The Best Musical Artists From Kansas

List Rules
Only artists born or raised in Kansas or bands formed in Kansas.

Here are the best artists and bands from Kansas. Often regarded as the heartland of America, it is easy to see why so many homegrown country and blues artists got their start in the state. Kansas has a vibrant music scene, including the Country Stampede Music Festival, which is one of the biggest festivals in the entire country. It is also home to the Walnut Valley Festival where people from all over the United States gather to enjoy some of the finest bluegrass groups playing today. They get to see some of the best musical artists from Kansas and around the Midwest. 

Country acts, like Martina McBride, define the area so well. However, there are still plenty of rock acts that have come out of the area. The band Kansas naturally got their start in the Sunflower State, along with bands, like The Midnight Ghost Train, Youngblood Supercult, and Split Lip Rayfield. Other popular Kansas artists include Janelle Monaé, Jennifer Knapp, Banshee, and Melissa Etheridge.

Are any of these acts your favorite? Perhaps you will find something you jam out to all the time in the list below. Either way, make sure you vote for your favorites so that everyone knows who the most famous Kansas musical artists are. 

Ranked by
  • Kansas
    Heartland rock, Rock music, Progressive rock
    118 votes
    • Albums: Point of Know Return, Leftoverture, Kansas, The Best of Kansas, Freaks of Nature
    Kansas is an American rock band that became popular in the 1970s initially on album-oriented rock charts and later with hit singles such as "Carry On Wayward Son" and "Dust in the Wind". The band has ...more
  • The Embarrassment
    55 votes
    • Albums: Blister Pop, The Embarrassment EP, God Help Us, Patio Set / Sex Drive, Heyday 1979-83
    The Embarrassment was an American quartet formed in 1979 in Wichita, Kansas, that made several recordings before breaking up in 1983. The band consisted of guitarist Bill Goffrier, lead singer and ...more
  • Get Smart!
    New Wave, Alternative rock, Punk rock
    64 votes
    • Albums: Action Reaction, Swimming with Sharks
    Get Smart! was a three piece band formed in Lawrence, Kansas in 1980 consisting of Marc Koch, Lisa Wertman Crowe and Frank Loose.
  • Charlie Parker
    Jazz, Bebop
    60 votes
    • Albums: Portrait, Bird: The Complete Charlie Parker on Verve, The Complete Savoy and Dial Studio Recordings 1944-1948, Bluebird, Jazz at Massey Hall
    Charles Parker Jr. (August 29, 1920 – March 12, 1955), also known as Yardbird and Bird, was an American jazz saxophonist and composer. Parker was a highly influential jazz soloist and a leading ...more