The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time Bands/Musicians

The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

32,955 votes 2,906 voters 230,038 views 152 items tags f p @

People may not realize this, but ska music originated in Jamaica in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Ska music's influence ranges beyond ska bands. Without ska music, genres like reggae and rocksteady may not have come to be. The ska beat is heavily influenced by American R&B music and has grown into one of the most popular standalone musical genres. It is also one of the most distinct - famous ska bands are rarely confused as being from another genre. The best ska bands are some of the most popular in the world due to the eclectic sound and the diverse instruments used in shaping the music. Ska bands had a surge in popularity in the 1990s with albums like Sell Out (Reel Big Fish) and Super Rad! (The Aquabats) taking over the radio waves. This is the era where some of the best ska bands emerged and haven't let up since.

So, what are the best ska bands? Any list of ska bands has to include names like Reel Big Fish, Streetlight Manifesto, The Specials, Less Than Jake, Goldfinger, the Aquabats and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones. These bands are widely considered some of the best in the genre and with good reason. With some of the best ska songs, exciting live shows and a sound that encapsulates the best of what ska music has to offer, there's no doubt that these bands are rightfully considered at or near the top of the list of ska bands.

That said, it's up to to you to determine what are the best ska bands. If you notice that a ska band is missing from this list, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best ska bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest ska 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 ska bands that you might've heard of. 


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  • 15 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 832
    - 201

    the people's #1 & most listed
    New Wave, 2 Tone, Ska punk

    ;
  2. 2
    + 549
    - 141


    Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

    ;
  3. 3
    + 604
    - 170


    New Wave, 2 Tone, Pop music

    ;
  4. 4
    + 630
    - 190


    Noise rock, Ska punk, Third-wave of ska

    ;
  5. 5
    + 412
    - 150


    Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

    ;
  6. 6
    + 518
    - 142


    Ska punk, Punk rock, Hardcore punk

    ;
  7. 7
    + 441
    - 176


    Ska

    ;
  8. 8
    + 564
    - 268


    Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

    ;
  9. 9
    + 435
    - 124

    ranked low on reranks & added by fatherrhyme
    2 Tone, Pop music, Ska punk Ska, 2-Tone, Dub, 3rd wave ska

    ;
  10. 10
    + 430
    - 178


    Ska punk, Ska, Rocksteady

    ;
  11. 11
    + 682
    - 324


    Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

    ;
  12. 12
    + 367
    - 145


    Ska, Rocksteady

    ;
  13. 13
    + 317
    - 106


    Ska, Reggae

    ;
  14. 14
    + 503
    - 254


    Pop punk, Ska punk, Third-wave of ska

    ;
  15. 15
    + 415
    - 176


    Pop punk, Ska punk, Street punk

    ;
  16. 16
    + 371
    - 123


    2 Tone, Ska

    ;
  17. 17
    + 115
    - 17


    Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

    ;
  18. 18
    + 286
    - 174

    often listed & added by fatherrhyme
    Ska punk, Punk rock Ska, Ska Punk, Reggae, Punk Rock, Pop Punk

    ;
  19. 19
    + 237
    - 62

    added by OneontaSka
    Ska, Reggae, Soul music

    ;
  20. 20
    + 285
    - 114

    added by WallyZialcita
    New Wave, 2 Tone, Pop music

    ;
  21. 21
    + 506
    - 321


    Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, Rock music

    ;
  22. 22
    + 202
    - 76


    Blue Beat, Ska, Reggae

    ;
  23. 23
    + 313
    - 127


    Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

    ;
  24. 24
    + 276
    - 168


    Ska punk, Ska, Reggae

    ;
  25. 25
    + 253
    - 107


    Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

    ;
  26. 26
    + 191
    - 71


    Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

    ;
  27. 27
    + 224
    - 126

    added by OneontaSka
    New Wave, Ska

    ;
  28. 28
    + 195
    - 95

    added by Jean-marieGerard
    Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

    ;
  29. 29
    + 250
    - 150


    Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

    ;
  30. 30
    + 238
    - 125


    Ska punk, Punk rock, Hardcore punk

    ;
  31. 31
    + 289
    - 185


    Pop punk, Ska punk, Alternative rock

    ;
  32. 32
    + 213
    - 134


    Ska punk, Ska, Rock music

    ;
  33. 33
    + 267
    - 167


    Ska punk

    ;
  34. 34
    + 164
    - 111

    added by OllieRocksteady
    Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Punk rock

    ;
  35. 35
    + 121
    - 64


    Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

    ;
  36. 36
    + 215
    - 145

    added by OneontaSka

    ;
  37. 37
    + 207
    - 209

    ranked high on reranks
    Disco, Pop music, Third-wave of ska

    ;
  38. 38
    + 187
    - 134


    Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

    ;
  39. 39
    + 316
    - 110

    ranked low on reranks
    Heavy metal, Reggae fusion, Hard rock

    ;
  40. 40
    + 84
    - 106

    often listed & added by RightOn
    Ska, Reggae

  41. 41
    + 231
    - 243

    often listed
    Pop punk, New Wave, Pop music

    ;
  42. 42
    + 94
    - 95

    often listed & added by OneontaSka

    ;
  43. 43
    + 301
    - 133

    ranked low on reranks
    Pop punk, Synthpop, New Wave

    ;
  44. 44
    + 117
    - 74

    added by OneontaSka
    Ska

  45. 45
    + 160
    - 109

    added by OneontaSka
    Ska

  46. 46
    + 213
    - 83

    ranked low on reranks & added by behessel
    Ska punk, Ska

    ;
  47. 47
    + 125
    - 166


    Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

    ;
  48. 48
    + 107
    - 109


    Ska punk, Ska, Anarcho-punk

    ;
  49. 49
    + 68
    - 74


    Ska, Reggae, Dub

    ;
  50. 50
    + 83
    - 88


    Ska punk, Anarcho-punk, Skate punk

    ;
153 +

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