’80s and still gets tonnes of play to this day. It also spawned the Rap-Rock subgenre, for better and for worse.


Honourable Mentions

  • Bryan Adams & Glass Tiger – “Don’t Forget Me When I’m Gone”
  • Michael & Janet Jackson – “Scream”
  • Eddie Murphy & Rick James – “Party All The Time”
  • Robbie Robertson & U2 – “Sweet Fire Of Love”
  • The Beatles & Eric Clapton – “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”
  • Olivia Newton-John & Electric Light Orchestra – “Xanadu”
  • Paul McCartney & Michael Jackson – “Say, Say, Say”
  • David Bowie & Mick Jagger – “Dancing In The Streets”
  • Pet Shop Boys & Dusty Springfield – “What Have I Done To Deserve This?”


Make sure you send us your favourite musical collaborations on Facebook or Twitter! And no, Milli Vanilli don’t count 😉

Filed under: Collaborations, Duets, JACK likes Lists, msuic facts