Rock Bands to Know

Check out this playlist featuring songs in the article:


Pink Floyd’s album Animals, taken from the official website

Kelli Cigelnik, Staff Reporter

As times change, tpng;base64dfb583b1d89e0e3eechnology advances and global warming gets worse, but there is something that always seems to stay the same: the love of music. While the types of music might change, it has always been present in our culture. As a result, these ten bands are bands that everyone should know at least a little about because they’ve changed the course of music history.



The Beatles – Rock: The Beatles had four members: Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. McCartney, Lennon and Harrison were friends all throughou

t high school. They started in Liverpool, England, and then came to America in February 1964 to become rock music icons. They have become the definition of rock and roll and brought it to America to stay forever. Because all their music is created by them, most of their songs have an interesting backstory to them. They were the biggest band of their time and continue to remain popular with each new generation. A song you should listen to is “Twist and Shout” on the album Please Please Me.


Pink Floyd – Progressive Rock: Pink Floyd also consisted of four members: David Gilmour, Roger Waters, Rick Wright and Nick Mason. The band is known for its artistry within the music, such as on the album Dark Side of the Moon. They originated in London while in college, and this is where most of them met each other. Mason and Waters were long-time friends before college as well. In the band’s early stages, they were unsuccessful in America because many people were not a fan of their type of progressive, or some would say “Psychedelic”, rock. It wasn’t until several years after the band’s origination that they came out with one of the best albums of all time, The Dark Side of the Moon. Their music and lyrics are brilliance put into a sound that is imaginative and creative at the same time. A song you should listen to is “Another Brick in the Wall Part 2” on the album The Wall.


Lynyrd Skynyrd – Hard Rock/Southern Rock: Lynyrd Skynyrd has many band members, but the only lead singer was Ronnie Van Zant, who is now deceased. The band is known for being one of the most successful bands throughout the 70s because they turned southern music into a rock style that everyone loves and listens to. When they came out with their first album, Pronounced ‘Lĕh-‘nérd ‘Skin-‘nérd, it was a mass hit within days of its release. They had many hits off of that album that remain popular today. These hits include “Tuesday’s Gone”, “Free Bird” and “Simple Man”. They also had another top hit, “Sweet Home Alabama”, which conjoined hard rock with southern rock. Their songs consist of beautiful guitar playing and extravagant lyrics. A song you should listen to is “Free Bird” on the album Pronounced ‘Lĕh-‘nérd ‘Skin-‘nérd.


Bob Marley and The Wailers – Reggae: Music lovers cannot claim a dislike of reggae until they listen to Bob Marley. Once they give him a try, they’ll be hooked because Bob Marley is the King of Reggae and has introduced this genre to everyone around the world. Bob Marley has brought people together who didn’t even think that they had anything in common when he introduced this music in the 1960s and early 70s. His most popular album is Exodus. His music makes the listeners feel as if they are a part of something bigger while also feeling at ease.  A song you should listen to is “Three Little Birds” on the album Legend.


Aerosmith – Hard Rock: Aerosmith consists of five people: Steven Tyler, Joe Perry, Tom Hamilton, Brad Whitford and Joey Kramer. Similar to The Rolling Stones, Aerosmith is known for many hard rock culture songs. They started off as a blues band but soon transitioned into hard rock music. They originated in and had the most success in America. This music is the type of sound to jam out to when you are having a bad day, but there is never a time that is bad for jamming out to some Aerosmith. They have also become known for their comeback concerts and tour. Their most popular album is Rocks, but Aerosmith does not disappoint with any of its songs. A song you should listen to is “Sweet Emotion” on the album Toys in the Attic.


Elton John – Pop: Elton John was one of the most popular musicians of the 20th century. He creates his own songs and is an amazing pianist. His music is the perfect mix of pop and hard rock to create the best sound for anyone to listen to. He composed music for “Billy Elliot” on Broadway, which also brought him much success in his life. Before this, he self-made his first album, which had hit singles, such as “Empty Sky”. Like Lady Gaga, he is best known for his crazy and unique outfits when he performs live. Additionally, he admitted he was gay in 1976, which negatively impacted  his music career, but  as time went on, fans have learned to  look past this to recognize that his music abilities are much more important than who he likes or doesn’t like. A song you should listen to is “Your Song” on the self-titled album Elton John.


Steve Miller Band – Pop Rock: Steve Miller Band’s lead singer and manager is Steve Miller, and they originated in San Francisco, California. This type of music is calm but also has a hard rock edge to it so that you can either lay down at a concert to listen to it, or you can get up and start dancing and singing to it. Not many bands have that effect on people. Their songs are very catchy, and their lyrics are fun to sing along to. Their most famous album is Fly like an Eagle. A song you should listen to is “The Joker” on the album Steve Miller Band Live!


Michael Jackson – Soul: Michael Jackson lives up to his genre. Every single song that he has created has all of his heart and soul in it. What is so amazing about Jackson is that he has been a star ever since he was 13 in his family’s band Jackson 5 and has remained a star even after his death in 2009. While many judge him for alleged criminal claims against him and for some of his lifestyle choices, people can’t deny his love for music and dance and his creativity in each of his songs. His songs reflect how he is as a person, which is hard to do for most songwriters and performers during this time period. Jackson sends messages in most of his songs as well. He was also known for his funky music videos. A lot of his songs have hit top charts and so have his albums. He continues to reign as the king of pop. A song you should listen to is “They Don’t Care about Us” on the album History: Past, Present, and Future.


Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers – Rock and Roll: Tom Petty and his band originated in a garage, thinking that they were going to be stars one day.  They became more than just stars; they have become one of the best rock and roll groups of all time. While achieving this, many band members have come and gone, but Tom Petty has stayed with it, still producing new music and touring. Additionally, Tom Petty has been referenced in other songs, such as “Sunshine and Whiskey” by Frankie Ballard, who states that he turns “Tom Petty up loud”. This one line emphasizes that any time you listen to Tom Petty you will have a good time because he always offers the good vibe you’re wishing to hear. A song you should listen to is “Free Fallin’” on the album Full Moon Fever.


Queen – Rock: The most popular band members include Freddie Mercury and Brian May. Queen is known for the indescribable lyrics that are imaginative while being very catchy at the same time. Their music is hard rock and easy to jam to with each song offering something unique. Any genre listener can listen to Queen and love the music. The classic songs are in many movies, such as “Bohemian Rhapsody” in “Wayne’s World”. A song you should listen to is “Killer Queen” on the album Sheer Heart Attack.