Top 10 Best Classic Rock Bands

The Top Ten
1 Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin was an English hard rock band formed in London in 1968 as the New Yardbirds. The group consisted of Robert Plant (Vocal), Jimmy Page (Guitar), John Paul Jones (Bass, Keyboard) and John Bonham (Drums) and was very much the child of Jimmy Page who even financed their first tour. He had tasted... read more

There are bands that don't have another band that even comes close to them. Led Zeppelin showcased some of the greatest guitar solos the world has ever seen. Jimmy Page redefined the way people play the guitar. Robert Plant is the greatest screamer ever - he actually sounds good. John Paul Jones was the fastest bassist, trying to keep up with Jimmy when he performed a guitar solo. Not many people could do that. And then, there's John Bonham, the greatest drummer to ever sit behind a drum kit. His solo in Rock and Roll is one of the greatest I've ever heard. And that brings me to my final point: LED ZEPPELIN RULES!

2 Queen Queen are an English rock band formed in London in 1970. The original lineup was Freddie Mercury (lead vocals, piano), Brian May (guitar, vocals), Roger Taylor (drums, vocals), and John Deacon (bass guitar, vocals). Before forming into Queen, Brian May and Roger Taylor had played together in a band... read more

Over the years, my taste in music has been redefined many times. It all came to rest at Queen. The pure musicianship of every single member of this amazing band shows that they are the greatest band ever. Each member is credited with writing at least one number one hit, even the bassist and drummer. That is no surprise when you look at each one, though.

John Deacon has some of the most iconic bass lines ever. Roger Taylor, with his intricate drum fills and an incredible voice, could have (and did) front a band of his own. Brian May, while also having an incredible voice, is one of the greatest guitarists ever. Not to mention, he has a PhD in Astrophysics.

Then we come to Freddie Mercury, a legend among legends. Freddie's voice was so powerful and had a range that most singers only dream of acquiring. He is listed as one of the greatest frontmen in history, which is no surprise to anyone who has seen him in person or on video. His death will be mourned for many more years. Because of the caliber of every single member in Queen, they deserve the spot of number one band ever. A true treasure that will be listened to well into the future.

3 The Beatles The Beatles were an English pop rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960. The members consisted of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. They were soon known as the foremost and most influential act of rock era. Rooted in skiffle, beat, and 1950s rock and roll, the Beatles later... read more

People say that The Beatles are overrated. That is not true because they have done so much for music. There wouldn't be Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Queen, or anything without Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. The Beatles reinvented music. So, they are not overrated at all. Zeppelin is easily the most overrated band in history, whereas Pink Floyd, Queen, and The Beatles are all 1000 times better. After all, Zeppelin has only one kick-ass album.

I love The Beatles. It seems like I can listen to every song over and over again. Queen is a really good band, but in no way do they come close to The Beatles. Led Zeppelin is a hard-rocking band worthy of the Gods but had their troubles with stealing music early on. I can't believe how low Black Sabbath is ranked - again, a heavy rock band worthy of the Gods. Sabbath over Zeppelin. Beatles over all.

4 Pink Floyd Pink Floyd are an English progressive rock band formed in 1965 in London, England. They achieved international acclaim with their progressive and psychedelic music. The band consisted of 5 members - David Gilmour (Vocals and Guitar), Syd Barrett (Vocals and Guitar), Nick Mason (Drums), Roger Waters... read more

Pink Floyd is like that one band where, if you show someone the logo for "Dark Side," they'll say, "Oh yeah, that band, Pink Floyd, right?" Everybody knows it. Take "The Wall," for example. Listen to "Another Brick in the Wall, Part One, Two, and Three." All three in a row. They blend seamlessly. Listen to the whole album nonstop. Each song blends perfectly into the next. Pink Floyd brought us the famous line, "If you don't eat your meat, you can't have any pudding." I'm sorry, but who hasn't heard that at least once in their life? For most, it's avoided, with an exception for "Dark Side." I hate to say this, but Pink Floyd should take the number one spot, as should "The Wall" compared to "Dark Side." "Mother, do you think they'll drop the bomb? Mother, do you think they'll like this song?" - Pink Floyd, "Mother," "The Wall."

5 The Rolling Stones The Rolling Stones are an English rock band formed in London in 1962. The first settled line-up consisted of Brian Jones (guitar, harmonica), Ian Stewart (piano), Mick Jagger (lead vocals, harmonica), Keith Richards (guitar), Bill Wyman (bass) and Charlie Watts (drums)... read more

Voting on this list is a considerably harder task than that on the hard rock bands list, for the obvious reason that it includes many iconic and influential bands from the '60s and '70s that aren't hard rock (e.g., The Rolling Stones, The Who, T. Rex, Queen, Pink Floyd, etc.). However, I voted for The Rolling Stones because they are the very band that defined the non-hard-rock side of classic rock, influencing genres like glam rock, boogie rock, and soft rock, thus enabling a broader musical diversity in classic rock. Also, I think they deserve a little more credit than The Beatles.

6 AC/DC AC/DC are a Australian hard rock band, formed in November 1973 by brothers Malcolm and Angus Young, who continued as members until Malcolm's illness and departure in 2014 . They were fronted by Bon Scott until his untimely death due to alcohol poisoning in 1979, after which they hired Brian Johnson... read more

What makes them great? Their shows and their longevity. While other older bands understandably slow down over the years, this group keeps pumping out anthemic music. Catchy rock music that could have been hits in the rock 'n' roll heyday of the '80s and '90s. With that said, in the 21st century alone, they've won a Grammy, and the Black Ice Tour was the fourth largest tour in history. Black Ice sold more albums worldwide than all but Coldplay. In 2007, AC/DC sold 3 million albums, yet they hadn't produced new songs in 8 years at that point. If you don't think these aging rockers are still relevant, then please check out Live at River Plate. Their stage presence is as good as ever. Johnson is in terrific shape, and they play to the frenzied crowd like never before. And this is the AC/DC that could be retired, and people would understand. Now, they have Rock or Bust. Tickets sold so fast for the European tour that it broke Guinness world records for the most sales in the least time: 1.75 million tickets in less than 24 hours. For those who think they just sound the same in all their music, that's okay. The band doesn't make music for you. They make it for their fans. Believe me, there are plenty of them.

7 The Who The Who is an English rock band formed in London, England in 1964. The most recognizable lineup was Roger Daltrey (lead vocals), Pete Townshend (guitar), John Entwistle (bass guitar), and Keith Moon (drums). They are best known for their live performances and hit songs Baba O'Riley, My Generation, and... read more

These guys were basically the first to introduce synthesizers, something that most everyone else has relied on in their music. This band has tested rock time and again and has revolutionized it, creating some of the best and most favorite classic rock songs of all time. It is even said that Led Zeppelin and many other British-origin groups and singers, including U2, were influenced by these guys. The band includes one of the greatest guitarists, greatest drummers, and greatest bassists of all time. There is a reason they have been around for nearly fifty years and continue to perform.

8 Black Sabbath Black Sabbath were a Heavy Metal band formed in Birmingham, England in 1968 by guitarist and songwriter Tony Iommi, singer John "Ozzy" Osbourne, bassist and main lyricist Geezer Butler and drummer Bill Ward... read more

Should be number 1. Not only Ozzy but also the Heaven and Hell days with Dio, and even the Martin era wasn't bad. Nobody has this longevity and is still making great music. What other band here put out an album as recently as The Devil You Know that is near that quality?

Black Sabbath is one of the bands that started metal. In fact, they're basically the godfather of metal. They should be at least in the top 5 or higher! Some people have no taste these days. Black Sabbath forever!

Awesome band with a diverse musical category, going from acoustic instrumentals such as Fluff to heavy balls-to-the-wall headbangers such as Sabbath Bloody Sabbath, Iron Man, Snowblind, Symptom of the Universe, Hole in the Sky, etc., to ballads such as Changes.

9 The Doors The Doors were an American rock band formed in 1965 in Los Angeles, with vocalist Jim Morrison, keyboardist Ray Manzarek, guitarist Robby Krieger and drummer John Densmore.

This band changed the world. Their influence is everywhere: in the music you hear on the radio, in the way poets and writers think, in the stars who don't watch their language on live TV, in the attitudes of the people you meet, and literally EVERYWHERE!

When their debut album was released in 1967, it was the first time they completely reinvented rock culture, but it surely wasn't the last.

If you love rock music and appreciate intelligent poetry, you can't deny that they are the best band ever. Everything about them was magic! Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, Rolling Stones, etc., are all great, but when considering the best and not just the greatest, hands down, The Doors are #1.

R.I.P. Jim Morrison and Ray Manzarek.

10 The Jimi Hendrix Experience The Jimi Hendrix Experience was an English-American rock band that formed in Westminster, London, in September 1966. Composed of singer, songwriter, and guitarist Jimi Hendrix, bassist and backing vocalist Noel Redding, and drummer Mitch Mitchell, the band was active until June 1969. During this time... read more

Jimi Hendrix is my biggest inspiration! I started playing a little over a year ago and still play every day. If I'm ever feeling down, I just listen to a little Hendrix. I really like watching him live on YouTube, because that's really the closest I can come to actually being at one of his legendary concerts. I truly feel soul pouring out of Hendrix and his guitar. I wish I could have met him. His music is the best in the universe, just my opinion though. Rock on Hendrix, forever your sound will adventure!

P.S. I still have an unopened copy of 'The Jimi Hendrix Experience,' hoping someday it will inspire my children.

The Contenders
11 Rush Rush was a Canadian progressive rock band that was formed in 1968. The band has had an iconic lineup since 1975, which included Neil Peart (Drums, Percussion), Geddy Lee (Vocals, Bass, Keyboards), and the guitarist, Alex Lifeson. Peart passed away after a 3 year battle with brain cancer in January of... read more

They were highly regarded by very positioned and prestigious musicians 40 years ago, and now they are revered as some of the greatest musicians of all time, not only by their fans but also by the most credible critics. Real iconic musicians that do not have even one small complaint. Who would dare cast doubt on the greatest musicians of all time, hands down? Rush humbly continues to be even better after 47 years. No other act on the entire list can lay claim to that longevity of commercial success. No one. Not even close, no matter how long you try to explain. Rush is still there, turning out new and full studio albums, then backing them up with sold-out shows at the highest dollar around the world. The Beatles never did that. The Stones never did that. U2 never did that. AC/DC never did that. Aerosmith never did that. Metallica never did that. Maiden never did that. Hendrix never did that. Cream never did that. The Who never did that. The only one I would consider close would be Neil Young.

12 Deep Purple Deep Purple are an English rock band formed in Hertford in 1968. They are considered to be among the pioneers of heavy metal and modern hard rock, although their musical approach changed over the years. Originally formed as a progressive rock band, the band shifted to a heavier sound in 1970. Deep Purple,... read more

One guy said that they were a terrible band, but don't listen to him. He doesn't know what good rock music is!

Listen to Deep Purple in Rock. It set the standard for all hard rock and has arguably never been surpassed... Period.

Deep Purple is the best rock band, and fools don't like it.

13 Van Halen Van Halen was an American hard rock band formed in Pasadena, California, in 1972. From 1974 until 1985, the band consisted of guitarist Eddie Van Halen, vocalist David Lee Roth, drummer Alex Van Halen, and bassist Michael Anthony.

Van Halen has some of the most infamous songs in rock history out there, but we do have to remember, this is one of those rare bands that have more than one hit. In fact, they have a good handful of songs that you can call your favorite, definitely not a one-hit wonder!

Eddie is the best guitarist, David is the best vocalist, Mike is the best bassist, and Alex isn't the best, but he's got some skills - Van Halen is an unbeatable band.

I totally agree! Eddie is the greatest guitarist who ever lived! And yes, with David, they were the best! Too bad egos got in the way.

14 Aerosmith Aerosmith is an American rock band, sometimes referred to as "the Bad Boys from Boston" and "America's Greatest Rock and Roll Band".

Aerosmith is great. They are my favorite rock band. I love their songs: Walk This Way, Toys in the Attic, Make It, and Sweet Emotion. Gosh, please put them in Led Zeppelin's place because they are SO much better. Seriously.

The top 5 are good, but I'd put Aerosmith above AC/DC. AC/DC can rock, but their songs are pretty simplistic. Aerosmith has more variety. This list is better than most I've seen on the web.

Aerosmith is the greatest-selling American rock band ever! 11th place is a joke! All of their songs are great! And they are one of the greatest bands to see live!

15 Metallica Metallica is an American Heavy/Thrash Metal band formed in 1981. The original lineup was James Hetfield (Vocalist and Rhythm guitarist), Dave Mustaine (Lead Guitar), Lars Ulrich (Drums), Ron McGovney (Bassist). The group came into mainstream from their Self-Titled album and the hit single "Enter Sandman"... read more

35? You're joking, right? This band is one of, and will always be, one of the greatest rock bands out there. I literally cringed when I saw this at 35. This band is better than most that are higher up on this chart. With songs like For Whom the Bell Tolls, The Unforgiven, Enter Sandman, Whiskey in the Jar, and covers such as Am I Evil? and Tuesday's Gone, this band seems to be far more underrated than it should be. With outstanding vocals, bass, guitar, and drums, I see no reason why this band isn't a great one. Metallica!

Metallica. The reason for the way I act today. I may be 13, but Metallica is my absolute favorite band, and because of Metallica, I am now a DJ and I have my own band. I can also play drums, guitar, bass, and I can sing, all because of Metallica. They are the kings of metal and deserve better than this.

16 The Eagles The Eagles are an American rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1971 by Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Bernie Leadon, and Randy Meisner.

No way I see the Eagles at 13! How is that possible? The Eagles are one of the most well-recognized and superbly talented groups of all time! Don Henley, Glenn Frey, Joe Walsh, and for a bit, Don Felder - all rock and roll legends! So many hits and they shaped modern rock during their time and everyone was down to listen to some Eagles. Man, this is a disgrace. They are number 4, maybe even number 3, behind Queen and The Beatles!

Producing great music from the first minute, these guys took it to the limit! They made many legendary songs like Hotel California, Take It Easy, One of These Nights, and so on. One of the best bands ever in rock, true legends!

17 Journey Journey is an American arena rock band that formed in San Francisco in 1973, composed of former members of Santana and Frumious Bandersnatch.

Every instrumentalist is top-notch. The writing and lyrics are fantastic, and no other vocalist could ever beat Steve Perry in his prime. Their songs usually carried a good message, which I appreciated. Arnel is good too, but Perry hit it out of the park every time.

Journey is one of the most underrated bands. Neal Schon, Jonathan Cain, and Steve Perry wrote some of rock's best-known hits. Perry has been called "The Voice." Neal Schon is as good a guitar player as any, and Cain is a master on the keyboards. Journey is Rock & Roll!

18 Creedence Clearwater Revival Creedence Clearwater Revival, often shortened to Creedence and abbreviated as CCR, was an American rock band active in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

I love CCR. Their greatest hit, in my opinion, is Heard it Through the Grapevine, and the rest are good songs too. This should be in the top ten. CCR FOREVER!

My mum would listen to this band forever (in-between Fats and Hank Williams).

CCR is one of the greatest bands of all time! Number 21?! They deserve to be in the top 10.

19 Lynyrd Skynyrd Lynyrd Skynyrd is an American rock band best known for popularizing the Southern rock genre during the 1970s They are known for songs like "Free Bird", "Sweet Home Alabama" and "Tuesdays Gone" .

Introducing the world to hardcore southern rock, Lynyrd Skynyrd was at the top of the mountain until a plane crash in 1977 profoundly influenced the band to break up. Ten years later, the band reformed with the former lead singer, Ronnie Van Zant's brother, taking over the vocal duties.

The greatest band to ever play. Ronnie Van Zant's songwriting ability and lead vocals, along with Steve Gaines, Allen Collins, and Gary Rossington, produced some of the greatest guitar solos of all time. There is no such thing as a bad Skynyrd song. The only band that even comes close to Skynyrd is Zeppelin. Free Bird is the greatest song of all time.

20 Fleetwood Mac Fleetwood Mac are a British-American rock band formed in July 1967, in London. The band have sold more than 100 million records worldwide, making them one of the best-selling bands of all time.

Why do people who have no good taste in music always underrate this band? This band is nothing less than The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, and Pink Floyd! Vote for it, fools!

They offer very diverse music through the years, plus having Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham as lead singers in different songs. No album has the same feel or sound. You can't say that about most classic rock groups. I know South Park made fun of Nicks for sounding like a lamb, but let's face it - South Park makes fun of everything.

The music is more diverse than most bands and as timeless as The Beatles or Led Zeppelin. They are a source of inspiration to young musicians and have withstood the test of time, no doubt. Should be in the top 10.

21 Iron Maiden Iron Maiden are an English Heavy Metal band formed in Leyton, East London, in 1975 by bassist and primary songwriter Steve Harris. The most critically acclaimed period for the band was from 1983-1989. With vocalist Bruce Dickinson, bassist Steve Harris, lead guitarist Dave Murray, rhythm guitarist Adrian... read more

"We Are Blood Brothers"... How that sounds.

22 Genesis Genesis are an English rock band formed at Charterhouse School, Godalming, Surrey in 1967. The most commercially successful and long-lasting line-up includes keyboardist Tony Banks, bassist/guitarist Mike Rutherford and drummer/singer Phil Collins.

I know I stand in the minority here, but I love the Phil Collins era a lot more than the Peter Gabriel era.

Deserves top 10. Helped expand progressive and classic rock.

23 The Grateful Dead The Grateful Dead was an American rock band formed in 1965 in Palo Alto, California. Ranging from quintet to septet, the band is known for its unique and eclectic style, which fused elements of country, folk, bluegrass, blues, reggae, rock, improvisational jazz, psychedelia, space rock, for live performances... read more

A Grateful Dead concert is unlike any other. I saw them in the form of Dead & Company, and it was awesome! Every song is complemented by a long, improvised jam while the Deadheads with dreadlocks dance. I've seen more dudes on acid that night than I will ever see again.

Fun and always different. Live shows are an adventure. I miss you, Jerry!

Biggest live audiences, most live shows, most dedicated fans.

24 Bon Jovi Bon Jovi is a hard rock/pop rock band formed in 1983, which had a streak of successful albums in the late 1980s. The band originally consisted of lead vocalist Jon Bon Jovi, guitarist Ritchie Sambora (left in 2013), bassist Alec John Such (left in 1994), keyboard David Bryan, and drummer Tico Torres... read more

Bon Jovi has and still is putting out the best rock music in the world. His most famous song, Livin' on a Prayer, is expected to be heard by everyone. Not listening to this and a couple of other songs is like not watching The Matrix or not hearing Don't Stop Believin'. The lyrics of Bon Jovi speak truth and encourage many people. Unlike some other bands, Bon Jovi are still living and playing. Not only does Bon Jovi make a ton of great hit songs, but they are also activists and help the community. Bon Jovi sold many records when recording and was said to put on some of the best concerts of that time.

25 Talking Heads Talking Heads were an American rock band formed in 1975 in New York City and active until 1991. The band comprised David Byrne, Chris Frantz, Tina Weymouth, and Jerry Harrison.
8Load More
PSearch List