player

If you like to play anything at all, you’re a player. If you take part in a game or sport, you're a player. If you're a big flirt, you’re a player. Like the kazoo? You’re a kazoo player. Play on!

Some players play cards or tennis, and others play roles in theater productions. You could also call a musician a player, like a piano player or a flute player. Vital or influential people (or groups) are sometimes described this way too: "The president called a meeting of all the biggest political players." And finally, there are inanimate players, like music or radio players, or an MP3 player.

Primary Meanings of player

1.
n
a person who participates in or is skilled at some game
2.
n
an important participant (as in a business deal)
3.
n
a person who pursues a number of different social and sexual partners simultaneously
Full Definitions of player
1

n a person who participates in or is skilled at some game

Synonyms:
participant
Examples:
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Henry Louis Aaron
United States professional baseball player who hit more home runs than Babe Ruth (born in 1934)
Arthur Robert Ashe
United States tennis player who was the first Black to win United States and English singles championships (1943-1993)
Lawrence Peter Berra
United States baseball player (born 1925)
John Donald Budge
United States tennis player who in 1938 was the first to win the Australian and French and English and United States singles championship in the same year (1915-2000)
Maureen Catherine Connolly
United States tennis player who was the first woman to win the United States, British, French, and Australian championships in the same year (1953) (1934-1969)
James Scott Connors
outstanding United States tennis player (born in 1952)
Margaret Court
Australian woman tennis player who won many major championships (born in 1947)
Ely Culbertson
United States authority on contract bridge whose books helped to popularize the game (1891-1955)
Dwight Filley Davis
United States tennis player who donated the Davis Cup for international team tennis competition (1879-1945)
Joseph Paul DiMaggio
United States professional baseball player noted for his batting ability (1914-1999)
Christine Marie Evert
United States tennis player who won women's singles titles in the United States and at Wimbledon (born in 1954)
Robert James Fischer
United States chess master; world champion from 1972 to 1975 (born in 1943)
Henry Louis Gehrig
baseball player who died of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (1903-1941)
Althea Gibson
United States tennis player who was the first Black woman player to win all the major world singles titles (1927-2003)
Stephanie Graf
German tennis player who won seven women's singles titles at Wimbledon (born in 1969)
Wayne Gretzky
high-scoring Canadian ice-hockey player (born in 1961)
William Benjamin Hogan
United States golfer who won many major golf tournaments (1912-1997)
Gordie Howe
Canadian hockey player who holds the record for playing the most games (born 1928)
Edmond Hoyle
English writer on card games (1672-1769)
Robert Tyre Jones
United States golfer (1902-1971)
Anatoli Yevgenevich Karpov
Russian chess master who was world champion from 1975 until 1985 when he was defeated by Gary Kasparov (born in 1951)
Gary Weinstein
Azerbaijani chess master who became world champion in 1985 by defeating Anatoli Karpov (born in 1963)
Billie Jean Moffitt King
United States woman tennis player (born in 1943)
Viktor Lvovich Korchnoi
Russian chess master (born in 1931)
Rodney George Laver
Australian tennis player who in 1962 was the second man to win the Australian and French and English and United States singles titles in the same year; in 1969 he repeated this feat (born in 1938)
Ivan Lendl
United States tennis player (born in Czechoslovakia) who won several singles championships; in 1992 he became a United States citizen (born in 1960)
Mickey Charles Mantle
United States baseball player (1931-1997)
Willie Howard Mays Jr.
United States baseball player (born in 1931)
John Joseph McGraw
United States baseball player and manager (1873-1934)
Helen Newington Wills
United States tennis player who dominated women's tennis in the 1920s and 1930s (1905-1998)
Stanley Frank Musial
United States baseball player (born in 1920)
Martina Navratilova
United States tennis player (born in Czechoslovakia) who won nine Wimbledon women's singles championships (born in 1956)
Jack William Nicklaus
United States golfer considered by many to be the greatest golfer of all time (born in 1940)
Gregory John Norman
Australian golfer (born in 1955)
Robert Orr
Canadian hockey player (born 1948)
Leroy Robert Paige
United States baseball player; a black pitcher noted for his longevity (1906-1982)
Arnold Daniel Palmer
United States golfer (born in 1929)
Jack Roosevelt Robinson
United States baseball player; first Black to play in the major leagues (1919-1972)
George Herman Ruth
United States professional baseball player famous for hitting home runs (1895-1948)
Gene Sarazen
United States golfer who was first to win all four major golf tournaments (1902-1999)
Monica Seles
United States tennis player (born in Yugoslavia in 1973)
Samuel Jackson Snead
United States golfer known for the graceful arc of his swing (1912-2002)
Boris Vasilevich Spassky
Russian chess master who moved to Paris; world champion from 1969 to 1972 (born in 1937)
William Tatem Tilden Jr.
United States tennis player who dominated men's tennis in the 1920s (1893-1953)
Lee Buck Trevino
United States golfer (born in 1939)
Virginia Wade
English tennis player who won many women's singles titles (born in 1945)
Theodore Samuel Williams
United States baseball player noted as a hitter (1918-2002)
Carl Yastrzemski
United States baseball player (born in 1939)
Danton True Young
United States baseball player and famous pitcher (1867-1955)
Types:
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ballplayer, baseball player
an athlete who plays baseball
billiard player
someone who plays billiards
bowler
a player who rolls balls down an alley at pins
card player
someone who plays (or knows how to play) card games
chess player
someone who plays the game of chess
dart player
someone who plays the game of darts
football player, footballer
an athlete who plays American football
golf player, golfer, linksman
someone who plays the game of golf
grandmaster
a player of exceptional or world class skill in chess or bridge
hockey player, ice-hockey player
an athlete who plays hockey
lacrosse player
an athlete who plays lacrosse
MVP, most valuable player
the player judged to be the most important to the sport
playmaker
a player in a team sport who leads attacks or maneuvers in such a way that a teammate can score
pool player
someone who shoots pool
scorer
a player who makes a score in a game or contest
seed, seeded player
one of the outstanding players in a tournament
server
(court games) the player who serves to start a point
shooter
(sports) a player who drives or kicks a ball at the goal (or a basketball player who shoots at the basket)
soccer player
an athlete who plays soccer
stringer
a member of a squad on a team
tennis player
an athlete who plays tennis
volleyball player
someone who plays the game of volleyball
back
(football) a person who plays in the backfield
ball carrier, runner
(football) the player who is carrying (and trying to advance) the ball on an offensive play
base runner, runner
a baseball player on the team at bat who is on base (or attempting to reach a base)
batsman, batter, hitter, slugger
(baseball) a ballplayer who is batting
blocker
a football player whose responsibility is to block players attempting to stop an offensive play
bridge player, hand
a card player in a game of bridge
cardholder
a player who holds a card or cards in a card game
card shark, card sharp, card sharper, cardsharp, cardsharper, sharper, sharpie, sharpy
a professional card player who makes a living by cheating at card games
center
(ice hockey) the person who plays center on a hockey team
chess master
a chess player of great skill
cornerback
a defensive football player stationed outside the linebackers
dealer
the person who distributes the playing cards in a card game
driver
a golfer who hits the golf ball with a driver
elder hand, eldest hand
the card player on the dealer's left
fielder
a member of the baseball team that is in the field instead of at bat
football hero
a football player who has achieved a reputation for success
goalie, goalkeeper, goaltender, netkeeper, netminder
the soccer or hockey player assigned to protect the goal
golf pro, professional golfer
someone who earns a living by playing or teaching golf
hacker
someone who plays golf poorly
hooker
a golfer whose shots typically curve left (for right-handed golfers)
International Grandmaster
a chess player who has been awarded the highest title by an international chess organization
kicker
a player who kicks the football
line backer, linebacker
a defensive football player who takes a position close behind the linemen
lineman
one of the players on the line of scrimmage
little leaguer
a player between 8 and 12 years of age who is a member of a little-league team
big leaguer, major leaguer
a member of a major-league baseball team
medal winner, medalist, medallist
(golf) the winner at medal play of a tournament
bush leaguer, minor leaguer
a player on a minor-league baseball team
patzer
a poor chess player
hurler, pitcher, twirler
(baseball) the person who does the pitching
putter
a golfer who is putting
pass catcher, pass receiver, receiver
a football player who catches (or is supposed to catch) a forward pass
receiver
the tennis player who receives the serve
shuffler
the card player who shuffles the cards
slicer
a golfer whose shots typically curve right (for right-handed golfers)
tackler
a football player who tackles the ball carrier
professional tennis player, tennis pro
someone who earns a living playing or teaching tennis
utility man
a baseball player valued for the ability to play at several positions
wing
a hockey player stationed in a forward position on either side
Type of:
contestant
a person who participates in competitions

n a theatrical performer

Synonyms:
actor, histrion, role player, thespian
Examples:
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Allen Stewart Konigsberg
United States filmmaker and comic actor (1935-)
Fred Astaire
United States dancer and cinema actor noted for his original and graceful tap dancing (1899-1987)
Maurice Barrymore
United States actor; husband of Georgiana Emma Barrymore and father of Ethel Barrymore and John Barrymore and Lionel Barrymore (1847-1905)
Lionel Barrymore
United States actor; son of Maurice Barrymore and Georgiana Barrymore (1878-1954)
John Barrymore
United States actor; son of Maurice Barrymore and Georgiana Barrymore (1882-1942)
Humphrey DeForest Bogart
United States film actor (1899-1957)
John Wilkes Booth
United States actor and assassin of President Lincoln (1838-1865)
Richard Burbage
English actor who was the first to play the leading role in several of Shakespeare's tragedies (1567-1619)
Richard Burton
Welsh film actor who often co-starred with Elizabeth Taylor (1925-1984)
James Cagney
United States film actor known for his portrayals of tough characters (1899-1986)
Maurice Chevalier
French actor and cabaret singer (1888-1972)
Frank Cooper
United States film actor noted for his portrayals of strong silent heroes (1901-1961)
Sir Noel Pierce Coward
English dramatist and actor and composer noted for his witty and sophisticated comedies (1899-1973)
Hume Blake Cronyn
Canadian actor who frequently played character parts with his wife Jessica Tandy (1911-2003)
Harry Lillis Crosby
United States singer and film actor (1904-1977)
James Byron Dean
United States film actor whose moody rebellious roles made him a cult figure (1931-1955)
Robert De Niro
United States film actor who frequently plays tough characters (born 1943)
Gerard Depardieu
French film actor (born in 1948)
John Drew
United States actor (born in Ireland); father of Georgiana Emma Barrymore (1827-1862)
Douglas Elton Fairbanks
United States film actor noted for his swashbuckling roles (1883-1939)
Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
United States film actor; son of Douglas Elton Fairbanks, (1909-2000)
Henry Fonda
United States film actor (1905-1982)
William Clark Gable
United States film actor (1901-1960)
David Garrick
English actor and theater manager who was the foremost Shakespearean actor of his day (1717-1779)
Mel Columcille Gerard Gibson
Australian actor (born in the United States in 1956)
Arthur John Gielgud
English actor of Shakespearean roles who was also noted for appearances in films (1904-2000)
Cary Grant
United States actor (born in England) who was the elegant leading man in many films (1904-1986)
Harley Granville-Barker
English actor and dramatist and critic and director noted for his productions of Shakespearean plays (1877-1946)
Sir Alec Guinness
English stage and screen actor noted for versatility (1914-2000)
Thomas J. Hanks
United States film actor (born in 1956)
Reginald Carey Harrison
English actor on stage and in films (1908-1990)
John Hemminge
English actor who edited the first folio of Shakespeare's plays (1556-1630)
Dustin Hoffman
versatile United States film actor (born in 1937)
Sir Anthony Philip Hopkins
Welsh film actor (born in 1937)
Leslie Howard Stainer
English actor of stage and screen (1893-1943)
Asa Yoelson
United States singer (born in Russia) who appeared in the first full-length talking film (1886-1950)
William Henry Pratt
United States film actor (born in England) noted for his performances in horror films (1887-1969)
Edmund Kean
English actor noted for his portrayals of Shakespeare's great tragic characters (1789-1833)
Joseph Francis Keaton
United States comedian and actor in silent films noted for his acrobatic skills and deadpan face (1895-1966)
Eugene Curran Kelly
United States dancer who performed in many musical films (1912-1996)
Charles Laughton
United States film actor (born in England) (1899-1962)
Lee Yuen Kam
United States actor who was an expert in kung fu and starred in martial arts films (1941-1973)
Jack Lemmon
United States film actor (1925-2001)
Harold Clayton Lloyd
United States comic actor in silent films; he used physical danger as a source of comedy (1893-1971)
Laszlo Lowestein
United States actor (born in Hungary) noted for playing sinister roles (1904-1964)
Bela Ferenc Blasko
United States film actor (born in Hungary) noted for portraying monsters (1884-1956)
Alfred Lunt
United States actor who performed with his wife Lynn Fontanne in many stage productions (1893-1977)
E. G. Marshall
United States actor (1914-1998)
Steve Martin
United States actor and comedian (born in 1945)
James Neville Mason
English film actor (1909-1984)
Robert Mitchum
United States film actor (1917-1997)
Dudley Stuart John Moore
English actor and comedian who appeared on television and in films (born in 1935)
Paul Leonard Newman
United States film actor (born in 1925)
Baron Olivier of Birghton
English actor best know for his Shakespearean roles (1907-1989)
Peter Seamus O'Toole
British actor (born in Ireland in 1932)
Sidney Poitier
United States film actor and director (born in 1927)
Charles Robert Redford
United States actor and filmmaker who starred with Paul Newman in several films (born in 1936)
Sir Ralph David Richardson
British stage and screen actor noted for playing classic roles (1902-1983)
Edward Goldenberg Robinson
United States film actor noted for playing gangster roles (1893-1973)
George C. Scott
award-winning United States film actor (1928-1999)
Peter Sellers
English comic actor (1925-1980)
Francis Albert Sinatra
United States singer and film actor (1915-1998)
Otis Skinner
United States actor (1858-1942)
Konstantin Sergeyevich Stanislavsky
Russian actor and theater director who trained his actors to emphasize the psychological motivation of their roles (1863-1938)
James Maitland Stewart
United States film actor who portrayed incorruptible but modest heros (1908-1997)
Israel Strassberg
United States actor and film director (born in Austria) who was a leader in developing method acting in the United States (1901-1982)
Erich von Stroheim
United States film actor (born in Austria) (1885-1957)
Spencer Tracy
United States film actor who appeared in many films with Katharine Hepburn (1900-1967)
Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree
English actor and theatrical producer noted for his lavish productions of Shakespeare (1853-1917)
Peter Alexander Ustinov
British actor and playwright (1921-2004)
Duke Wayne
United States film actor who played tough heroes (1907-1979)
George Orson Welles
United States actor and filmmaker (1915-1985)
Lucille Ball
United States comedienne best known as the star of a popular television program (1911-1989)
Tallulah Bankhead
uninhibited United States actress (1903-1968)
Georgiana Emma Barrymore
United States actress; daughter of John Drew and wife of Maurice Barrymore; mother of Ethel Barrymore and John Barrymore and Lionel Barrymore (1854-1893)
Ethel Barrymore
United States actress; daughter of Maurice Barrymore and Georgiana Barrymore (1879-1959)
Ingrid Bergman
Swedish film actress (1915-1982)
Henriette Rosine Bernard
French actress (1844-1923)
Shirley Temple Black
popular child actress of the 1930's (born in 1928)
Katherine Cornell
United States actress noted for her performances in Broadway plays (1893-1974)
Joan Crawford
United States film actress (1908-1977)
Bette Davis
United States film actress (1908-1989)
Maria Magdalene von Losch
United States film actress (born in Germany) who made many films with Josef von Sternberg and later was a successful cabaret star (1901-1992)
Eleonora Duse
Italian actress best known for her performances in tragic roles (1858-1924)
Jane Fonda
United States film actress and daughter of Henry Fonda (born in 1937)
Lynn Fontanne
United States actress (born in England) who married Alfred Lunt and performed with him in many plays (1887-1983)
Greta Louisa Gustafsson
United States film actress (born in Sweden) known for her reclusiveness (1905-1990)
Judy Garland
United States singer and film actress (1922-1969)
Lillian Gish
United States film actress who appeared in films by D. W. Griffith (1896-1993)
Eleanor Gwynne
English comedienne and mistress of Charles II (1650-1687)
Harlean Carpenter
United States film actress who made several films with Clark Gable (1911-1937)
Helen Hayes
acclaimed actress of stage and screen (1900-1993)
Katharine Houghton Hepburn
United States film actress who appeared in many films with Spencer Tracy (1907-2003)
Lena Calhoun Horne
United States singer and actress (born in 1917)
Glenda Jackson
English film actress who later became a member of British Parliament (born in 1936)
Princess Grace of Monaco
United States film actress who retired when she married into the royal family of Monaco (1928-1982)
Emilie Charlotte le Breton
British actress and mistress of the prince who later became Edward VII (1853-1929)
Gertrude Lawrence
English actress (1898-1952)
Eva Le Gallienne
United States actress (born in England) (1899-1991)
Vivien Leigh
English film actress (1913-1967)
Beatrice Lillie
British actress (born in Canada) (1898-1989)
Sofia Scicolone
Italian film actress (born in 1934)
Marcel Marceau
French mime famous for his sad-faced clown (born in 1923)
Mary Martin
United States actress (1913-1990)
Anna Amalia Mercouri
Greek film actress (1925-1994)
Norma Jean Baker
United States film actress noted for sex appeal (1926-1962)
Alla Nazimova
United States actress (born in Russia) (1879-1945)
Mary Pickford
United States film actress (born in Canada) who starred in silent films (1893-1979)
Virginia Katherine McMath
United States dancer and film actress who partnered with Fred Astaire (1911-1995)
Moira Shearer
Scottish ballet dancer and actress (born in 1926)
Sarah Kemble Siddons
English actress noted for her performances in Shakespearean roles (1755-1831)
Cornelia Otis Skinner
United States actress noted for her one-woman shows (1901-1979)
Meryl Streep
United States film actress (born in 1949)
Barbra Joan Streisand
United States singer and actress (born in 1942)
Gloria May Josephine Svensson
United States actress in many silent films (1899-1983)
Jessica Tandy
United States actress (born in England) who made many stage appearances, often with her husband Hume Cronyn (1909-1994)
Elizabeth Taylor
United States film actress (born in England) who was a childhood star; as an adult she often co-starred with Richard Burton (born in 1932)
Dame Alice Ellen Terry
English actress (1847-1928)
Dame Sybil Thorndike
English actress (1882-1976)
Ethel Waters
United States actress and singer (1896-1977)
Mae West
United States film actress (1892-1980)
Natalie Wood
United States film actress (1938-1981)
Loretta Young
United States film and television actress (1913-2000)
Types:
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actress
a female actor
barnstormer, play-actor, playactor, trouper
an actor who travels around the country presenting plays
character actor
an actor who specializes in playing supporting roles
comedian
an actor in a comedy
ham, ham actor
an unskilled actor who overacts
heavy
an actor who plays villainous roles
ingenue
an actress who specializes in playing the role of an artless innocent young girl
leading man
actor who plays the leading male role
mime, mimer, mummer, pantomimer, pantomimist
an actor who communicates entirely by gesture and facial expression
plant
an actor situated in the audience whose acting is rehearsed but seems spontaneous to the audience
reenactor
a person who enacts a role in an event that occurred earlier
scene-stealer
an actor who draws more attention than other actors in the same scene
movie actor, screen actor
an actor who plays a role in a film
lead, principal, star
an actor who plays a principal role
extra, spear carrier, supernumerary
a minor actor in crowd scenes
tragedian
an actor who specializes in tragic roles
standby, understudy
an actor able to replace a regular performer when required
upstager
a selfish actor who upstages the other actors
walk-on
plays a small part in a dramatic production
comedienne
a female actor in a comedy
co-star
one of two actors who are given equal status as stars in a play or film
film star, movie star
a star who plays leading roles in the cinema
idol, matinee idol
someone who is adored blindly and excessively
leading lady
actress who plays the leading female role
starlet
a young (film) actress who is publicized as a future star
TV star, television star
a star in a television show
tragedienne
an actress who specializes in tragic roles
Type of:
performer, performing artist
an entertainer who performs a dramatic or musical work for an audience

n someone who plays a musical instrument (as a profession)

Synonyms:
instrumentalist, musician
Examples:
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Marian Anderson
United States contralto noted for her performance of spirituals (1902-1993)
Louis Armstrong
United States pioneering jazz trumpeter and bandleader (1900-1971)
Johann Sebastian Bach
German baroque organist and contrapuntist; composed mostly keyboard music; one of the greatest creators of western music (1685-1750)
Pearl Mae Bailey
United States singer (1918-1990)
Bela Bartok
Hungarian composer and pianist who collected Hungarian folk music; in 1940 he moved to the United States (1881-1945)
Charles Edward Berry
United States rock singer (born in 1931)
Marc Blitzstein
United States pianist and composer of operas and musical plays (1905-1964)
Anton Bruckner
Austrian organist and composer of romantic music (1824-1896)
William Byrd
English organist and composer of church music; master of 16th century polyphony; was granted a monopoly in music printing with Thomas Tallis (1543-1623)
Maria Meneghini Callas
Greek coloratura soprano (born in the United States) known for her dramatic intensity in operatic roles (1923-1977)
Enrico Caruso
outstanding Italian operatic tenor (1873-1921)
Pablo Casals
an outstanding Spanish cellist noted for his interpretation of Bach's cello suites (1876-1973)
Johnny Cash
United States country music singer and songwriter (1932-2003)
Maurice Chevalier
French actor and cabaret singer (1888-1972)
Frederic Francois Chopin
French composer (born in Poland) and pianist of the romantic school (1810-1849)
Arcangelo Corelli
Italian violinist and composer of violin concertos (1653-1713)
Francois Couperin
French composer of music for organ and a member of a family of distinguished organists (1668-1733)
Harry Lillis Crosby
United States singer and film actor (1904-1977)
Karl Czerny
Austrian virtuoso pianist and composer of many works for the piano; studied with Beethoven and was a teacher of Liszt (1791-1857)
Miles Dewey Davis Jr.
United States jazz musician; noted for his trumpet style (1926-1991)
Maria Magdalene von Losch
United States film actress (born in Germany) who made many films with Josef von Sternberg and later was a successful cabaret star (1901-1992)
Placido Domingo
Spanish operatic tenor noted for performances in operas by Verdi and Puccini (born in 1941)
Antoine Domino
United States rhythm and blues pianist and singer and composer (born in 1928)
John Dowland
English lutenist and composer of songs for the lute (1563-1626)
Bob Dylan
United States songwriter noted for his protest songs (born in 1941)
Edward Kennedy Ellington
United States jazz composer and piano player and bandleader (1899-1974)
Georges Enesco
Romanian violinist and composer (1881-1955)
Manuel de Falla
Spanish composer and pianist (1876-1946)
Eileen Farrell
United States operatic soprano noted for the clarity and power of her voice (1920-2002)
Ella Fitzgerald
United States scat singer (1917-1996)
Judy Garland
United States singer and film actress (1922-1969)
John Birks Gillespie
United States jazz trumpeter and exponent of bebop (1917-1993)
Benjamin David Goodman
United States clarinetist who in 1934 formed a big band (including black as well as white musicians) and introduced a kind of jazz known as swing (1909-1986)
Stephane Grappelli
French jazz violinist (1908-1997)
Woodrow Wilson Guthrie
United States folk singer and songwriter (1912-1967)
William John Clifton Haley Jr.
United States rock singer who was one of the first to popularize rock'n'roll music (1925-1981)
Lionel Hampton
United States musician who was the first to use the vibraphone as a jazz instrument (1913-2002)
George Harrison
English rock star; lead guitarist of the Beatles (1943-2001)
Coleman Hawkins
United States jazz saxophonist (1904-1969)
James Marshall Hendrix
United States guitarist whose innovative style with electric guitars influenced the development of rock music (1942-1970)
Woodrow Charles Herman
United States jazz musician and bandleader (1913-1987)
Dame Myra Hess
English pianist (1890-1965)
Charles Hardin Holley
United States rock star (1936-1959)
Lena Calhoun Horne
United States singer and actress (born in 1917)
Marilyn Horne
United States operatic mezzo-soprano (born 1934)
Vladimir Horowitz
Russian concert pianist who was a leading international virtuoso (1904-1989)
Julio Iglesias
Spanish singer noted for his ballads and love songs (born in 1943)
Mahalia Jackson
United States singer who did much to popularize gospel music (1911-1972)
Michael Joe Jackson
United States singer who began singing with his four brothers and later became a highly successful star during the 1980s (born in 1958)
Michael Philip Jagger
English rock star (born in 1943)
Joseph Joachim
Hungarian violinist and composer (1831-1907)
Asa Yoelson
United States singer (born in Russia) who appeared in the first full-length talking film (1886-1950)
Janis Joplin
United States singer who died of a drug overdose at the height of her popularity (1943-1970)
Riley B King
United States guitar player and singer of the blues (born in 1925)
Fritz Kreisler
United States violinist (born in Austria) (1875-1962)
Wanda Landowska
United States harpsichordist (born in Poland) who helped to revive modern interest in the harpsichord (1879-1959)
Sir Harry MacLennan Lauder
Scottish ballad singer and music hall comedian (1870-1950)
Huddie Leadbetter
United States folk singer and composer (1885-1949)
John Lennon
English rock star and guitarist and songwriter who with Paul McCartney wrote most of the music for the Beatles (1940-1980)
Jerry Lee Lewis
United States rock star singer and pianist (born in 1935)
Swedish Nightingale
Swedish soprano who toured the United States under the management of P. T. Barnum (1820-1887)
Franz Liszt
Hungarian composer and piano virtuoso (1811-1886)
Madonna Louise Ciccone
United States pop singer and sex symbol during the 1980s (born in 1958)
Robert Nesta Marley
Jamaican singer who popularized reggae (1945-1981)
Dino Paul Crocetti
United States singer (1917-1995)
Sir James Paul McCartney
English rock star and bass guitarist and songwriter who with John Lennon wrote most of the music for the Beatles (born in 1942)
John McCormick
United States operatic tenor (born in Ireland) (1884-1945)
Helen Porter Mitchell
Australian operatic soprano (1861-1931)
Lauritz Lebrecht Hommel Melchior
United States operatic tenor (born in Denmark) noted for his Wagnerian roles (1890-1973)
Sir Yehudi Menuhin
British violinist (born in the United States) who began his career as a child prodigy in the 1920s (1916-1999)
Ethel Merman
United States singer who appeared in several musical comedies (1909-1984)
Thelonious Sphere Monk
United States jazz pianist who was one of the founders of the bebop style (1917-1982)
James Douglas Morrison
United States rock singer (1943-1971)
Ferdinand Joseph La Menthe Morton
United States jazz musician who moved from ragtime to New Orleans jazz (1885-1941)
Marta Brigit Nilsson
Swedish operatic soprano who played Wagnerian roles (born in 1918)
Jessye Norman
United States operatic soprano (born in 1945)
Joseph Oliver
United States jazz musician who influenced the style of Louis Armstrong (1885-1938)
Roy Orbison
United States composer and rockabilly tenor popular in the 1950s (1936-1988)
Ignace Jan Paderewski
Polish pianist who in 1919 served as the first Prime Minister of independent Poland (1860-1941)
Niccolo Paganini
Italian violinist and composer of music for the violin (1782-1840)
Charles Christopher Parker
United States saxophonist and leader of the bop style of jazz (1920-1955)
Luciano Pavarotti
Italian tenor (born in 1935)
Edith Giovanna Gassion
French cabaret singer (1915-1963)
Alice-Josephine Pons
United States coloratura soprano (born in France) (1904-1976)
Rosa Melba Ponselle
United States soprano (1897-1981)
Francis Poulenc
French pianist and composer (1899-1963)
Elvis Aron Presley
United States rock singer whose many hit records and flamboyant style greatly influenced American popular music (1935-1977)
Mary Leontyne Price
United States operatic soprano (born 1927)
Henry Purcell
English organist at Westminster Abbey and composer of many theatrical pieces (1659-1695)
Sergei Vasilievich Rachmaninoff
composer and piano virtuoso born in Russia (1873-1943)
Paul Bustill Robeson
United States bass singer and an outspoken critic of racism and proponent of socialism (1898-1976)
Anton Grigorevich Rubinstein
Russian composer and pianist (1829-1894)
Arthur Rubinstein
United States pianist (born in Poland) known for his interpretations of the music of Chopin (1886-1982)
Lillian Russell
United States entertainer remembered for her roles in comic operas (1861-1922)
Charles Camille Saint-Saens
French pianist and composer (1835-1921)
Artur Schnabel
United States composer (born in Austria) and pianist noted for his interpretations of the works of Mozart and Beethoven and Schubert (1882-1951)
Clara Josephine Schumann
German pianist and composer of piano music; renowned for her interpretation of music, especially the music of her husband Robert Schumann (1819-1896)
Ernestine Schumann-Heink
United States operatic contralto (1861-1936)
Albert Schweitzer
French philosopher and physician and organist who spent most of his life as a medical missionary in Gabon (1875-1965)
Peter Seeger
United States folk singer who was largely responsible for the interest in folk music in the 1960s (born in 1919)
Andres Segovia
Spanish guitarist who made classical guitar a concert instrument (1893-1987)
Rudolf Serkin
United States concert pianist (born in Czechoslovakia) (1903-1991)
Ravi Shankar
Indian sitar player who popularized classical Indian music in the West (born in 1920)
Arthur Jacob Arshawsky
United States clarinetist and leader of a swing band (1910-2004)
Belle Miriam Silverman
United States operatic soprano (born in 1929)
Paul Simon
United States singer and songwriter (born in 1942)
Francis Albert Sinatra
United States singer and film actor (1915-1998)
Bessie Smith
United States blues singer (1894-1937)
Kathryn Elizabeth Smith
United States singer noted for her rendition of patriotic songs (1909-1986)
Richard Starkey
rock star and drummer for the Beatles (born in 1940)
Isaac Stern
United States concert violinist (born in Russia in 1920)
Barbra Joan Streisand
United States singer and actress (born in 1942)
Dame Joan Sutherland
Australian operatic soprano (born in 1926)
Thomas Tallis
English organist and composer of church and secular music; was granted a monopoly in music printing with William Byrd (1505-1585)
Arthur Tatum
United States jazz pianist who was almost completely blind; his innovations influenced many other jazz musicians (1910-1956)
Renata Tebaldi
Italian operatic soprano (born in 1922)
Dame Kiri Janette Te Kanawa
New Zealand operatic soprano (born in 1944)
Helen Traubel
United States operatic soprano (1903-1972)
Sarah Vaughan
United States jazz singer noted for her complex bebop phrasing and scat singing (1924-1990)
Antonio Lucio Vivaldi
Italian baroque composer and violinist (1675-1741)
Thomas Wright Waller
United States jazz musician (1904-1943)
Ethel Waters
United States actress and singer (1896-1977)
Hiram King Williams
United States country singer and songwriter (1923-1953)
Tammy Wynetter Pugh
United States country singer (1942-1998)
Lester Willis Young
United States jazz tenor saxophonist (1909-1959)
Efrem Zimbalist
United States violinist (born in Russia) (1889-1985)
Pinchas Zukerman
Israeli violinist (born in 1948)
Types:
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accompanist, accompanyist
a person who provides musical accompaniment (usually on a piano)
accordionist
a musician who plays the accordion
bandsman
a player in a band (especially a military band)
bassist
a musician who play the bass viol
bassoonist
a musician who plays the bassoon
bell ringer
someone who plays musical handbells
carillonneur
a musician who plays a carillon
cellist, violoncellist
someone who plays a violoncello
clarinetist, clarinettist
a musician who plays the clarinet
flautist, flute player, flutist
someone who plays the flute
gambist
a musician who performs upon the viola da gamba
guitar player, guitarist
a musician who plays the guitar
harmoniser, harmonizer
a musician who sings or plays in harmony
harper, harpist
someone who plays the harp
harpsichordist
someone who plays the harpsichord
hornist
a musician who plays a horn (especially a French horn)
jazz musician, jazzman
a musician who plays or composes jazz music
keyboardist
a musician who plays a keyboard instrument
koto player
a musician who plays the koto
lutanist, lutenist, lutist
a musician who plays the lute
oboist
a musician who plays the oboe
organist
a person who plays an organ
percussionist
a musician who plays percussion instruments
pianist, piano player
a person who plays the piano
bagpiper, piper
someone who plays the bagpipe
recorder player
someone who plays the recorder
rhythm and blues musician
a performer (and sometimes composer) of rhythm and blues music
rock 'n' roll musician, rocker
a performer or composer or fan of rock music
saxist, saxophonist
a musician who plays the saxophone
singer, vocaliser, vocalist, vocalizer
a person who sings
sitar player
a musician who plays the sitar
soloist
a musician who performs a solo
trombone player, trombonist
a musician who plays the trombone
cornetist, trumpeter
a musician who plays the trumpet or cornet
vibist, vibraphonist
a musician who plays the vibraphone
fiddler, violinist
a musician who plays the violin
violist
a musician who plays the viola
alto
a singer whose voice lies in the alto clef
alto saxophonist, altoist
a musician who plays the alto saxophone
baritone, barytone
a male singer
bass, basso
an adult male singer with the lowest voice
bugler
someone who plays a bugle
canary
a female singer
caroler, caroller
a singer of carols
castrato
a male singer who was castrated before puberty and retains a soprano or alto voice
chorister
a singer in a choir
contralto
a woman singer having a contralto voice
balladeer, crooner
a singer of popular ballads
cymbalist
a performer on the cymbals
drummer
someone who plays a drum
folk singer, jongleur, minstrel, poet-singer, troubadour
a singer of folk songs
hummer
a singer who produces a tune without opening the lips or forming words
lieder singer
a singer of lieder
madrigalist
a singer of madrigals
opera star, operatic star
singer of lead role in an opera
pipe major
the chief piper in a band of bagpipes
rapper
someone who performs rap music
recitalist
a musician who gives recitals
rock star
a famous singer of rock music
songster
a person who sings
soprano
a female singer
syncopator
a musician who plays syncopated jazz music (usually in a dance band)
tenor
an adult male with a tenor voice
tenor saxophonist, tenorist
a musician who plays the tenor saxophone
thrush
a woman who sings popular songs
torch singer
a singer (usually a woman) who specializes in singing torch songs
voice
(metonymy) a singer
warbler
a singer; usually a singer who adds embellishments to the song
xylophonist
someone who plays a xylophone
yodeller
a singer who changes register rapidly (popular is Swiss folk songs)
Type of:
performer, performing artist
an entertainer who performs a dramatic or musical work for an audience
2

n an important participant (as in a business deal)

“he was a major player in setting up the corporation”
Type of:
participant
someone who takes part in an activity
3

n a person who pursues a number of different social and sexual partners simultaneously

Type of:
individual, mortal, person, somebody, someone, soul
a human being

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