The Best Fictional Bands in Movies


I have a little thing about music in movies.  I love a great soundtrack but I can’t stand when the quality of the movie sucks and the soundtrack is great.  It’s like, “did you even care about actually making the movie?  how about caring as much about the movie as you did the kick ass music?”

That doesn’t mean I don’t think movies should have great music.  I’m just saying movie first, music second.  That is, unless you’re making a movie about music or based on the subject of music.  Bottom line is that I enjoy seeing music in movies and part of that enjoyment stems from the great musical portrayals by actors.

And it doesn’t have to be real bands they portray.  In fact, sometimes the fictional ones are way more entertaining.

Here are my picks for the top fictional bands in movies….with video

Vesuvius – The Rocker

Come on man.  Will Arnett, Bradley Cooper, that skinny dude and Fred Armison?  Absolutely awesome.   They were such an underrated or rather underutilized part of that movie.

Sexual Chocolate – Coming to America

If hearing Eddie Murphy scream “Sexual Chocolate!” and smashing the microphone on the ground isn’t enough to qualify this band to make this list then I honestly don’t know what would.

Steel Dragon – Rockstar

You gotta admit this was a very cool fictional band.  Very Def Leppard, Poison, etc etc type band.  Plus the guy who actually sang in the soundtrack had one hell of a voice.   And “Stand up and Shout” is actually a kick ass song.

Soggy Bottom Boys – O’ Brother Where Art Thou

Just funny, period.

Stillwater – Almost Famous

Feverdoggggggg!  Napping at my fingers.   Another example of a movie actually having a pretty good soundtrack that included original music.  “I am a Golden God!”   FYI Stillwater was actually a real band but 100% zero connection to the movie.

Spinal Tap – This is Spinal Tap

You don’t make a list like this without including Spinal Tap.  Period.

The Band in Wedding Crashers and Starsky and Hutch

Did these guys even have a name?  That lead singer is awesome.  Actually they’re a real band in real life called “The Dan Band” but obviously are fake in these movies.

School of Rock – The School of Rock

Word is all these kids were legit and actual musicians.  Pretty impressive.  That final scene definitely kicked ass.

Wyld Stallyns – Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure

Sure their actual music sucks but it’s still Bill and Ted.  It’s still a young Keanu Reeves and it’s still George Carlin with brown hair playing a guy named Rufus.

Fig’rin D’an and the Modal Nodes – Star Wars

I’ll bet you guys never thought I’d put these guys in here.

The Commitments – The Commitments

Personally I think this is one of the best movies about music that I’ve ever seen.   Very underrated and if you haven’t seen it I highly suggest that you do.


Citizen Dick – Singles

Let’s face it.  When Eddie Vedder is in a movie,  it’s automatic.

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  1. The band from the Wedding Singer and (apparently) Starsky and Hutch is not a fictional band. They are known as The Dan Band.

    Also I agree 100% about the Commitments, it’s been a long time since I’ve seen that movie but it’s a good one.

  2. The Dan Band is awesome…awesome in Old School and more awesomer in The Hangover when he’s singing Fame at the wedding…that singer is hilarious

  3. Ramiel, the Modal Nodes were the cantina band, dipshit. You should be upset that Max Rebo and the Max Rebo Band weren;t included.

    Also, has nobody heard of Detroit Metal City?! What about Fire Bomber or Sheryl Nome? Sharon Apple? Not even Lynn Minmei? No love for anime!

  4. Sexual Chocolate is the best on this list!!!
    I just really want to know how much it would cost to get The Dan Band to play at my wedding!? That would be worth easily 10G’s!!!!!

  5. I may lose street cred for this but how ’bout Eddie and the Cruisers?

    On the Dark Side was a great tune and there were a couple other good ones in there as well.

  6. The only band for me that tops the Commitments isn’t on the list and I think it should be…

    Eddie and The Cruisers!!
    “On the dark side…oh yeah!”

    Another great music movie about a fictional band and a great soundtrack all rolled into one.

    @Mr. Jim
    I think The Blues Brothers would top all of these except that they were actually a real band. They released 12 albums and toured extensively in there hay day. Lettermans band leader Paul Schaffer was not only their keyboard player but also arranged the bands music.

  7. Spinal Tap is a REAL bad that tours and has several albums including one that was released not even a year ago. Though they are actors, they all play their instruments. The persona they take on when on stage is no more fake then Kiss or Alice Cooper when they don silly makeup.

  8. Agreed. So glad The Commitments got the nod. It’s one of my favorite music movies of all time.

    (talking to black market fence)

    -Cin I git anyting else fer ya?

    =Yeah, me Ma would like one o’dem tings dat wakes ya up in da marnin wit a cuppa tea.

    (blank stare)

    It feels much better being an unemployed musician then a unemployed pipe fitter!

  9. My vote also for “The Oneders”.
    They did at least one more good song in the movie, a surf sound instrumental, IIRC.
    Also, instead of changing their name to “The Wonders”,
    they should have changed it to “The 1-Ders”.

  10. No “Rutles”? They’re the best mock-Beatles band ever!
    Eric Idle playing the Paul McCartney character.
    How could you have missed them with such hits like “Cheese and Onions”and “Get up and Go”?
    No, but seriously, when the writers on “Almost Famous” were writing the songs for Stillwater, they attempted for the songs to be like “Cheese and Onions”.
    And who other band got George Harrison (THE George Harrison) to be on the movie. And Dan Arkoyd. And Bill Murray. And Mick Jagger. And Gilda Radner!
    Enclosed is a video of “Cheese and Onion”:

  11. @ Meatball

    Otis Day & the Knights started as a fictional band, but since they rules so hard, they decided to start the real thing and tour around. My dream would be for them to play at my wedding.

  12. @ evil mike
    spinal tap was a fictional band from the movie who began touring because of their popularity. like otis day & and the knights. and the blues brothers who were NEGLECTED IN THIS LIST. the best fake band ever created.

  13. The band fronted by Lestat in the horrible “Queen of the Damned” was awesome. All songs were written by Johnathan Davis from Korn, but due to silly contract dispute he was not allowed to provide vocals on the soundtrack, only for the movie. I thought it was great and sorely lacking from the list and comments!

  14. “Why do people create “Best of” lists when they haven’t seen everything?”

    Totally agreed. I’m also stunned that Blues Brothers wasn’t on here. Also, the Swanky Modes from Tapeheads was another good call. If you’re unfamiliar with anything before the 90s, you probably shouldn’t be making “best of” lists and instead just calling them “my favorites.”

  15. “Why do people create “Best of” lists when they haven’t seen everything?”

    Well, no one’s seen everything. So does that mean there shouldn’t be any best of lists at all? Maybe they could announce the topic, get a bunch of input from readers, collate that, and then present the list. If the list then sucks, it’d be the readers fault. Probably too much work, and what’s going to fill the space in the meantime?

  16. “So does that mean there shouldn’t be any best of lists at all?”

    So does that mean they can’t tell the difference between “best of” and “my favorites”?

  17. After watching the clip from the Steel Dragon, I had to look and see who sang the vocals, ’cause there’s no way Mark Wahlberg could have (even if he did catch a bad case of Hockey Hair during the filming of Rock Star). It was Michael Matijevic, lead singer of Steelheart, a band I’ve never heard of. Love his voice, though – he’s very Van Halen/Led Zeppelin.

  18. The Dan Band is awesome.

    And for all you haters out there leaving comments on what got left off this list and how you would’ve made it so much more awesome, suck it.

    Natty did a good job with this list, so just because he’s not old as dirt and hasn’t seen every fucking movie under the sun doesn’t mean this is a bad list.

  19. @illeaturfamily (illiterate family? Wow, some people are pretty sensitive when it comes to feedback on an article. Most of the comments I read here are mere suggestions people have for fictitious bands. I really don’t see that as being “haters” or that people are suggesting it’s a “bad list.” As with any list of this kind, readers are naturally going to be reminded of other acts they’ve seen in movies that they enjoyed. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to share those insights with others on this site. Sheesh. No wonder this country is in such a polarized state. A person can’t even give props to their favorite movie bands without someone getting all bent out of shape. Grow up.

  20. Agreed with TracyFord. Seriously, the words “hater” and “haters” are so overused these days. It’s pretty much just self-embarassment to use them as an excuse to support something…especially when this topic isn’t overrun with people being negative.

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