reggae The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time  

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People may not realize this, but ska music originated in Jamaica in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Ska music's influence ranges beyond ska bands. Without ska music, genres like reggae and rocksteady may not have come to be. The ska beat is heavily influenced by American R&B music and has grown into one of the most popular standalone musical genres. It is also one of the most distinct - famous ska bands are rarely confused as being from another genre. The best ska bands are some of the most popular in the world due to the eclectic sound and the diverse instruments used in shaping the music. Ska bands had a surge in popularity in the 1990s with albums like Sell Out (Reel Big Fish) and Super Rad! (The Aquabats) taking over the radio waves. This is the era where some of the best ska bands emerged and haven't let up since.

So, what are the best ska bands? Any list of ska bands has to include names like Reel Big Fish, Streetlight Manifesto, The Specials, Less Than Jake, Goldfinger, the Aquabats and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones. These bands are widely considered some of the best in the genre and with good reason. With some of the best ska songs, exciting live shows and a sound that encapsulates the best of what ska music has to offer, there's no doubt that these bands are rightfully considered at or near the top of the list of ska bands.

That said, it's up to to you to determine what are the best ska bands. If you notice that a ska band is missing from this list, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best ska bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest ska 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 ska bands that you might've heard of. 
list ordered by

1
2,086 589
The Specials is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Specials New Wave, 2 Tone, Ska punk

2
1,607 542
The Skatalites is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Skatalites Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

3
1,603 588
Madness is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Madness New Wave, 2 Tone, Pop music

4
1,001 257
Toots & the Maytals is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Toots & the Maytals Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

5
1,213 468
Desmond Dekker is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Desmond Dekker Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

6
1,567 706
The Mighty Mighty Bosstones is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Mighty Mighty Bosstones Noise rock, Ska punk, Third-wave of ska

7
1,129 495
The Slackers is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

8
904 359
Jimmy Cliff is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Jimmy Cliff Ska, Reggae

9
1,249 667
Operation Ivy is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Operation Ivy Ska punk, Punk rock, Hardcore punk

10
925 386
The Selecter is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
OneontaSka added The Selecter New Wave, Ska

11
1,175 434
Hepcat is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Hepcat Ska, Rocksteady

12
833 355
The Beat is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
WallyZialcita added The Beat New Wave, 2 Tone, Pop music

13
1,700 1,015
Reel Big Fish is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Reel Big Fish Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

14
1,108 432
The Toasters is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
fatherrhyme added The Toasters 2 Tone, Pop music, Ska punk - Ska, 2-Tone, Dub, 3rd wave ska

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15
1,012 384
Bad Manners is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Bad Manners 2 Tone, Ska

16
769 282
The Aggrolites is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
OneontaSka added The Aggrolites Ska, Reggae, Soul music

17
603 129
Prince Buster is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
JeffreyBryson added Prince Buster Blue Beat, Ska, Reggae

18
1,390 787
Streetlight Manifesto is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Streetlight Manifesto Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

19
1,284 730
Less Than Jake is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Less Than Jake Pop punk, Ska punk, Third-wave of ska

20
794 619
Mad Caddies is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
fatherrhyme added Mad Caddies Ska punk, Punk rock - Ska, Ska Punk, Reggae, Punk Rock, Pop Punk

21
766 312
Laurel Aitken is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Jean-marieGerard added Laurel Aitken Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

The Best Third-wave Of Ska Bands

22
656 266
Derrick Morgan is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Derrick Morgan Blue Beat, Ska, Reggae

23
1,133 638
Rancid is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Rancid Pop punk, Ska punk, Street punk

24
785 473
The Pietasters is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Pietasters Ska punk, Ska, Rocksteady

25
1,229 802
Sublime is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Sublime Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, Rock music

26
741 457
Voodoo Glow Skulls is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Voodoo Glow Skulls Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

27
609 258
Alton Ellis is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Alton Ellis Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

28
826 340
Fishbone is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Fishbone Heavy metal, Reggae fusion, Hard rock

The Best Christian Ska Bands

29
744 567
Big D and the Kids Table is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Big D and the Kids Table Ska punk, Ska, Reggae

30
548 413
Skankin' Pickle is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Skankin' Pickle Ska punk, Ska, Rock music

31
397 163
Lee Perry is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

32
706 478
Mustard Plug is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Mustard Plug Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

33
772 561
Goldfinger is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Goldfinger Pop punk, Ska punk, Alternative rock

34
620 455
The Suicide Machines is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Suicide Machines Ska punk, Punk rock, Hardcore punk

35
438 373
The Interrupters is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
OneontaSka added The Interrupters

The Best Canned Beers

36
696 528
Save Ferris is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Save Ferris Ska punk

37
623 482
Catch 22 is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Catch 22 Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

38
342 100
English Beat is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
tmcandrews3 added English Beat

39
880 419
The Aquabats is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
The Aquabats Pop punk, Synthpop, New Wave

40
599 257
Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Tokyo Ska Paradise Orchestra Ska, Japanese ska, Jazz

41
380 214
Delroy Wilson is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Delroy Wilson Ska, Reggae, Rocksteady

42
408 385
The Planet Smashers is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
OllieRocksteady added The Planet Smashers Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Punk rock

12 Things You Didn't Know About Panic! At The Disco's Brendon Urie

43
312 230
Dance Hall Crashers is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Dance Hall Crashers Pop punk, Ska punk

44
447 233
New York Ska-Jazz Ensemble is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time

45
471 327
Mephiskapheles is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
behessel added Mephiskapheles Ska punk, Ska

46
443 395
Buck-O-Nine is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Buck-O-Nine Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

47
388 283
Bim Skala Bim is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
Bim Skala Bim Ska punk, Third-wave of ska, Ska

48
650 697
No Doubt is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
No Doubt Pop punk, New Wave, Pop music

49
207 312
The Allstonians is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
RightOn added The Allstonians Ska, Reggae

50
240 208
Los Fabulosos Cadillacs is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Ska Bands of All Time
rex-fett added Los Fabulosos Cadillacs Ska, Rock music, Folk music