Lenny Kravitz grew up in a showbiz family (his mother was actress Roxie Roker of “The Jeffersons” fame), but he didn’t have it easy when he tried to break into the music business in the late ‘80s, when being a black solo artist playing rock music was still considered very rare. After briefly going by the ill-advised stage name Romeo Blue, Kravitz began using his real name and eventually crafted songs and an image heavily influenced by late '60s/early '70s rock. His success has included platinum albums, arena tours and several Grammys. Kravitz doesn’t rule at rock radio as much as he used to in the ‘90s, but he still makes a solid body of work and has turned into one of the most enduring male solo artists in rock.
“The Chamber” was the first single from Kravitz’s 2014 album, Strut. With its Chic-like bass groove and sensual vibe, it’s an underrated Kravitz song that may not have been one of his biggest hits but it’s still one of his best songs.
“Where Are We Runnin’” is an often-overlooked, high-energy stomper of a song that stands as one of Kravitz’s best. It was the first single from his 2004 album, Baptism, and showed that Kravitz wasn’t going to be mellowing out anytime soon.
This calypso-inspired rock/pop ballad is all kinds of laid-back and sexy. One of the singles from Kravitz’s 1998 album, 5, “I Belong to You” is one of his most sensual songs.
As the first single from his 1991 album, Mama Said, “Always on the Run” further established Kravitz as a powerhouse rocker who expertly blended retro influences with modern sounds.
“Dig In” was the first single from the 2001 album Lenny. It’s got all the elements of a classic Kravitz rock song, including an addictive chorus and great rhythm. It’s hard to forget this song once you’ve heard it.
Although Kravitz is known mostly for performing rock, he can still deliver a soulful performance, as he does here in this ballad from his 1991 album, Mama Said.
Kravitz has said he wrote this song about the breakdown of his marriage to actress Lisa Bonet (they eventually divorced), and the heartbreak is oozing all over this song. With a Motown-ish 1960s vibe, this ballad (from 1991’s Mama Said album) is one of Kravitz’s best ballads. It remains his highest-charting hit of his career in the U.S., where it peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
“Let Love Rule,” the title track from Kravitz’s 1989 debut album, was also his first single. Despite the hippy-dippy nature of the song’s lyrics, the gorgeous melodies and simple but inspiring message are what make “Let Love Rule” work so well. It’s still a song that Kravitz performs at pretty much any concert he does.
Kravitz’s does funky rock to the hilt in “Fly Away,” one of the singles from his 1998 album, 5. It's got insanely catchy hooks, and it’s one of the songs that won Kravitz a Grammy.
The definitive Lenny Kravitz song epitomizes Kravitz at his passionate best: It’s an anthemic rock song that has a retro flavor but still sounds modern. As the title track to his 1993 album, “Are You Gonna Go My Way” put Kravitz on a whole new level as an artist and it’s probably the song that he will always have to perform in concert because it’s loved by so many of his fans.
Kravitz regularly tours when he has a new album to promote. People who see him in concert can expect to hear at least half of the songs on this list. Keep up with all the latest news and information on Lenny Kravitz here.