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The Most Famous Band Formed Each Year Since 1951

Sunday, July 31, 2016


Beach Boys

The transportive nature of music is powerful, often helping listeners reminisce upon a fond memory or time period in their lives.

We have bands to thank for much of the modern music we recognize today. Unlike solo artists, multiple members contribute to a band and influence its sound with their different personalities. Take the calming, acoustic musings of Simon and Garfunkel, or the jaunty, wonder-filled tracks of The Beach Boys. No two bands are the same -- they all bring their own unique style to the table.

Despite the nostalgia that songs of certain bands can create, most people usually don't know what year the band was actually formed. Do you know the most famous band formed the year you were born? What about the year your parents were born? Or the year you graduated from high school?

PrettyFamous, an entertainment research site by Graphiq, found the most famous band formed each year since 1951. To do this, they created a customized Band Score on a scale of 1 to 100 based on a weighted average of a band's Wikipedia page views in the last 30 days, page views of album releases and total number of Spotify followers.

The bands with the highest Band Score from each year were then ordered into a list starting in 1951 and continuing to 2015. It is important to note that since Wikipedia page views are current, all of these bands have stood the test of time, and remained famous many years after they were formed.

Note: Band formation dates are often arbitrary, as some dates account for different members entering and exiting the group. The formation data for this article is sourced from MusicBrainz, a large community of music enthusiasts with a mission to gather and organize music data from all over the world.

Play around with the custom visualization below to discover which famous band formed in a given year.


Scroll through the slideshows below to discover famous bands formed in the past seven decades.

The 1950s: From The Dave Brubeck Quartet to The Modern Jazz Quartet and the Miles Davis Quintet, the '50s were dominated by jazz bands. Dave Brubeck was considered to be one of the first cool jazz pianists, and Miles Davis is one of the most iconic jazz musicians to have ever lived. The end of the '50s showed a departure from jazz music. Pop group Bee Gees made their debut onto the music scene, along with one of the most popular and influential bands to this day, The Beatles, who received a Band Score of 99.51 out of 100. Their most popular song on Spotify is "Here Comes the Sun."


The 1960s: The '60s were an incredible decade for music. Some of the most famous bands to date were formed. The Beach Boys, The Rolling Stones, The Who and Led Zeppelin all received Band Scores over 95, meaning that, despite the passage of time, they still remain relevant and popular. The most famous band formed in this decade is Pink Floyd. Formed in 1965, the psychedelic rock group rose to fame quickly. Their song "Wish You Were Here" has been played more than 9.9 million times on last.fm and is their most popular song on Spotify.


The 1970s: The most famous bands formed in the '70s coincided with the rising popularity of rock music, as well as the beginning of the punk rock revolution. This era saw the birth of iconic rock bands The Eagles and AC/DC as well as punk rock group The Cure and heavy metal band Iron Maiden. Queen is the most famous band formed in this decade, with a Band Score of 99.55. The band's most popular track according to Spotify is "Bohemian Rhapsody" -- probably one of the only six-minute long songs that everybody knows the words to.


The 1980s: The '80s revealed a greater representation of American bands compared to the relative international dominance of the '70s. Iconic formations include: rock group Nirvana, punk rock group Green Day and heavy metal band Metallica. The most famous band formed in the '80s is the Red Hot Chili Peppers, who received a Band score of 99.84. The Chili Peppers recently released their new album, "The Getaway" in June of this year. Their most popular song on Spotify is "Californication."


The 1990s: Often associated with pop punk, teen-angst and the rise of alternative music, the '90s were the birthplace of several notable and mold-breaking bands. The Backstreet Boys broke onto the scene in 1993, and went on to become the best-selling boy band in history. The Gorillaz was one of the first famous virtual bands, meaning that each band member was completely animated. A few '90s bands have recently put out new music. Blink-182 just released a new album titled "California," and Radiohead recently released their new album titled "A Moon Shaped Pool." British rock band Coldplay is the most famous band formed in the '90s, with a Band Score of 99.2. Their most popular song on Spotify is "Hymn For the Weekend."


The 2000s: The new millennium brought about a varied landscape of musical genres. From pop punk band Fall Out Boy, to Adam Levine's crooning pop group Maroon 5, to indie rock band Florence and the Machine and EDM duo LMFAO, famous bands were departing from the rock-heavy decades of the past. The most famous band formed in the 2000s is the alternative duo twenty one pilots, who received a Band Score of 99.19. The group most likely benefits here from its recent smash hits "Stressed Out" and "Ride," the former of which has more than 450 million plays on Spotify as of July 20.


The 2010s: Our current decade appears to be fairly pop-heavy so far. Red Velvet is the first K-pop group to appear on this list. The prevalence of reality television also seems to have had an effect. Pop bands One Direction, Little Mix and Fifth Harmony have all appeared on seasons of the reality TV talent competition "The X Factor." The most famous band formed in the 2010s so far is girl group Fifth Harmony, who received a Band Score of 98.74. Their most popular song on Spotify is "Work From Home."


Listen to the most popular Spotify song from the most famous band of each decade below.



Research More Bands and Artists on PrettyFamous


Related Slideshow: 25 Must See Spring & Summer Concerts in New England - 2016

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April 10

The Avett Brothers & Brandi Carlile at DCU Center 

Worcester, Ma

The Avett Brothers will perform at the DCU Center on Sunday, April 10 at 7:30 p.m.  This is their only New England stop. 

In 2009, the Avett Brothers made the big time  with the album  I and Love and You which landed at #16 on the Billboard Top 200 and was called one of the top 10 albums of the year by Time. 

Their second album, The Carpenter hit $4 on the Billboard Top 200 chart, the highest to date. 

The Avett Brothers are now touring after releasing their 9th studio album and will have special guest Brandi Carlile with them. 

Click Here for Tickets

Photo: Wikipedia

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April 10

Rosanne Cash at The Vets 

Providence, RI

Rosanne Cash, daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash, comes to The Vets for a 6:30 p.m. show. Cash will play songs off her Grammy Award winning album The River & The Thread.

The concert will be a multimedia performance of her Grammy Award winning album and will take fans on a journey through Sun Record Studio in Memphis, the Civil Rights-era in Mississippi Delta, the grave site of bluesman Robert Johnson, and a visit to her father, Johnny Cash's, birthplace in Arkansas. 

Click Here for Tickets. 

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April 12

Chick Corea & Bela Fleck at Hanover Theatre

Worcester, Ma

Chick Corea & Bela Fleck will meet in a duet of piano and banjo. The Grammy-winning duet combine Corea and Fleck's classic tunes with the music from their Grammy-winning album The Enchantment and their latest release together called Two. 

The show is set for April 12 at 7:30 p.m. at The Hanover Theatre. 

Chick Corea has won 22 Grammy Awards and has been around the world for decades and continues to impress anyone that goes to a show.  

Bela Fleck will be returning to the Music Worcester stage as the banjo player. 

Click Here for Tickets

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April 14

Diana Ross at Providence Performing Arts Center (PPAC)

Providence, RI 

Music legend Diana Ross is coming to the Providence Performing Arts Center on Thursday, April 14 for a 7:30 p.m. show

Ross is known for songs such as "Stop! In The Name of Love," "Where Did Our Love Go," and "You Keep Me Hangin On. 

The songs "Stop! In the Name of Love" and "You Can't Hurry Love" are among The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame's Songs that Shaped Rock & Roll. '

To date, Ross has totaled 31 top ten singles and 14 top ten albums selling more than 100 million units around the globe. 

With the release of "Endless Love" in 1981, Ross became the first female artist in music history to place six singles at top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart. 

Click Here for Tickets 

PHOTO: Zach Tomlinson/flickr

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May 21

Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo at Twin River 

Lincoln, RI 

Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo play their 35th Anniversary Tour at Twin River on Saturday, May 21 with the show set to begin at 8 p.m. 

Benatar is considered the leading female rock vocalist of  the  80s  with songs like "Love is a Battlefield," "Hit me With Your Best Shot" and "Invincible." 

Click here for tickets 

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May 27-28

Boston Calling 

Boston, Ma

Boston Calling, the first New England music festival of the season kicks off in downtown Boston on the weekend of May 27 and 28. The festival features performances from Elle King, The Front Bottoms and Robyn. 

Click here for Tickets

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June 3

Beyonce at Gillette Stadium 

Foxboro, MA

One of the best entertainers in the business today, Beyonce is coming to Gillette Stadium on June 3 as part of the Formation World Tour. The show is set to begin at 6 p.m.

In her 19 year career, Beyonce has sold over 100 million records as a solo artist and another 60 million with Destiny's Child, who broke up in 2005. 

In 2013 and 2014, Time listed Beyonce as one of the top 100 most influential people in the world and in 2015, Forbes listed her as the most powerful female musician of the year. 

Beyonce is known for songs such as "Crazy in Love," "Baby Boy," "Irreplaceable" and of course "Single Ladies." 

Click here for tickets

PHOTO: Wikipedia

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June 10

Dave Matthews Band at Xfinity Center 

Mansfield, MA 

Dave Matthews Band was formed in 1991 and has since sold well over 30 million records worldwide. 

The band has six albums debut at number one including 2012's Away From the world and 2009's Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King. 

Dave Matthews Band is known for songs such as "The Space Between," "Everyday" and "I Did It" as well as "Where Are You Going."

Click Here for Tickets

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June 11

Ringo Starr & His All-Star Band at DCU Center 

Worcester, MA

Former Beatle Ringo Starr brings his All-Star Band to the DCU Center. His band includes Todd Rundgren and Greg Rolie (Santana and Journey), Steve Lukather (Toto), Richard Page (Mr. Mister), Greg Bissonette (ELO) and Warren Ham. 

Ringo Starr started his career with the Beatles in the 1960's and helped the band become arguably the greatest of all time with 27 number one hits.

Ringo's hits with the Beatles include "With a Little Help From My Friends," "Don't Pass Me by," "Octopus' Garden" and "Yellow Submarine." 

Ringo has gone on to have a successful solo career as a singer-songwriter, drummer, collaborator and actor. 

Ringo's solo hits include songs such as "You're Sixteen," "It Don't Come Easy" and "Photograph." 

Click Here for Tickets 

Photo Eva Rinaldi/flickr

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June 17

Peter Frampton at Twin River 

Lincoln, RI 

Peter Frampton really became an international start when he released his album Frampton Comes Alive and watched is sell over 6 million copies in the United States. 

Frampton is known for songs such as "Show Me the Way," "Baby I Love Your Way," "Do You Feel Like we do" and "I'm in You." 

Click here for Tickets 

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June 22

Boyz II Men at Twin River

Lincoln, RI 

The legendary band Boyz II Men will perform at Twin River on June 22 as they come off their most recent album release, Collide, in 2014. 

Boyz II Men are only the third band in history to replace themselves as #1  on the Billboard charts and they did  that when "On Bended Knee" took the top spot away from "I'll Make Love to You." 

The other two bands The Beatles and Elvis Presley. 

Click here for tickets. 

Photo: Wikipedia

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June 22

Janet Jackson at The Dunkin' Donuts Center 

Providence, RI 

Janet Jackson brings her "Unbreakable World Tour" to Providence on Wednesday, June 22 2016 at 8 p.m.

Janet Jackson is an multi award winning songwriter and the winner of the NAACP Best Sporting Actor award. Jackson is a six time Grammy Award Winner along with dozens of American Music Awards.

Click Here for Tickets 

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July 2

Sting & Peter Gabriel at DCU Center 

Worcester, Ma

Sting and Peter Gabriel, two music icons, will perform at the DCU Center on Saturday, July 2 at 8 p.m. 

The show comes as part of their "Rock, Paper, Scissors" tour that will visit select cities in June and July.

Click Here for Tickets 


Sting was born in Newcastle, England before moving to London in 1977 to form The Police with Stewart Copeland and Andy Summers. 

The band released five studio albums, won six Grammy Awards and two Brits. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2003. 

Since 1989, Sting has released 14 solo albums and won an additional 10 Grammy Awards, two Brits, a Golden Globe, an Emmy, three Oscar nominations, Billboard Magazine's Century Award, and MusiCares 2004 Person of the Year. 

Sting has sold nearly 100 million albums throughout his career with The Police and as a solo artist. 

Peter Gabriel 

Peter Gabriel broke into prominence with the band Genesis which he co-founded while at school. 

After leaving the band in 1975, Gabriel's career  includes 11 studio albums and numerous live albums. 

Gabriel has won multiple Grammy Awards and created the Real World Records label. 

PHOTO: Wikipedia

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July 3

Bob Dylan & Mavis Staples at Foxwoods 


Music legend Bob Dylan is set to play at Foxwoods on July 3 along side lifelong friend, and nearly wife, Mavis Staples. 

Staples admitted in 2008 that her and Dylan "were good friends" and that Dylan had asked her father for her hand in marriage. 

Bob Dylan has been a huge influence in pop music and culture  with a recording career that is spans 50 years and a variety of different music styles from folk, blues, and country to gospel and rock and roll. 

Dylan has soled over 100 million records and has won 11 Grammy Awards, a Golden Globe Award and an Academy Award. Dylan was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hal of Fame, Minnesota Music Hall of Fame, Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. 

In 202, Dylan received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama. 

 Mavis Staples 

Stables is a rhythm and blues and gospel singer who has recorded and performed with her family's band The Staple Singers, as well as performing solo. 

Click Here for Tickets

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July 15 & 16

Dead & Company at Fenway Park 

Boston, Ma

Dead and Company will perform at Fenway Park for two nights and of course feature the surviving members of the Grateful Dead. Initially, they were only going to do one show at Madison Square Garden but decided to expand the tour shortly after that. 

Ticket info for both concerts are listed below. 

The band consists of former Grateful Dead members Bob Weir, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmannn and they team up with John Mayer, Oteil Burbridge and Jeff Chimenti. 


July 15 

July 16 

PHOTO: Wikipedia

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July 19

Guns N' Roses at Gillette Stadium 

Their back! 

Guns N' Roses reunite for a reunion tour titled 'Not in This Lifetime" and will play shows in 20 stadiums across North America this summer and Gillette Stadium is one of those places on July 19. This is a MUST SEE. 

Axl Rose, Slash and Duff McKagan will all be there. 

The band has sold over 100 million record worldwide, including shipments of 45 million in the United States. Of the 100 million, approximately 30 million come from their debut album Appetite for Destruction and the song "Sweet Child O Mine" which reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. 

Tickets for the show go on sale April 8 at 10 a.m. at LiveNation.com

Photo: Wikipedia

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July 22 - 24

Newport Folk Festival 

Newport, RI

Norah Jones kicks off her week in Newport by headlining the Newport Folk Festival. She will play the festival on the 23. 

Jones has won 9 Grammy Awards and was ranked 60th on the Billboard magazine's artists of the 2000-2009 decade chart. In her career, Jones has sold over 50 million albums worldwide.

Click Here for Tickets 

PHOTO: Larry Philpot, Wikipedia

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July 30

Coldplay at Gillette Stadium 

Foxboro, Ma

Coldplay, fresh off their Super Bowl appearance, comes into Gillette Stadium on July 30 as part of their A Head of Full Dreams Tour. 

This is the first world tour for the group since 2011/2012. 

Coldplay was formed in 1996 by lead singer Chris Martin but did not get their name until 1998. 

Two years later the group reached worldwide fame with the release of their single Yellow prior to their debut album Parachutes, which was released the following year. 

Their second album, A Rush of Blood to the Head, is arguably their greatest album, winning multiple awards and featuring songs such as "The Scientist," "In My Place" and "Clocks." 

Coldplay has sold over 80 million records worldwide and have won 62 awards out of 209 nominations. In 2009, Rolling Stone named the group the fourth best artist of the 2000s. 

Click Here for Tickets


PHOTO: Wikipedia 

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July 29-31

Newport Jazz Festival

Newport, RI

After another big year last year, the Newport Jazz Festival is ready to go again this summer, with the headliner for this show also being Norah Jones. 

Jones will play the Newport Jazz Festival on the 30th. This performance will come just a week after she plays the Newport Folk Festival. 

Other performers include Grammy-winning vocalist Gregory Porter and saxophonist Kamasi Washington, 22-time Grammy-winning jazz composer Chick Corea and much more. 

Click Here for Tickets.

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August 3

James Taylor With Jackson Browne at Fenway Park

Boston, Ma

Boston's own James Taylor will perform at Fenway Park along with Jackson Brown on August 3rd. 

James Taylor is a five time Grammy Award winner from Boston, Massachusetts. 

Taylor is known for songs such as "Carolina in My Mind," "Sweet Baby James" and 'You've Got a Friend." 

Click Here for Tickets

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August 5 & 7

Pearl Jam at Fenway Park

Boston, Ma

Pearl Jam is bringing their music to Fenway Park for two shows, the first on August 5 and the second on August 7. Tickets for both shows are listed below. 

Pearl Jam made the big time after releasing their debut album, ten, in 1991. Since the band formed in 1990, it has concussed of Eddie Vedder on lead vocals, Mike McCready on lead guitar, Stone Gossard on rhythm guitar and Jeff Ament on bass. 

Pearl jam has sold nearly 32 million records in the United States and an estimated 60 million worldwide. 


August 5 

August 7

PHOTO: EMR/flickr

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August 18

Billy Joel at Fenway Park

Boston, Ma

The Piano Man himself Billy Joel brings his legendary music to Fenway Park  on August 18. This concert is a MUST see.

Billy Joel released his first hit song, arguably still his biggest hit, Piano Man in 1973 an since has become the 6th best selling recording artist and the third best selling solo artist in the United States. 

Joel was inducted into the  Songwriters Hall of  Fame in 1992 and then the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999. 

In 2013, Joel received the Kennedy Center Honors, the countries highest honor for influencing American culture through the arts.

Click Here for Tickets. 

PHOTO: Jeaneem/flickr

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August 20 & 21

Zac Brown Band at Fenway Park 

Boston, Ma

The Zac Brown Band is coming to Fenway Park for two shows on August 20 and 21. Ticket listings for both concerts are below. 

To date, the band has released 4 studio albums, three of which have been in collaboration with Atlantic Records, as well as two live albums, on greatest hits album and two extended plays. 

They have have also had 16 singles hit the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, with 8 go them reaching number one. 

The group is known for the songs Chicken Fried, Toes, Highway 20 Ride and Free, amongst others. 


August 20 

August 21 

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August 26 & 27

Kenny Chesney at Gillette Stadium 

Foxboro, MA

Kenny Chesney has already performed at Gillette Stadium more times than any other artist and has broke 9 attendance records on last summers Big Revival Tour. Chesney will be adding to her performances at Gillette when he plays two more on August 26 and 27, both starting at 5 p.m. 

Chesney will be joined by Miranda Lambert, Sam Hunt and Old Dominion for the shows. 

In his career, Chesney has recorded 20 albums, 14 of which have been certified gold or higher by the RIAA, produced over 40 top 10 singles on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs and Country Ariplay Charts, 28 of which have reached #1. 

He has sold over 30 million albums worldwide and has received 6 Academy of Country Music awards.  

Click Here for Tickets 

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August 27

Black Sabbath: The End at Mohegan Sun Arena 

Uncasville, Connecticut

Black Sabbath will play Mohegan Sun Arena on August 27 as part of their farewell tour titled "The End." 

Black Sabbath are considered pioneers of heavy metal music, ranked as the greatest metal band of all time by MTV and number 85 on Rolling Stone's list of 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. 

Black Sabbath ha sold over 70 million records worldwide and were inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005 and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006. 

The band is known for songs such as "Paranoid," and "Ironman," 

Click Here for Tickets


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