Rock The Best British Rock Bands/Artists  

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200k votes 13.3k voters 313.1k views 409 items

List Rules Only rock musicians who are originally from/formed their band/started their careers in the UK.

Of all the important rock bands to grace the stage, British bands are considered by many to be the most important and most influential. Though they weren't first, the best British rock bands planted their mark in the 1960s with catchy melodies, delicious hooks and music that influenced multiple generations of bands and music fans. Not to be outdone, every decade thereafter, famous English rock bands were mostly ahead of their contemporaries across the globe, bringing all variations of rock music to the masses. The most successful English bands remain staples on rock radio, and though some are old and over the hill, they manage to tour to arenas and stadiums all over the world. 

Though it's certainly a difficult question to ask, this list tries to decide who are the best British rock bands. There are plenty of amazing British bands to pick from, with names like the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Who, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, The Clash, Oasis, Blur, and Queen, just to name some of the most famous ones. The thing that the best British rock bands have in common is that they're known all over the world for widely influencing a musical genre, and in some cases, creating their own musical genre. However, it's up to you to determine which of these top British rock bands is that best.

Ultimately, the choice for best British bands is not an easy one - but you can vote for multiple stars on the list. If for some reason a British band isn't on this list, please add them. Vote or re-rank this list of British bands to how you deem fit. This list answers the questions "who are the best British rock bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest British rock 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 British rock bands that you might've heard of.

1
3,278 1,637
The Beatles is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Beatles Pop music, Rock music, Pop rock

2
2,410 1,869
Led Zeppelin is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Led Zeppelin Blues-rock, Classic rock, Rock music

3
2,258 1,571
Pink Floyd is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Pink Floyd Rock music, Space rock, Experimental rock

4
1,934 1,569
The Who is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Who Popular music, Pop music, Rock music

5
2,279 1,322
The Rolling Stones is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Rolling Stones Blues-rock, Rock music, Protopunk

6
2,952 1,702
Queen is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Queen Pop music, Rock music, Heavy metal

7
1,219 1,077
Cream is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Cream Blues-rock, Classic rock, Rock music

8
2,202 1,074
David Bowie is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
David Bowie Rock music, Psychedelic pop, Electronic music

9
1,021 1,297
Deep Purple is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Deep Purple Blues-rock, Classic rock, Heavy metal

10
1,661 1,120
The Kinks is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Kinks Music hall, Pop music, Rock music

11
1,210 1,387
Black Sabbath is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Black Sabbath Doom metal, Blues-rock, Power metal

12
1,063 1,429
The Police is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Police New Wave, 2 Tone, Ska punk

13
829 762
Eric Burdon & the Animals is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Eric Burdon & the Animals Blues-rock, Rock music, British blues

14
836 781
The Yardbirds is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Yardbirds British Invasion, Blues-rock, Rock music

15
1,462 1,012
The Clash is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Clash Hip hop music, Pop punk, New Wave

16
953 1,134
Genesis is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Genesis Rock music, Pop rock, Soft rock

17
1,356 1,031
John Lennon is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
John Lennon Blues-rock, Pop music, Rock music

18
818 726
Jethro Tull is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Jethro Tull Blues-rock, Rock music, Electronic music

19
947 278
The Jimi Hendrix Experience is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Jimi Hendrix Experience Blues-rock, Psychedelic soul, Rock music

20
924 1,144
Eric Clapton is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Eric Clapton Blues-rock, Rock music, Reggae

21
1,143 779
Paul McCartney is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Paul McCartney Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

22
1,502 1,450
Oasis is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Oasis Rock music, Britpop, Alternative rock

23
819 1,188
Elton John is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Elton John Pop music, Rock music, Piano rock

24
778 895
Dire Straits is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Coolza added Dire Straits Celtic rock, Blues-rock, Rock music

25
410 395
Roxy Music is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Roxy Music New Wave, Rock music, Protopunk

26
1,128 880
Sex Pistols is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Sex Pistols Rock music, Anarcho-punk, Punk rock

27
461 408
Blind Faith is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Blind Faith Blues-rock, Rock music, British blues

28
824 1,079
The Smiths is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Smiths Jangle pop, Indie pop, Alternative rock

29
973 507
George Harrison is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
George Harrison Pop music, Rock music, Experimental rock

30
264 762
Simple Minds is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Coolza added Simple Minds New Wave, Rock music, Pop rock

31
538 342
Wings is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Wings Pop music, Rock music, Pop rock

32
880 1,136
Iron Maiden is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
mrblond added Iron Maiden New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Heavy metal, Hard rock

33
341 769
New Order is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
New Order Synthpop, New Wave, Electronic music

34
1,095 1,191
Radiohead is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Radiohead Rock music, Electronic music, New Prog

35
827 1,174
Coldplay is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Coldplay Rock music, Piano rock, Post-Britpop

36
296 725
Emerson, Lake & Palmer is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Emerson, Lake & Palmer Rock music, Progressive rock, Art rock

37
430 907
Judas Priest is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
mrblond added Judas Priest New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Thrash metal, Power metal

38
573 824
Def Leppard is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
muzziac added Def Leppard Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

39
563 791
Ozzy Osbourne is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Ozzy Osbourne Doom metal, Glam metal, Blues-rock

40
547 306
Ranker Video
bren911 added The Hollies Pop music, Rock music, Psychedelic pop

41
564 853
Yes is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Yes Rock music, Experimental rock, Pop rock

42
757 926
Electric Light Orchestra is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Electric Light Orchestra Synthpop, Pop music, Rock music

43
777 560
The Jam is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Jam Pop punk, New Wave, Rock music

44
606 568
Elvis Costello is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Coolza added Elvis Costello New Wave, Rock music, Pub rock

45
898 698
Blur is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Blur Indie pop, Shoegazing, Pop music

46
588 575
Bad Company is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
mrblond added Bad Company Blues-rock, Hard rock

47
474 249
Madness is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
Madness New Wave, 2 Tone, Pop music

48
491 271
The Small Faces is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Small Faces British Invasion, Classic rock, Pop music

49
455 652
The Moody Blues is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Moody Blues Synthpop, Rock music, Acoustic music

50
738 867
The Cure is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best British Rock Bands/Artists
The Cure New Wave, Gothic rock, Rock music