Movember Awareness: The Top Mustaches in Rock

With great mustache comes great responsibility

Well, hopefully everyone out there had a happy and safe Halloween yesterday but now that fall is in full swing and Thanksgiving is just around the corner, it’s time to celebrate the manliest month of the entire year – Movember! As in Moe-vember, as in that time of the year where Mo’ Bros across the globe sprout their epic man-staches in the name of men’s health awareness. Much like October being breast cancer awareness month, Movember’s main goal is educate the public on a score of underrepresented issues affecting men today with an emphasis on testicular and prostate cancers. Not only that, the movement aims to encourage men to take control of their health, know their family health history and to be aware of the health issues they should discuss with their doctor. Simply think of your stache as a hairy equivalent of the pink ribbon.

Today, we’re going to be celebrating the first day of Movember the only way we know how – by profiling some of the greatest mustaches in rock, that’s how! But before we get on with the best mo’s in in the business, let’s take a look at how Movember came to be.


It All Started with a Mustache… and a Dream

Although the movement first hit it big in 2004 with the creation of the Movember Charity Foundation, the notion that lip-sweaters could hold much power actually began a few years earlier in 1999 in Adelaine, Australia when according to local news program Seven Nightly News, a group of young men had the idea of growing moustaches for charity during the month of November and coined the term “Movember.” The news report went on to call these guys the “Movember Committee” who said they came up with the idea one night at a pub. At its peak, the group grew to about 80 men who aimed to raise money for the RSPCA by selling T-shirts and called the campaign, “Growing whiskers for whisker.”

Anyways, as mentioned above, the idea of growing out a stache to raise awareness gained much more traction in 2004 when an unrelated group from Melbourne, Australia came together and organized an event where 30 men would grow a moustache for 30 days in order to raise awareness for prostate cancer and depression in men. That group would soon call themselves the Movember Foundation. One of those original 30 men, Adam Garone, had this to say about his experience in a piece for the Huffington Post:

“We saw that the breast cancer movement was gaining momentum at a staggering pace, but noticed there was nothing for any men's health issue. When we did a bit of research into the health issues that affect men, it was surprising to learn that the incident rates of prostate cancer were comparable to rates of breast cancer in women. But there was, and still is, a huge gap between the two causes in terms of awareness and funding. And that sealed the deal for us - our Movember moustaches would become for prostate cancer what the pink ribbon is for breast cancer - a hairy ribbon.”

To date, the Movember Foundation has raised over $299 million and is currently formally running in 21 countries, making it the single largest funder of prostate cancer programs in the world. You can check out these guys over at for the US site. Alright, on with the staches!


The Top Mustaches in Rock 

The Mustache The Man

Freddie Mercury (Queen)

Queen’s legendary late frontman may have been well known for his killer strong vocals but you can’t deny there must have been some power inside those lip locks. Born in the British protectorate of Zanzibar, East Africa (now part of Tanzania), Mercury might have been better known for his flamboyant stage persona and that powerful four-octave vocal range – but you can’t deny the man had a nice mustache!

Lemmy (Motorhead)

If there ever was a mustache that looked like it could kick your ass, drink beer and take your wife – probably because of the face it sits on  it would be the impressive chops on this guy! Lemmy Kilmister has made a living off of living hard and rocking out harder but if you’ve ever seen a picture of this guy without that signature stache, kind of loses his edge, don’t you think? Well, he could still probably dish it out but you can’t deny the power of that stache!

Derek Smalls (Spinal Tap)

Known as much for his awesome stache as he is for stuffing vegetables in his pants, he is the bassist of arguably one of the best bands in the world ever – too bad Spinal Tap doesn’t really exist (but try telling that to my obsessive neighbor… he’ll swing). Smalls joined the Tap way back in 1967 after the departure of Ronnie Pudding, or so says the movie. Seriously though, if you’ve never seen Spinal Tap… DO SO NOW!

Frank Beard (ZZ Top)

Frank makes it on this list not only because he has a thick and pristine stache to be reckoned with but takes the honor handedly due to the ironic fact that he is the only member of ZZ Top without one of those signature beards – and this from a guy whose last name is Beard!

Frank Zappa

Not only is considered one of the greatest guitarists of all time (ranked no. 45 on Rolling Stone’s list), a very successful composer, arranger and producer as well as one of the few musicians who was willing to testify in front of congress in order to fight for artistic freedom – he also has his own style of stache named after him! When someone asks “the Zappa,” you know he knows a good stache when he sees one!

David Crosby

This guy was so influential in the history of rock in roll music that he even made it into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice; once for him membership in Crosby, Stills and Nash and the other for his superior mustache (well, the Byrds, but close enough). Interestingly enough, the only thing that’s probably more infamous than his awesomely thick mustache is the fact that he donated the necessary “ingredient” for Melissa Etheridge and Julie Cypher’s two kids. Remember that? Well, now you do. 

Chuck Berry

If there was one single person that pretty much crafted rock and roll music as we know it today, it would have to be the one and only Chuck Berry. If there was ever a guy who could wear a pencil thin stache and still make it look awesome, it would be Mr. Berry as well! While he was originally overlooked for having expertly melded traditional blues with a faster tempo type of sound, there was never any denial that he wasn’t rocking one sophisticated stache up there!

Phil Lynott (Thin Lizzy)

Thin Lizzy frontman, singer and bassist Phil Lynott has a lot to be thankful for; not only is he responsible for one of the best bands of the ‘70s – with songs such as “Jailbreak” and the radio mega hit “The Boys are Back in Town” – he has a stache worthy of envy. While it might not be the biggest and flashiest mustache on the list, it has everything you could ask for in an awesome rock and roll stache.

John Bonham (Led Zeppelin)

Now this guy rocked hard and his stache rocked even harder! As the drummer for one of the hardest rocking most influential bands in the history of everything everywhere, John and the rest of the guys in Led Zeppelin pretty much wrote the book on what it means to be a true rock star. How good was he? Rolling Stone considers him the best drummer of all time. How good is that stache? I’m sure we all know it more than speaks for itself.

The Beatles (Sgt. Pepper Era)

And finally, we got the Fab Four. Unfortunately, most of the guys quickly traded in their awesome mustaches for full on beards by the time the next album rolled by but we will always have the memories. Each one is as unique as the face it sits on and while people will assuredly have their favorite Beatle-stache, we can all agree that John was hands down the coolest Beatle (there, I said it!).

Leave a Reply