reggae The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time  

Originally by
36k votes 3.7k voters 267k views 155 items Follow Embed
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. 

1
+ - 984 259
The Specials is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Specials New Wave, 2 Tone, Ska punk

The Very Best Reggae Songs The Best Dogs for First-Time Owners

2
+ - 621 191
The Skatalites is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Skatalites Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

3
+ - 757 209
Madness is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Madness New Wave, 2 Tone, Pop music

4
+ - 594 188
Operation Ivy is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Operation Ivy Ska punk, Punk rock, Hardcore punk

5
+ - 737 235
The Mighty Mighty Bosstones is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Mighty Mighty Bosstones Noise rock, Ska punk, Third-wave of ska

6
+ - 832 366
Reel Big Fish is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Reel Big Fish Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

7
+ - 472 178
Desmond Dekker is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Desmond Dekker Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

8
+ - 509 155
The Toasters is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Toasters 2 Tone, Pop music, Ska punk - Ska, 2-Tone, Dub, 3rd wave ska

9
+ - 675 299
Streetlight Manifesto is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Streetlight Manifesto Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

10
+ - 184 29
Toots & the Maytals is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Toots & the Maytals Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

11
+ - 485 203
The Slackers is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

12
+ - 508 209
Rancid is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Rancid Pop punk, Ska punk, Street punk

13
+ - 461 204
The Pietasters is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Pietasters Ska punk, Ska, Rocksteady

14
+ - 324 200
Mad Caddies is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Mad Caddies Ska punk, Punk rock - Ska, Ska Punk, Reggae, Punk Rock, Pop Punk

15
+ - 588 287
Less Than Jake is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Less Than Jake Pop punk, Ska punk, Third-wave of ska

The Best Third-wave Of Ska Bands 16 Songs That Don't Mean What You Think They Do

16
+ - 372 119
Jimmy Cliff is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Jimmy Cliff Ska, Reggae

17
+ - 356 118
The Beat is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Beat New Wave, 2 Tone, Pop music

18
+ - 268 73
The Aggrolites is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Aggrolites Ska, Reggae, Soul music

19
+ - 399 161
Hepcat is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Hepcat Ska, Rocksteady

20
+ - 420 138
Bad Manners is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Bad Manners 2 Tone, Ska

21
+ - 359 148
Mustard Plug is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Mustard Plug Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

22
+ - 225 83
Derrick Morgan is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Derrick Morgan Blue Beat, Ska, Reggae

23
+ - 613 349
Sublime is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Sublime Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, Rock music

24
+ - 292 130
The Selecter is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Selecter New Wave, Ska

25
+ - 310 188
Big D and the Kids Table is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Big D and the Kids Table Ska punk, Ska, Reggae

26
+ - 276 138
The Suicide Machines is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Suicide Machines Ska punk, Punk rock, Hardcore punk

27
+ - 222 100
Laurel Aitken is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Laurel Aitken Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

28
+ - 294 124
Voodoo Glow Skulls is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Voodoo Glow Skulls Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

29
+ - 315 181
Save Ferris is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Save Ferris Ska punk

The Best Christian Ska Bands The Worst Things Men Say to Women on Their Period

30
+ - 293 167
Catch 22 is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Catch 22 Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

31
+ - 342 207
Goldfinger is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Goldfinger Pop punk, Ska punk, Alternative rock

32
+ - 245 148
Skankin' Pickle is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Skankin' Pickle Ska punk, Ska, Rock music

33
+ - 186 117
The Planet Smashers is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Planet Smashers Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Punk rock

34
+ - 210 77
Alton Ellis is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Alton Ellis Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

35
+ - 231 90
Mephiskapheles is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Mephiskapheles Ska punk, Ska

36
+ - 121 99
The Interrupters is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

37
+ - 353 116
Fishbone is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Fishbone Heavy metal, Reggae fusion, Hard rock

38
+ - 210 142
Buck-O-Nine is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Buck-O-Nine Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

39
+ - 218 151
Hub City Stompers is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

40
+ - 346 140
The Aquabats is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Aquabats Pop punk, Synthpop, New Wave

41
+ - 68 20
Dance Hall Crashers is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Dance Hall Crashers Pop punk, Ska punk

42
+ - 90 110
The Allstonians is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Allstonians Ska, Reggae

43
+ - 131 68
Delroy Wilson is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Delroy Wilson Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

The Best UB40 Songs The Best Hotel Booking Websites

44
+ - 285 266
No Doubt is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
No Doubt Pop punk, New Wave, Pop music

45
+ - 62 16
Lee Perry is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

46
+ - 166 114
Inspecter 7 is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

47
+ - 35 3
Prince Buster is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Prince Buster Blue Beat, Ska, Reggae

48
+ - 225 217
Suburban Legends is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Suburban Legends Disco, Pop music, Third-wave of ska

49
+ - 125 79
The Scofflaws is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

50
+ - 179 73
New York Ska-Jazz Ensemble is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time