Greatest Rock Bands of the '70s


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The Top Ten

Led Zeppelin
Led Zeppelin is OBVIOUSLY above queen, I mean, they have been rocking since the 1968, and its no secret Robert PLant was an inspiration for Mercury. Led is proclamed as the best rock band ever by fans and critics. They are the best seller rock band too, without mentioning they are ahead every other band in others top ten lists. Led zeppelin did less with stairway to heaven than queen with bohiam rhapsody and yet stairway to heaven lyrics and music is so much better. Led zeppelin is quality.
With other bands you can usually ask people what their best album and they will always say 1 or 2 that are always talked about. With Led Zeppelin you could ask someone and they will tell yo with absolute certainty what their best album is, but this could be completely different than what other might say.
The best rock band I ever heard simply the best!


[Newest]Led Zeppelin has always been an inspiration for many others. I think they are the best and they also sounds super cool, even today

2Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd were so much better than Queen. Lets break it down to prove it. In terms of vocal ability, I'm giving it to Freddie Mercury. So, Pink Floyd 0-1 Queen. Drumming, I'm giving it to Nick Mason. Pink Floyd 1-1 Queen. Guitar playing, David Gilmour by far! Pink Floyd 2-1 Queen. Base, Roger Waters. Pink Floyd 3-1 Queen. Songwriting, includes lyrics and music, Roger Waters/David Gilmour. While Bohemian Rhapsody is one of the greatest songs of all time, more Pink Floyd sings have more meaning, better lyrics, and better music than Queen songs. Pink Floyd 4-1 Queen. Album writing, Pink Floyd hands down. The Dark Side Of The Moon and The Wall are one of the best albums of all time. Pink Floyd 5-1 Queen. Piano/Keyboard playing, Richard Wright. Pink Floyd 6-1 Queen. In terms of sells, Pink Floyd sold 250 million units, while Queen sold 200 million. Pink Floyd 7-1 Queen. All Queen did was write radio friendly songs. Just because you hear their songs on the radio doesn't mean they're that good. You hear a lot of Nicki Minaj and Lil' Wayne on the radio. That doesn't mean they're good. It's the same thing with Queen. All they did was write mainstream music. Really nothing that special besides Bohemian Rhapsody, The Show Must Go On, and Under Pressure are excellent songs. But all their other songs are just commercial music. I Want To Break Free sounds like a commercial 80's pop music. Somebody To Love is terrible. Their just easy songs to listen to. Pink Floyd is way, way better.
Stupid Question! Pink Floyd is obviously the best band of the 70's! Dark Side of the Moon alone tops every other 70's artist out! Every single album they produced at this time went to the top of the charts immediately. Led Zeppelin was very good but they didn't change the coarse of music the way Pink Floyd did. Some of you will try to argue that but look, Pink Floyd Pioneered so many things that set the stage for others like Concerts: Pink Floyd INVENTED the Light show. They were the first band to master the art of using visual effects, blinking lights, lazers, huge stages, -ALL Pioneered by the Floyd. All the music before Pink Floyd was made to be radio friendly. Pink Floyd were the first to really write music and song about what THEY wanted to say, and not what they knew people wanted to hear. They were the first to take that risk. This inspired so many bands after them to write for you and not for the radio. Pink Floyd was able to connect with people at a lot of deeper level because of their willingness to write about inter-struggles of the human race and thing like that, instead of the same crap that every other artist wrote about. Their Music was able to connect like no other and their lyrics to go along made it that much more timeless. This kind of depth along with their sort of spacey vibe made them the MOST Original band to be as successful as they were. I could go on and on and on and on...
Pink Floyd are absolutely great. While Queen wrote good singles, Pink Floyd wrote outstanding albums. The reason why this is not number one or two is because people don't listen to entire albums anymore. They base their answers on one or two singles. Yes, Queen does have more number one singles, but Pink Floyd has way more number one albums, being The Wall, Wish You Were Here, and The Dark Side Of The Moon, which, in my opinion, is the greatest album ever made. People just vote Queen because they know the songs We Will Rock You, Another One Bites The Dust, and Bohemian Rhapsody, which I do recognize is one of the greatest songs of all time, and I do love it. Yes, Queen does have the best voice, but Richard Wright, David Gilmour, and Roger Waters are far better musicians than Brain May, Roger Meddows Taylor, John Deacon. In my opinion, Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin are better than Queen (although Queen are also excellent). Queen's music is just more commercial.
[Newest]Wish You Were Here tops everything. Immortal.

Every song had meaning and reason behind it. Songs like "Bohemian Rhapsody", "Somebody to Love", "We are the Champions"... All really meant something. This year will be their 41st anniversary. 41 years of great music in our world... Sadly, there were only 45 years of Freddie Mercury in our world. He was deceased thanks to HIV/AIDS in '91... Long live Freddie.
Even though all of the other rock bands were amazing Queen took rock to a whole other level, the heart. They deserve the number one title because they changed rock forever. Who could forget the first time they heard Freddie Mercury pour his heart out into his music? I thought so.
Queen are the BEST band ever! Each song, from classics such as bohemian rhapsody to underrated songs like scandal or breakthru, is unique and the sheer talent of each band member makes them number 1 forever!
[Newest]The best band ever; Freddie has the best vocals!

They made a very good songs in 70s.
Highway to hell, TNT, it's a long way to the top, if you want blood, let there be rock...
In BON SCOTT) era.
Classical rock n' roll songs


Ac/dc was THE hard rock band of the 70's. Just below Led Zeppelin. AC/DC was all about sex, drugs, and good music. When AC/DC played, audiences roared. Truly magnificent rock'n'roll band. They are hardcore and know the real meaning of rock.
I think on the 'Dirty Deeds' album that's where they found their sound.
[Newest]Best rock band in the world

Steven Tyler is my man! Still going strong, touring and raising hell. He filled many of my memories of college and hear an oldie it excites me like it did in cole! I love every album!
Awesome band, deserve to be higher, they were brilliant in the 70's and achieved arguably their best work, very good band.
You might say this band was famous during 90's era
But they sounded kick ass during 70's
With "walk this way" and "toys in the attic" they are the grooviest band ever


[Newest]Their power ballads and blues rock were awesome in the 70's and are still awesome now.

6Black Sabbath
This is the reason why the genre heavy metal was born.
With those gothic tunes and riot solo's. this bands trademark is the best


Creators of Heavy Metal who have never been bettered by any of their imitators.
My first cassette tape. Ever.. love them. !

7Deep Purple
The most talented, creative, innovative, technical and advanced = THE BEST.
A band of masters. Ritchie Blackmore alone is a whole music universe.
The riff that rules all other riffs - Smoke on the water;
The solo that rules all other solos - Highway Star;
The screams that rule all other screams - Child in time;
The best band live - Live in Japan;
The most technical pioneers of hard rock and heavy metal;
The globe's loudest band of the 70s, officially listed in the 1975 Guinness Book of World Records.

Anything else for number 1?


Lazy, definitely the best. best hard rock sound of the seventies.
Seriously, Judas Priest in forth place?
Smoke on the water is so good to hear.
Especially when you want to hear a kick ass song


[Newest]Nobody's perfect - but Deep Purple comes close.

8The Rolling Stones
I like all the bands on this list, but I honestly think that the stones deserve 2. I mean the stones are probably as influential as the Beatles. They made many great songs, it's pretty hard to not like the stones, I mean I like every song they ever made and released. Thanks!
There were certainly some great bands through the 60's, 70's and 80's but, nobody who has ever seen the Stones could vote for any of the Others as the Stones are one of the very best bands ever!
Stones early '70s dominance is unparalleled

They are the best. Tell me a group which can give us a country classic like Desperado, a superb disco-blues in One of these Nights and the might rock song Hotel California. Nobody in music history was is and will have the range like The Eagles. The Pink Floyd's, Led Zep, who, Rolling Stones just do not have the range of this music nor have they the Harmonies that the Eagles give us. For me, they are No: 1, then the others follow.
Every member of this group sang lead at one time or another, producing unrivaled harmonies. There is a reason their Greatest Hits album is the second best selling album except for Thriller.
Nothing better than Hotel California.
[Newest]Definitely the best- they sound the same live as they do on a recording and have lost nothing with age.

10The Who
Definitely one of the best bands, deserves more significance on this list. The Who influenced hundreds of musicians and bought a whole new genre to music being one of the first bands to implement effects and non instrumental tones. With the crazy power of John Entwistle's mad bass playing skills, Keith Moons wild drumming skills, Pete Townshends amazing song writing technique, and Roger Daltreys powerhouse voice this was a band that truly influenced generations of musicians
Better than the Stones by a LONG SHOT. Great musicians (Entwistle and Moon are RIDICULOUSLY GOOD) and a great songwriter in Pete Townshend; plus, their '70s run, from Live at Leeds to Who Are You, is pretty solid - "Won't Get Fooled Again", "Baba O'Riley", "Behind Blue Eyes", "5:15", "Slip Kid", "Who Are You", "Love Reign O'er Me"... great songs.
Not exactly from the 70's but still one of the greatest bands ever.


The Contenders

Yes there were many 70's rock bands but KISS was the ultimate 70's band. They owned the 70's and got bigger from there on. They started in the 70's and got bigger ever since but the 70's made them and they the 70's
Created a whole generation of hairbands in the 80s
They were new loud and had great songs Amazing Band

Best vocals with Steve Perry great musicians. Never got over Steve leaving the band his voice his look. They are my favorite of all time.
My prom song was open arms... So nostalgic.
Just love their style. Powerful.

Rush is the most underrated and under appreciated band ever. In spite of this they've managed to thrive as a band and influence many, many other more popular up and comming bands.
The best 3 musicians of the decade, and probably the best drummer of the Rock and Roll era.
2112 is one of the greatest prog rock albums I've ever heard. Should be top 5 in my opinion

14Judas Priest
Psychedelic? Are you daft? In what world are they psychedelic.
Their first album 'ROCKA ROLLA' was prog rockfish.
The loudest psychedelic rock band I've ever heard


15Jethro Tull
A wizzard on stage, Ian Anderson and Co. Created music that was really off mainstream. Loads of different styles, from little ballads like "slipstream" over concept albums like "Thick as a brick" and "A Passion Play" to mystic songs like "Dun Ringill". I love the music since I was a young guy.

Poetic lyrics, though often not understandable even for native speakers, just stunned me. Anderson's flute was and still is unique. To me still my favourite band.
Ian and company is, was and will always be one of the most unique bands in the history of Music. Thick as a Brick will someday be discovered as the masterpiece thet it is...
Unique band will stand the test of time

16Fleetwood Mac
Seriously, Stevie Nicks in 1976? Is that even open to argument?
Love this band and Stevie's unique sound... Nothing better
The Best Band Ever!

17Blue Oyster Cult
Blue Oyster Cult should be in the top ten of any hard rock/metal list as they did both and more. Very experimental with great lyrics, way ahead of their time and has one of the best guitar players that ever came to the into the rock world, Buck Dharma. Go see them if you don't believe it, they put on excellent live shows.
Definitely a top 10 band of all time. Influential in many genres of music particularly punk and metal. First band that could be labelled as Gothic as well.
After Sabbath the best classic Heavy Metal band.

18Lynyrd Skynyrd
Lynyrd Skynyrd is by far the very best band ever! They sold out every concert they ever did back in the 70,s. Ronnie Van Zant wrote the greatest rock song of all time freebird! Their songs to this day are in heavy rotation on the best rock radio stations not even the Beatles songs are this timeless! If not for the plane crash that decimated the band in 1977 who knows how far they would have went. long live the bird!
How can Lynyrd Skynyrd NOT be in the top 3? This is nuts! Who are these bubble gum rockers that are taking this poll?
No, No, its in the wrong place! They are a great band and should be in the top ten, especially since Aerosmith is there. Freebird has the greatest solo of all time! 1. Beatles 2. Queen 3. Rolling Stones $. LYNYRD SKYNYRD!

19Van Halen
Van Halen is second great band with David
Lee Roth as front man

20Uriah Heep
No one remembers one of the best. They are still playing
And recording. They belong in top 20.
Wonderful lyrics and music.

21Status Quo
Indeed one of the greatest British rock bands of all time. The classic line up of Rossi, Parfitt, Lancaster & Coghlan really knew how to write & perform some wonderful, catchy rock songs. No-one who knows anything about 70's rock (and their whole long career) can honestly say they weren't great at what they did or unworthy of their success. Might not have been technically brilliant or as influentual as their peers but live they were wonderful and very powerful. The first rock band I really listened to back in 1974 and through the 70's Quo were THE band. Still following them and collecting all their stuff. Long live The Quo!
Probably created some of the most underrated rock songs of all time. Tracks like Rain, Roll Over Lay Down, Big Fat Mama and Forty Five Hundred Times rival anything done in the 70's
Not one of the best but only the best long living rock legends! Quo oh oh oh oh

22Creedence Clearwater Revival
The best band of all time
Absolute great old band. They should of stayed together.
They were down home good!
[Newest]They stayed together for just a year or two but delivered fantastic songs. Epic band.

23Alice Cooper
Amazing performer! Knows how to rock the house and add some drama to the performance.
The king of shock rock!

The best musicianship offered by the 70s in every respect: guitars, vocals, drumming, songwriting. A very creative and innovative band as they invented several metal subgenres currently very popular and respected. R.I.P. Dio!


I definitely think a guitarist like Ritchie Blackmore deserves to be mentioned here for more than one occasion. And long live zeppelin on their throne!

Come on now... Some of the best ballads and hottest rock songs ever! Feels like the first time, Cold as Ice, Hot Blooded, Double Vision, Juke Box Hero, Urgent, Waiting for a Girl like You! The list goes on and on!
The problem with this rating system is the age of the voter... Come on now is absolutely right... They are one of the best bands of all time... All songs listed below were HUGE hits!
Listen and fall in love... That is what their songs are capable of doing.

26The Police

Wow, way too low on the totem pole... Boston's the whole package, and then some. Very, very unappreciated today in this culture of off key "singing" and poorly delivered acoustics. Yes, they are still number one with this fan and I'm sure more in best era of bands--the 80's!
A couple of them were neighbors of mine, genuinely the nicest guys ever
This band is awesome it doesn't deserve to be this low. Boston has one of the best guritarist and the best singer and also the rest of the band is good, but when they play together they create a whole different sound.


29T. Rex
Absolutely fantastic. Excellent albums and super singles. Very influential and still used in many movies/

30Electric Light Orchestra
George Harrison said that ELO is what the Beatles would have sounded like if they hadn't split up. John Lennon called them the "sons of the Beatles". Jeff Lynne is an incredible musician, the arrangements he made were excellent, the band was unique in incorporating strings into rock and roll. They should definitely be in the top ten.
I really love this band even though its not really rock, its still my most favorite band I just love the sound of the orchestra mixed with Jeff lynne's voice.
Listened to them as a 70's Child. Just rediscovered them in my 40's and they've definitely stood the test of time. Jeff Lynne is a Musical Genius and a Legend!

31Thin Lizzy
One of the most unheard of and underrated bands of the 70s who had greats such as Phil Lynott and Gary Moore lead them. They released epic songs such as emerald, Chinatown, whiskey in the jar, the boys are back in town, the rocker, jailbreak, the list goes on. They also had some of the most awesome guitar riffs I have ever heard making them definitely one of or the best rock bands of the 70s
Two of the top one hundred guitarist of all time were in Thin Lizzy.
Inspiration for U2.
One of the greatest bands.

32The Jackson 5

33The Sweet
The sweet? Nice! Most of the glam rock bands are really underrated. It's good to see some appreciation here!


Not the best. But if Queen is at no. 2 Sweet should be higher. They were the first to bring the high pitched harmonics in rock. Very overlooked band from the 70s.
The most underestimated band of all time!
If you ever had the chance to listen to the self penned B- sides of their hit singles you'd know why. For reasons unknown to me, they where never given the chance to reach their full potential.

34Dire Straits
Dire Straits got the best music!

35The Clash
44? This is a crime. The Clash is and always will be the only band that matters. They deserve to be at least in the top 5.
Underrated for Joe Strummer's and Mic Jones's contribution to modern rock, the Clash definitely deserve to be higher on this list.
London Calling ranks amongst the best albums in history.

36Def Leppard
They weren't in the 70s. One of the best in the 80s for sure!

37Grand Funk Railroad
Solid Rock band that blew it up in the 70's!
No way these guys are 26. Remember the name of the list: Seventies
Great band blew Zepplin off the stage early in there career

Completely awesome... Ann wilson voice is a powerhouse.
Belongs in the top ten!

The best band ever

Great Band check out their later albums like Rogues Gallery... I think you'll be surprised
Huge English band with little North American credit.

41ZZ Top
ZZ Top impacted rock bringing Southern Rock into classic rock great along with Lynyrd Skynyrd

42Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band
Top 3 easily. Only reason not #1 is so much of the work has continued through the decades, but Greetings, Born to Run, Darkness on Edge of Town and The River all came from the 70's.
Great band, classic American rock about the open road and the working man.
Deserves to be LOT higher!

43Bob Seger and The Silver Bullet Band
No one rocked like Seger live in concert in the Seventies.
Some of the greatest songs ever written in my book.. Simple yet extraordinary.
Bob left memories that make me a wealthy soul...
[Newest]Best voice, best songs, and that voice! Took a hit to your soul

44REO Speedwagon
They had so many songs better than entire careers of some of these artists

45The Doors
Most authentic rock band - a revolution
One of my favourite bands!
The Doors songs were always played during our highschool days and they're thd greatest!

Rik Emmitt -most under-rated guitarist and songwriter maybe ever

Unique and groundbreaking with what they brought the world of rock & roll! Nothing like em'.

48The Allman Brothers Band
The greatest southern rock band ever!
Words no words, the best souhern rock of all time

49Bob Marley & The Wailers
Rock band? Although Best reggae band ever...

50Steely Dan
Favorite group ever, but surprised at their inclusion with their heavy jazz influence
Great lyrics. Wonderful and imaginative musical riffs. Timeless.

One of the best of all time. Totally underrated
"Crime of the Century"... Simply put, a masterpiece.
What could be better than school?
[Newest]Crime of the Century, both album and song are just genius.

52Bad Company
Bad Company at 60 They out sold almost everyone in the 70's, and probably had more hits then anyone on this list in the 70's, except maybe the stones
Hell ya paul rodgers best vocalist

53The Cars
I can't believe I actually had to add this band! The Cars were great. Let's go, just what I needed, moving in stereo, my best friend's girl, they were a really phenomenal band.

54The Ramones
Simple, fast and good. 15 minute songs?! No way! Average 2 minute good songs made some difference back there.

55The Grateful Dead
I realize the dead isn't for everyone, but for those of us that get it, jerry garcia guitar playing, with the dead or the jgb just satisfies my soul
Pity they didn't do anything else that approached Anthem of the Sun.

56The Beach Boys


The average rock listener won't catch the magic that was 70s YES music, which is why they normally don't make generic top 10 lists and aren't considered by most to be mainstream. However, the construction of YES music is far superior to other bands due to their very complex arrangements and inspirational thematic elements. To truly appreciate this you have to listen close to tracks on albums such as The Yes Album, Fragile, and Close to the Edge, listen closely to hear what each individual musician is contributing and how they are interwoven (the average listener may not have the patience). While analyzing what they are doing, it is good to do so from the perspective of how difficult it would be to reproduce these efforts. YES members have always been the most proficient musicians. One other outstanding aspect of this band is that their messages were largely positive, not just pandering to teens who have always clamored for music that reflects an attitude of "Let's party" and "Drugs, sex, and rock and roll." This is why their music has stood the test of time and stands out from the rest.
The 70's are so long ago people just don't remember, plus 7-9 minute songs found little airplay until the advent of FM stations. Before the 70's AM played top 40 and FM played classical - mostly. I am not arguing who is best, etc. , but Yes has a plethora of works that last the test of time. They were one of the original Stadium Bands where nearly 130K showed up in Philly to watch their ethereal, Laser Light laden show. This was 1976! What was Iron Maiden (RU Kidding), Aerosmith and Deep Purple doing then? Hell, Peter Frampton - during the Frampton Comes Alive height - OPENED for Yes. They were individually unmatched musicians within the top 5 at any instrument and there music so inventive that they practically invented Progressive Rock. Not saying the "best" and in the recent years seem to be just out there for the buck, but not 46. 46? Really?
Who had more genuine musical ability and talent than Yes both individually and collectively?

59The Damned

60The Guess Who
Really. Well lets just start counting Top ten hits.
I love this band great rock and roll

61Wishbone Ash
This is the band that inspired iron maiden... Check out the seminal album "argus".. It will blow you away... Twin lead guitars set the bar for bands to come...
They certainly deserve a higher ranking - and they are still unbelievable. The melancholic harmonics of their twin lead guitars are unforgettable.
Argus ranks among the best albums of all time. Try Leaf and Stream.
The best of un- appreciated guitar bands of Britain-- set a new standard of musicianship in Rock

62King Crimson
Listen to Red. It's got Robert Fripp, Bill Bruford, and John Wetton (pre-Asia). This is one of the greatest bands of all time because they could always find a new sound and still be original.

63Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

64Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention
Frank Zappa should be in the top10 any musician will say they the best band was the the Mothers
Probably the most underrated guitarist in rock history.

Agree UFO and Thin Lizzy are awesome but Thin Lizzy are from Ireland.


Rock bottom do I need to sat anymore!
Along with Thin Lizzy one of the best melodic hard rock bandsEngland has produced

66The Alan Parsons Project
At least top twenty. The Alan Parsons Project had perfect arrangements and melody. Not the best but top twenty.
The first of great ensemble groups and great songwriting
Different, fast and in your face

67Little River Band
VERY UNDERRATED BAND, crank up "Man on your mind"
Wow... People should go out & buy a greatest hits album to get reacquainted with this powerhouse group! Lady, Lonesome Loser, and Happy Anniversary Baby.. Got you on my minnnddd!

68Crack the Sky



One of the best selling groups of ALL TIME! They were so much more musically talented than the majority of bands higher up on this list; they incorporated jazz into all of their songs. They had great vocals too. Top ten material.
The most Underrated band in the history of Rock!
Great first album - then down hill from thereon.

Styx has some very HARD roots in Rock and Roll. Just take a quick listen to Styx I, II and Serpent Rising will prove it. It was carried thru into Equinox and Crystal Ball but DD's relenting and unwavering influence turned the bands direction toward pop and more mellow "top 40" stuff which is were the "underrated" title began. The Grand Illusion/Pieces of Eight Tour has done a lot to show the band in its best light as they continue to pack venues all over the states and around the world! ROCK ON STYX!
Very sad to see them on 72 and underrated band, during the early 80s I was picking up my dates with the tape playing their songs..
This band is underrated and better than people rate them. This should be in the top 10!

73Sex Pistols

74The Velvet Underground
Along with stooges fathers of punk and avante garde rock

75Mahogany Rush
Classic psychedelic power trio who blow all others away - except for Hendrix and Sabbath.
Watch California Jam nobody is cooler than Frank Marino

76Climax Blues Band

77The Charlie Daniels Band

78Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

Fool for the city and slow ride, what more can you say

80Bee Gees
Incredible songwriters and arrangers! Too often associated with disco, they wrote so many other songs and for other artists. Even their disco is great to listen to.

They are so good Paul krossof is a very under rated guitar player

82Duran Duran

83Cheap Trick
The best American rock band of all time.

84The Cure

Insane music, awesome pepople! Should be in the top 10

86The Kinks
So underrated, and so amazing.

87The Cramps

Rock... I doubt! The 70's even more...

89The Victims

90The Adicts

91The Sensational Alex Harvey Band
One of the best front men in rock
You must be joking.

John Kay's music is relevant today. Listen to Monster.

93Jefferson Starship
Unforgettable songs for rock lovers


95Golden Earring
Good rock band with good composing sense

96Pure Prairie League

97The Marshall Tucker Band
Can't you see... Whipping Post... Strong, strong songs.

98April Wine
Highly underrated Canadian band... Best known for "Just Between You and Me" but many gems far superior


100The Specials

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This list was created 3 years, 250 days ago and has been voted on over 1,000 times. This top ten list contains 125 items, has been remixed 14 times.

Updated Saturday, April 18, 2015

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