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The Best Music Side Projects

Updated July 8, 2021 3.8k votes 428 voters 13.2k views84 items

Like everyone else in the workforce, even our favorite rock stars need some time off from seeing his or her bandmates on occasion. This is why side projects have existed and why rock bands have spawned other bands and at times, been more creative and experimental than what fans are used to. Sometimes, the result is as good, if not better than the original outfit.

Though that doesn't happen often, it does happen from time to time that the side project is the best, most creative outlet for individual members that he or she can't achieve in their regular band. It can mean experimenting with synths or hardcore, or music like IDM or even EDM. Other times, it means powerhouses like Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, George Harrison of The Beatles join forces, same for hip hop icons Jay-Z and Kanye West. Here are some of the best side projects in music history, which vary from genre to genre.

The end result is the same however: the better the individual parts, the better the band. If a side project like the Traveling Wilburys or Atoms For Peace doesn't have the components like each respect project has, then they're unlikely to get the recognition. Even a group like indie super side project The Postal Service wouldn't be as known if not for the participation of Ben Gibbard and Jenny Lewis.

Here are some of the top side projects of all time.

 
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