Your favorite music artists from A to Z

I stole this subject from another forum, thought it might be fun to try it here… though sadly, we’ve lost some music loving members, and their contributions will be missed, but lets see what we come up with.


  • Name your favorite artist for each letter of the alphabet.
  • Only one per letter - Solo artist by surname, unless they only use the first as their professional name - members choice if they were known by both (Elvis Presley, could go with E or P)
  • Any era, any style of music

Alice Cooper (originally was the name of a group, not an individual)
Cash, Johnny (hon mentions, The Cars and Cream)
Devo (so hard to choose between them and Dylan)
Everly Brothers
Franklin, Aretha (also, Fitzgerald, Ella & The Flaming Lips)
Gabriel, Peter
Hendrix, Jimi
Idol, Billy
Judas Priest
Kihn, Greg (The Knack’s first album and concert made them contenders)
Lennon, John
Melanie (also a shout out to The Monkees)
Oingo Boingo
Roxy Music
Simon & Garfunkel
Tubes (but Sister Rosa Tharpe was calling out to me)
Ultravox (I had one album, Rage in Eden, but it was a winner)
Velvet Underground (or the Violent Femmes)
Waits, Tom
Young, Neil


Challenging my memory here. No doubt I could come up with other answers. I’ll try not to repeat yours, even though some would be favorites (e.g. Beatles, Hendrix, Queen.) Certain letters could have multiple answers (e.g. I could start with Amos, Tori or Apple, Fiona.)

Alice in Chains
Bowie, David
Cheap Trick
Doors, The
Jefferson Airplane
Led Zeppelin
Moody Blues
October Project
Pink Floyd
Rolling Stones
Santana, Carlos
Talking Heads
Yankovic, Weird Al
Zevon, Warren


One per letter? I am already running into issues making a decision at A.

I’ll post a list this evening…


If they’re your fave, then repeats are perfectly fine, IMO. The request does say list your favorite.


Yeah absolutely, repeat away! It’s all about favorites. (though I like the Quarterflash pick, brings back happy Portland memories, when they were named Seafood Mama - folks from there might remember this locally released single)



AC/DC (honorable mentions Aerosmith, Allman Brothers, Alice Cooper)

The Beatles (honorable mentions The B-52s, The Band, Beck, Blue Oyster Cult, David Bowie, The Byrds – B is a tough one.)

The Clash (honorable mentions Johnny Cash, Nick Cave, The Chieftains, Clannad, Leonard Cohen, Elvis Costello, Cream, CCR, CSN)

The Doors (honorable mentions Deep Purple, Devo, The Doobie Brothers, Nick Drake, Bob Dylan)

Brian Eno (honorable mentions Echo & the Bunnymen, Eurythmics)

Aretha Franklin (honorable mentions Fairport Convention, Fatboy Slim, Fleetwood Mac)

The Grateful Dead (honorable mentions Marvin Gaye, Genesis, Philip Glass, The Go-Gos)

Jimi Hendrix (honorable mentions PJ Harvey, Heart, Husker Du)

Iron Maiden

Joan Jett (honorable mentions The Jam, Jefferson Airplane, Jethro Tull, J. Geils Band, Elton John, Judas Priest)

The Kinks (honorable mentions King Crimson, Kraftwerk, Kronos Quartet)

Led Zeppelin (honorable mentions John Lennon, Love)

Joni Mitchell (honorable mentions Bob Marley, Men At Work, Moody Blues, Van Morrison)

Stevie Nicks (honorable mentions New Order, Nirvana)

Ozzy Osbourne

Pink Floyd (honorable mentions Tom Petty, Phish, Pixies, The Police. Another one… very close to a tie between Floyd and the Police)


R is the toughest one. Rush is my answer, but Radiohead, the Ramones, R.E.M., Lou Reed, Renaissance, Replacements, Rolling Stones, Roxy Music… damn.)

Stereolab. (honorable mentions Sex Pistols, Simon & Garfunkel, Siouxsie & the Banshees, Smashing Pumpkins, Patti Smith, Sonic Youth, Springsteen, Steely Dan, Styx… yes, don’t judge me)

Talking Heads (honorable mentions Television, Traffic)


Velvet Underground (honorable mention Van Halen)

The Who (honorable mentions Tom Waits, Stevie Wonder)

XTC (honorable mention X)

Neil Young (honorable mentions Weird Al Yankovic, the Yardbirds, Yes, Yo La Tengo)

Frank Zappa (honorable mentions Warren Zevon, ZZ Top)


Asobi Seksu
Big Head Todd & the Monsters
Camera Obscura
Death Cab for Cutie
The Eames Era
Fiona Apple
Gregory Alan Isakov
Neko Case
Owl City
Paul Simon
Rainer Maria
Talking Heads
Yo La Tengo
Zolof the Rock & Roll Destroyer


These are tough for me because my “randomly recall things” skills are very poor so I end up having to go through lists (and all the “bands starting with X” lists go by solo artist first name) anyway enough griping here’s my list. Some of which are “just about the only band I can think of for this letter”

Cure, The [honorable mention: Chainsaw Kittens]
Depeche Mode
Frightened Rabbit [hon mention: Flobots]
Green Day
Jesus & Mary Chain
Killers, The
Lady Gaga
Me First and the Gimme Gimmes
Nine Inch Nails
Offspring, The
Prince [hon mention: Pink]
Smiths, The
Ting Tings, The
Urge Overkill
Violent Femmes
Winehouse, Amy
Yankovic, Al “Weird”
Zappa, Frank


The Aquabats
Bowie, David
Cohen, Leonard
The Eurythmics
Father John Misty
Hopeful Monster
Islam, Yusuf
John, Elton
The Kinks
Lamar, Kendrick
The Marvelettes
Newman, Randy (was a punchline for a while but he’s got a wicked sense of humour)
Orange Range
The Pixies
The Ramones
Shonen Knife
The Talking Heads
“unknown” (picks on my computer I never properly sorted)
Waits, Tom
Yankovic, “Weird” Al
Zevon, Warren


That was frustrating, K was difficult for me, so I went searching, but for individual performers they didn’t list by the last name… GRRRR!

For laughs, and for this forum, I thought about using a band out of Tennessee I’d see around town called the Katies. :laughing:

I have one of their CDs, and loved this song. A lot of people in the area expected them to break nationally but they never did. Too bad, the rest of America missed out.


Steve Hoffman Forum?

That was sooooo difficult. Several letters had a good half dozen candidates and, if asked to redo this in twenty-four hours, would be quite likely, quite different.

B: The Beatles
C: The Clash
D: Dire Straits
E: Eurythmics
F: Fleetwood Mac
G: Gabriel, Peter
H: Harvey, PJ
I: Iron Maiden
J: Jane’s Addiction
K: The Kinks
L: Los Lobos
M: Manic Street Preachers
N: New Order
O: O’Connor, Sinead
P: Petty, Tom & The Heartbreakers
Q: Queens Of The Stone Age
R: Rush
S: Springsteen, Bruce & The E Street Band
T: Talking Heads
U: U2
V: Van Halen
W: Wonder, Stevie
X: X
Y: Young, Neil & Crazy Horse
Z: Zevon, Warren


Since y’all are including honorable mentions, I’m going to do that as well. That makes this a bit easier. But just like @FreemanLowell said, this list would probably be different if I made it tomorrow…

A: Apocalyptica (HM: Anthrax, Arch Enemy)
B: Bad Religion (HM: Bad Brains)
C: Coltrane, John (HM: Cannibal Corpse, Corrosion Of Conformity)
D: Dream Theater (HM: Dead Kennedys)
E: Ellington, Duke (HM: Exodus)
F: Fleck, Bela
G: Guano Apes (HM: Graffin, Greg
H: Holiday, Billie (HM: Helmet)
I: Iron Maiden
J: Judas Priest
K: Krysna (HM: King Diamond, KMFDM
L: Led Zeppelin (HM: Lamb Of God, Luna Mortis)
M: Metallica (HM: Motörhead, Megadeth)
N: Nine Inch Nails
O: Opeth (HM: Osbourne, Ozzy)
P: Psychostick (HM: Prince, Public Enemy)
Q: Queen
R: Rictus Grin (HM: Rage Against The Machine, Ruder Than You)
S: Sepultura (HM: Slayer, Soulfly
T: Type O Negative (HM: Talking Heads)
U: Ugly Kid Joe
V: Vader
W: Wrath
X: X (HM X-Ray Spex)
Y: Yellowjackets
Z: Zappa, Frank


Enjoying the lists, keep 'em coming.

I didn’t struggle too much with mine, the K’s sure (there were plenty I liked, but not many I loved and owned records from) but it was pretty swift goings for me

Start at the top (Beatles), worked my way through the bands where I have every album and enjoy most of them (Cooper, XTC, Roxy)

After that, those where maybe I didn’t like everything in their careers, but for an era they were incredible (70s Nazareth)

Next, those where I liked songs and had an album I loved (The Zombies, Ultravox)

Finally, the legends - no LPs in my collection, but I always turn up the radio when they play, and have checked out their greatest hits from the library or Spotify (Aretha)

Edit: I did add a shout out to the Monkees in my list, needed to show them some love

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My husband (not on this board) took it as a challenge to write his favorites purely from memory, then did it again consulting our list of albums. He only had to change a few of them after consulting the list. I, on the other hand, made little to no attempt to do mine from memory.

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I did this pretty much off the top of my head. There was only a couple letters I had to consult our database for.


If he doesn’t mind you sharing, I’d love to see his list.

After I finished mine, I did go to the old record rack and looked over my LP, gave a once over on the CD collection too.

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Sure, he don’t mind. The final list (after consulting our collection) is:

Aquabats, The
Blue Brothers, The
Costello, Elvis
Dead Kennedys, The [hm: The Dickies and Devo]
Green Day [hm: Gogol Bordello]
Hooker, John Lee
Iggy Pop (I told him I think stage names don’t have to go by last name)
Jane’s Addiction
King, B.B.
Let’s Go Bowling
Mighty Mighty Bosstones, The
Oingo Boingo
Prine, John
Red Hot Chili Peppers [hm: The Ramones]
Smashing Pumpkins
Talking Heads
Untouchables, The
Voodoo Glow Skulls
Who, The
Yankovic, “Weird” Al
Zappa, Frank

I also realized I should have picked They Might Be Giants over the Ting Tings for my T pick.


I like it (I was so wrapped up in my Devo vs Dylan debate I forgot about the Dickies, nice deep cut)

And yeah, stage names are fine with the first (I wonder if anyone ever did call him Mr. Pop?)

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Since it is a name, I always file him under Pop, Iggy. Although I often have the urge to confuse the wife and file him under Osterberg, James.

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