music The Best Surf Bands of All Time  

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1.2k votes 316 voters 49.1k views 64 items Embed

During the early years of rock music, surf bands provided the soundtrack to people's perception of what California was like through bright driving riffs. The best surf bands, at their peak, topped the charts and their catchy tunes remain popular today. The sound remains highly influential on genres like punk, rock and even rockabilly. Surfer music may have seemed light and fun when it came out, but the surf bands' influence can't be understated.

So, what are the best surf bands? Any list of surf bands has to include the likes of the Beach Boys, Dick Dale, Jan and Dean, Waaves and even Brian Wilson's solo material. Many people associate surf music with the Beach Boys and with good reason. Not only were they among the most popular rock bands, they brought quick-hitting, fun-loving surf music to the charts that spawned a huge number of top hits. As for the other surf bands, Dick Dale's influence on experimental rock and instrumental rock is still heard in music today. 

That said, it's up to you to determine what are the best surf bands. If you notice that a band is missing, feel free to add them. Vote thumbs up for a band you think should be at the top of this poll, and vice versa if you don't think they should achieve a lofty status. This list answers the questions "who are the best surf music bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest surf music 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 surf music bands that you might've heard of. {#nodes}
list ordered by

1
76 23
Dick Dale is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Dick Dale Instrumental rock, Heavy metal, Pop rock

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2
29 3
The Ventures is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
darin-green added The Ventures Rock music, Instrumental rock, Surf rock

3
82 34
The Beach Boys is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Beach Boys Pop music, Rock music, Psychedelic pop

4
50 13
The Surfaris is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Surfaris Rock music, Surf music

5
39 18
Jan and Dean is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Jan and Dean Sunshine pop, Rock music, Folk rock

6
27 9
The Astronauts is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Astronauts Pop music, Rock music, Rock and roll

7
28 10
The Bel-Airs is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Bel-Airs Rock music, Surf rock, Surf music

8
33 16
Brian Wilson is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Brian Wilson Pop music, Rock music, Outsider music

9
17 3
The Telestons is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Lino Herakles Tesco added The Telestons

10
18 4
Agent Orange is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
sjw674 added Agent Orange Skate punk, Surf rock, Punk rock

11
26 12
The Mermen is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Mermen Rock music, Surf music

12
20 7
The Atlantics is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Atlantics Rock music, Garage rock, Instrumental rock

13
14 5
The Sandals is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Sandals Surf music

14
22 13
The Bambi Molesters is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Bambi Molesters Instrumental rock, Surf music

15
12 4
Eddie & the Showmen is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Eddie & the Showmen Rock music

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16
14 6
The Tornados is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Tornados Pop music, Rock music, Instrumental rock

17
14 6
The Centurions is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time

18
11 5
The Livelyones is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
RobGriffith added The Livelyones Lead guitar: Jim MasonerRhythm guitar: Ed ChiaveriniBass guitar: Ron GriffithSaxophone: Joel WillenbringDrums: Tim FitzpatrickThe greatest surf band off alltime.

19
15 9
Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Plane... is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet Rock music, Instrumental rock, Surf rock

20
15 9
The Growlers is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Growlers Garage rock, Psychedelic rock

21
19 13
Surf Punks is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Surf Punks Pop punk, Rock music, Surf rock

22
13 8
The Surf Coasters is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Surf Coasters Surf rock, Psychedelic rock, Surf music

23
11 6
Original Surfaris is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Original Surfaris Surf rock, Surf music

24
14 9
The Surf Trio is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Surf Trio Surf rock, Surf music

25
10 5
The Blue Hawaiians is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Blue Hawaiians Rock music, Surf music

26
10 6
Ronny & The Daytonas is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Ronny & The Daytonas Rock music, Rock and roll, Surf rock

27
8 4
The Raybeats is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Raybeats Surf rock, Surf music

28
8 4
Davie Allan and the Arrows is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
RobertJamesMcArthur added Davie Allan and the Arrows

29
8 4
The Livelyones is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
RobGriffith added The Livelyones

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30
6 2
FIDLAR is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time

31
4 0
The Chantays is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
GregerNordstrom added The Chantays

32
4 0
The Torquays is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
GregerNordstrom added The Torquays

33
12 9
Wavves is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Wavves Pop punk, Noise rock, Garage rock

34
9 6
The Rip-Chords is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time

35
8 5
The Hondells is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Hondells Rock music

36
3 0
The Aqua Velvets is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
GregerNordstrom added The Aqua Velvets

37
10 8
Best Coast is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Best Coast Indie pop, Garage rock, Indie rock

38
10 8
Jack Johnson is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
gamedemon24 added Jack Johnson Indie pop, Tropical rock, Pop music

39
8 6
Red Elvises is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Red Elvises Lounge music, Ska, Rock music

40
8 6
The Phantom Surfers is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Phantom Surfers Rock music, Surf rock, Surf music

41
5 3
Al Casey is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time

42
9 8
The 5.6.7.8's is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The 5.6.7.8's Rock music, Rockabilly, Garage punk

43
9 8
The Honeys is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Honeys Pop music, Rock and roll, Surf music

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44
8 7
The Barracudas is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
The Barracudas Jangle pop, Pop punk, Garage rock

45
3 3
The Rebels is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time

46
1 1
Cafe Del Mar is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
GregerNordstrom added Cafe Del Mar

47
1 1
The Moon-Rays is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
ScottMensching added The Moon-Rays The Moon-Rays mixture of 60's surf, exotica,and Mancini-esq jazz got their first album the JPF Indie award for best surf album, and since recorded four other albums for the SVI label as well as being featured in four feature ...

48
5 6
Surfer Blood is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Surfer Blood Pop punk, Shoegazing, Alternative rock

49
4 5
Surf City is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time

50
1 2
Royale Monarchs is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Surf Bands of All Time
Royale Monarchs Rock music