The Best Folk Bands/Artists Bands/Musicians

The Best Folk Bands/Artists

3.8k votes 177 voters 40k views 275 items tags f p @
Folk music is one of the most renowned genres of music in the world. Every country has its own version and derivative of the genre, which is broad in its appeal. But what makes the best folk singers and folk music artists resonate with listeners. The message reflected in folk music artist's songs is originally supposed to come from folklore, hence the name, but as of late, folk songs have retained a more populist message, with the genre's mainstream pinnacle coming in the 1960s. Usually, folk singers and folk bands play acoustic instruments.

So, who are the best folk music artists and best folk singers? That's not an easy question to answer. But if you're a fan of folk music, you'll know that artists like Woody Guthrie, Joan Baez, Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell deserve to be at or near the top of this list of folk music bands. This list should include all folk music bands, including the most popular folk musicians and folk singers, and if you notice this isn't the case, feel free to add them to this list. All of the best folk music artists need to be accounted for, and the goal of this list of folk music bands is to do exactly that.

That said it's up to you to decide who are the best folk music artists and best folk singers. This list answers the questions "who are the best folk music bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest folk music 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 folk music bands that you might've heard of. (275 items)
List Photo: Freebase/Public domain
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  1. 1
    + 37
    - 7
    Bob Dylan is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    added by jerrycstanaway
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

  2. 2
    + 39
    - 11
    Joni Mitchell is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Pop music, Folk music, Folk jazz

  3. 3
    + 38
    - 14

    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

    ;
  4. 4
    + 36
    - 16
    Joan Baez is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Americana, Pop music, Rock music

  5. 5
    + 26
    - 8
    Leonard Cohen is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Synthpop, Pop music, Spoken word

  6. 6
    + 32
    - 14

    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

    ;
  7. 7
    + 20
    - 5
    Woody Guthrie is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Folk music, Country

  8. 8
    + 32
    - 16

    Western music, Pop music, Traditional music

    ;
  9. 9
    + 6
    - 0

    added by chip-chop
    Electric folk, Folk jazz, Folk rock

    ;
  10. 10
    + 6
    - 0
    James Taylor is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    added by chip-chop
    Blues-rock, Disco, Pop music

  11. 11
    + 20
    - 9
    Tanita Tikaram is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Pop music, Folk music

  12. 12
    + 15
    - 5
    Loudon Wainwright III is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Rock music, Folk music, Blues

  13. 13
    + 19
    - 9
    Linda Ronstadt is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    New Wave, Rock music, Latin American music

  14. 14
    + 16
    - 7

    Folk music, Indie folk, Indie rock

    ;
  15. 15
    + 16
    - 7

    Rock music, Folk music, Psychedelic rock

    ;
  16. 16
    + 17
    - 8
    John Sebastian is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

  17. 17
    + 14
    - 6
    Janis Ian is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Adult contemporary music, Folk music

  18. 18
    + 19
    - 11
    Jewel is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Adult contemporary music, Pop music, Traditional music

  19. 19
    + 21
    - 13

    Folk music, Progressive bluegrass, Country

    ;
  20. 20
    + 8
    - 1

    added by chip-chop
    British Invasion, Psychedelic folk, Psychedelic pop

    ;
  21. 21
    + 13
    - 6

    Folk music, Bluegrass, Country

    ;
  22. 22
    + 14
    - 7

    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

    ;
  23. 23
    + 14
    - 7

    Rock music, Folk music, Traditional pop music

    ;
  24. 24
    + 15
    - 8

    Folk music, Folk music of Ireland

    ;
  25. 25
    + 15
    - 8

    Outlaw country, Rock music, Folk music

    ;
  26. 26
    + 15
    - 8

    Folk music, Folk music of Ireland, Celtic music

    ;
  27. 27
    + 15
    - 8

    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

    ;
  28. 28
    + 16
    - 9

    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

    ;
  29. 29
    + 16
    - 9

    Pop music, Trip hop, Folk music

    ;
  30. 30
    + 16
    - 9

    Americana, Heartland rock, Rock music

    ;
  31. 31
    + 17
    - 10
    Joanna Newsom is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Folk music, Folk, Experimental music

  32. 32
    + 21
    - 14
    Dixie Chicks is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Country pop, Pop music, Rock music

  33. 33
    + 11
    - 5

    Folk music, Acoustic music

    ;
  34. 34
    + 11
    - 5

    Pop music, Folk music, Alternative country

    ;
  35. 35
    + 11
    - 5

    Americana, Chicano rock, Heartland rock

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  36. 36
    + 11
    - 5

    Folk music, Alternative rock, Jam band

    ;
  37. 37
    + 13
    - 7

    Folk music, Electric folk, Folk rock

    ;
  38. 38
    + 13
    - 7
    No image

    Pop music, Folk music

  39. 39
    + 9
    - 4
    India.Arie is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Pop music, Neo soul, Folk music

  40. 40
    + 9
    - 4

    Folk music

    ;
  41. 41
    + 9
    - 4
    Julie Felix is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Folk music, Folk rock

  42. 42
    + 11
    - 6

    Americana, Folk music, Piedmont blues

    ;
  43. 43
    + 10
    - 5

    Americana, Indie, Pop music

    ;
  44. 44
    + 7
    - 2

    Rock music, Folk music, Folk rock

    ;
  45. 45
    + 11
    - 6

    Rock music, Folk music, Country

    ;
  46. 46
    + 6
    - 1

    added by chip-chop
    Rock music, Rhythm and blues, Rock and roll

    ;
  47. 47
    + 12
    - 7

    Rock music, Folk music, Country rock

    ;
  48. 48
    + 22
    - 17
    Sinéad O'Connor is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

  49. 49
    + 9
    - 4
    Buffy Sainte-Marie is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Folk Bands/Artists

    Rock music, Folk music, Electronic music

  50. 50
    + 10
    - 5

    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

    ;
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