Who are the quintessential New York bands?

When you think “music” and “New York City,” which are the quintessential New York bands? Who are to NYC what the Beach Boys and Red Hot Chili Peppers are to southern California? If NYC recorded an album, who would it use as artists?

The bands that spring to mind:

The Velvet Underground. Inarguable, I think. The band seemed to use the subway as a circulatory system, oxygenating their fervid collective brain.

The Ramones. CBGBs punk.

Television. CBGBs punk-influenced experimental pop-rock, or whatever the hell genre they are.

The Beastie Boys. To the five boroughs, indeed.

Talking Heads are probably more Providence than NYC, even though they also played the CBGBs stage.

Who else?

Blue Oyster Cult. But I suspect that’s just me.

Anthrax = NY speed metal

The New York Dolls.

Nobody can top the Velvet Underground. They’re simply the answer to this question. Good call on Television, too.

Other bands that may not be the NY bands, but New York is them -

the Ramones
Richard Hell and the Voivoids
the Wu-tang Clan
EL-P and Aesop Rock

Simon & Garfunkel, of course.

Not a band, per se, but a musician: Billy Joel - I am not all that big of a fan, but after moving out to NY from California it became very clear to me that NY’ers love the guy. And with his song “New York State of Mind” he gets the love.

I personally go with the Ramones and the Velvets, with the New York Dolls and Run-DMC close behind (how the heck could this thread have gone this far without props to Run, Darryl and Jam Master Jay?!?). And, yes, the Beasties have endured and are very NY.

Public Enemy gets a special mention as well - not only the best rap group, to my mind, but quintessential NY.

I’ve always thought of them as non-NYC, even though I know they played a lot in upstate NY (Schenectady/Albany/Troy area). Even caught them at The Roadhouse one night in the mid-'80s playing under Soft White Underbelly.

The Dictators and The Fleshtones.

The Blues Project.

Jeez, what is it with you people.

Sinatra. Frankie-baby.

Why, because he sang a cover or two about the city? He did the same thing about Chicago, London, and dozens of other places. Even “New York, New York” became his signature tune only after his recording career was largely over; though that’s the song that most associate with him now, I’ve never heard him associated much with the city itself.

Sinatra originally hailed from Hoboken, anyway. But if Hoboken-ers count as New Yawkers, then Yo La Tengo has to make the list. (Or better yet: start a Jersey list: Yo La Tengo, The Smithereens, Fountains of Wayne, The Glands, From Good Homes,…)

Back to NYC: DNA, The Lounge Lizards, Sonic Youth, Blondie, The Golden Palominos, and The White Stripes come to mind.

The The (Englishman Matt Johnson) has been living in Chinatown for a number of years now… at what point do we get to call him a New Yorker? :smiley:

They Might Be Giants , founded on Bedford Ave in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and who have performed over 50% of their concerts within city limits, have many many references to NYC in their songs…although their song actually titled “New York City” is a cover of a song by a Canadian band

You’re getting your neo-garage rock bands confused, my friend. The White Stripes are from my wonderful hometown, the city of Detroit. I was too lazy to look up the city-of-origin of the others you listed, although I’m pretty sure you’re right about Blondie.

On the other hand, The Strokes (who I think are a smidge overrated) are very much from New York. I could tell the first time I heard them.

Another hip-hop selection: LL Cool J; after all, he represents Queens but was raised in Brooklyn. :wink:

But, per the OP, there is no band that is more NYC than The Velvet Underground. The two simply cannot be separated.

the Patti Smith Group(!)
Vanilla Fudge
the Fugs
the Duke Ellington Orchestra

the Patti Smith Group(!)
Vanilla Fudge
the Fugs
the Duke Ellington Orchestra
Paul Schaffer & the Late NIght show band


Oh well,

Add Blondie to the list as well.

:smack: Thanks. I really meant The Strokes, honestly.

At least I’ve got The Vines and The Hives straight in my mind. Mostly.

Hey, Jazz has “quintessential” bands, too.

The Manhattan Transfer.