Music

List of Famous Bands from Chicago

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Updated June 14, 2019 379.7k views 365 items

List of Chicago musicians, listed by their level of fame. This Chicago musicians list includes both Chicago bands and solo artists. All famous Chicago bands are included, as well as many Chicago musicians of underground status. Chicago is famous for many styles of music. The Windy City has a deep and rich history of amazing blues and jazz. In the past couple of decades, Chicago became known for it's alternative rock and pop punk scene while also producing some of the most influential rappers of all time.This list of Chicago musical artists includes examples from practically every genre. Rappers, singers, DJs, rock bands, and indie groups are all included on this list. All-time great artists like Sam Cooke and Muddy Waters are listed along with new pillars of Chicago music like Kanye West and Wilco. 

You can rank all of these bands, from Kanye West to The Smashing Pumpkins.

If you're wondering, "What bands are from Chicago?" or "What is a list of Chicago bands?" then this list will answer your questions. 
1
Kanye West is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Hip hop; Nationality: United States of America
Kanye Omari West (born June 8, 1977) is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer, entrepreneur, and fashion designer. His musical career has been marked by dramatic changes in ...more

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The Best Kanye West Albums of All-Time #511 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #821 of 2,835 The Most Influential People of All Time

2
The Smashing Pumpkins is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
The Smashing Pumpkins (or Smashing Pumpkins) are an American alternative rock band from Chicago, Illinois. Formed in 1988 by frontman Billy Corgan (lead vocals, guitar), D'arcy Wretzky (bass), ...more

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The Best Smashing Pumpkins Albums, Ranked #94 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #114 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

3
Chicago is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Chicago is an American rock band formed in 1967 in Chicago, Illinois, calling themselves the Chicago Transit Authority in 1968 before shortening the name in 1969. The self-described “rock and ...more

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#201 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #81 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #91 of 279 The Top Pop Artists of the 1960s

4
Sam Cooke is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Pop music, Rhythm and blues & Jazz; Nationality: United States of America
Samuel Cook (January 22, 1931 – December 11, 1964), known professionally as Sam Cooke, was an American singer, songwriter, civil-rights activist and entrepreneur. Influential as both a singer ...more

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Rising Soul Singer Sam Cooke Perished Under Mysterious Circumstances In 1964 And The Case Is Still Unsolved #51 of 696 The Best Rock Vocalists #95 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

5
Disturbed is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Disturbed is an American heavy metal band from Chicago, formed in 1994. The band includes vocalist David Draiman, guitarist/keyboardist Dan Donegan, bassist John Moyer and drummer Mike Wengren. ...more

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#913 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #441 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #567 of 1,060 The Worst Bands & Musicians of All Time

6
Jennifer Hudson is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Pop music, Contemporary R&B & Soul music; Nationality: United States of America
Jennifer Kate Hudson (born September 12, 1981) is an American singer and actress. She rose to fame in 2004 as a finalist on the third season of American Idol, placing seventh. Hudson made her ...more

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The Best Jennifer Hudson Songs #181 of 274 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities in the World #26 of 218 The Greatest New Female Vocalists of the Past 10 Years

7
Muddy Waters is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Blues-rock, Chicago blues & Rock music; Nationality: United States of America
McKinley Morganfield (April 4, 1913 – April 30, 1983), known professionally as Muddy Waters, was an American blues singer-songwriter and musician who is often cited as the "father of modern ...more

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The Best Muddy Waters Albums of All Time #137 of 696 The Best Rock Vocalists #249 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

8
Common is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Hip hop music, Jazz rap & Alternative hip hop; Nationality: United States of America
Lonnie Corant Jaman Shuka Rashid Lynn (born March 13, 1972), better known by his stage name Common (formerly Common Sense), is an American rapper, actor, writer, philanthropist, and activist. ...more

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The Best Common Songs #115 of 501 The Greatest Rappers Of All Time #320 of 329 The Greatest Actors Who Have Never Won an Oscar (for Acting)

9
Wilco is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Wilco is an American alternative rock band based in Chicago, Illinois. The band was formed in 1994 by the remaining members of alternative country group Uncle Tupelo following singer Jay ...more

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#681 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #357 of 398 The Best Frontmen in Rock #599 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

10
R. Kelly is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Hip hop music, Neo soul & Dance-pop; Nationality: United States of America
Robert Sylvester Kelly (born January 8, 1967)[8] is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, and former semi-professional basketball player. Kelly is known for songs including ...more

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All The Fallout From 'Surviving R. Kelly' #868 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Timelisted on The Complete List of Rappers Who've Been in Prison

11
Rise Against is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Rise Against is an American punk rock band from Chicago. The group's current line-up comprises vocalist/rhythm guitarist Tim McIlrath, lead guitarist Zach Blair, bassist Joe Principe and drummer ...more

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The Best Rise Against Songs of All Time #1,655 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #818 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

12
Lupe Fiasco is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop & Political hip hop; Nationality: United States of America
Wasalu Muhammad Jaco (born February 16, 1982), better known by his stage name Lupe Fiasco ( LOO-pay), is an American rapper, record producer, entrepreneur, and activist. He rose to fame in 2006 ...more

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The Best Songs Feat. Lupe Fiasco #1,656 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #109 of 501 The Greatest Rappers Of All Time

13
Anastacia is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Blue-eyed soul, Disco & Pop music; Nationality: United States of America
Anastacia Lyn Newkirk (; born September 17, 1968) is an American singer-songwriter, producer and former dancer. Her first two albums Not That Kind (2000) and Freak of Nature (2001) were released ...more

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#20 of 218 The Greatest New Female Vocalists of the Past 10 Years #961 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #721 of 1,043 The Best Singers of All Time

14
Earth, Wind & Fire ... is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Earth, Wind & Fire is an American band that has spanned the musical genres of R&B, soul, funk, jazz, disco, pop, rock, Latin, African and gospel. They are one of the most successful and ...more

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#163 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #58 of 364 The Greatest American Rock Bands #92 of 502 The Greatest Musical Artists of the '80s

15
Fall Out Boy is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Fall Out Boy is an American rock band formed in Wilmette, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, in 2001. The band consists of lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Patrick Stump, bassist Pete Wentz, lead ...more

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The Best Fall Out Boy Songs #630 of 696 The Best Rock Vocalists #533 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

16
Ministry is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Ministry is an American industrial metal band founded by lead singer Al Jourgensen in 1981. Originally a new wave synthpop outfit, Ministry changed its style to industrial metal in the ...more

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#801 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #508 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #104 of 221 Bands/Artists With Only One Great Album

17
Survivor is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Survivor is an American rock band formed in Chicago in 1978 by Jim Peterik and Frankie Sullivan. The band achieved its greatest success in the 1980s, producing many charting singles, especially ...more

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#1,042 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #222 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time #77 of 367 The Best Pop Artists of the 1980s

18
Kaskade is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Dubstep, Lounge Music & Deep House; Nationality: United States of America
Ryan Gary Raddon (born February 25, 1971), better known by his stage name Kaskade, is an American DJ, record producer and remixer. In 2013, Kaskade was nominated for two Grammy Awards: the song ...more

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The Best Kaskade Albums, Ranked #17 of 365 The Best DJs in the World Right Nowlisted on Mormon Celebrities

19
Resurrection Band is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Resurrection Band, also known as Rez Band or REZ, was a Christian rock band formed in 1972. They were part of the Jesus People USA Christian community in Chicago and most of its members have ...more

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#1,690 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #554 of 676 The Best Alternative Bands/Artists #78 of 105 The Best Musical Artists From Illinois

20
Richard Marx is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Adult contemporary music, Pop music & Rock music; Nationality: United States of America
Richard Noel Marx (born September 16, 1963) is an American adult contemporary and pop/rock singer, songwriter, musician and record producer who has sold over 30 million records. He had a stream ...more

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#256 of 696 The Best Rock Vocalists #429 of 1,043 The Best Singers of All Time #106 of 193 The Greatest Male Pop Singers of All Time

21
Donny Hathaway is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Blues-rock, Pop music & Chicago soul; Nationality: United States of America
Donny Edward Hathaway (October 1, 1945 – January 13, 1979) was an American soul singer, keyboardist, songwriter, and arranger. Hathaway has been described as a "soul legend" by Rolling ...more

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#536 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #635 of 1,043 The Best Singers of All Time #75 of 152 The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 40

22
Mavis Staples is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Rhythm and blues, Soul music & Gospel music; Nationality: United States of America
Mavis Staples (born July 10, 1939) is an American rhythm and blues and gospel singer, actress, and civil rights activist. She has recorded and performed with her family's band The Staple Singers ...more

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#271 of 1,043 The Best Singers of All Time #263 of 935 The Best Female Vocalists Ever #91 of 181 The Best Female Musicians of All Time

23
Veruca Salt is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Veruca Salt is an American alternative rock band founded in Chicago, Illinois, in 1993 by vocalist-guitarists Nina Gordon and Louise Post, drummer Jim Shapiro and bassist Steve Lack.

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#1,941 of 2,040 The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time #91 of 161 The Greatest Chick Rock Bands Ever #1,211 of 2,211 The Best Rock Bands of All Time

24
Andrew Bird is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Swing music, Folk rock & Jazz; Nationality: United States of America
Andrew Wegman Bird (born July 11, 1973) is an American indie rock multi-instrumentalist, singer, and songwriter. Since 1996, he has released 15 studio albums, as well as several live albums and ...more

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The Best Andrew Bird Albums of All Time #142 of 319 The Best Bands With Animal Names #431 of 605 The Most Hipster Bands

25
Twista is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list List of Famous Bands from Chicago
Genre: Hip hop music, Midwest hip hop & Gangsta rap; Nationality: United States of America
Carl Terrell Mitchell (born November 27, 1973), better known by his stage name Twista (formerly Tung Twista), is an American rapper. He is best known for his chopper style of rapping and for ...more

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#60 of 501 The Greatest Rappers Of All Time #77 of 138 The Dopest Rappers of the '90s #60 of 206 The Best Rap Lyricists of All Time