Thursday, September 7, 2017

The Top 100 Groups/Duos of All Time

First posted 9/10/2011; updated 9/7/2017.

Based on chart figures, sales data, airplay, awards, and appearances on best-of lists (and not just rock groups from the last 50 years, mind you), here are the top 50 groups and duos according to Dave’s Music Database:

The Beatles
1. The Beatles
2. The Rollng Stones
3. Led Zeppelin
4. The Beach Boys
5. Queen
6. Pink Floyd
7. U2
8. The Bee Gees
9. The Who
10. Fleetwood Mac

The Rolling Stones
11. Eagles
12. The Supremes
13. Aerosmith
14. The Temptations
15. The Doors
16. Chicago
17. Simon & Garfunkel
18. The Jackson 5/The Jacksons
19. R.E.M.
20. The Kinks

The Beach Boys
21. Four Tops
22. Peerless Quartet/Columbia Male Quartet
23. The Everly Brothers
24. AC/DC
25. The Andrews Sisters
26. Genesis
27. The Police
28. Nirvana
29. Earth, Wind & Fire
30. Creedence Clearwater Revival

31. Van Halen
32. Bon Jovi
33. Black Sabbath
34. Pearl Jam
35. The Clash
36. Kiss
37. The Isley Brothers
38. The Miracles
39. Grateful Dead
40. Metallica

Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant and Jimmy Page
41. Journey
42. Velvet Underground
43. Sly & the Family Stone
44. Cream
45. Jefferson Airplane
/Jefferson Starship
46. Daryl Hall & John Oates
47. The Drifters
48. Carpenters
49. Lynyrd Skynyrd
50. Crosby, Stills & Nash
/Neil Young

51. Rush
52. Alabama
53. Ramones
54. The Band
55. The Byrds
56. The Mills Brothers
57. Allman Brothers Band
58. Guns N’ Roses
59. Sex Pistols
60. The Four Seasons

The Who
61. Yes
62. Deep Purple
63. Electric Light Orchestra
64. Abba
65. ZZ Top
66. Steely Dan
67. Blondie
68. The Platters
69. Parliament/Funkadelic
70. Radiohead

The Bee Gees
71. Beastie Boys
72. The Impressions
73. Dire Straits
74. The Spinners
75. Red Hot Chili Peppers
76. Boyz II Men
77. Green Day
78. Heart
79. Haydn Quartet
80. Foreigner

Pink Floyd
81. Talking Heads
82. American Quartet
83. The Pretenders
84. The Monkees
85. Three Dog Night
86. Kool & the Gang
87. Jethro Tull
88. The Ink Spots
89. Duran Duran
90. Oasis

Fleetwood Mac
91. Commodores
92. The Cure
93. Public Enemy
94. 5th Dimension
95. Eurythmics
96. Traffic
97. The O’Jays
98. The Moody Blues
99. Boston
100. Roxy Music



  1. Hey, just a question: according to your stats, is there any 00s band poised to break through in this list? I was thinking that Coldplay probably could be here, and maybe the White Stripes as well. Cheers

    1. Excellent question, Alberto - and you are right on the money with your first guess. Coldplay would be the newest group to have a shot at breaking into the top 100, but they don't show up on the list until #144. Linkin Park shows up at #159, Rascal Flatts at #178, Evanescence at #203, Nickelback at #212, Black Eyed Peas at #223, Audioslave at #241, and The White Stripes don't surface until #244. Personally, out of that batch I'd rank White Stripes ahead of all of them, but this is what the number crunching tells me.

  2. Where is The Jimi Hendrix Experience? You CANNOT possibly exclude this legendary group! Backstreet Boys are better? C'mon...

    1. I didn't include the Experience, opting to compile all the work he did with and without the Experience under the banner of Hendrix as a solo artist. If I put him on this list (Experience + non-Experience material) he would rank #5, between U2 and Led Zeppelin.

    2. Thanks Dave. Definitely in my top handful of artists...

  3. Hi, Dave (yes still following this website!)
    One question : are you going to do an update on this list, eventually?

  4. Hey, Alberto. I'm not sure when this list will get a makeover, but I redo the lists often, so who knows. Glad you're still following!

  5. This list seems to have been reorganized, with some omissions from the previous list. What a waste of time.

    1. As noted at the top of the page, the list has been updated so there are some omissions for previous lists. As with all DMDB lists, they are based on aggregates of multiple lists and the goal is to keep those current. The attempt is not to satisfy each individual's tastes (which would be impossible) but to reflect a consensus. I'm sorry it is a waste of time for you to consider the opinions of others.