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Greatest American Band of All Time?

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Greatest American Band of All Time?

Old 05-27-05, 10:03 AM
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Greatest American Band of All Time?

I know, I know. I hate these threads too. The "Name Your Favorite" album threads, the "List your Top 10 Zydeco Mixtapes" et. al. but I think this is an interesting question.

When you ask "Who is the greatest band of all time?" you're going to get a lot of responses with British bands (Rolling Stones, The Who, The Beatles, The Clash, Led Zeppelin).

When you ask "Who is the greatest American artist of all time?" you're going to have a nice long big discussion regarding Elvis vs. Sinatra vs. Bing Crosby etc.

So, in your best imitation of a rock critic, who would you classify as the greatest American band? We're talking both technical skill, popularity, historical importance, influence, artistic development & relevancy, longevity, etc. etc. Don't name anyone of the past five years... please.

This is not a vote for your favorite American band, but what you objectively think is the "greatest" -- not just for you, but for others. (I recall the person who, when asked, named Jimmy Buffet's backing band).

So who is it? Beach Boys? The Doors? Metallica? Nirvana?
Old 05-27-05, 11:14 AM
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I'll vote for REM (at least until they lost their drummer, Bill Berry). They were not only one of the best bands of the 80's & 90's (just behind U2, IMO), they were instumental in taking "Alternative" music and making it mainstream.
Old 05-27-05, 11:16 AM
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Without a doubt, Billy Ray Fuckin Cyrus.

Achey this whores.
Old 05-27-05, 11:18 AM
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Ramones
Old 05-27-05, 11:19 AM
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Velvet Underground

Last edited by Talkin2Phil; 05-27-05 at 11:23 AM.
Old 05-27-05, 11:35 AM
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Van Halen
Old 05-27-05, 11:37 AM
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all the ones listed above would probably tie for first for me (w/exception of billy ray cyrus). too many great bands from the US. no point in picking just one.....
Old 05-27-05, 12:06 PM
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I don't know. It is a good question. Beach Boys is a good one. How about the Boss himself, Bruce Springsteen? Mellencamp? Tom Petty? Skynyrd? Billy Joel?
Old 05-27-05, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Michael Corvin
I don't know. It is a good question. Beach Boys is a good one. How about the Boss himself, Bruce Springsteen? Mellencamp? Tom Petty? Skynyrd? Billy Joel?
Even though there's an E Street band, it was really about Bruce. Skynyrd would be the only ones to qualify.

For some ungodly reason I completely forgot about VU being American.
Old 05-27-05, 12:35 PM
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Do the members need to be American born or just residents at the time the band was formed? The Van Halen brothers were born in the Netherlands.

Last edited by GuessWho; 05-27-05 at 12:44 PM.
Old 05-27-05, 12:39 PM
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well, Beach Boys are technically Brian Wilson then (unless you ask Mike Love), if Bruce is considered more of a solo artist
Old 05-27-05, 12:55 PM
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My 2 guilty pleasures... Ramones and Cheap Trick.

One that I do not see is The Eagles. Not a favorite of mine but should be up there.

Beach Boys, VH were also great.
Old 05-27-05, 01:41 PM
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Beach Boys
Velvet Underground
Grateful Dead
Nirvana
Old 05-27-05, 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Decker
I'll vote for REM (at least until they lost their drummer, Bill Berry). They were not only one of the best bands of the 80's & 90's (just behind U2, IMO), they were instumental in taking "Alternative" music and making it mainstream.
I'll go with REM as my favorite American band of all time. Up until New Adventures in Hi FI that is. To me they mixed the rootsy music of CCR with the experimentation of the Velvet Underground. Up until REM, Southern rock was Lynard Skynard and the Allmans Brothers. But boy when they fell, they fell hard.
Old 05-27-05, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by cungar
I'll go with REM as my favorite American band of all time. Up until New Adventures in Hi FI that is. To me they mixed the rootsy music of CCR with the experimentation of the Velvet Underground. Up until REM, Southern rock was Lynard Skynard and the Allmans Brothers. But boy when they fell, they fell hard.
No kidding they fell hard. Woah. I agree with your R.E.M. assessment even though I listed Ramones and will stick with 'em. You got me thinking about southern rock and what other good bands fall in that category pre-R.E.M.
I've never once thought of Big Star as southern rock, but I'd think Memphis is about as southern as you can get. And Big Star is a monster of a good band.
Old 05-27-05, 02:49 PM
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Morris Day and the Time, of course
Old 05-27-05, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by GuessWho
Do the members need to be American born or just residents at the time the band was formed? The Van Halen brothers were born in the Netherlands.
Everyone knows Roth was Van Halen.
Old 05-27-05, 03:33 PM
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Kiss, VU, Ramones, Nirvana, Beastie Boys, early Metallica.
Old 05-27-05, 04:54 PM
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Yo La Tengo.
Old 05-27-05, 05:24 PM
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Best bands by decade:
60's: Velvet Underground
70's: Television
80's: Sonic Youth
90's: Pavement
present: Wilco
Old 05-27-05, 05:31 PM
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Blondie(with Deborah Harry)
Old 05-27-05, 05:34 PM
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Funkadelic
Old 05-27-05, 08:13 PM
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Why the Good 'Ol Grateful Dead of course.
Old 05-27-05, 08:47 PM
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Guns N' Roses (on the strength of Appetite alone).
The Doors
VU
Old 05-27-05, 09:17 PM
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Guns n' Roses are my personal favorite. They bridged the gap between 80s pop-metal and 90s grunge and just flat out kicked ass in their prime. They weren't ***** "let's party!!" fluff rock but they weren't shoegazing "i wanna die..my life is miserable" doom and gloom sludge either. What I wouldn't pay to see the Appetite lineup onstage again, having put all their stubborn shit "creative differences" aside and really wanting to be there. Velvet Revolver just isn't a very good substitute.

The Beach Boys, CCR, The Doors, Aerosmith, VH, Metallica, Nirvana, AIC, Blondie, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Allman Brothers, R.E.M, and The Ramones are also amazing American bands well-deserving of long legacies. Nice to see Big Star get some love. I'd add another personal fave, The Talking Heads. "How did I get here?"

Last edited by gnradd21; 05-27-05 at 09:20 PM.

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