10 Awesome Band Cameos in Movies

One thing about movies that’s way better than real life is the bands that play at parties, bars, or special events.  In real life, you’re usually stuck listening to a couple of teenagers who know about four chords between the two of them, or maybe a washed-up, tone deaf singer at a Bar Mitzvah. 

In movies, though, the bands undoubtedly rock the party and send everyone into a frenzy.  Maybe that’s because it’s a real life band, either playing as themselves or under some fictional name created for the purposes of the movie.  I found 10 clips of awesome band cameos in movies and posted them with my comments after the jump, so enjoy. 

As an aside, I avoided solo artists like Madonna and tried to focus instead on groups or bands, and I also wanted clips where bands play or perform as opposed to simply appearing.

Oingo Boingo – Back to School


Oingo Boingo is perhaps the quintessential 80s bands.  They performed the song “Weird Science” for the movie of the same name and can be seen in the above clip performing “Dead Man’s Party” at a Grand Lakes University party with Thornton Melon.  I’ve always liked my roommate, but when he told he that he loves “Dead Man’s Party,” I started to have thoughts that went beyond platonic.  It’s only natural.

Morris Day and The Time – Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back


Morris Day is one of the coolest motherf*ckers alive; he’s like a masculine Prince.  He had a small role in The Adventures of Ford Fairlane, but to really appreciate the man, check out his performance in the above clip.  A great way to end a hilarious movie.

The Dan Band – Old School

Unfortunately, I was unable to find the clip of The Dan Band performing “Total Eclipse of the Heart” during the wedding scene in Old School.  Sure, the cursing is funny, but for me it’s how intense the lead singer gets that makes the scene so hilarious.  The above clip is The Dan Band performing the song live.

Queens of the Stone Age – Hot Rod


One of the most underrated bands in rock performing in one of the most underrated comedy movies.  Josh Homme is one of the most talented guys working in music today, and his mere association with Andy Samberg, Bill Hader,and Danny McBride also makes him one of the coolest.

Twisted Sister – Pee-wee’s Big Adventure


Dee Snider and the rest of Twisted Sister is seen here taping the video for “Burn in Hell” and things seem to be going fine before a public masturbating man-child, Godzilla, and Santa’s sleigh suddenly explode onto the scene.

The Mighty Mighty Bosstones – Clueless


Ugh.  I couldn’t find the clip where Cher (Alicia Silverstone) takes Josh (Paul Rudd) to a party where the Mighty Mighty Bosstones are performing (and Rudd hops around like a total jackass), but you can see clips of the band interlaced with scenes from the movie in the above clip.  Alicia Silverstone in this movie is flawless; if you don’t agree, you like dudes.

Otis Day and The Knights – Animal House

According to wikipedia, Otis Day and The Knights were a fictional band created for the purposes of Animal House, and the success of the movie led them to start performing for real.  The toga party scene is the greatest party scene in any movie, ever.  If you don’t like Animal House,you like dudes.  I think we’re developing a pattern here.

AC/DC – Private Parts


Private Parts was a surprisingly good movie, and it was capped off with a great performance by AC/DC, the pioneers of what I like to call “cock rock.”  Nothing fancy, just some hard chords and a lot of screaming.  Really, I don’t know how Brian Johnson can perform more than three songs in a row without his throat bleeding.

Green Day – The Simpsons Movie


Sure, they’re animated, but it’s the likeness of Green Day and they did lend their voices and music to the movie, so it counts as a cameo.

Alice in Chains – Singles

The superior Pearl Jam appear in Singles as members of Cliff Poncier’s fictional band Citizen Dick, and Chris Cornell of Soundgarden has a cameo as well, but it’s Alice in Chains that actually perform in the movie.

I am sure there are some band cameos in movies I may have left out, so let me know which ones I missed and that you really like in the comments section.

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  1. I love “Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure” so much. I know I saw it as a kid, but a few years ago I watched it again as an adult, and kind of had my mind blown by that scene. The movie is weird enough already, and then to go “Is that Twisted Sister?” just adds to the weirdness.

  2. Mudhoney in Black Sheep
    Helmet in The Jerky Boys
    Red Hot Chili Peppers in Thrashin
    The Offspring in Idle Hands
    Fishbone in Tapeheads, Back To The Beach and I’m Gonna Git You Sucka
    Circle Jerks in Repo Man
    Alice Cooper in Wayne’s World
    The Ramones in Rock N Roll High School
    Every band on Warped Tour 03 in Punk Rock Holocaust
    Gogol Bordello in Everything Is Illuminated
    The Donnas in Drive Me Crazy and Jawbreaker
    TSOL in Suburbia
    George Clinton and The P Funk Allstars in PCU
    Save Ferris in Ten Things I Hate About You
    Reel Big Fish in Baseketball
    5678’s in Kill Bill
    Snoop Dogg in Old School
    Gwar in Empire Records
    Good Charlotte in Not Another Teen Movie
    Devo in Heavy Metal
    Monster Magnet in Heavy Metal FAKK 2
    Old 97’s in The Breakup
    Blink182 in American Pie
    Smashmouth in Rat Race
    Placebo, Teenage Fanclub and members of Radiohead, Roxy Music, The Stooges, Sonic Youth, Minutemen, Gumball and Mudhoney in the Velvet Goldmine(i looked this one up)
    Urban Dance Squad in Hackers
    Mutha’s Day Out in Mortal Kombat
    Rammstein and Orbital in XXX

    …i can keep going

  3. Good list. People added some very extensive lists but my favorite band cameo was missing.

    The Misfits in Bruiser by George Romero. Yeah it was The Misfits when they had Michael Graves rather than Glen Danzig but at least they performed Scream which is a good song. Scream also has one of the best music videos ever. Directed by George Romero.

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