music The Best British Rock Bands/Artists

79k votes 5.6k voters 116k views 369 items Embed

List Rules Only rock musicians who are originally from/formed their band/started their careers in the UK.

Of all the important rock bands to grace the stage, British bands are considered by many to be the most important and most influential. Though they weren't first, the best British rock bands planted their mark in the 1960s with catchy melodies, delicious hooks and music that influenced multiple generations of bands and music fans. Not to be outdone, every decade thereafter, famous British bands were mostly ahead of their contemporaries across the globe, bringing all variations of rock music to the masses. The most successful English bands remain staples on rock radio, and though some are old and over the hill, they manage to tour to arenas and stadiums all over the world. 

Though it's certainly a difficult question to ask, this list tries to decide who are the best British rock bands. There are plenty of amazing British bands to pick from, with names like the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Who, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, The Clash, Oasis, Blur, and Queen, just to name some of the most famous ones. The thing that the best British rock bands have in common is that they're known all over the world for widely influencing a musical genre, and in some cases, creating their own musical genre. However, it's up to you to determine which of these top British rock bands is that best.

Ultimately, the choice for best British bands is not an easy one - but you can vote for multiple stars on the list. If for some reason a British band isn't on this list, please add them. Vote or re-rank this list of British bands to how you deem fit. This list answers the questions "who are the best British rock bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest British rock musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular British rock bands that you might've heard of.

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The Beatles is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Beatles Pop music, Rock music, Pop rock

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The Who is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Who Popular music, Pop music, Rock music

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Queen is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Queen Pop music, Rock music, Heavy metal

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Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Led Zeppelin Blues-rock, Classic rock, Rock music

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The Rolling Stones is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Rolling Stones Blues-rock, Rock music, Protopunk

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Pink Floyd is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Pink Floyd Rock music, Space rock, Experimental rock

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David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
David Bowie Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music

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The Kinks is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Kinks Music hall, Pop music, Rock music

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Black Sabbath is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Black Sabbath Doom metal, Blues-rock, Power metal

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The Police is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Police New Wave, 2 Tone, Ska punk

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John Lennon is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
John Lennon Blues-rock, Pop music, Rock music

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The Clash is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Clash Hip hop music, Pop punk, New Wave

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The Arcana is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Arcana Rock music, Pop music, Baroque pop/rock

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Deep Purple is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Deep Purple Blues-rock, Classic rock, Heavy metal

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Eric Clapton is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Eric Clapton Blues-rock, Rock music, Reggae

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Genesis is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Genesis Rock music, Pop rock, Soft rock

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Elton John is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Elton John Pop music, Rock music, Piano rock

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Cream is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Cream Blues-rock, Classic rock, Rock music

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Oasis is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Oasis Rock music, Britpop, Alternative rock

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The Jimi Hendrix Experience is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Jimi Hendrix Experience Blues-rock, Psychedelic soul, Rock music

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Eric Burdon & the Animals is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Eric Burdon & the Animals Blues-rock, Rock music, British blues

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The Smiths is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Smiths Jangle pop, Indie pop, Alternative rock

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Sex Pistols is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Sex Pistols Rock music, Anarcho-punk, Punk rock

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Radiohead is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Radiohead Rock music, Electronic music, New Prog

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Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Paul McCartney Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

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Iron Maiden is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Iron Maiden New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Heavy metal, Hard rock

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The Yardbirds is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Yardbirds British Invasion, Blues-rock, Rock music

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Jethro Tull is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Jethro Tull Blues-rock, Rock music, Electronic music

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The Cure is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Cure New Wave, Gothic rock, Rock music

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Electric Light Orchestra is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Electric Light Orchestra Synthpop, Pop music, Rock music

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Dire Straits is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Dire Straits Celtic rock, Blues-rock, Rock music

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Judas Priest is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Judas Priest New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Thrash metal, Power metal

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Bee Gees is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Bee Gees Adult contemporary music, Blue-eyed soul, Disco

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George Harrison is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
George Harrison Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

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Yes is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Yes Rock music, Experimental rock, Pop rock

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The Moody Blues is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Moody Blues Synthpop, Rock music, Acoustic music

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Def Leppard is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Def Leppard Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

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Coldplay is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Coldplay Rock music, Piano rock, Post-Britpop

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Depeche Mode is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Depeche Mode Synthpop, New Wave, Electronic music

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Blur is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Blur Indie pop, Shoegazing, Pop music

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Elvis Costello is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Elvis Costello New Wave, Rock music, Pub rock

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Ozzy Osbourne is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Ozzy Osbourne Doom metal, Glam metal, Blues-rock

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The Small Faces is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Small Faces British Invasion, Classic rock, Pop music

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Motörhead is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Motörhead New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Thrash metal, Rock music

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Van Morrison is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Van Morrison Skiffle, Blue-eyed soul, Pop music

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The Jam is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Jam Pop punk, New Wave, Rock music

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Wings is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Wings Pop music, Rock music, Pop rock

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Bad Company is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Bad Company Blues-rock, Hard rock

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Madness is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Madness New Wave, 2 Tone, Pop music

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T. Rex is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
T. Rex Psychedelic folk, Rock music, Folk rock