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Arp's avatar

What was the most technically talented band of all time?

Asked by Arp (3516points) March 11th, 2010

You don’t have to like their music, but what was the most gifted and musically talented group of musicians you’ve ever heard. The most complex music I have heard (That isn’t IDM) is from Rush!

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35 Answers

ragingloli's avatar

Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, etc.

Arp's avatar

@ragingloli I didn’t know Beethoven was a band!

TheLoneMonk's avatar

One could argue that the Traveling Wilburys were the most gifted and talented as all of the members had/have been quite successful on their own and/or with other bands. Their talents also crossed many time periods with Roy Orbison from the 50’s, George Harrison and Bob Dylan from the 60’s, Tom Petty and Jeff Lynde from the 70’s. Petty and Dylan are still major forces today. Hard to beat this super group I should think.

filmfann's avatar

I would say Steely Dan, except there really isn’t a band. They are all studio musicians.
The Police are remarkably good, when they let themselves be good (early in the punk rock days, they had to purposely hide how good they were, because it wasn’t popular then to be able to actually play).

noyesa's avatar

Rush is definitely up there—one of the most virtuosic rock bands in history. Neal Peart kind of overshadows the rest of the band since he’s one of the most famous drummers of all time, but Alex Lifeson is one of the best guitarists in rock music and Geddy Lee isn’t exactly a chump at the bass.

Cruiser's avatar

Frank Zappa hands down. Nobody has ever come close to the musical gymnastics he and his gunslingers did. From the writing, orchestrating and incredible execution by the best musicians in the business along with the best sound engineering and sound reinforcement. He quality of sound at his concerts was unmatched. I did stage crew for him once and witnessed first hand something truly incredible. Frank did it better than anybody.

CMaz's avatar

ELO and what @Cruiser said.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

@Arp Would agree with @Cruiser but a band is was in mid-sixties opened at a college show for Procol Harum with Robert Trower WOW.

janbb's avatar

I would go with either Dire Straits or Cream, but theLoneMonk makes a good case for the Travelling Wilburys.

_Jade_'s avatar

Technically talented? In my opinion, that would be Pink Floyd.

CMaz's avatar

Yes Pink Floyd is also on the list as is XTC.

I would like to include the Beatles but their “technically talented abilities” came from George Martin.

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

I feel like The Who and Eric Clapton need to be on this list.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Can’t disagree with any of these, although I think Tropical Willie was referring to Robin Trower. I’d throw in Blue Oyster Cult, Trower, Jeff Beck, and Michael Scheneker, even though they’re aren’t all bands. I just saw Clapton and Beck collaborating, and it was good. I just wish I could spell.

janbb's avatar

Anyone remember Yes?

janbb's avatar

Cream had Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker – one of the best supergroups of all time.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille We listened to the worldwide debut of The Wall setting on the floor of our college room, stoned to the gills roasting hot dogs over a half beer can filled with flaming rubbing alcohol.

CMaz's avatar

Pink Floyd, The Wall Concert was an amazing experience.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

New York Philharmonic
Cleveland Symphony Orchestra
Berlin Philharmonic

et al.

This notion of ‘most talented [rock or pop music] band’ is pretty bogus… and limited. (And we haven’t even looked at non-Western music, of course.)

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Yo Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@CyanoticWasp Good point. It’s kind of like asking what’s the best food dish in the world, but it does make me think.

CMaz's avatar

“the most gifted and musically talented group of musicians you’ve ever heard. ”

That is a flaw in your question. Or not, you did say band. Orchestra can translate that way. It looks like we/I assumed Rock Bands. But you did not specify that.
So any/most Classical music falls into that category.

Strauss's avatar

I think one of the most talented bands of all time is the Joliet (Illinois) American Legion Band. This band has been in existence since 1946 and has consistently won awards for both musicianship and marching performance.

iam2smart99037's avatar

Pink Floyd or Dream Theater. Personally, I’m a DT fan but Pink Floyd were the masters that they emulated. If someone who IMITATED Pink Floyd was so incredible…well, you do the math.

Jack79's avatar

I’d have to go for Queen. I bet there were better ones out there that we never found out about, but as far as the famous ones go, those guys were real scientists.

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

Put down another vote for Zappa. Honorable mention for Genesis when Peter Gabriel and Steve Hackett were still with them.

ubersiren's avatar

Ben Folds/ Ben Folds Five. Simply amazing.

Axemusica's avatar

“of all time” is kind of too broad for music talent, since the degrees of talent have changed quite a bit, technicality speaking. Off the top of my head I’d have to say, Pink Floyd would range up there with all time, but newer age I’d have to say Lost Prophets. As for metal (my fav) it would definitely be All That Remains, As I Lay Dying and KillSwitch Engage. All very talented musicians.

filmfann's avatar

One could make a case for Emerson Lake and Palmer, but not me.

Strauss's avatar

@filmfann I’ve never heard you play (that I know of), but I like what ELP did with classical music in Pictures At An Exhibition

rawpixels's avatar

Once again, Yes

WhatEvil's avatar

@Cruiser Absolutely without a doubt Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention.

Frank Zappa is one of the greatest technical guitarists of all time, along with Steve Vai who often played with them. Frank specifically seeked out the most gifted musicians to work with him, and they wanted to work with him because he was such an amazing musician and composer himself. A lot of the bands other people have mentioned have one or maybe 2 great technical musicians, but every single person who ever worked with Zappa was amazing.

troyofyort's avatar

Lets put some actually talented metal bands on here, like Iron Maiden, who has the amazing singer Bruce Dickinson. Also Steve Harris who is arguably one of the greatest bassists ever, Plus the trio of amazing guitarists and single bass pedal master nicko McBrain. Another amaziing technical band is protest the hero, who have all amazing, all the more amazing when considering their ages, members. ALthough the singers style is a matter of personal taste, he has range.

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