Music

The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time 

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
Updated May 21, 2020 37.7k votes 4.9k voters 132k views 119 items

List Rules 3 piece bands...

Across all types of music what is the best 3 piece band ever? Add your own favorite band...heck even country works... country is a musical genre. Even contemporary country, unfortunately.

These are the best 3 piece bands ever, the best musical trios if you will... the best bands with 3 members if you want to say it that way.

These 3 man bands run the spectrum from very very famous, to not so famous. But don't vote based on fame... some of the best bands aren't super famous. Obviously. It's about the music! it's not a popularity contest. Who is your favorite three piece band?

list ordered by
1
Rush is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Moving Pictures, 2112, Hemispheres, Permanent Waves, Fly by Night, + more

See more rock trio bands here!

Rush was a Canadian rock band consisting of Geddy Lee (bass, vocals, keyboards), Alex Lifeson (guitars), and Neil Peart (drums, percussion). Formed in 1968, the band went through several ...more

More Rush 

#231 of 466 The Best Current Pop Groups/Singers #20 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #21 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

2
The Jimi Hendrix Experie... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Electric Ladyland, Are You Experienced, Axis: Bold as Love, Live at Monterey, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, + more

The Jimi Hendrix Experience was an English-American rock band that formed in Westminster, London, in September 1966. Composed of singer, songwriter, and guitarist Jimi Hendrix, bassist and ...more

More The Jimi Hendrix Experience 

#9 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #33 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #192 of 604 The Most Hipster Bands

3
Cream is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Disraeli Gears, The Very Best of Cream, Fresh Cream, Wheels of Fire, Those Were the Days, + more

Cream were a 1960s British rock supergroup power trio consisting of bassist/singer Jack Bruce, drummer Ginger Baker, and guitarist/singer Eric Clapton. Their unique sound was characterised by a ...more

More Cream 

The Best Cream Albums of All-Time #21 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #39 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

4
ZZ Top is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Tres Hombres, Eliminator, Rio Grande Mud, Greatest Hits, Fandango!, + more

ZZ Top is an American rock band formed in 1969 in Houston, Texas. The band has, since 1970, consisted of vocalist/guitarist Billy Gibbons (the band's leader, main lyricist and musical arranger), ...more

More ZZ Top 

The Best ZZ Top Songs of All Time #24 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #13 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands

5
Nirvana is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Nevermind, In Utero, MTV Unplugged in New York, Bleach, Heart‐Shaped Box, + more

Nirvana was an American grunge band that was formed by singer/guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist Novoselic in Aberdeen, Washington in 1987. Nirvana went through a succession of drummers, ...more

More Nirvana 

Behind The Scenes Of ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ #55 of 466 The Best Current Pop Groups/Singers #8 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands

6
The Police is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Synchronicity, Ghost in the Machine, Zenyattà Mondatta, Every Breath You Take: The Singles, Outlandos d'Amour, + more

The Police were a British rock band formed in London in 1977. For most of their history the line-up consisted of Sting (lead vocals, bass guitar, primary songwriter), Andy Summers (guitar) and ...more

More The Police 

The Best Police Albums of All Time #42 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #35 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

7
Green Day is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: American Idiot, Dookie, 21st Century Breakdown, ¡Dos!, Insomniac, + more

See more rock trio bands here!

Green Day is an American rock band formed in 1986 by lead vocalist and guitarist Billie Joe Armstrong and bassist Mike Dirnt. For much of the band's career, they have been a trio with drummer ...more

More Green Day 

The Best Green Day Songs of All Time #63 of 466 The Best Current Pop Groups/Singers #46 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands

8
Beastie Boys is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Paul's Boutique, Licensed to Ill, Check Your Head, Hot Sauce Committee Part Two, Hello Nasty, + more

The Beastie Boys were an American hip hop group from New York City formed in 1981. The group comprised Michael "Mike D" Diamond (vocals, drums), Adam "MCA" Yauch (vocals, ...more

More Beastie Boys 

The Best Beastie Boys Songs #129 of 604 The Most Hipster Bands #10 of 408 The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

9
Motörhead is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Ace of Spades, 1916, No Remorse, Motorhead: Extended Versions, Bastards, + more

Motörhead () were an English rock band formed in June 1975 by bassist, singer, and songwriter Ian "Lemmy" Kilmister, who was the sole constant member, guitarist Larry Wallis and ...more

More Motörhead 

#21 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #145 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #98 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

10
Bee Gees is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time
Valdave added

Albums: Saturday Night Fever, Main Course, Spirits Having Flown, Living Eyes, Size Isn't Everything, + more

See more pop music trios here!

The Bee Gees were a pop music group formed in 1958. Their lineup consisted of brothers Barry, Robin, and Maurice Gibb. The trio were especially successful as a popular music act in the late ...more

More Bee Gees 

The Best Bee Gees Albums of All Time #78 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bandslisted on List of Famous Bands from Australia

11
Emerson, Lake & Palm... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Emerson Lake & Palmer, Brain Salad Surgery, Tarkus, Welcome Back My Friends to the Show That Never Ends, Trilogy, + more

Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP) were an English progressive rock supergroup formed in London in 1970. The band consisted of keyboardist Keith Emerson; singer, bassist, guitarist and producer ...more

More Emerson, Lake & Palmer 

#51 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #107 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #146 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

12
Muse is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Origin of Symmetry, Absolution, The 2nd Law, Black Holes and Revelations, The Resistance, + more

Muse are an English rock band from Teignmouth, Devon, formed in 1994. The band consists of Matt Bellamy (lead vocals, guitar, keyboards), Chris Wolstenholme (bass guitar, backing vocals), and ...more

More Muse 

#197 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #138 of 408 The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s #318 of 2,042 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

13
Grand Funk Railroad is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Closer to Home, On Time, Survival, Good Singin', Good Playin', + more

Grand Funk Railroad, sometimes shortened as Grand Funk, is an American hard rock band popular during the 1970s, when they toured extensively and played to packed arenas worldwide. David Fricke ...more

More Grand Funk Railroad 

The Best Grand Funk Railroad Albums of All Time #16 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #101 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

14
Blink-182 is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Enema of the State, Dude Ranch, blink-182, Take Off Your Pants and Jacket, Cheshire Cat, + more

See more rock trio bands here!

Blink-182 is an American rock band formed in Poway, a suburb of San Diego, California in 1992. The band currently consists of bassist and vocalist Mark Hoppus and drummer Travis Barker, while ...more

More Blink-182 

The Best Blink-182 Albums of All-Time #124 of 466 The Best Current Pop Groups/Singers #281 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands

15
The Cure is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Disintegration, Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me, Boys Don’t Cry, Wish, Pornography, + more

The Cure is an English rock band formed in Crawley, West Sussex in 1976. The band members have changed several times, with guitarist, lead vocalist, and songwriter Robert Smith the only constant ...more

More The Cure 

Behind The Scenes Of 'Disintegration', The Cure's Dark And Brooding Masterpiece #173 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #93 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

16
Thin Lizzy is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Live and Dangerous, Dedication: The Very Best of Thin Lizzy, Renegade, Jailbreak (bonus disc), Vagabonds of the Western World, + more

Thin Lizzy are a hard rock band formed in Dublin, Ireland, in 1969. Two of the founding members, drummer Brian Downey and bass guitarist and lead vocalist Phil Lynott, met while still in school. ...more

More Thin Lizzy 

The Best Thin Lizzy Albums of All Time #35 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #97 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

17
Primus is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Sailing the Seas of Cheese, Pork Soda, Frizzle Fry, Tales From the Punchbowl, Brown Album, + more

Primus is an American funk metal band based in San Francisco, California, currently composed of bassist/vocalist Les Claypool, guitarist Larry "Ler" LaLonde and drummer Tim ...more

More Primus 

#179 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands #578 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #61 of 408 The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

18
Three Dog Night is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time
Valdave added

Albums: Naturally, Seven Separate Fools, Hard Labor, Joy to the World: Their Greatest Hits, Suitable for Framing, + more

Three Dog Night is an American rock band. They formed in 1967 with founding members consisting of vocalists Danny Hutton, Cory Wells, and Chuck Negron. This lineup was soon augmented by Jimmy ...more

More Three Dog Night 

The Best Three Dog Night Albums of All Time #22 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #108 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

19
The Supremes is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time
ColinBoddy added

Albums: 20th Century Masters: The Christmas Collection: The Best of The Supremes, Diana Ross & the Supremes: 20 Golden Greats, Love Child, Diana Ross & the Supremes: Greatest Hits, Where Did Our Love Go, + more

See more pop music trios here!

The Supremes were an American female singing group and a premier act of Motown Records during the 1960s. Founded as The Primettes in Detroit, Michigan, in 1959, the Supremes were the most ...more

More The Supremes 

The Best Supremes Albums of All Time #117 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #100 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands

20
Triumph is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Allied Forces, Never Surrender, Rock & Roll Machine, Triumph, Thunder Seven, + more

Triumph is a Canadian hard rock band formed in 1975 that was popular in the late 1970s and the 1980s, building on its reputation and success as a live band. Between the band's 16 albums and ...more

More Triumph 

#236 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #194 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #401 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

21
America is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Homecoming, The Complete Greatest Hits, A Horse With No Name, Perspective, America, + more

America is an American rock band that was formed in London in 1970 by Dewey Bunnell, Dan Peek, and Gerry Beckley. The trio met as sons of US Air Force personnel stationed in London, where they ...more

More America 

#48 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #120 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #70 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands

22
Stray Cats is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Built for Speed, Stray Cats, Rock This Town, Shake, Rattle and Roll: Live at TK's Place, + more

Stray Cats are an American rockabilly band formed in 1979 by guitarist and vocalist Brian Setzer, double bassist Lee Rocker, and drummer Slim Jim Phantom in the Long Island town of Massapequa, ...more

More Stray Cats 

The Best Stray Cats Albums of All Time #220 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #147 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands

23
James Gang is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Rides Again, Passin' Thru, Miami, Thirds, Bang, + more

The James Gang was a rock band formed in Cleveland, Ohio in 1966. The band enjoyed moderate success with the singles "Funk #49" and "Walk Away," and are perhaps best ...more

More James Gang 

The Best James Gang Albums of All Time #130 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #181 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

24
Sublime is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time

Albums: Sublime: 10th Anniversary Deluxe Edition, 40oz. to Freedom, Sublime Acoustic: Bradley Nowell & Friends, Robbin' the Hood, Second-Hand Smoke, + more

Sublime was an American ska punk band from Long Beach, California, formed in 1988. The band's line-up, unchanged until their breakup, consisted of Bradley Nowell (vocals and guitar), Eric Wilson ...more

More Sublime 

#198 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands #384 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #19 of 408 The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

25
Peter, Paul and Mary is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Musical Trios Of All-Time
hellodalai added

Albums: Peter, Paul and Mary, Peter, Paul and Mommy, In the Wind, + more

See more folk trio bands here!

Peter, Paul and Mary were a United States folk-singing trio whose nearly 50-year career began with their rise to become a paradigm for 1960s folk music. The trio was composed of folk song writer ...more

More Peter, Paul and Mary 

#352 of 419 Musicians Who Belong In The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame #186 of 333 The Greatest Classic Rock Bands #192 of 318 The Greatest American Rock Bands