So when is a band real? When some mates get together to jam in a garage and start playing in pubs and moving up the greasy pole? When a record company puts some pretty faces together in a studio with a producer and slaps on the autotune? When a bunch of people who have made their names in other bands get together to form a supergroup? When someone sitting in their bedroom making home recordings needs to get a band together to take the songs out on the road? What about when it’s a band in a TV series of a film? Is it any less real? As we continue our countdown of our favourite fictional bands, we’re starting to think that maybe some of these bands are better than many so-called ‘real’ bands out there.
Marvin Berry and the Starlighters (Back To The Future) A band who play at the Enchantment Under The Sea dance held in 1955 in Back To The Future, Michael J Fox’s character Marty McFly joins them for a rendition of ‘Johnny B. Goode’ at the end of their set.
Sex Bob-Omb (Scott Pilgrim) Comic book character Scott Pilgrim is a typical 90s slacker who is the bass player in Sex Bob-Bomb, a neither particularly good nor successful band. In the film adaption of the comic book, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, the band’s music is appropriately provided by Beck.
Soggy Bottom Boys (O, Brother, Where Art Thou?) A fictitious band formed by the main characters in the film O Brother, Where Art Thou?, their renditions of Appalachian folk music were so popular that the performers whose music was dubbed in to the film, such as Gillian Welch, Emmylou Harris and Alison Krauss got together to perform for a concert tour which was filmed for TV and DVD release.
Mystik Spiral (Daria) The fictional grunge band that Trent Lane in Daria plays in, the running joke is that the band are always thinking of changing their name but they never do.
The Folksmen (A Mighty Wind) The return of the actors that gave us the fictional band masterpiece This Is Spinal Tap, Mark Shubb (Harry Shearer) Alan Barrows (Christopher Guest), and Jerry Palter (Michael McKean) reunite their folk band The Folksmen for a memorial concert to their influential producer Irving Steinbloom.
Josie And The Pussy Cats One of the ultimate TV series cartoon bands, they also had a life as a comic book bank and in a film adaption of the TV series. Comprised of guitarist and singer Josie, drummer Melody and tambourine player Valerie, considering the TV series started in the early 70s they were remarkably prescient in anticipating the wave of raw, garage sounding two and three pieces sans bass player such as The Black Keys, The Kills and The White Stripes.
Dr. Fünke’s 100 Percent Natural Good-Time Family Band Solution (Arrested Development) Tobias Funke’s mid 90s folk group, "Dr. Funke's 100 Percent Natural Good Time Family Band Solution", was underwritten by the Natural Food Life Company, a division of Chem-Grow, an Allen Crayne acqusition, which was part of the Squimm Group. Their motto was simple: We keep you alive.” They have only 1 true fan.
The Weird Sisters (Harry Potter) Taking after Aussie all male band The Morning After Girls, The Weird Sisters are an eight piece all male band who are very popular in the Wizarding World and perform at Hogwart’s 1994 Yule Ball. Their songs in the film Harry Potter & The Goblet of Fire were written by Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker and the band in the film included Cocker, Pulp’s Steve Mackey and Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood and Phil Selway.
Sadgasm (The Simpsons) Sadgasm were a grunge band formed by Homer Simpson in the 90s, of course. He reforms them with a new purpose and style, entitled Guitar Rock Utilizing Nihilist Grunge Energy or GRUNGE.
Stillwater (Almost Famous) Altogether now, ‘Hold me closer tiny dancer/Count the headlights on the highway/Lay me down in sheets of linen/you had a busy day today.’ Yep, the scene of fictional band Stillwater singing Elton John’s classic on their tour bus is one of the most enduring scenes in music film. The band were actually based on a 70s band of the same name but conflated writer Cameron Crowe’s experiences with Led Zeppelin, The Eagles and Lynyrd Skynyrd amongst others.
The Blues Brothers The best fictional band ever? Take Jake & Elwood Blues (John Belushi and Dan Akroyd) and put them together with the cream of American blues and soul talent with the likes of James Brown, Aretha Franklin, Cab Calloway and Ray Charles and you can’t really go wrong!
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