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Favorite American Bands
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The Doors were an American rock band formed in 1965 in Los Angeles, California, with vocalist Jim Morrison, keyboardist Ray Manzarek, drummer John Densmore and guitarist Robby Krieger.
The band took its name from the title of Aldous Huxley's book The Doors of Perception, which itself was a reference to a William Blake quotation, from his famous work The Marriage of Heaven and Hell: "If the doors of perception were cleansed every thing would appear to man as it is, infinite."
They were among the most controversial, influential and unique rock acts of the 1960s and beyond, mostly because of Morrison's wild, poetic lyrics and charismatic but unpredictable stage persona. After Morrison's death in 1971, the remaining members continued as a trio until finally disbanding in 1973.
They were signed to Elektra Records in 1966. The 1967 release of The Doors was the first in a series of top ten albums in the US, followed by Strange Days (1967), Waiting for the Sun (1968), The Soft Parade (1969), Morrison Hotel (1970), Absolutely Live (1970) and L.A. Woman (1971), with 20 Gold, 14 Platinum and 5 Multi-Platinum album awards in the United States alone. Although the Doors' active career ended in 1973, their popularity has persisted. According to the RIAA, they have sold 35.5 million certified units in the US and over 100 million albums worldwide. The band is one of the best-selling bands of all time. The Doors were the first American band to accumulate eight consecutive gold LPs.
Three of the band's studio albums, The Doors (1967), Strange Days (1967) and L.A. Woman (1971), were featured in the Rolling Stone list of The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, at positions 42, 407 and 362 respectively.
The band, their work, and Morrison's celebrity continue to be considered inexorably embedded within the larger counterculture of the 1960s.
In 1993, the Doors were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Active: 1961 to present
The Beach Boys are an American rock band, formed in Hawthorne, California in 1961. The group's original lineup consisted of brothers Brian, Dennis and Carl Wilson, their cousin Mike Love and friend Al Jardine. Initially managed by the Wilsons' father Murry, the Beach Boys signed to Capitol Records in 1962. The band's early music gained popularity across the United States for its close vocal harmonies and lyrics reflecting a Southern California youth culture of surfing, cars, and romance.
During the early to mid-1960s, Brian Wilson's growing creative ambition and songwriting ability would dominate the group's musical direction. The primarily Wilson-composed Pet Sounds album and "Good Vibrations" single (both released in 1966) featured a complex, intricate and multi-layered sound that represented a departure from the simple surf rock of the Beach Boys' early years.
Starting in 1967, Wilson gradually ceded control to the rest of the band, assuming a reduced level of input due to mental health and substance abuse issues. Though the more democratic incarnation of the Beach Boys recorded a string of albums in various musical styles that garnered international critical success, the group struggled to reclaim their commercial momentum in America despite once being seen as the primary competitors to the Beatles.
Since the 1980s, there has been much publicized legal-wrangling over royalties, songwriting credits, and use of the band's name. Dennis Wilson drowned in 1983, and Carl died of lung cancer in 1998. After Carl's death, a number of versions of the band, each fronted by surviving members from the original quintet, continued to tour until the 2000s. For the band's 50th anniversary, they briefly reunited as the Beach Boys for a new studio album, world tour, and career-spanning retrospective box set.
The Beach Boys have often been called "America's Band", and Allmusic has stated that their "unerring ability…made them America's first, best rock band." The group have had over eighty songs chart worldwide, thirty-six of them United States Top 40 hits (the most by an American rock band), four of those reaching number-one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The Beach Boys have sold in excess of 100 million records worldwide and are listed at number 12 on Rolling Stone magazine's 2004 list of the "100 Greatest Artists of All Time".
The core quintet of the three Wilsons, Love and Jardine were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988.
Active: 1967 to present
Fleetwood Mac are a British-American rock band formed in 1967 in London. The founding members were Peter Green, Mick Fleetwood and John McVie. McVie's wife Christine McVie joined the band in 1970.
They achieved success as an English blues band during the late 1960s British blues boom, when they had a UK number one with "Albatross".
From 1975 they became a more pop oriented act, when Americans Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks joined the group following Peter Green's departure.
Fleetwood Mac's second album after the incorporation of Buckingham and Nicks, 1977's 'Rumours', produced four U.S. Top 10 singles (including Nicks' song "Dreams"), and remained at No.1 on the American albums chart for 31 weeks, as well as reaching the top spot in various countries around the world. To date the album has sold over 45 million copies worldwide, making it the 4th highest selling album of all time.
In 1998, selected members of Fleetwood Mac were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The band have sold over 120 million albums worldwide with a certified 48,500,000 units sold in the U.S. and a certified 9,760,000 units sold in the U.K.
Active: 1971-1980 & 1994 to present
The Eagles are an American rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1971 by Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Bernie Leadon and Randy Meisner.
With five number-one singles, six Grammy Awards, five American Music Awards, and six number one albums, the Eagles were one of the most successful musical acts of the 1970s. At the end of the 20th century, two of their albums, Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975) and Hotel California, ranked among the 20 best-selling albums in the U.S. according to the Recording Industry Association of America. Hotel California is ranked 37th in Rolling Stone's list of "The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time", and the band was ranked number 75 on the magazine's 2004 list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
They are one of the world’s best-selling bands of all time, having sold over 150 million records—100 million in the U.S. alone—including 42 million copies of Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975) and 32 million copies of Hotel California. They are the fifth-highest-selling music act and highest-selling American band in US history. No American band sold more records than the Eagles during the 1970s.
The Eagles released their self-titled debut album in 1972, which spawned three top 40 singles: "Take It Easy", "Witchy Woman", and "Peaceful Easy Feeling". Their next album, Desperado (1973), was less successful than the first, reaching only number 41 on the charts; neither of its singles reached the top 40. However, the album contained two of the band's most popular tracks: "Desperado" and "Tequila Sunrise". They released On the Border in 1974, adding guitarist Don Felder midway through the recording of the album. The album generated two top 40 singles: "Already Gone" and their first number one, "Best of My Love".
It was not until 1975's One of These Nights that the Eagles became arguably America's biggest band. The album included three top 10 singles: "One of These Nights", "Lyin' Eyes", and "Take It to the Limit", the first hitting the top of the charts. They continued that success and hit their commercial peak in late 1976 with the release of Hotel California, which would go on to sell over 16 million copies in the U.S. alone and over 32 million copies worldwide. The album yielded two number-one singles, "New Kid in Town" and "Hotel California". They released their last studio album for nearly 28 years in 1979 with The Long Run, which spawned three top 10 singles: "Heartache Tonight", "The Long Run", and "I Can't Tell You Why", the lead single being another chart-topping hit.
The Eagles disbanded in July 1980 but reunited in 1994 for the album Hell Freezes Over, a mix of live and new studio tracks. They have toured intermittently since then and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998. In 2007, the Eagles released Long Road Out of Eden, their first full studio album in 28 years and their sixth number one album. The next year they launched the Long Road Out of Eden Tour in support of the album. In 2013, they began the extended History of the Eagles Tour in conjunction with the band's documentary release, History of the Eagles.
Active: 1965-1968 & 1971
The Mamas and the Papas were an American folk rock vocal group that recorded and performed from 1965 to 1968, reuniting briefly in 1971.
They released five studio albums and seventeen singles, six of which made the top ten, and sold close to 40 million records worldwide.
The group comprised John Phillips (1935–2001), Canadian Denny Doherty (1940–2007), Cass Elliot (1941–1974), and Michelle Phillips née Gilliam (b. 1944).
Their sound was based on vocal harmonies arranged by songwriter and leader, John Phillips, an innovator who adapted folk to the new beat style of the early sixties.
Active: 1970 to present
America is an American folk rock band formed in London in 1970 which originally consisted of Gerry Beckley, Dewey Bunnell and Dan Peek.
The three members were barely out of their teens when they became a musical sensation in 1972, scoring No. 1 hits and winning a Grammy for best new musical artist.
Their recording success stretched throughout the 1970s; some of their best known songs are "A Horse with No Name", "Sister Golden Hair" (both of which reached No. 1), "Ventura Highway", "Tin Man", "Daisy Jane", and "Lonely People". George Martin produced seven of their albums.
Peek left the group in 1977 to pursue a solo career, but Beckley and Bunnell returned to the top 10 as a duo with "You Can Do Magic" in 1982. As late as 2009, America performed over 100 shows per year.
On January 16, 2007, America released Here & Now, the band's first major label studio album in over twenty years.
Reunions: 1975, 1981–83, 1993, 2003–04 & 2009–10
Simon & Garfunkel were an American music duo consisting of singer-songwriter Paul Simon and singer Art Garfunkel (both born in 1941).
They formed the group Tom & Jerry in 1957 and had their first success with the minor hit "Hey, Schoolgirl". As Simon & Garfunkel, the duo rose to fame in 1965, largely on the strength of the hit single "The Sound of Silence". Their music was featured in the landmark film 'The Graduate' (1967), propelling them further into the public consciousness.
They are well known for their vocal harmonies and were among the most popular recording artists of the 1960s. Their biggest hits – including "The Sound of Silence" (1964), "I Am a Rock" (1965), "Homeward Bound" (1965), "Scarborough Fair/Canticle" (1966), "A Hazy Shade of Winter" (1966), "Mrs. Robinson" (1968), "Bridge over Troubled Water" (1969), "The Boxer" (1969) and "Cecilia" (1969) – reached number one in several charts.
Their sometimes rocky relationship led to their last album, 'Bridge over Troubled Water', being delayed several times due to artistic disagreements, and as a result the duo broke up in 1970.
It was their most successful album worldwide to date, reaching number one in several countries, including the United States, and receiving 8× platinum certification from the Recording Industry Association of America, making it their highest-selling studio album in the U.S. and second-highest album overall.
Simon & Garfunkel have, at times, reunited to perform and sometimes tour together. They have done so in every decade since the 1970 breakup, most famously for 1981's "The Concert in Central Park", which attracted more than 500,000 people, making it the 7th-most attended concert in the history of music.
In 2004, they were ranked No. 40 on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 greatest artists of all time. They have received several Grammy Awards and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990 and the Long Island Music Hall of Fame in 2007.
Active: 1972–1981 & 1993 to present
Steely Dan is an American jazz rock/rock band founded in 1972 by core members Walter Becker and Donald Fagen.
The band's popularity peaked in the late 1970s, and their seven albums over that period of time blended elements of jazz, rock, funk, R&B, and pop. Rolling Stone has called them "the perfect musical anti-heroes for the Seventies."
Recorded with a revolving cast of session musicians, Steely Dan's music is characterized by complex jazz-influenced structures and harmonies. Often sharply sarcastic lyricists, Becker and Fagen have written "cerebral, wry and eccentric" songs about drugs, love affairs and crime. The pair are known for their near-obsessive perfectionism in the recording studio: Over the year they took to record Gaucho (1980), an album of just seven songs, Becker and Fagen hired at least 42 studio musicians and 11 engineers.
Steely Dan toured from 1972 to 1974 before retiring to the studio. The group disbanded in 1981, and throughout most of the next decade Becker and Fagen were largely inactive, though a cult following remained devoted to the group. In 1993 the two reunited and began playing concerts. Steely Dan has since released two albums of new material, the first of which earned a Grammy Award for Album of the Year. They have sold more than 40 million albums worldwide and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in March 2001.
The Carpenters were an American vocal and instrumental duo, consisting of siblings Karen and Richard Carpenter.
During a period in the 1970s when louder and wilder rock was in great demand, Richard and Karen produced a distinctively soft musical style that made them among the best-selling music artists of all time.
The Carpenters' melodic pop produced a record-breaking run of hit recordings on the American Top 40 and Adult Contemporary charts, and they became leading sellers in the soft rock, easy listening and adult contemporary genres. Carpenters had three No. 1 singles and five No. 2 singles on the Billboard Hot 100 and fifteen No. 1 hits on the Adult Contemporary chart (see The Carpenters discography). In addition, they had twelve top 10 singles (including their No. 1 hits). To date, Carpenters' album and single sales total more than 100 million units.
During their 14-year career, the Carpenters recorded 11 albums, thirty-one singles, five television specials, and a short-lived television series. They toured in the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, Australia, the Netherlands and Belgium.
Their recording career ended with Karen's death in 1983 at age 32 from heart failure following complications of anorexia nervosa. Extensive news coverage of the circumstances surrounding her death increased public awareness of the consequences of eating disorders.
R.E.M. was an American rock band from Athens, Georgia, formed in 1980 by singer Michael Stipe, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist Mike Mills and drummer Bill Berry.
One of the first popular alternative rock bands, R.E.M. gained early attention because of Buck's ringing, arpeggiated guitar style and Stipe's unclear vocals.
R.E.M. released its first single, "Radio Free Europe", in 1981 on the independent record label Hib-Tone. The single was followed by the Chronic Town EP in 1982, the band's first release on I.R.S. Records. In 1983, the group released its critically acclaimed debut album, Murmur, and built its reputation over the next few years through subsequent releases, constant touring, and the support of college radio. Following years of underground success, R.E.M. achieved a mainstream hit in 1987 with the single "The One I Love".
The group signed to Warner Bros. Records in 1988, and began to espouse political and environmental concerns while playing large arenas worldwide.
By the early 1990s, when alternative rock began to experience broad mainstream success, R.E.M. was viewed by subsequent acts such as Nirvana and Pavement as a pioneer of the genre and released its two most commercially successful albums, catapulting them to international fame, Out of Time (1991) and Automatic for the People (1992), which veered from the band's established sound.
R.E.M.'s 1994 release, Monster, was a return to a more rock-oriented sound, but still continued their run of success. The band began its first tour in six years to support the album; the tour was marred by medical emergencies suffered by three band members.
In 1996, R.E.M. re-signed with Warner Bros. for a reported US$80 million, at the time the most expensive recording contract in history. Their 1996 release, New Adventures in Hi-Fi, though critically acclaimed, fared worse commercially than expected.
The following year, Bill Berry left the band, while Buck, Mills, and Stipe continued the group as a trio. Through some changes in musical style, the band continued its career into the next decade with mixed critical and commercial success, despite having sold over 85 million records worldwide.
In 2007, the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. R.E.M. disbanded amicably in September 2011, announcing the split on its website.
Active: 1975–1991 & reunion 2002
Talking Heads was an American new wave band formed in 1975 in New York City and active until 1991.
The band comprised David Byrne (lead vocals and guitar), Chris Frantz (drums and backing vocals), Tina Weymouth (bass and backing vocals) and Jerry Harrison (keyboards, guitar, and backing vocals). Other musicians also regularly made appearances in concert and on the group's albums.
The new wave style of Talking Heads combined elements of punk rock, art rock, avant-garde, pop, funk, world music and Americana. Frontman and songwriter David Byrne contributed whimsical, esoteric lyrics to the band's songs and emphasized their showmanship through various multimedia projects and performances.
In 2002, the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Four of the band's albums appeared on Rolling Stone magazine's 2003 list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time and the Channel 4 100 Greatest Albums poll listed one album (Fear of Music) at number 76. On a 2011 update of Rolling Stone's "100 Greatest Artists of All Time", the band was ranked at No. 100.
The Jackson 5 (also spelled The Jackson Five, sometimes stylized The Jackson 5ive) were an American popular music family group from Gary, Indiana.
Founding group members Jackie Jackson, Tito Jackson, Jermaine Jackson, Marlon Jackson and Michael Jackson formed the group after performing in an early incarnation called The Jackson Brothers, which originally consisted of a trio of the three older brothers.
Active from 1964 to 1976, the Jackson 5 played from a repertoire of R&B, soul, pop and (in the 1970s) disco. During their six-and-a-half-year Motown tenure, The Jackson 5 was one of the biggest pop-music acts of the 1970s and the band served as the launching pad for the solo careers of their lead singers Jermaine and Michael, the latter brother later transforming his early Motown solo fame into greater success as an adult artist.
The Jackson 5/The Jacksons have sold 100 million records worldwide, making them one of the best-selling music artists of all time.
The Jackson 5 was one of few bands in recording history to have their first four major label singles ("I Want You Back", "ABC", "The Love You Save", and "I'll Be There") reach the top of the Billboard Hot 100.
Several later singles, among them "Mama's Pearl", "Never Can Say Goodbye" and "Dancing Machine", were Top 5 pop hits and number-one hits on the R&B singles chart. Most of the early hits were written and produced by a specialized songwriting team known as "The Corporation"; later Jackson 5 hits were crafted chiefly by Hal Davis.
Significantly, they were one of the first black teen idols to appeal equally to white audiences, thanks partially to the successful promotional relations skills of Motown Records CEO Berry Gordy.
Active: 1974–1982 & 1997–present
Blondie is an American rock band founded by singer Deborah Harry and guitarist Chris Stein.
The band was a pioneer in the early American new wave and punk scenes of the mid-1970s. Its first two albums contained strong elements of these genres, and although successful in the United Kingdom and Australia, Blondie was regarded as an underground band in the United States until the release of 'Parallel Lines' in 1978.
Over the next three years, the band achieved several hit singles including "Call Me", "Atomic" and "Heart of Glass" and became noted for its eclectic mix of musical styles incorporating elements of disco, pop, rap and reggae, while retaining a basic style as a new wave band.
Blondie broke up after the release of its sixth studio album 'The Hunter' in 1982. Deborah Harry continued to pursue a solo career with varied results after taking a few years off to care for partner Chris Stein, who was diagnosed with pemphigus, a rare autoimmune disease of the skin.
The band re-formed in 1997, achieving renewed success and a number one single in the United Kingdom with "Maria" in 1999, exactly 20 years after their 1st UK No1 single.
The group toured and performed throughout the world during the following years, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006.
Blondie has sold 40 million records worldwide and is still active today. Its ninth studio album, 'Panic of Girls', was released in 2011, with their tenth, 'Ghosts of Download', to be released in 2014.
Active: 1971 to present
Earth, Wind & Fire is an American band that has spanned the musical genres of R&B, soul, jazz, pop, rock, funk, disco, latin, african and gospel.
They are one of the most successful and critically acclaimed bands of the twentieth century. Also known as EWF, the band was founded in Chicago by Maurice White in 1969. Other members have included Philip Bailey, Verdine White, Ralph Johnson, Larry Dunn and Al McKay.
The band has received 20 Grammy nominations; they won six as a group and two of its members, Maurice White and Bailey, won separate individual awards. Earth, Wind & Fire have 12 American Music Awards nominations and four awards.
They have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame, received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and sold over 90 million albums worldwide.
Five members of Earth, Wind & Fire were also inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame: Maurice White, Philip Bailey, Verdine White, Larry Dunn and Al McKay.
The music industry and fans have bestowed Lifetime Achievement honors from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (Rhythm & Soul Heritage Award – 2002), NAACP (Hall of Fame – 1994) and the BET Awards (Lifetime Achievement Award – 2002).
Earth, Wind & Fire is known for the dynamic sound of their horn section, their energetic and elaborate stage shows, and the interplay between the contrasting vocals of Philip Bailey's falsetto and Maurice White's tenor. The kalimba (African thumb piano) is played on all of the band's albums.
In the 1970s and early 1980s, the band had many hits, including "Shining Star", "That's the Way of the World", "Devotion", "Reasons", "Sing a Song", "Can't Hide Love", "Getaway", "Fantasy", "Love's Holiday", "September", "Boogie Wonderland", "After the Love Has Gone", and "Let's Groove". Two Earth, Wind & Fire classic songs have been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame: "That’s the Way of the World" (2004) and "Shining Star" (2007).
The band is also known as having been the first African-American act to sell out Madison Square Garden and to receive the MSG Gold Ticket Award. President Barack Obama invited Earth, Wind & Fire to perform at the White House for the first social event of the new administration.
Active: 1965–1969, 1979–1980 & 1991 to present
The Lovin' Spoonful is an American rock band of the 1960s.
The band had its roots in the folk music scene based in the Greenwich Village section of lower Manhattan during the early 1960s. The original band members were guitarist-keyboard player-vocalist John Sebastian, guitarist Zal Yanovsky, drummer-vocalist Joe Butler and bassist Steve Boone.
Their hit songs include: "Do You Believe in Magic?", "Younger Girl", "You Didn't Have to Be So Nice", "Daydream", "Did You Ever Have to Make Up Your Mind?", "Summer in the City", "Rain on the Roof", "Six o'clock" and "Nashville Cats."
They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000.
The Supremes were an American female singing group and the premier act of Motown Records during the 1960s.
Founded as the Primettes in Detroit, Michigan, in 1959, the Supremes were the most commercially successful of Motown's acts and are, to date, America's most successful vocal group with 12 number one singles on the Billboard Hot 100.
Most of these hits were written and produced by Motown's main songwriting and production team, Holland–Dozier–Holland. At their peak in the mid-1960s, the Supremes rivaled the Beatles in worldwide popularity and their success made it possible for future African American R&B and soul musicians to find mainstream success.
Founding members Florence Ballard, Mary Wilson, Diana Ross and Betty McGlown, all from the Brewster-Douglass public housing project in Detroit, formed the Primettes as the sister act to the Primes (with Paul Williams and Eddie Kendricks, who went on to form the Temptations). Barbara Martin replaced McGlown in 1960 and the group signed with Motown the following year as the Supremes. Martin left the act in early 1962 and Ross, Ballard and Wilson carried on as a trio.
During the mid-1960s, the Supremes achieved mainstream success with Ross as lead singer. In 1967, Motown president Berry Gordy renamed the group Diana Ross & the Supremes and replaced Ballard with Cindy Birdsong.
Ross left to pursue a solo career in 1970 and was replaced by Jean Terrell, at which point the group's name reverted to the Supremes. After 1972, the lineup changed more frequently; Lynda Laurence, Scherrie Payne
and Susaye Greene all became members of the group during the mid-1970s. The Supremes disbanded in 1977 after an 18-year run.
Active: 1974 to present
Heart is an American rock band which first found success in Canada and later in the United States and worldwide.
Over the group's four-decade history, the band has had three primary lineups, with the constant center of the group since 1974 being sisters lead singer Ann Wilson and guitarist Nancy Wilson.
Heart rose to fame in the mid-1970s with music influenced by hard rock and heavy metal as well as folk music. Their popularity declined in the early 1980s, but the band enjoyed a comeback starting in 1985 and experienced even greater success with album oriented rock (AOR) hits and hard rock ballads into the 1990s.
With Jupiter's Darling (2004), Red Velvet Car (2010), and Fanatic (2012), Heart made a return to their hard rock and acoustic folk roots.
To date, Heart has sold over 35 million records worldwide, including over 22 million in album sales in the U.S. The group was ranked number 57 on VH1's "100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock". With Top 10 albums on the Billboard Album Chart in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and 2010s, Heart is among the most commercially enduring hard rock bands in history.
They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013.
Active: 1969-1977 & reunion 1996
Bread was a rock band from Los Angeles, California. They placed 13 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 chart between 1970 and 1977 and were a prime example of what later was labeled soft rock.
The band consisted of David Gates (vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards, violin, viola, percussion), Jimmy Griffin (vocals, guitar, keyboards, percussion), Robb Royer (bass, guitar, flute, keyboards, percussion, recorder, backing vocals), Mike Botts (drums; joined in the summer of 1969) and Larry Knechtel (bass, guitar, keyboards, harmonica; replaced Royer in 1971).
Their hit songs include: 'Baby I'm-a Want You', 'Dear Diary', 'Guitar Man', 'Everything I Own', 'If', 'Make It With You', 'Aubrey', 'Lost Without Your Love', 'It Don't Matter To Me' and 'Sweet Surrender'.
Active: 1960 to present
The Four Seasons are an American rock and pop band who became internationally successful in the mid-1960s.
Since 1970, they have also been known at times as Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.
In 1960, the group known as the Four Lovers evolved into the Four Seasons, with Frankie Valli as the lead singer, Bob Gaudio on keyboards and tenor vocals, Tommy DeVito on lead guitar and baritone vocals and Nick Massi on bass guitar and bass vocals.
The Vocal Group Hall of Fame has stated that the group was the most popular rock band before the Beatles.
The Four Seasons (group members 1960–1966) were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990, and joined the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1999.
They are one of the best-selling musical groups of all time, having sold an estimated 100 million records worldwide.
Active: 1971 to present
The Steve Miller Band is an American rock band formed in 1967 in San Francisco, California.
The band is managed by Steve Miller on guitar and lead vocals, and is best known today for a string of (mainly) mid-1970s hit singles that are staples of classic rock radio, as well as several earlier acid rock albums.
The current band members are: Steve Miller, Steve Miller, Kenny Lee Lewis, Gordy Knudtson, Joseph Wooten, Sonny Charles and Jacob Petersen
Active: 1964–1973, 1989–1991 & 2000
The Byrds were an American rock band, formed in Los Angeles, California in 1964.
The band underwent multiple line-up changes throughout its existence, with frontman Roger McGuinn, a.k.a. Jim McGuinn, remaining the sole consistent member, until the group disbanded in 1973.
Although they only managed to attain the huge commercial success of contemporaries like The Beatles, The Beach Boys and The Rolling Stones for a short period (1965–66), The Byrds are today considered by critics to be one of the most influential bands of the 1960s.
Initially, they pioneered the musical genre of folk rock, melding the influence of The Beatles and other British Invasion bands with contemporary and traditional folk music. As the 1960s progressed, the band was also influential in originating psychedelic rock, raga rock and country rock.
The band's signature blend of clear harmony singing and McGuinn's jangly twelve-string Rickenbacker guitar has continued to be influential on popular music up to the present day.
Among the band's most enduring songs are their cover versions of Bob Dylan's "Mr. Tambourine Man" and Pete Seeger's "Turn! Turn! Turn! (to Everything There Is a Season)", along with the self-penned originals, "I'll Feel a Whole Lot Better", "Eight Miles High", "So You Want to Be a Rock 'n' Roll Star", "Ballad of Easy Rider" and "Chestnut Mare".
The original five-piece line-up of The Byrds consisted of: Jim McGuinn (lead guitar, vocals), Gene Clark (tambourine, vocals), David Crosby (rhythm guitar, vocals), Chris Hillman (bass guitar, vocals) and Michael Clarke (drums).
Several former members of the band went on to successful careers of their own, either as solo artists or as members of such groups as Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, The Flying Burrito Brothers and The Desert Rose Band.
In the late 1980s, Gene Clark and Michael Clarke both began touring as The Byrds, prompting a legal challenge from McGuinn, Crosby, and Hillman over the rights to the band's name. As a result of this, McGuinn, Crosby, and Hillman performed a series of reunion concerts as The Byrds in 1989 and 1990, and also recorded four new Byrds' songs.
In January 1991, The Byrds were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, an occasion that saw the five original members performing together for the last time. McGuinn, Crosby and Hillman still remain active but Gene Clark died of a heart attack in 1991 and Michael Clarke died of liver failure in 1993.
1953 to present
The Drifters are a long-lasting American doo-wop and R&B/soul vocal group. They were originally formed to serve as a backing group for Clyde McPhatter (of Billy Ward & the Dominoes) in 1953.
According to Rolling Stone magazine, the Drifters were the least stable of the great vocal groups, as they were low-paid musicians hired by George Treadwell, who owned the Drifters name. There have been 60 vocalists in the history of the Treadwell Drifters line, including: Clyde McPhatter, Bill Pinkney, Ben E. King, Johnny Moore, Doc Green and Bobby Hendricks.
There are two notable versions of the Drifters. The first classic Drifters, formed by Clyde McPhatter, was inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame as "The Drifters" or "The Original Drifters". The second Drifters, featuring Ben E. King, was separately inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame as "Ben E. King and the Drifters". In their induction, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame selected four members from the classic Drifters, two from the second Drifters, and one from the post-Treadwell Drifters.
The Drifters managed to give the public 13 Billboard Hot 100 top 30 chart hits, including: 'Up On The Roof', 'Save The Last Dance For Me', 'Under The Boardwalk', 'Saturday Night at the Movies', 'On Broadway', 'Like Sister & Brother', 'Kissing in the Back Row of the Movies', 'There Goes My First Love' and 'You're More Than a Number in My Little Red Book'.
Active: 1981–1989 & 1999–present
The Bangles are an American band that originated in the early 1980s, scoring several hit singles during the decade.
The original band members were Susanna Hoffs (vocals/guitars), Annette Zilinskas (vocals/bass) and sisters Debbi Peterson (vocals/drums) and Vicki Peterson (guitars/vocals).
The band's hits include "Walk Like an Egyptian", "Manic Monday", "Hazy Shade of Winter" and the 1989 number-one single "Eternal Flame".
Formed in 1974, the group consisted of vocalist and songwriter Patti Smith, guitarist, bassist and rock archivist Lenny Kaye, Ivan Kral on guitar and bass, Jay Dee Daugherty on drums and Richard Sohl on piano.
The Patti Smith Group was signed by Clive Davis of Arista Records, and in 1975 recorded their first album, 'Horses', produced by John Cale. The album fused punk rock and spoken poetry and begins with a cover of Van Morrison's "Gloria".
As the popularity of punk rock grew, Patti Smith Group toured the United States and Europe. The rawer sound of the group's second album, 'Radio Ethiopia', reflected this.
Patti Smith Group produced two further albums before the end of the 1970s. 'Easter' (1978) was her most commercially successful record, containing the single "Because the Night" co-written with Bruce Springsteen. 'Wave' (1979) was less successful, although the songs "Frederick" and "Dancing Barefoot" both received commercial airplay.
Reunions: 1986–1989, 1993–1997, 2001–2002 & 2010 to present
The Monkees are an American-British pop/rock band that released music in their original incarnation between 1966 and 1970, with subsequent reunion albums and tours in the decades that followed.
Formed in Los Angeles in 1965 by Robert "Bob" Rafelson and Bert Schneider for the American television series The Monkees, which aired from 1966–1968, the musical acting quartet was composed of Americans Micky Dolenz, Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork and Englishman Davy Jones.
For the first few months of their almost five-year initial career, the four actor-musicians were allowed only limited roles in the recording studio. Nonetheless, Nesmith did compose and produce some songs from the beginning, and Peter Tork contributed limited guitar work on the Nesmith-produced sessions. They soon fought for and earned the right to collectively supervise all musical output under the band's name. Although the sitcom was canceled in 1968, the band continued to record music through 1971.
In 1986, the television show experienced a revival, which led to a series of reunion tours and new records. Up until 2011, the group has reunited and toured several times, to varying degrees of success. Despite the sudden death of Davy Jones in February 2012, the surviving members reunited for a tour in November–December 2012 and again in 2013 for a 24-date tour.
The Monkees had international hits, including "Last Train to Clarksville", "Pleasant Valley Sunday" and "Daydream Believer". At their peak in 1967, the band outsold both the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. As of 2012, their albums and singles have sold over 65 million copies worldwide.
Active: 1970 to present
Daryl Hall and John Oates, known more commonly as Hall & Oates, is an American musical duo from Philadelphia.
Daryl Hall is the lead vocalist and multi-instrumentalist and John Oates plays electric guitar and provides backing vocals. The two also write most of the songs they perform, either separately or in collaboration.
They achieved their greatest fame from the late 1970s to the mid-1980s with a fusion of rock and roll and rhythm and blues. While much of their reputation is due to the sustained pop-chart run in the 1980s, they continue to record and tour, and remain respected by various artists for their ability to cross stylistic boundaries.
They are best known for their six No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100: "Rich Girl", "Kiss on My List", "Private Eyes", "I Can't Go for That (No Can Do)", "Maneater", and "Out of Touch", as well as many other songs which charted in the Top 40.
In total, they had 34 chart hits on the US Billboard Hot 100, seven RIAA platinum albums, and six RIAA gold albums. Because of that chart success, Billboard magazine named them the most successful duo of the rock era, surpassing The Everly Brothers.
In 2003, Hall and Oates were inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Billboard magazine had Hall & Oates at No. 15 on their list of the 100 greatest artists of all time and the No. 1 duo, while VH1 placed the duo as No. 99 on their list of the 100 greatest artists of all time. They will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April of 2014.
Active: 1957–73 & 1983–2014
The Everly Brothers were American country-influenced rock and roll singers, known for steel-string guitar playing and close harmony singing.
The duo, consisting of Isaac Donald "Don" Everly (born February 1, 1937) and Phillip "Phil" Everly (January 19, 1939 – January 3, 2014), were elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986 and the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2001.
Active: 1995 to present
The Black Eyed Peas are an American hip hop group, consisting of rappers will.i.am, apl.de.ap, Taboo and singer Fergie.
Originally an alternative hip hop group, they subsequently added R&B, pop and EDM/dance influences. Although the group was founded in Los Angeles in 1995, it was not until the release of their third album Elephunk in 2003 that they found widespread acclaim and achieved high record sales. Since that time, the group has sold an estimated 56 million records worldwide. According to Nielsen SoundScan, the Black Eyed Peas were the second-best-selling artist/group of all time for downloaded tracks, with over 42 million sales as of the end of 2011.
Their first major hit was the 2003 single "Where Is the Love?" from Elephunk, which topped the charts in 13 countries, including the United Kingdom, where it spent seven weeks at number one and went on to become Britain's biggest selling single of 2003. Another European hit single from the album was "Shut Up". Their fourth album, Monkey Business, was an even bigger worldwide success, certified 4× Platinum in the U.S., and spawning four singles, "Don't Phunk with My Heart", "Don't Lie", "My Humps" and "Pump It".
In 2009, the group became one of only 11 artists to have simultaneously held the No. 1 and No. 2 spots on the Billboard Hot 100, with their singles "Boom Boom Pow" and "I Gotta Feeling", which topped the chart for an unprecedented 26 consecutive weeks. This album The E.N.D. later produced a third Hot 100 number-one placement with "Imma Be", making the group one of few to ever place three number one singles on the chart from the same album, before being followed with "Rock That Body" and "Meet Me Halfway", which peaked in the Top 10 of the Hot 100. "I Gotta Feeling" became the first single to sell more than one million downloads in the United Kingdom.
The Black Eyed Peas were ranked 12th on Billboard's Decade-End Chart Artist of the Decade, and 7th in the Hot 100 Artists of the Decade. At the 52nd Grammy Awards ceremony, held in January 2010, they won three awards out of six nominations. In November 2010, they released the album The Beginning. In February 2011, the group performed at the Super Bowl XLV halftime show. The album's first two singles, "The Time (Dirty Bit)" and "Just Can't Get Enough", became international hits and topped the charts in many countries. The single "Don't Stop the Party" became an international hit too.
Active: 1968–1970, 1973, 1974 & 1977 to present
Crosby, Stills & Nash (CSN) is a folk rock supergroup made up of David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Graham Nash.
They are noted for their intricate vocal harmonies, often tumultuous interpersonal relationships, political activism and lasting influence on American music and culture.
All three members of CSN have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice.
Active: 1968 to present
The Commodores is an American funk/soul band, which was at its peak in the 1970s. The members of the group met as mostly freshmen at Tuskegee Institute (now Tuskegee University) in 1968, and signed with Motown in November 1972, having first caught the public eye opening for The Jackson 5 while on tour.
The group's most successful period was in the late 1970s and early 1980s when Lionel Richie was lead singer and songwriter. The band's biggest hit singles are ballads such as "Easy", "Three Times a Lady" and "Nightshift", and the funky, driven dance-floor hits which include "Brick House", "Fancy Dancer", "Lady (You Bring Me Up)" and "Too Hot ta Trot".
The current band members are Walter Orange, William King and J.D. Nicholas.
Active: 2001 to present
Scissor Sisters are an American pop group formed in 2001. Its members include Jake Shears and Ana Matronic as vocalists, Babydaddy as multi-instrumentalist, Del Marquis as lead guitar/bassist and Randy Real as drummer (who replaced Paddy Boom).
Scissor Sisters have incorporated diverse and innovative styles in their music, but tend to sway towards pop rock, glam rock, nu-disco and electroclash.
The band came to prominence following the release of their Grammy-nominated and chart-topping disco version of "Comfortably Numb" and subsequent debut album Scissor Sisters (2004). The album was a success, particularly in the UK (a country they call their "spiritual home") where it reached number one, was the best-selling album of 2004, was later certified platinum by the BPI, and accrued them three BRIT Awards in 2005. All five of its singles reached positions within the top 20 of the UK Singles Chart while "Filthy/Gorgeous" scored the band their first number one on Billboard's Hot Dance Club Songs, despite the album's mere success in their native US.
The album continued its success in countries around Europe, in Australia and in Canada before the release of the band's second studio album Ta-Dah (2006), their second consecutive UK number one album which produced their first UK number one single "I Don't Feel Like Dancin'". Their third studio album Night Work (2010) displayed a shift towards a more club-oriented sound, charting at number two on the UK Albums Chart, number one on Billboard's Top Independent Albums chart and in the top 10 of several international territories. The band released their fourth studio album Magic Hour in May 2012.
Scissor Sisters have performed around the world and have become well-recognized for their controversial and transgressive live performances.
Active: 1972 to present
Styxis an American rock band from Chicago that became famous for its albums from the mid-1970s and early 1980s.
They are best known for melding the style of prog-rock with the power of hard-rock guitar, strong ballads and elements of international musical theater.
The original band members were Chuck Panozzo, John Panozzo, John Curulewski, James "J.Y." Young and Dennis DeYoung.
Styx is best-known for the hit songs "Lady" (#6, 1973), "Come Sail Away" (#8, 1977), "Babe" (#1, 1979), "The Best of Times" (#3, 1981), "Too Much Time on My Hands" (#9, 1981) and "Mr. Roboto" (#3, 1983). Other hits include "Show Me the Way" (#3, 1990), "Don't Let It End" (#6, 1983), "Renegade" (#16, 1978) and "Boat on the River", a big hit in much of Europe. The band has four consecutive albums certified multi-platinum by the RIAA, as well as sixteen top 40 singles in the US.
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