Golf & Music
September 24, 2008
The Top 100 in Music
Handicaps are from August and were determined from the USGA's Golf Handicap and Information Network, state associations, the musicians, publicists, friends and playing partners. Handicaps without decimal points are unofficial estimates.
RANK/MUSICIAN HDCP COMMENT [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=1)[#image: /photos/55adac93add713143b44466f]|||gatlin|||1. Rudy Gatlin +1.3 Singer's touted motivational speaking must have contributed to improvement from 2.4 Index in 2006; plays at Royal Oaks in Dallas, where he shot 68 in June. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=2)[#image: /photos/55adac93b01eefe207f88660]|||kennyg|||2. Kenny G 0.0 Jazz saxophonist was our No. 1 in 2006; says his proudest athletic moment was hitting a great drive in front of Jack Nicklaus. ([Read more about Kenny G](/rankings/2006/12/kennyg)) 3. Marty Roe 0.2 Vocalist and acoustic guitarist for Diamond Rio plays at Nashville Golf & Athletic Club; improved his Index over summer months. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=3)[#image: /photos/55adac93b01eefe207f88662]|||vince|||4. Vince Gill 0.8 Country singer, on tour through November, has raised millions for junior golf with his "Vinny" pro-celebrity event; The First Tee Nashville facility is called The VinnyLinks. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=4)[#image: /photos/55adac93b01eefe207f8865d]|||azar|||5. Steve Azar 1.3 Singer-songwriter played almost daily with college roommate, listening on headphones to Springsteen, Mellencamp and Seger. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=5)[#image: /photos/55adac93add713143b444671]|||adrian|||6. Adrian Young 1.4 Drummer for No Doubt with mohawk cut belongs to two clubs in San Diego area. ([Read more about Adrian Young](/rankings/2006/12/topmusicians)) 7. Steve Gatlin 3.4 Hasn't improved as dramatically as No. 1 younger brother, but he's down from 3.9 in '06. 8. Larry Gatlin 3.5 Went from gospel to country to Broadway. 9. Dan Tyminski 4.4 Ten-time Grammy winner released his second solo album, "Wheels," in June. 10. Griffin House 5 Singer-songwriter grew up playing at Springfield (Ohio) Country Club, where his scratch-player dad is a former club champ. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=6)[#image: /photos/55adac93b01eefe207f88669]|||cooper|||11. Alice Cooper 5.3 Well before he was known for his golf, rocker used to charter flights to golf venues from concert cities. ([Read more about Alice Cooper](/rankings/2006/12/topmusicians)) [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=7)[#image: /photos/55adac94b01eefe207f8866f]|||davis|||T-12. Mac Davis 5.8 Singer-songwriter who wrote several Elvis hits plays at Bel-Air Country Club. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=8)[#image: /photos/55adac94add713143b444678]|||davis|||T-12. Huey Lewis 5.8 Posted 18 rounds at his Montana club in May/June; performed on Capitol lawn July 4. 14. Lloyd Cole 5.9 British rocker lives in western Massachusetts, where he laments that only two of Donald Ross' original holes remain at home course, Wycoff Country Club. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=10)[#image: /photos/55adac93b01eefe207f8866c]|||josh|||T-15. Josh Kelley 6 Singer married actress Katherine Heigl late last year, and he's claiming a handicap two strokes higher than his 4 in [our 2006 ranking.](/rankings/2007/musicianrankings_gd2007) [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=9)[#image: /photos/55adac94add713143b44467b]|||justin|||T-15. Justin Timberlake 6 Rarely plays 18 holes; says he's "about a 6." ([See interview with Justin Timberlake](/rankings/2008/11/justintimberlake)) 17. Will Pugh 6.4 Lead singer for Cartel quit his high school golf team to pursue music. T-18. Alan White 6.6 Yes drummer, based in state of Washington, is No. 2 sticks man on our list. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=11)[#image: /photos/55adac94b01eefe207f88674]|||dweezil|||T-18. Dweezil Zappa 6.6 Guitarist says golf keeps him sane in crazy business. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=12)[#image: /photos/55adac94add713143b444683]|||clay|||20. Clay Walker 7 Country singer hosted "Band Against MS" fund-raiser at Pebble Beach courses to fight MS, a disease from which he suffers. [ View the top 20 musicians](/rankings/musicians) RANK/MUSICIAN HDCP COMMENT 21. John Lodge 7.6 Moody Blues legend has tournament for charity at home in U.K.; loves U.S. courses like Congressional and Hazeltine. 22. Frank Beard 8.3 ZZ Top drummer plays almost every day. 23. Robby Krieger 8.6 Doors guitarist, 62, tours with Riders On The Storm and belongs to Riviera Country Club. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_musicians?slide=13)[#image: /photos/55adac94b01eefe207f8867e]|||tico|||24. Tico Torres 8.7 Bon Jovi drummer and percussionist is down from a 12.1 in '06. T-25. Ray Benson 9 Lead singer for Asleep at the Wheel plays at Barton Creek in Austin when not touring. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=1)[#image: /photos/55adac94b01eefe207f88678]|||Bolton|||T-25. Michael Bolton 9.0 Despite short season in Connecticut, pop singer continues to lower handicap. T-25. Kenny Scott 9 Florida-born Echo Jet frontman was headed for career in golf before record deal beckoned. T-28. Barbara Bonney 9.3 American soprano lives and records in Europe -- and plays in Provence; raves about Pia Nilsson/Lynn Marriott school she attended. T-28. Drew Copeland 9.3 Rhythm guitarist and lyricist for Sister Hazel has also recorded solo; although he performs barefoot, he does wear golf shoes. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=2)[#image: /photos/55adac94add713143b44468a]|||darius|||T-28. Darius Rucker 9.3 Best golfer in Hootie & the Blowfish, he won band's post-Masters 2008 Myrtle Beach pro-celeb event with Annika Sorenstam. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=3)[#image: /photos/55adac94b01eefe207f8867c]|||branford|||T-31. Branford Marsalis 9.4 Saxophonist with his own quartet plays a lot of golf when home in North Carolina. T-31. Scott (Flip) Phillips 9.4 Drummer who moved from Creed to Alter Bridge is a member at Golden Bear Club at Keene's Pointe in Windermere, Fla. 33. Thomas Hampson 9.7 Europe-based American baritone was in hunt with partner Brandel Chamblee after 36 holes at 2008 AT&T but missed cut by two. T-34. Tab Benoit 10 Blues singer-songwriter with B.B. King sound is an environmental activist. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=4)[#image: /photos/55adac94add713143b44468f]|||kix|||T-34. [Kix Brooks](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=3) 10 This half of Brooks & Dunn once bested pal John Daly and Arnold Palmer in a skins game. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=7)[#image: /photos/55adac95b01eefe207f88688]|||glen|||T-34. Glen Campbell 10.0 Former Bel-Air Country Club member plays often at public Malibu Country Club. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=5)[#image: /photos/55adac95add713143b444692]|||don|||T-34. Don Felder 10.0 Ex-Eagles guitarist wrote tell-all book, *Heaven and Hell: My Life in the Eagles, 1974-2001.* T-34. John Michael Montgomery 10 Country singer's favorite courses: Victoria National (Indiana), Champion Trace (Kentucky). T-34. Vince Neil 10 Mtley Cre singer hosts fund-raising event that honors his late daughter, Skylar. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=6)[#image: /photos/55adac95add713143b444696]|||rooney|||T-34. Joe Don Rooney 10 Rascal Flatts guitarist collects scorecards. [ View the top 20-40 musicians](/rankings/musicians?currentPage=2) RANK/MUSICIAN HDCP COMMENT 41. Dave (Phoenix) Farrell 10.7 Bassist for Linkin Park plays at Coto de Caza Golf & Racquet Club in Southern California. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=8)[#image: /photos/55adac95add713143b44469e]|||barrere|||42. Paul Barrere 10.8 Little Feat guitarist-vocalist is touring the United Kingdom; plays in Woodland Hills, Calif. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=9)[#image: /photos/55adac95add713143b44469b]|||green|||T-43. Pat Green 11 Country singer plays in BMW Charity Pro-Am on Nationwide Tour; made headlines in August when a fan responding to his onstage request for a beer knocked him out with a thrown can. T-43. Jani Lane 11 Glam metal rocker is lead singer for Warrant. T-43. Mark Miller 11 Frontman for Sawyer Brown founded Christian label after playing golf with Grammy winner Steven Curtis Chapman T-43. Matthew Polenzani 12 Lyric tenor starring with Metropolitan Opera T-43. Ed Roland 11.0 Collective Soul singer-guitarist got into game at urging of Eddie Van Halen. T-43. George Strait 11.0 Country icon is only golfer-musician on our list who sponsors a Team Roping Classic. 48. Bob Seger 11.1 Rock & Roll Hall of Famer plays in Michigan. 49. Anne Murray 11.4 Canadian singer plays avidly near her homes in Toronto and Nova Scotia. 50. Mark Bryan 11.7 Second-best Hootie & the Blowfish golfer belongs with rest of band at Bulls Bay Golf Club near Charleston, S.C. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=10)[#image: /photos/55adac95b01eefe207f8868b]|||johnny|||51. Johnny Mathis 11.8 Singer's Index improved from 15.2 in April after 40 rounds in June, July, August. 52. Trace Adkins 12 No. 1 hits keep coming for country star. T-52. Joe Diffie 12 Touring has limited golf for country singer. T-52. Nick Jonas 12 He's youngest, 16, and top musician-golfer of the Jonas Brothers, his brothers say. T-52. Roger Waters 12.0 British bassist-songwriter spent 20 years with Pink Floyd; member at Sunningdale. T-52. Tony Joe White 12 Country singer plays golf in Nashville with Spalding clubs made in the 1920s. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=11)[#image: /photos/55adac95b01eefe207f88691]|||dean|||57. Dean Felber 12.1 Hootie & the Blowfish guitarist. 58. Jonathan Cain 12.2 Keyboardist for Journey plays across bay from San Francisco at Richmond Country Club. 59. Aaron Lewis 13 Lead vocalist for Staind plays guitar right-handed and golf left-handed; lives in Massachusetts and plays 5-6 times a week. [ View the top 40-59 musicians](/rankings/musicians?currentPage=3) RANK/MUSICIAN HDCP COMMENT T-60. Chris Culos 14 Drummer for rock band O.A.R. has been playing golf since he was 12 or 13. T-60. Matthew Polenzani 14 Lyric tenor was winner of Metropolitan Opera's 2008 Beverly Sills Award. T-60. Marc Roberge 14 Lyricist and co-founder of O.A.R. says he loves escaping "the noise" while on the course. T-60. M. Shadows 14.0 Lead singer for Avenged Sevenfold (aka A7X) took up game last winter. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=12)[#image: /photos/55adac95add713143b4446a4]|||frey|||64. Glenn Frey 14.0 Co-founder of the Eagles has tried acting; plays his golf at Bel-Air Country Club. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=13)[#image: /photos/55adac95add713143b4446a9]|||taylor|||T-65. Taylor Hicks 15 The 2006 "American Idol" winner starred on Broadway this past summer in "Grease." T-65. Kevin Jonas 15 The oldest of the Jonas Brothers told CNN that golf is "our get-out-on-the-green-and-enjoy-being-out-there-by-ourselves" time. T-65. Toby Keith 15 Country chart-topper is as good as he was in 2006, playing at his Norman, Okla. course. T-65. Charley Pride 15 Legendary country singer is still touring. T-65. Kenny Rankin 15 Jazz/pop vocalist, songwriter and guitarist. T-65. Smokey Robinson 15 Motown star told Golf Digest he isn't really a country-club golfer. "I play golf wherever my buddies and I want to go that day. Wherever they've got holes and flags, look for us." ([See "Final Exam with Smokey Robinson"](/magazine/2007/11/finalexam_smokey)) T-65. Denny Scott 15 Like brother Kenny (T-25), a frontman for Echo Jet; former surfer enjoying solid reviews of new hit single "Wave." 72. Doug Clifford 15.6 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame drummer now plays with Creedence Clearwater Revisited. T-73. Brian McKnight 16 Former semi-pro basketball player with R&B sound brings athleticism to his game. T-73. Willie Nelson 16 His nine-hole Cut-N-Putt course near Austin is as iconoclastic as its founder. 75. Stephen Stills 16.8 Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young guitarist is yet another member at Bel-Air Country Club. T-76. Ricky Phillips 17 Bass player with Styx is trying to get back after injuring his Achilles tendon. T-76. Jesse Valenzuela 17.0 Vocalist-guitarist for Gin Blossoms plays in Southern California. 78. Edwin McCain 17.1 Greenville, S.C., singer-songwriter released "Nobody's Fault But Mine" in June. T-79. Joshua Bell 18 Indiana-born classical violinist says playing effortlessly works in golf -- and music. ([Read more on Joshua Bell](/magazine/interviews/2007/01/joshuabell)) T-79. Jett Beres 18 Bass player-vocalist for Sister Hazel plays in Palm Beach area when schedule allows. T-79. Eric Church 18 Lower-handicap golfers in his band get this country singer on courses while touring. T-79. Celine Dion 18 Songstress has been MIA at her home club, Trump International in West Palm Beach. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=14)[#image: /photos/55adac95add713143b4446a7]|||mick|||T-79. Mick Fleetwood 18 Fleetwood Mac drummer touring with Mick Fleetwood Blues Band and playing as much golf as time allows. ([Read, "Golfing Musicians: Saving Grace"](/rankings/2006/12/topmusicians)) [ View the top 60-79 musicians](/rankings/musicians?currentPage=4) RANK/MUSICIAN HDCP COMMENT 84. Mike Mills 19.1 REM bassist, who turns 50 in December, plays at Athens (Ga.) C.C.; he can be heard vocalizing on band's 2008 album, "Accelerate." 85. Robin Zander 19.1 Cheap Trick singer-guitarist is playing celebrity events and battling a bad back. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=15)[#image: /photos/55adac96b01eefe207f8869c]|||meatloaf|||T-86. Meat Loaf 21 In addition to his DirecTV "Rock and a Hard Place," a new CD, acting and celebrity poker, the singer played in the 2008 Bob Hope. T-86. Steve Miller 21 Neck surgery curtailed golf for two years, but he's back in the studio and back playing golf. 88. Will Turpin 21 Bassist for Georgia-based Collective Soul. 89. Michael (Flea) Balzary 25 Australian bassist for Red Hot Chili Peppers is spotted often at courses around L.A. 90. Harry Connick Jr. 28.6 Singer-songwriter says he rarely travels without his clubs; lives in Connecticut but keeps his Index on Cape Cod. 91. Chester Bennington 30 Lead vocalist for Linkin Park loves playing at dawn at Coyote Hills in Fullerton, Calif. T-92. Clint Black 32 Country singer hasn't posted a score since our 2006 ranking. Friends tell us he's playing -- but not well. T-92. Richie Sambora 33 Bon Jovi guitarist plays a few rounds a year T-92. Tom Hamilton 32 Aerosmith bassist plays public course in Cape Cod; says he doesn't get many invites to Boston clubs and is trying to break 100. T-92. Mike Herrera 32 Frontman for punk band MxPx also plays rockabilly with Tumbledown. 95. Josh Groban 35 "Awake Live" is latest CD from singer-songwriter known for incredible range (pop to classical); he's new to golf. T-96. Charlie Daniels 36 Released "Live from Iraq" after his band visited last year; has played golf for years without establishing a handicap. T-96. Daryl McDaniels 36 Founder of Run-DMC, with four rounds played, says, "When I hit it in the fairway I love it; I just want to be consistent." T-96. Kid Rock 36 Rocker put game on display with John Daly in Buick Open pro-am in June. T-96. Yuri Ruley 36 Drummer with MxPx. [ ](/rankings/2008/11/photos_more_musicians?slide=16)[#image: /photos/55adac95b01eefe207f88694]|||shakira|||100. Shakira 40 Philanthropic, top-selling Colombian singer is looking for lessons; if "Hips Don't Lie" video is any indication, flexibility won't be a problem.