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The Top 10 Geekiest Rock Stars

by dsussman   March 18, 2009 at 10:00AM  |  Views: 2,237

One of greatest things about idolizing geeky musicians is the fact that you will have no problems relating to them. It can be very annoying dedicating yourself to a rock star who gets all the chicks, does all the drugs, and leaves a good looking corpse. I would much rather commit to someone who pokes fun at popular culture, loves Lord of the Rings, and writes songs about writing songs in their parent’s basement.

By Dustin Sussman

The following article does not represent the opinions of Spike TV or its affiliates.

10. Rivers Cuomo


Source: Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images

I’m not really that into the new and improved Rivers, but I still have a special place in my heart for the obsessive-compulsive dork who wrote songs about fellow geeks like Buddy Holly and playing Kiss songs in your parent’s garage.

Rivers’ classic horn-rimmed glasses and early ‘90s bowl cut also provide the perfect formula for any random dude trying to make his geek flag fly.


9. Ronnie James Dio


Source: Paul Natkin/Getty Images

Definitely a curveball, but for a guy who invented the metal "devil's horns", Dio is one of the geekiest rock stars to ever hit the stage. Needless to say, there are a lot of weird and wacky metal frontmen who could have made this list, but it’s Ronnie’s Middle Earth-inspired lyrics and intellectual soft spoken persona that stand out here.

I do love me some Dio, but if you go back and watch the video for “Holy Diver” it’s really hard to believe that people even considered this heavy metal in the first place. When Ronnie starts waving around that giant sword, I can’t help but lose my s***. It’s bigger than him!

Such a big voice, such a tiny man. Ride the tiger!

8. Brian Wilson


Source: Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Only a brain this big could have put together one of the most groundbreaking records ever created.

Although Brian became a reclusive rock star cokehead in the late-'60s, he was still a giant geek at heart. His ability to absorb music and melody was even apparent at a very young age. Brian's father Murry told of how Brian had unusual musical abilities prior to his first birthday. Legend has it that baby Brian somehow was able to repeat the melody from "When the Caissons Go Rolling Along" after hearing a few verses sung by his father. Now that’s pretty f***ing impressive.

7. Thom Yorke


Source: Shirlaine Forrest/Getty Images

For being the frontman of one of the biggest bands on planet earth, Thom Yorke is a pretty big goober. The combination of his awkward facial expressions and uncoordinated dance moves proves that he is and always will be a giant geek. His wicked googly eye is also another key factor.

Thom’s notorious hate for "mythology" within the rock genre is also something most popular musicians choose to embrace instead of battle against. Thom’s overly intellectual take on the media and worldly issues also makes Bono look like a freakin’ lab monkey. 

Mr. Yorke had to be an outcast in grade school as well. I can totally see him sitting in the corner reading a book by himself and humming a high-pitched lullaby.

6. David Byrne


Source: Roberta Bayley/Getty Images

Do I really need to justify this pick? Just watching David dance throughout the entirety of Stop Making Sense makes me giggle in dorky delight every single time.

If every so-called "rock star" was more like David and the Talking Heads I would totally be okay with that. If you go back and watch the band perform on The Old Grey Whistle Test in 1979, it felt like David just rolled out of his Grandma’s basement, strapped on a guitar, and went right into “Psycho Killer.”

Did you know David won an Academy Award for his collaboration with composers Ryuichi Sakamoto and Cong Su on Bernardo Bertolucci's The Last Emperor? I love it. What a dork.