Music

The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s 

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
Updated May 2, 2020 1M votes 60.6k voters 3.5M views 408 items

List Rules Best musical acts who were active in the 1990s, judged on the quality of their '90s projects ONLY.

 

Take a big whiff- "mmmbop", it smells like the '90s in here! An incredibly eclectic decade for music, the 1990s saw the rise in popularity of new genres and sounds never heard before (and rarely heard better). Bands of the '90s created a unique sound and catchy lyrics in a way that captured the enthusiasm and disillusionment of the era. The '90s bands and solo artists that populate this list cover all musical categories. If you're still feeling nostalgic, check out the best fictional '90s songs and the greatest one hit wonders of the '90s

From the East Coast/West Coast rap wars, to the grunge era, to low-fi garage rock, to '90s rock bands, the Lilith Fair sound, and the teen pop takeover - 1990s music was rich with experimentation and style. Where else but in the MTV in your head can you find top artists like Nirvana, Wu-Tang Clan, No Doubt, A Tribe Called Quest, Oasis, Bikini Kill and Britney Spears in one place? Whether you were a fan of 90s alternative bands like Blind Melon, you were more dark and brooding and loved grunge music, or you couldn't get enough of popular, mainstream pop names like the Backstreet Boys, take a moment now and give some of your favorite '90s music artists some love! Who are the most famous '90s bands? Which '90s singers led their groups to become the among best of the decade?

Vote-Up your favorite '90s artists and make sure to add any of your favorites that we left out!  

 

list ordered by
1
Nirvana is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

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

More Nirvana 

15 Crazy But True Stories About Nirvana #197 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #31 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

2
Soundgarden is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Superunknown, Badmotorfinger, Down on the Upside, Louder Than Love, Black Hole Sun, + more

More Soundgarden 

#85 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #60 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #67 of 133 Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums

3
Alice in Chains is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Dirt, Alice in Chains, Facelift, Jar of Flies, Black Gives Way to Blue, + more

More Alice in Chains 

The Best Alice In Chains Songs of All Time #129 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #66 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

4
Red Hot Chili Peppers is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Californication, Blood Sugar Sex Magik, Stadium Arcadium, Mother's Milk, By the Way, + more

More Red Hot Chili Peppers 

The Best Red Hot Chili Peppers Songs #199 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #20 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

5
Pearl Jam is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s
6
Foo Fighters is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Wasting Light, The Colour and the Shape, Foo Fighters, One by One, There Is Nothing Left to Lose, + more

More Foo Fighters 

The Best Foo Fighters Songs of All Time #120 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #34 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

7
Rage Against the Machine... is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Rage Against the Machine, Evil Empire, The Battle of Los Angeles, Renegades, Live at the Grand Olympic Auditorium, + more

More Rage Against the Machine 

The Best Rage Against The Machine Albums of All Time #349 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #105 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

8
Metallica is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Master of Puppets, Ride the Lightning, Metallica, …and Justice for All, Kill 'Em All, + more

More Metallica 

Metallica’s ‘Some Kind Of Monster’ Might Be The Least Metal Documentary Ever Made #277 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #28 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

9
Stone Temple Pilots is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Purple, Core, Tiny Music… Songs From the Vatican Gift Shop, №4, Interstate Love Song, + more

More Stone Temple Pilots 

The Best Stone Temple Pilots Songs #244 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #129 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

10
Beastie Boys is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

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

More Beastie Boys 

The Best Beastie Boys Songs #210 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #96 of 502 The Greatest Musical Artists of the '80s

11
Green Day is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

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

More Green Day 

The Best Green Day Songs of All Time #213 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #56 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

12
The Smashing Pumpkins is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s
13
Guns N' Roses is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Appetite for Destruction, G N' R Lies, Use Your Illusion I, Chinese Democracy, Use Your Illusion II, + more

More Guns N' Roses 

The Best Guns N' Roses Songs of All Time #55 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #10 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

14
Tool is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s
15
Nine Inch Nails is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s
16
Weezer is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Pinkerton, Weezer, Weezer, Weezer, Raditude, + more

More Weezer 

#312 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #250 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #122 of 352 The Greatest American Rock Bands

17
David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s
Genre: Rock music, Psychedelic pop & Electronic music; Nationality: United Kingdom

Albums: The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, Hunky Dory, Diamond Dogs, Aladdin Sane, "Heroes", + more

More David Bowie 

The Behind-The-Scenes Rivalry And Making Of 'Under Pressure' #6 of 696 The Best Rock Vocalists #84 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

18
System of a Down is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s
tankerdrew180 added

Albums: Toxicity, Hypnotize, Mezmerize, System of a Down, Steal This Album!, + more

More System of a Down 

The Best System Of A Down Songs of All Time #334 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #168 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

19
Sublime is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

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

More Sublime 

#434 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #398 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #833 of 1,039 The Worst Bands & Musicians of All Time

20
R.E.M. is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Murmur, Green, Automatic for the People, Out of Time, Reckoning, + more

More R.E.M. 

#704 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #33 of 133 Bands Or Artists With Five Great Albums #48 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

21
The Offspring is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Smash, Americana, The Offspring, Hit That, Pretty Fly (For a White Guy), + more

More The Offspring 

The Best Offspring Albums of All Time #189 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #868 of 1,039 The Worst Bands & Musicians of All Time

22
Oasis is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: (What's the Story) Morning Glory?, Definitely Maybe, Don’t Believe the Truth, Dig Out Your Soul, Be Here Now, + more

More Oasis 

The Best Oasis Songs of All Time #275 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timelisted on The Best English Boy Bands

23
Eminem is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s
Genre: Hip hop; Nationality: United States of America

Albums: The Marshall Mathers LP, The Slim Shady LP, The Eminem Show, Infinite, Recovery, + more

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26 Fascinating Facts You Didn't Already Know About Eminem #251 of 289 The Best (Male) Actors Working Today #15 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

24
AC/DC is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

Albums: Back in Black, Highway to Hell, Let There Be Rock, The Razors Edge, Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, + more

More AC/DC 

Insane Stories From The Heyday Of AC/DC #420 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timelisted on List of Famous Bands from Australia

25
Blink-182 is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Musical Artists of the '90s

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

More Blink-182 

One Of Blink-182’s Lead Singers Left The Band To Become An Outspoken UFO Researcher #652 of 2,179 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #252 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time