Skip to main content

100 Favorite Album Covers

I was that loner kid who read comics when everyone else was playing, listened to the B-sides, watched old movies ... And wrote in spirals

Album Cover Art

One of my favorite places in the world as a little kid was sitting spread-eagled in front of my mom's stereo. Between my legs was a stack of albums. But not only was I pouring through the enclosed lyric sheet to sing along with the songs, I was absorbing the artwork on the front, back and sometimes inside covers. Because if I must be honest, they had me at the album cover.

STEVIE WONDER had some of the best covers. But so many artists did. Because that was a thing. Making cover art that in some cases was better than the actual album contained within. But not restricted to hand drawn illustrations, but also cracker jack photography that pops and catches your eye and often wills you to purchase the product.

It didn't have to just be traditional singers or a certain genre of music either. It could be actors who also sang, movie soundtracks, television soundtracks or even children's albums. For instance, Sesame Street produced some great albums with awesome cover art. So I was no respecter of persons in this regard.

The following are some of my favorite albums covers. Some of them are from albums I've actually owned, others are from releases that I admired from afar. And let it be known that even when vinyl albums morphed into CDs, cover art still prevailed.

Steveland Morris aka Stevie Wonder.  Looking so cool and introspective on this cover.  Looking like he indeed has a lot on his mind.  And I suppose that his vast catalog of music attests to that theory.

Steveland Morris aka Stevie Wonder. Looking so cool and introspective on this cover. Looking like he indeed has a lot on his mind. And I suppose that his vast catalog of music attests to that theory.

There's something about a black and white photo that makes you want to pick up a CD; just out of sheer curiosity.

There's something about a black and white photo that makes you want to pick up a CD; just out of sheer curiosity.

The Good Girls ... Dressed like private school girls ... Posing in a classroom even ... Talk about giving a brother flashbacks to a better time.

The Good Girls ... Dressed like private school girls ... Posing in a classroom even ... Talk about giving a brother flashbacks to a better time.

Two musicians sharing a sandwich ... A image so powerful that I remembered from my childhood and searched it out in my 30s.  And am I glad I did. Because the music on the album is just as fun as the photo on the cover.

Two musicians sharing a sandwich ... A image so powerful that I remembered from my childhood and searched it out in my 30s. And am I glad I did. Because the music on the album is just as fun as the photo on the cover.

Al Green looking like The Flash.  An appropriate image, because even in his 60s (at the time of this recording), the good reverend always seemed so full of energy.

Al Green looking like The Flash. An appropriate image, because even in his 60s (at the time of this recording), the good reverend always seemed so full of energy.

I was already a fan, but when I saw this 1999 cover, I totally fell in love with the Kimmey sisters -- the artists formerly known as  Out Of Eden. Casual.  Chill.  Relaxing ... Fine.

I was already a fan, but when I saw this 1999 cover, I totally fell in love with the Kimmey sisters -- the artists formerly known as Out Of Eden. Casual. Chill. Relaxing ... Fine.

A generation looks at this picture and immediately think of the classic 70s sitcom, Good Times.  But they may be ignorant of the fact that this is a honest to goodness painting created by an honest to goodness artist by the name of Ernie Barnes.

A generation looks at this picture and immediately think of the classic 70s sitcom, Good Times. But they may be ignorant of the fact that this is a honest to goodness painting created by an honest to goodness artist by the name of Ernie Barnes.

I didn't really care what she sounded like, as I looked at her beautiful photo on the shelf at Family Bookstore.  However, it just so happens that she was heavily influenced by the late great Whitney Houston.

I didn't really care what she sounded like, as I looked at her beautiful photo on the shelf at Family Bookstore. However, it just so happens that she was heavily influenced by the late great Whitney Houston.

This cool brother pose ... Tonex had a true 70s vibe emanating from this cover; piquing my curiosity about what I would find within the case.  And 20 some odd years later, I still put on this mixed bag of sonic tricks to brighten up my day.

This cool brother pose ... Tonex had a true 70s vibe emanating from this cover; piquing my curiosity about what I would find within the case. And 20 some odd years later, I still put on this mixed bag of sonic tricks to brighten up my day.

Looking like the coolest minister in the city.

Looking like the coolest minister in the city.

Fred Hammond didn't disappoint musically on his debut album.  Another example of a black and white picture grabbing one's attention.  Even if I wasn't a fan from his tenure with the Urban Gospel outfit known as Commissioned, I would have purchased.

Fred Hammond didn't disappoint musically on his debut album. Another example of a black and white picture grabbing one's attention. Even if I wasn't a fan from his tenure with the Urban Gospel outfit known as Commissioned, I would have purchased.

All six members of the 80s boy band together and looking dapper like Dan.

All six members of the 80s boy band together and looking dapper like Dan.

Lalah looking like the sweet girl next door that you want to sit on the porch talking to all night long.

Lalah looking like the sweet girl next door that you want to sit on the porch talking to all night long.

This album of greatest hits signaled the beginning of the MTV generation discovering what many baby boomers took for granted.

This album of greatest hits signaled the beginning of the MTV generation discovering what many baby boomers took for granted.

The Jackson brothers never looked cooler.

The Jackson brothers never looked cooler.

Scroll to Continue
New Edition welcomes new addition, Johnny Gill in this suave night scene.

New Edition welcomes new addition, Johnny Gill in this suave night scene.

The coolest Jackson.

The coolest Jackson.

Monica exudes a sophistication that deceives, considering her young age at the time.

Monica exudes a sophistication that deceives, considering her young age at the time.

The first Monkees album without Peter Tork on the cover.

The first Monkees album without Peter Tork on the cover.

Fred Hammond chilling against a Urban backdrop.

Fred Hammond chilling against a Urban backdrop.

One of the most influential bands to ever do it. Their harmonies have inspired artists like Boyz II Men, Justin Beiber, Brian McKnight and on and on and on

One of the most influential bands to ever do it. Their harmonies have inspired artists like Boyz II Men, Justin Beiber, Brian McKnight and on and on and on

I must say that I didn't have Gospel on my mind when I first saw Angie and Debbie looking fine on this cover.

I must say that I didn't have Gospel on my mind when I first saw Angie and Debbie looking fine on this cover.

It's a Prince album, but let's not forget that we're promoting a movie about one of the greatest superheroes ever.

It's a Prince album, but let's not forget that we're promoting a movie about one of the greatest superheroes ever.

Commissioned circa 1990 with that JW/Chess King/ Oak Tree 90s men's wear vibe. Classic.

Commissioned circa 1990 with that JW/Chess King/ Oak Tree 90s men's wear vibe. Classic.

I believe in 1991 I thought this was one of the sexiest photos I'd ever seen.

I believe in 1991 I thought this was one of the sexiest photos I'd ever seen.

One of the best acts to come from the X-Factor music competition.

One of the best acts to come from the X-Factor music competition.

(Sigh)

(Sigh)

I could care less what the music sounds like right about now. I'm just saying ....

I could care less what the music sounds like right about now. I'm just saying ....

Something about a beautiful woman with a sundress ... barefoot

Something about a beautiful woman with a sundress ... barefoot

Church never looked so cool

Church never looked so cool

One foot in Philly, the other foot in Hollywood ... nice.

One foot in Philly, the other foot in Hollywood ... nice.

Bare ... vulnerable ... hair swept back ... this beats many of her magazine photos featuring big hair, excessive makeup and over the top dresses.

Bare ... vulnerable ... hair swept back ... this beats many of her magazine photos featuring big hair, excessive makeup and over the top dresses.

A man and his horse ... It doesn't get more country than that.

A man and his horse ... It doesn't get more country than that.

Perfect

Perfect

America's most famous siblings come together after far too long apart.

America's most famous siblings come together after far too long apart.

The birth of an amazing talent.

The birth of an amazing talent.

Although I love her with long hair, there is no dying the "it factor" of this shot.  Pure and unadulterated sexiness

Although I love her with long hair, there is no dying the "it factor" of this shot. Pure and unadulterated sexiness

Its album covers like this that drew me to classic Jazz.

Its album covers like this that drew me to classic Jazz.

Looking like an ad for Montgomery Wards. But it works.

Looking like an ad for Montgomery Wards. But it works.

Every time I look at this cover, it feels like Christmas

Every time I look at this cover, it feels like Christmas

Coming with that 90s college-boy style

Coming with that 90s college-boy style

Like the Beyonce/Sasha Fierce cover, this is one of the sexiest photos ever of Miss Ross.  Just the simplicity of it all.

Like the Beyonce/Sasha Fierce cover, this is one of the sexiest photos ever of Miss Ross. Just the simplicity of it all.

Sitting there, looking the way you're looking ... you can sing to me anything you want and I'll listen.

Sitting there, looking the way you're looking ... you can sing to me anything you want and I'll listen.

Takes you on that Marvin Gaye/ What's Goin' On kind of trip

Takes you on that Marvin Gaye/ What's Goin' On kind of trip

I just love that around the way girl vibe

I just love that around the way girl vibe

Just a girl and her radio ... I love it

Just a girl and her radio ... I love it

This was a new beginning and all of his fans couldn't wait to dive in.

This was a new beginning and all of his fans couldn't wait to dive in.

Classically cool

Classically cool

You look at this cover and figure that this dude really means business

You look at this cover and figure that this dude really means business

Same as above

Same as above

understated and underated

understated and underated

B-ball playing bassist

B-ball playing bassist

Sweet

Sweet

This girl has some serious things on her mind

This girl has some serious things on her mind

Looking like girls from the same block as Jenny

Looking like girls from the same block as Jenny

Keeping it classy

Keeping it classy

Classic photo for a classic album

Classic photo for a classic album

favorite-album-covers
Something about a guy and a girl and a street lamp ...

Something about a guy and a girl and a street lamp ...

favorite-album-covers
The coolest

The coolest

No, I take it back ... The coolest!!

No, I take it back ... The coolest!!

The cutest.

The cutest.

favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
I've always had a major crush on Lisa Hartman and this album cover didn't help. Looking so sweet on this photo shoot, I could care less what she was singing about ... I'm just sayin' .... But yes, it is a great album as well.

I've always had a major crush on Lisa Hartman and this album cover didn't help. Looking so sweet on this photo shoot, I could care less what she was singing about ... I'm just sayin' .... But yes, it is a great album as well.

favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
A musical genius. But as a little boy, all I cared about was that chocolate chip cookie.

A musical genius. But as a little boy, all I cared about was that chocolate chip cookie.

favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
I wanted to be her baby sooooo bad. Such a understated but hot photo.

I wanted to be her baby sooooo bad. Such a understated but hot photo.

favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
The one album cover with all six brothers on it.  A true classic.

The one album cover with all six brothers on it. A true classic.

favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
You have to wonder if he knew his time was limited on this earth.

You have to wonder if he knew his time was limited on this earth.

Sandra Stephens, Lanny Cordola and John Stamos in a Jazzy mood

Sandra Stephens, Lanny Cordola and John Stamos in a Jazzy mood

favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers
favorite-album-covers

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2019 LaZeric Freeman

Comments

LaZeric Freeman (author) from Hammond on September 30, 2020:

Thanks. That was fun to do. I probably should do a sequel. Thanks for stopping by.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on September 30, 2020:

Well that was fun. I hadn't seen a lot of these in quite a few years. I actually owned seven of them, not bad for an old white guy. :)

Thanks for the trip back in time. I'm all about good memories.

Blessings always

Related Articles