The Best Indie Folk Bands & Artists Bands/Musicians

The Best Indie Folk Bands & Artists

18k votes 3.5k voters 599k views 197 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Vote up and add all of your favorite indie and folk bands out there.

For years, folk music was not popular. However, during the 2000s, the subgenre indie folk began gradually build a captive audience among music listeners. Armed with an acoustic guitar and poignant lyrics, indie folk bands seemed to rise in tandem with American hipsters' love of beards and artisan goods. Indie folk music started to show up on college radio before ultimately exploding around the 2010s with groups like Fleet Foxes and Bon Iver going on to become national phenomenons. Since then, these groups have managed to sell out theaters, arenas and even amphitheatres on the strength of music that would have been dismissed as too niche as recently as 10 years prior. 

So, that begs the question, who are the best indie folk bands? Well, there's no easy answer to that. For starters, if you want to measure indie folk artists based solely on popularity, then London's Mumford & Sons has to be near the top of your list. Their second record, Babel, won multiple Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year back in 2013. The same goes for famous folk singer Bon Iver, who took home a Grammy for Best New Artist in 2012. However, Iceland's Of Monsters and Men,  Los Angeles' Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and female folk singer Feist would argue that the strength of their extremely catchy songs and the constant radio play would land them as some of the best indie folk artists.

This list should include every famous indie folk band. If you notice a particular artist is missing, then feel free to add them. The point of this list should be to answer the questions "who are the best indie folk bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest indie folk musician ever?" There's no right or wrong answer, but ultimately, these good indie folk artists' fate is in your hands so choose wisely! 
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  • 19 ReRanks
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  1. 1
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    most listed
    Indie pop, Folk music, Folk rock

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  2. 2
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    added by JacksonMay
    Indie pop, Ska, Folk rock

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  3. 3
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    the people's #1
    Indie, Neo soul, Folk music

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  4. 4
    + 537
    - 130


    Folk music, Folk rock, Indie folk

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  5. 5
    + 411
    - 71

    added by lolaschaefer12
    Americana, Folk rock, Alternative rock

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  6. 6
    + 336
    - 78

    added by JacksonMay
    Indie pop, Folk rock, Indie folk

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  7. 7
    + 392
    - 119


    Americana, Folk music, Folk rock

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  8. 8
    + 468
    - 122


    Country pop, Folk rock, Neo-psychedelia

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  9. 9
    + 300
    - 69

    added by amicalirobinson
    Indie, Rock music, Folk music

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  10. 10
    + 289
    - 84


    Christian music, Alternative country, Baroque pop

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  11. 11
    + 413
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    /Passenger is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Indie Folk Bands & Artists


    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

  12. 12
    + 308
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    Indie pop, Rock music, Folk rock

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  13. 13
    + 203
    - 88

    often listed & added by lolaschaefer12
    Psychedelic folk, Experimental music, Alternative rock

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  14. 14
    + 205
    - 53

    added by JacksonMay
    Folk music

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  15. 15
    + 165
    - 47

    ranked high on reranks & added by CamEisen

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  16. 16
    + 295
    - 83

    ranked low on reranks
    Folk rock, Pop rock, Bluegrass

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  17. 17
    + 257
    - 80


    Indie pop, Folk music, Emo

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  18. 18
    + 282
    - 76

    added by selin
    Alternative rock, indie folk

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  19. 19
    + 288
    - 67

    ranked low on reranks
    Folk music, Indie folk, Indie rock

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  20. 20
    + 230
    - 105

    often listed & added by lolaschaefer12
    Indie pop, Soul music, Blues

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  21. 21
    + 237
    - 46

    ranked low on reranks & added by lolaschaefer12

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  22. 22
    + 201
    - 68

    added by selin
    Folk music, Folk rock, Indie rock

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  23. 23
    + 184
    - 104

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Indie pop, Indie folk

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  24. 24
    + 260
    - 68

    ranked low on reranks & added by IgnatiusRadityoW
    Indie, Folk music, Acoustic music

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  25. 25
    + 197
    - 119

    added by lolaschaefer12
    Trip hop, Dance-punk, Garage rock

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  26. 26
    + 271
    - 94

    ranked low on reranks
    Pop music, Folk music, World music

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  27. 27
    + 162
    - 84


    Indie pop, Anti-folk, Folk music

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  28. 28
    + 43
    - 7
    Adam Torres is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Indie Folk Bands & Artists

    added by dreamingtree
    Indie Folk, Indie Rock, Chamber Folk

  29. 29
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    - 76


    Indie pop, Folk rock, Electronic dance music

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  30. 30
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    Indie pop, Emo, Folk rock

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  31. 31
    + 146
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    City and Colour is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Indie Folk Bands & Artists

    added by CamEisen

  32. 32
    + 105
    - 64


    Alternative rock, Indie folk, Indie rock

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  33. 33
    + 70
    - 29

    added by CamEisen

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  34. 34
    + 102
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    Indie pop, Pop music, Rock music

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  35. 35
    + 104
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    Folk music, Post-rock, Indie folk

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  36. 36
    + 71
    - 36

    added by lolaschaefer12
    Indie pop, Folk music, Acoustic music

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  37. 37
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    - 55


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  38. 38
    + 88
    - 62


    Indie pop, Synthpop, New Wave

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  39. 39
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    - 25

    ranked low on reranks
    Indie pop, Americana, Folk music

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  40. 40
    + 53
    - 50


    Folk rock, Indie folk

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  41. 41
    + 53
    - 51


    Acoustic music, Alternative rock, Indie folk

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  42. 42
    + 43
    - 32


    Alternative country, Indie folk, Indie rock

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  43. 43
    + 75
    - 57


    Folk music, Folk rock, Alternative rock

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  44. 44
    + 87
    - 65


    Psychedelic folk, Folk music, New Weird America

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  45. 45
    + 25
    - 6


    Shoegazing, Experimental rock, Minimalist Post Rock

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  46. 46
    + 66
    - 32
    The Oh Hellos is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Indie Folk Bands & Artists

    added by CamEisen
    Folk rock

  47. 47
    + 46
    - 35


    New Wave, Pop music, Jazz

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  48. 48
    + 31
    - 22

    added by lolaschaefer12
    Folk music, Acoustic music

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  49. 49
    + 21
    - 3

    added by -1449913396271
    Rock music, Alternative country, Indie rock

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  50. 50
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    - 28

    ranked low on reranks & added by JoelGarrison
    Folk music, Indie rock Indie folk 

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