Rock The Best Surf Rock Bands  

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2.9k votes 634 voters 43k views 84 items
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During the 1960s, there were fewer musical genres more popular in the U.S. than surf rock. The glossy pop soundings encapsulated the carefree nature and glistening Americana that California symbolize. Naturally, surf rock's origins were in Southern California, in particular the Los Angeles and Orange County coasts. Surf rock was generally more popular at the beginning of the 1960s, when bands would sing about surfing, hanging out, hot rod cars and girls. Surf rock bands appealed to the desire for the endless summer.

So, that said, what are the best surf rock band bands? Well, any list needs to be built around the genius of Brian Wilson, Mike Love and the Beach Boys. One of the most popular and greatest rock bands of all time, the Beach Boys helped usher in this new era of rock music. Additionally, other bands like Best Coast, Jan and Dean, Dick Dale, Waaves and DIIV are an eclectic mix of old and new bands that are among the top surf rock bands. 

That said, it's up to you to determine what are the best surf rock bands. If you know surf rock and are a fan of the genre, feel free to vote on this list. If you notice a surf rock band isn't on this list, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best surf rock bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest surf 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 surf rock bands that you might've heard of. (84 items)
list ordered by

1
139 53
Dick Dale is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Instrumental rock, Heavy metal, Pop rock

2
120 42
The Ventures is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Rock music, Instrumental rock, Surf rock

3
170 73
The Beach Boys is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Pop music, Rock music, Psychedelic pop

4
58 29
The Trashmen is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Rock music, Garage rock, Protopunk

5
60 32
Jan and Dean is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Sunshine pop, Rock music, Folk rock

6
43 21
Skinny Dickies is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
andrewcantsurf added Surf punk, blues rock

7
66 43
Brian Wilson is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Pop music, Rock music, Outsider music

8
49 37
The Cramps is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Horror punk, New Wave, Punk blues

9
30 20
Original Surfaris is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Surf rock, Surf music

10
33 23
The Tornados is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Pop music, Rock music, Instrumental rock

11
36 26
The Marketts is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Pop music, Surf rock

12
47 37
The Growlers is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Garage rock, Psychedelic rock

13
42 33
Man or Astro-man? is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Space rock, Surf rock, Punk rock

14
30 21
The Bel-Airs is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Rock music, Surf rock, Surf music

15
27 22
Agent Orange is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Skate punk, Surf rock, Punk rock

16
11 5
The Tarantulas is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Draggin TheLion added Surf, Punk, Surf Punk

17
50 48
Wavves is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Pop punk, Noise rock, Garage rock

18
7 2
Link Wray & His Raymen is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Dylan Evans added

19
30 29
Carl Wilson is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Classic rock, Pop music, Rock music

20
31 31
Surf Punks is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Pop punk, Rock music, Surf rock

21
22 21
The Atlantics is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Rock music, Garage rock, Instrumental rock

22
13 11
The Surf Coasters is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Surf rock, Psychedelic rock, Surf music

23
4 1
Beach Fossils is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Dylan Evans added Indie pop, Shoegazing, Garage rock

24
39 42
Best Coast is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
Indie pop, Garage rock, Indie rock

25
18 18
Allah-Las is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Surf Rock Bands
diogo-nóvoa added Rock music, Rock and roll