top of page

Musicians Who Made It Despite Learning Disorders

You may have come across children who have difficulties in learning due to disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and dyslexia. ADHD can affect both children and adults. For adults, it can affect them from focusing, managing time, organising tasks, setting goals, or holding onto jobs. Dyslexia is a learning disorder that can make it hard for the sufferer to process written and spoken language. However, there are famous musicians who made it big despite suffering from learning disabilities.

Ozzy Osbourne

Ozzy Osbourne is best known for being the star of The Black Sabbath and eventually a reality show of his own. With his successes, it may be hard to guess that the English singer-songwriter suffers from both dyslexia and ADHD.

The rock star has trouble with both writing and reading but has found strategies that allow him to pursue his music despite these neurological challenges. He carries around a tape recorder wherever he goes so that he records a melody in his head straightaway.

Joss Stone

Joss Stone became a sensation when she was only 17 years old. She rose to fame in 2003 with her multi-platinum album “The Soul Sessions”. But she also suffers from dyslexia and she claimed it has not made it easy for her. She often forgets the lyrics to her songs, including the ones she penned herself. She didn’t let this affect her career as she continues to produce award-winning albums and win international recognition for her talent.


The American folk-pop singer who is a four-time Grammy nominee with 30 million albums sold worldwide struggles with dyslexia. She also grew up unconventionally in Alaska, at times living in cabins without running water or electricity. But these differences in her life did not keep her from embracing the guitar in high school. It made her work 20 times harder because it is hard for her to learn things.

Adam Levine

The frontman singer-songwriter of widely popular Maroon 5 was diagnosed with ADHD as a teenager. Levine has talked about his trouble focusing on schoolwork in high school and continues to struggle with focusing in adulthood.

He has not allowed his ADHD symptoms to come between him and his music though. Levine has been working with his doctor to come up with a treatment plan to help him manage his symptoms.

Mick Hucknall

Mick Hucknall achieved international fame as the lead singer and songwriter of soul-inspired Simply Red in the 1980s. His illustrious career spanned 25 years with over 50 million albums sold.

But the Manchester native suffers from dyscalculia. Dyscalculia sufferers have difficulty in understanding numbers. His struggles in school with math made it difficult for Hucknall and he felt stupid. It was only when he reached 16 and moved to an art school that opened up the world of creativity to him that allowed him to express his talents.

Don’t let any of these learning disorders stop you from learning music if you are passionate about creating or performing music. Check out our music programmes at Ritmo Music Studio.

4 views0 comments


bottom of page