This Sunday is Father’s Day, a day for families to get together and honor all those dads and granddads. In honor of the holiday, we decided to go through our list of famous musical fathers and their musical progeny.
Elvis Presley—Lisa Marie Presley
We all know the “Hound Dog” who swiveled his hips and sang about his “Blue Suede Shoes.” He married a woman named Priscilla in 1967 and had his only child by her, Lisa Marie. Elvis died in 1977, and on Lisa Marie’s 25th birthday, she inherited his entire fortune. And that’s not all she inherited; she also started up a career in music in 2003 with the release of her first album, To Whom It May Concern. Oh, and there were those kooky marriages to Michael Jackson and Nicholas Cage.
He had success as part of the Fab Four and later maintained that success with his solo career. If you’re the child of one of the Beatles, that’s something you’ve got to carry around with you for the rest of your life. That’s one huge shadow to live under. James is still starting out, but he’s already on his way with two digital EPs, and his first full-length album, Me, was released just last month. He’ll be performing at Bonnaroo tomorrow night and heading off to tour overseas before returning to the U.S. on July 30 for a show in New York’s the Cutting Room.
This was the Motown man who famously asked, “What’s Going On?” and dared to reach beyond what was expected of him in his career. In 1972, Gaye met his future second wife, Janis Hunter, who inspired “Let’s Get It On.” His daughter, Nona, was born in 1974. Nona started out young, releasing her first album, Love for the Future, on Atlantic Records just a month after her 18th birthday. But in addition to her music career, Nona has also worked as a model—and also dated Prince back when he was a symbol.
It was kind of impossible not to be charmed by Frank Sinatra. He had the looks, he had the style and, of course, he had the voice. Nancy was born in 1940 and took an interest in entertainment, even as a child. She took lessons in piano, dance, drama and voice. She launched her music career in 1960 with her debut on The Frank Sinatra Timex Show. She was quickly signed onto Reprise Records, and while her songs were popular overseas, they didn’t quite make the cut on the U.S. charts. But 1966 was her year, because she hit No. One with her popular single, “These Boots Are Made for Walkin’.” She continued to record throughout the years and gained a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2006.
Dylan is a folk icon who has gained international popular and critical acclaim for his music. And at 72, he has quite a musical career behind him, but he’s still going strong with the release of Tempest just last year. While Jakob has followed into his father’s footsteps in terms of pursuing a career in music, he’s got a sound all his own. Inspired by rock bands like the Clash, Jakob is the lead singer and guitarist of alt-rock band the Wallflowers, as well as a solo artist. The Wallflowers saw the release of their latest studio album, Glad All Over, last year.
The Beach Boys basically created California surf rock, songs loaded with light, cheery harmonies and catchy hooks that spoke of youth, summer and fun times at the beach. In 1964, Wilson married Marilyn Rovell from the Honeys. They had two kids, Carnie and Wendy. The two of them joined up with Chynna Phillips (who also came from musical parentage—John and Michelle Phillips from the Mamas & the Papas) to form Wilson Phillips. The Wilson sisters have also teamed up on their own to work on music projects.
We’ve got another one of the Fab Four for the list. The eclectic, artsy Lennon was a member of the iconic band and then later went off on his own for his solo projects and work with his wife, Yoko Ono. John’s first son, Julian Lennon, was born in 1963 to Cynthia Powell. Julian made his record debut as a drummer on “Ya Ya” off of his father’s Walls and Bridges album. Julian’s first album, 1984’s Valotte, produced four chart singers and nabbed him a Grammy nomination. Julian continued to produce subsequent albums, but they did not receive as much success as his first. Julian just released his latest album, Everything Changes, on June 4. Julian’s half-brother, Sean, was born to John Lennon and Yoko Ono in 1975. Sean first appeared on record for Yoko’s Seasons of Glass in 1981. He released his debut solo album, Into the Sun, in 1998. Sean jumped around from project to project, experimenting with hip hop and metal. He collaborated with a laundry list of other artists and released his second solo album, Friendly Fire, in 2006.
Cash was that hard-living southern boy whose sorrowful, personal songs influenced countless artists and earned him the name the “Man in Black.” Roseanne Cash was born in 1955 to Johnny Cash and his first wife, Vivian Liberto. Roseanne was so in love with music that after she graduated from high school in 1973, she joined her father on tour as a wardrobe assistant and background singer. Cash later signed with the Germany-based Ariola label and recorded her self-titled debut album in 1978, but it never hit U.S. record stores. In 1980, she released her first U.S. album, Right or Wrong, which was soon followed by Seven Year Ache the following year. It reached gold status and produced several hits: “Seven Year Ache,” “My Baby Thinks He’s a Train” and “Blue Moon with a Heartache.” Roseanne continued to record albums and had a list of other chart-topping hits, along with a 1985 Grammy win and several Grammy nominations.
Ravi Shankar was a legendary sitar player and composer who was honored in India and beyond. Beatle George Harrison famously called him “the Godfather of World Music.” His daughter, singer and pianist Norah Jones, was born in 1979 in New York. She was raised by her mother alone, but still managed to follow her father into the music business. In 2001, she signed to Blue Note Records and released her debut album, Come Away With Me, the next year. She won an impressive five Grammy Awards in 2003, racking up honors for the hit “Don’t Know Why.” She continued to record numerous albums. Her latest work, Broken Little Hearts, was released last year.
You know about this one—the guy who lent his name to the highly popular heavy metal bands of the ʼ70s and ʼ80s. Van Halen married actress Valerie Bertinelli in 1981, and Wolfgang was born nine years later. Wolfgang grew up playing multiple instruments, and when he was 16, he became actively involved in the band. He replaced Michael Anthony as Van Halen’s bassist.
Here we’ve got three generations of father-and-son musicians. Highly influential country music star Hank Williams gained popularity with songs like “Cold, Cold Heart,” “Your Cheatin’ Heart,” “Hey, Good Lookin’” and “I’ll Never Get Out of This World Alive.” He married Audrey Mae Sheppard in 1944 and had Hank Williams Jr. in 1949. Hank Williams Jr. played his first show at 8 years old. Hank Jr. became known for performing a number of his father’s hits and recorded a number of his own, including “Texas Women,” “All My Rowdy Friends Are Coming Over Tonight,” “Leave Them Boys Alone” and others. The third generation Hank Williams was born in 1972. Hank III released his debut album, Risin’ Outlaw, in 1999 and followed it up with seven subsequent releases.
Here’s a tragic duo. The folk singer-songwriter garnered success with 1969’s Happy Sad, but had trouble finding consistent success later on due to his more experimental pursuits. He died at the age of 28. His son, Jeff, was born in 1966 and had his own promising music career until he also died early in 1997.
Billy Idol—Willem Broad
Rod Stewart—Ruby Stewart
Leonard Cohen—Adam Cohen
George Harrison—Dhani Harrison
Van Morrison—Shana Morrison
Paul Simon—Harper Simon
Steve Earle—Justin Townes Earle
John Bonham—Jason Bonham
Waylon Jennings—Shooter Jennings
Loudon Wainwright III—Rufus Wainwright, Martha Wainwright
Bob Marley—Stephen Marley, Ziggy Marley, Damian Marley