music The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time  

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Americana artists are by nature are traditionalist American musicians who infuse roots music - which includes elements of rock, folk, blues, bluegrass and even R&B - to create a sound that channels the spirit of traditional American music. The best Americana bands have been internationally recognized and critically acclaimed for creatively bringing the roots music movement to a wider audience. While Americana bands and Americana artists first achieved tepid popularity during the 1960s, since the onset of the 1990s, they've grown in popularity and acclaim, with some even taking home major Grammy awards.

So, what are the best Americana bands? When people think of Americana music, the best examples of the top Americana bands includes The Band (who strangely enough aren't even American), Bob Dylan, The Avett Brothers, Gillian Welch, Lucinda Williams, The Civil Wars and Son Volt. These are some of the best bands in the genre and some are considered among the greatest rock bands of all time and even the best country music artists. That's the beauty of Americana music: it fuses so many different other genres that different music artists can create the Americana sound. 

That said, it's up to you to determine what are the best Americana bands. If you notice that a band isn't on this list and should be, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best Americana bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest Americana 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 americana bands that you might've heard of. (342 items)
list ordered by

1
242 49
The Band is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
The Band Americana, Blues-rock, Rock music

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2
102 9
Johnny Cash is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Johnny Cash Outlaw country, Christian music, Americana

3
152 30
Bob Dylan is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
josephaldenmoore added Bob Dylan Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music

4
156 36
Steve Earle is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Steve Earle Americana, Heartland rock, Country rock

5
138 33
Lucinda Williams is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Lucinda Williams Americana, Heartland rock, Rock music

6
103 16
Townes Van Zandt is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Townes Van Zandt Outlaw country, Folk music, Country

7
102 16
John Prine is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
John Prine Folk music, Progressive bluegrass, Country

8
106 18
Neil Young is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Neil Young Rock music, Experimental rock, Grunge

9
118 19
Jason Isbell is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Jason Isbell Rock music, Progressive country, Alternative country

10
157 43
The Avett Brothers is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
The Avett Brothers Folk music, Folk rock, Bluegrass

11
78 8
Creedence Clearwater Revival is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Creedence Clearwater Revival Blues-rock, Blue-eyed soul, Swamp pop

12
86 14
Emmylou Harris is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Emmylou Harris Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

13
109 31
Gillian Welch is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Gillian Welch American Primitivism, Americana, Rock music

14
125 32
Old Crow Medicine Show is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Old Crow Medicine Show Americana, Folk music, Old-time music

15
99 16
Willie Nelson is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
josephaldenmoore added Willie Nelson Outlaw country, Americana, Traditional pop music

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16
98 28
Wilco is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Tata14 added Wilco Rock music, Experimental rock, Folk rock

17
75 10
John Hiatt is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added John Hiatt Americana, Heartland rock, Rock music

18
92 19
Son Volt is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Son Volt Folk rock, Alternative country, Country

19
52 7
The Flying Burrito Brothers is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
The Flying Burrito Brothers Rock music, Country rock, Country

20
52 7
Guy Clark is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Guy Clark Outlaw country, Folk music, Country

21
47 4
Bonnie Raitt is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Bonnie Raitt Blues-rock, Blue-eyed soul, Pop music

22
63 9
Justin Townes Earle is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Justin Townes Earle Americana, Folk music, Country

23
73 17
Ryan Adams is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Lilbronn added Ryan Adams Rock music, Heavy metal, Alternative rock

24
78 20
James McMurtry is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
James McMurtry Americana, Rock music, Folk rock

25
58 7
Sturgill Simpson is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
bcook added Sturgill Simpson

26
53 7
Ry Cooder is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Ry Cooder Americana, Rock music, Latin American music

27
68 16
Patty Griffin is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Patty Griffin Americana, Folk music, Folk rock

28
89 29
The Civil Wars is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
The Civil Wars Americana, Folk music, Folk rock

29
68 12
Ryan Bingham is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Ryan Bingham Americana, Rock music, Folk music

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30
70 11
Hayes Carll is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time

31
63 9
Drive-By Truckers is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Drive-By Truckers Rock music, Alternative rock, Alternative country

32
70 20
Grateful Dead is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
josephaldenmoore added Grateful Dead Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk rock

33
35 3
Alison Krauss is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Alison Krauss Christian music, Folk music, Progressive bluegrass

34
52 11
Buddy Miller is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
bamjuggler added Buddy Miller Americana, Country

35
47 9
Uncle Tupelo is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Uncle Tupelo Rock music, Country rock, Alternative rock

36
43 5
Robert Earl Keen is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Robert Earl Keen Outlaw country, Americana, Folk music

37
46 7
Jayhawks is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Jayhawks Alternative rock, Alternative country, Psychedelic rock

38
42 5
Gram Parsons is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Gram Parsons Rock music, Country rock, Country

39
36 9
Todd Snider is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
john-baggett added Todd Snider Americana, Folk rock, Alternative country

40
54 9
Delbert McClinton is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Delbert McClinton Americana, Blues-rock, Rock music

41
49 10
T-Bone Burnett is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
T-Bone Burnett Americana, Rock music, Rock and roll

42
32 4
Joe Ely is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Joe Ely Outlaw country, Americana, Heartland rock

43
87 29
The Lumineers is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
The Lumineers Americana, Folk rock, Alternative rock

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44
30 3
Rodney Crowell is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Rodney Crowell Country

45
45 7
Levon Helm is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Levon Helm Americana, Rock music, Folk music

46
51 14
Dave Alvin is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Dave Alvin Rockabilly, Folk music, Alternative country

47
35 8
Ray Wylie Hubbard is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
Ray Wylie Hubbard Folk music, Country, Cowpunk

48
37 6
Whiskeytown is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time
passionsears added Whiskeytown Alternative country, Country

49
64 25
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time

50
32 5
Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowel... is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Americana Bands & Artists of All Time