Bands/Musicians The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time  

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6k votes 1.1k voters 84.5k views 223 items

This swing bands list ranks the best swing music artists by votes. This list of top swing bands and musicians let’s you see who swing fans think are the best swing music groups. For the better part of the 1930s and 1940s, swing music and swing bands were among the most popular musicians in the world. Using brass instruments and percussion, the best swing music consisted of arrangements that were easy to dance to and was considered the hippest sound, even surpassing jazz music. Soloists in swing bands were the rock stars of their time. Their bouncy music that had rhythm and a beat that could get even the most conservative of person to swing their hips. While many of the best swing music featured these soloists, the best featured memorable singers as well.

So, what are the best swing bands and swing artists? This isn't to be confused with famous swing bands and artists. This lists aims to separate the best swing music from the average. That's why you'll see the likes of Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Benny Goodman, Count Basie and Nat King Cole on here. These swing bands and artists are among the best swing bands and their songs remain classics in the great American songbook. Swing music and famous swing songs are the backbone of popular music, so that's why swing artists have so much respect by other musicians.

That said, it's up to you to determine what are swing bands and swing artists can truly be considered the best. This list answers the questions "who are the best swing bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest swing 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 swing bands that you might've heard of.
list ordered by

1
192 46
Count Basie is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Piano blues

2
184 43
Duke Ellington is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Orchestral jazz, Swing music, Big band

3
248 70
Louis Armstrong is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Traditional pop music, Jazz

4
268 79
Benny Goodman is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

5
164 38
Ella Fitzgerald is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Ballad, Swing music, Traditional pop music

6
241 72
Glenn Miller is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

7
239 76
Frank Sinatra is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Traditional pop music, Big band

8
126 27
Artie Shaw is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band

9
108 22
Tommy Dorsey is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

10
104 22
Count Basie Orchestra is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time

11
106 30
Nat King Cole is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Jump blues, Swing music, Traditional pop music

12
109 32
Billie Holiday is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Torch song, Ballad, Swing music

13
84 22
Cab Calloway is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

14
64 20
Jimmy Dorsey is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Dixieland

15
66 22
Gene Krupa is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

16
56 18
Fats Waller is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Stride, Ragtime, Swing music

17
76 32
Louis Prima is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Jump blues, Swing music, Traditional pop music

18
46 15
Woody Herman is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Cool jazz, Swing music, Big band

19
43 14
Jack Teagarden is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

20
51 20
Fletcher Henderson is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Jazz

21
52 23
Django Reinhardt is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Romani music, Gypsy jazz

22
42 16
Coleman Hawkins is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Bebop

23
47 20
Lionel Hampton is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band

24
37 13
Jelly Roll Morton is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Ragtime, Swing music, Jazz blues

25
42 19
Stan Kenton is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Jazz, West Coast jazz

26
73 45
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band

27
24 7
Swing Sisters is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Ragtime, Swing music, Big band

28
45 25
Buddy Rich is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

29
29 13
Charlie Barnet is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band

30
26 12
Charlie Christian is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

31
29 15
The Brian Setzer Orchestra is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Jump blues, Swing music, Rockabilly

32
23 10
George Shearing is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Cool jazz, Swing music, Jazz

33
25 13
Big Joe Turner is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Jump blues, Rock music, Swing music

34
25 13
Joe Williams is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Traditional pop music, Jazz

35
46 32
Brian Setzer is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Jump blues, Rock music, Swing music

36
21 10
Roy Eldridge is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

37
44 32
Harry Connick, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Jazz-funk, Swing music, Traditional pop music

38
15 6
Billy Strayhorn is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Classical music

39
16 7
Stéphane Grappelli is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Gypsy jazz, Jazz fusion

40
17 8
Charlie Byrd is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Brazilian jazz, Latin jazz

41
16 8
Tex Beneke is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

42
17 9
Johnny Hodges is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Ballad, Swing music

43
21 13
Ray Eberle is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Traditional pop music, Big band

44
13 6
Bobby Hackett is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz

45
14 7
John Pizzarelli is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Jazz

46
17 10
Billy Butterfield is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band

47
18 11
Clark Terry is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Hard bop, Jazz

48
22 15
Louis Prima, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Traditional pop music, Jazz

49
10 4
Sidney Bechet is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
slaft added Ragtime, Jazz, Dixieland

50
13 7
Benny Carter is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Swing Bands/Artists of All Time
Swing music, Big band, Jazz