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Monday, July 23, 2007

The Ten Best Bands That Never Existed 

By: David Schultz
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Some of the longstanding "who's the best musician" arguments are so old they've grown tiresome. Who’s the best guitarist that ever lived? Who’s the best singer that ever walked the planet? Best band ever to ever play live? Despite copious lists and countdowns, no definitive answers have ever been reached. To this day, we have no conclusive proof as to whether The Beatles were better than The Rolling Stones . . . or The Who . . . or U2. This list makes no attempt to resolve any argument over the best musicians who ever lived. Rather, it resolves the question of ranking the best bands that never really existed.

Some of the bands on this list never produced one note of audible music, others needed real musicians to give them voice, a couple served as alter egos and one band is made up of puppets. Regardless of their corporeal status, in one form or another, these bands embodied the ethos of rock and roll, either by capturing the essence of a certain genre, leaving a lasting influence on real-life musicians or, despite their manifestation as a fictional entity, by creating some rockin' tunes.

10. The School Of Rock

Even though Jack Black’s overly-simplistic speeches about rock ‘n’ roll’s liberating power belabor the point, The School Of Rock shows why music has always been a refuge for the insecure outcast. It’s the truth of that axiom that turns this tale about awkward pre-teens gaining confidence and self-esteem by picking up an instrument and joining a band from a far fetched story into an endearing underdog tale. Richard Linklater knew what he was doing: rather than teach actors to play, the director conscripted actual child musicians and taught them to act. The resulting band, which shouldn't be confused with the Paul Green School of Rock Music, only works because they are kids. If The School Of Rock were comprised of teenagers or college kids, the stereotypes of the rowdy troublemaker as drummer, the shy keyboard player as a Yes-loving, prog-rock geek and the heavy-set girl finding confidence through her ability to sing would seem more like hackneyed plot devices than character development. Instead of coming across as affectatious posing, the little hard rock acknowledgements like guitarist Zack’s Slash-style hat and Jack Black’s Angus Young schoolboy outfit are sincere and a knowing wink to anyone who picks them up. Melodrama aside, The School Of Rock become a great band not because they wear the accoutrements of rock ‘n’ roll, they embody them. For the last 20 minutes of the film, featuring The School Of Rock killing at the Battle Of The Bands and jamming in the studio over the closing credits, the band, in Jack Black’s words, totally rocks, even if they didn't cast a Scottish kid to play bagpipes on AC/DC’s “It’s A Long Way To The Top.” The simplicity of the last couple songs only serves to highlight the inherent power of three chords and a little D.I.Y. attitude.

9. Alvin & The Chipmunks

An animated precursor to the boy bands of the Nineties, Alvin and his brother chipmunks Simon and Theodore were directed, managed and possibly owned by David Seville, Lou Pearlman’s fictional ancestor. The creations of Ross Bagdasarian, Alvin & The Chipmunks have always reflected the musical style of the times. The Chipmunks first appeared as a novelty act in 1958, famously and innocently singing about witch doctors and the joys of Christmas. Despite some continued success as a Saturday morning animated series (Alvin once caused controversy by claiming they were “bigger than Mickey Mouse”), the original boy band would have faded into obscurity had the gimmick not taken new life in 1980 with Chipmunk Punk, which contained hyperspeed versions of “My Sharona,” “Call Me” and Tom Petty’s “Refugee.” Chipmunk-mania continued through Urban Chipmunk, their send-up of the country music explosion in the wake of Urban Cowboy, where they warned “Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Chipmunks.” Much like Weird Al Yankovic confirms a song’s status by parodying it, The Chipmunks were the cherry atop the cake of a genre’s success. The technique used by Bagdasarian to create the chipmunks singing voices was simple enough: he sped up a normally recorded analog tape. It’s a recording style that has been associated with the Chipmunks ever since, providing fodder for many unauthorized R-rated releases. Most fictional bands have a relatively short shelf life, Bagdasarian and his son, who continued the venture after his dad's death, have not only kept Alvin & The Chipmunks alive as a fictional entity for close to five decades; they've adapted them to the times, keeping them fresh and recognizable.

8. Hedwig And The Angry Inch

In the late Nineties, John Cameron Mitchell created an off-Broadway sensation at New York City’s Jane Theater with his portrayal of Hedwig, the most troubled glam rock icon since Tim Curry laced up Dr. Frank N Furter’s fishnet stockings. A virtual eunuch as the result of a botched sex change operation, Hedwig fronts the Angry Inch, the band named after the resulting remnants of his genitalia. By the time Hedwig moved into movie theaters in 2001, a cult following had already developed around Mitchell’s transgender singer from East Berlin and Stephen Trask’s glam rock songbook. Hedwig’s catalog forms the framework as well as the substance of the story. As a nanny, Hedwig instructed Tommy Speck in the art of music as well as the art of love. Speck transforms himself into Tommy Gnosis and becomes an International rock star by stealing Hedwig’s songs, disavowing all knowledge of his transsexual tutor and leaving Hedwig to survive by performing all sorts of odd jobs (mainly blow). Instead of following the path of The Rubinoos, The Isley Brothers or The Rolling Stones and bringing Gnosis into court, Hedwig and the Angry Inch begin following Gnosis around the country. If Gnosis is playing at an arena or stadium, Hedwig is close by, playing the same songs at the local Bilgewaters (imagine a more depressing Denny’s) for befuddled and confused diners. A modern embodiment of the blithe androgyny fostered by glam rock icons like David Bowie and Mark Bolan, Hedwig’s character digs deeply into the genre’s ethos and by using the divided city of Berlin as a metaphor for the duality of gender, Trask adds an intriguing complexity to Hedwig’s glam anthems.

7. The American Medical Association

Long before Dan Brown incorporated Illuminati mythology and iconography into Angels & Demons as an action-adventure plot device, Robert Shea and Robert Anton Wilson authored the definitive masterpiece on the “Illuminati conspiracy” in their picaresque Illuminati trilogy consisting of The Eye In The Pyramid, The Golden Apple and Leviathan. In Shea and Wilson’s universe, the world’s attention is drawn towards the American Medical Association, the most popular and significant rock band in the world - imagine The Beatles in their heyday and then some. Foreshadowing the influence musicians would one day exert over populist political and social issues like world hunger, African debt relief and global warming, the American Medical Association uses their popularity to attract hungry concert-goers to Bavaria, Germany, the birthplace of the Illuminati, for their European version of Woodstock. Unfortunately, the AMA’s motives are far more sinister than the simple domination of the hearts and minds of the world’s youth. As Illuminati Primi, the AMA serves as 4/5 of the secret organization’s executive council and masterfully and invisibly orchestrates all the world’s major events. Satirizing the paranoid belief that rock and roll is simply a communist plot to take over the world by poisoning its youth, Shea and Wilson create a scenario that only a demented, tyrannical anarchist could love. The AMA plans to use the good vibes and energy generated from their performance at the concert to reawaken dormant Nazi battalions, bring about the resurrection of Adolf Hitler and conquer the world. While the Illuminati’s influence is (hopefully) greatly exaggerated, Shea and Wilson’s late Sixties/early Seventies trilogy slyly lampoons and presages the growing prominence of musicians on popular culture and within our national discourse. Hmmmm, come to think of it, maybe the Illuminati still exist: Bono surely didn't get his influence with world leaders and the international banking community by portraying “The Fly” on the Zoo TV tour. Has anyone looked into this?

6. Billy & The Boingers

During the Reagan years, one needed to look no farther then the comics page of your local newspaper to find the highest quality political satire. Although Garry Trudeau’s Walden college graduates endured, the sharpest and funniest comic strip of the Eighties sprang forth from Berke Breathed in the panels of Bloom County. While the Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist normally targeted political and economic hypocrisy, in 1987 he focused his attention on the more absurd aspects of heavy metal and Tipper Gore’s misguided Parents Music Resource Center. Designed to poke fun at the silliness of bat-head chomping heavy metal rockers, Breathed’s strip saw morally bankrupt lawyer Steve Dallas hold open auditions for a “new high-profit heavy metal rock band” that required applicants to “know 3 chords and be able to grimace musically.” The resulting band, Deathtongue, transformed oft-dead Bill The Cat (electric tongue), Opus (rhythm tuba) and Hodge-Podge (drums) into Satan-praising, decadent hell-raisers who hardly understood their own lyrics.

As they were responsible for songs like “Demon Drooler From The Sewer,” “Clearasil Messiah” and “Leper Lover,” Steve Dallas and Bill The Cat were summoned to Washington D.C. to testify before a Senate subcommittee whose members bore a striking resemblance to Tipper Gore and her PMRC. With Tipper hysterically screaming “off with their heads,” Dallas caved in and rechristened the band with the more Christian-friendly appellation: Billy & The Boingers. Sponsored by Dr. Scholl’s Odor Eaters, which seemed to work when plastered all over Bill, Billy & The Boingers only played one show: a Moose Lodge benefit at a Motel 6 in Albuquerque, New Mexico that ended with a trashed hotel room, wallpaper togas and a jailed Steve Dallas ranting that a cat, penguin and rabbit caused all the damage. Although Bill The Cat made a fortune selling “You Stink But I ♥ U” to Wheat Thins, the band broke up when he found God, became Fundamentally Oral Bill and hit the airwaves ranting against the evils of penguin lust. Billy & The Boingers’ minor legacy lives on in Bootleg, a Bloom County compilation, which includes a forgettable single (“I’m A Boinger” backed with “You Stink But I ♥ U”) and a hard-to-find back cover photo spoof of The Joshua Tree that is worth the purchase price alone.

5. The Commitments

In Roddy Doyle’s novel, The Commitments burst remarkably off of the page; on film, Alan Parker gave the Saviors of Soul tangible form and Andrew Strong’s amazing voice. Crafted in accordance with a very specific blueprint, manager Jimmy Rabbitte formed The Commitments in much the same way that Malcolm McLaren assembled The Sex Pistols or any diabolical hitmeister forms a boy band. However, unlike any image focused reality-TV creation, The Commitments were based on soul. In one sense, they were only a skillful cover band, slavishly adhering to the core elements and iconic standards of soul music, a genre born thousands of miles away from The Commitments’ hometown streets of Dublin, Ireland. The significance of The Commitments doesn't lie in their originality; rather, it lies in the tragedy of their tale. As proven by Rod Stewart and Three Dog Night, “Try A Little Tenderness” can be butchered if handled incorrectly. On film, Parker conveys the greatness of the band by focusing on Andrew Strong’s rendition of the Otis Redding classic, subliminally letting the performance rather than exposition show the band’s exceptional talent. On the verge of a record deal and Wilson Pickett on the way (at least in the film), The Commitments irreparably fall apart, leaving Rabbitte’s dream in tatters and the potential of the band untapped. Doyle intended to tell a tale of a group of Irishmen trying to better themselves and, in the process, finding salvation in American soul music. In doing so, he also created a classic archetype, representing the legions of truly talented bands that collapse under their own weight, finding obscurity instead of success.

4. The Blues Brothers

Much like The Commitments mission to keep soul alive, The Blues Brothers strove to preserve the vitality of the blues. A labor of love, Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi meticulously cultivated The Blues Brothers mythology, mapping out the backgrounds of Elwood and “Joliet Jake” long before they memorialized their story in John Landis’ 1980 film. Orphans in Rock Island, Illinois, Jake and Elwood surreptitiously learned the blues from Curtis, the orphanage’s janitor. By cutting their fingers with an Elmore James guitar string the two became blood, or rather, blues brothers. Evolving from a 1975 Saturday Night Live segment in which they sang Slim Harpo’s “I’m A King Bee” while dressed in the show’s signature bumblebee outfits, Aykroyd and Belushi perfected their Blues Brothers gimmick by entertaining SNL’s cast and crew during after-show parties. Without any fanfare, The Blues Brothers, now wearing their trademark suits, hats and sunglasses, opened a 1978 SNL show and became an overnight sensation. Aykroyd and Belushi believed so heavily that their alter-egos were more than a fad, they were willing to leave the hottest TV show of the Seventies to devote more time to the venture. Backed by Stax/Volt legends Steve Cropper and Duck Dunn, The Blues Brothers had a fair shot at long-running success, but were sadly derailed by Belushi’s untimely death in 1982. Although The Blues Brothers legacy includes the nationwide proliferation of the House of Blues, it also includes the abysmal Blues Brothers 2000, which could have been watchable had anyone considered the fact that Curtis could have taught the blues to more than just Jake and Elwood, meaning there would be more than two Blues Brothers. By creating characters instead caricatures, The Blues Brothers evolved from what could have been a one-off joke into the poster boys for the preservation of the blues.

3. The Rutles

For All You Need Is Cash, Monty Python’s Eric Idle created The Rutles, whose fictional career paralleled the Fab Four’s in every respect. John Lennon became the outspoken Ron Nasty, Paul McCartney was transformed into the bubbly Dirk McQuickly, Ringo Starr became Barrington Womble who likewise had his name shortened to Barry Wom and the silent Beatle, George Harrison, became Stig O’Hara, an Indian that never utters a single word. Idle left no item of Beatlemania unspoofed: Nasty chomps his gum through “Love Life” (an audio and video spoof of “All You Need Is Love”); he falls in love with a German experimental artist (who also happens to be a Nazi); Leppo, the 5th Rutle, who leaves the band before they become famous and the systematic looting and hemorrhaging finances of Banana records. Marked by such releases as Rutle Soul, Sgt. Rutter’s Only Darts Club Band and Tragical Mystery Tour, The Rutles music all derives from The Beatles, with its humor relying primarily on the listener’s intimate familiarity with not just the music but the images frequently associated with them. “Piggy In The Middle” and “Cheese And Onions” meticulously adapt Magical Mystery Tour and Yellow Submarine’s psychedelically drenched music and imagery and “Get Up And Go” not only spoofs the gallop of “Get Back” but tweaks the iconic rooftop concert with which it’s always identified. All You Need Is Cash is not only one of Eric Idle’s finest comedic projects; it’s the finest Beatles parody ever. The Rutles music, which evolves from bright-eyed pop to trippy psychedlia, will never be mistaken for anything but Beatles parodies, but given that the core material is amongst the finest music ever recorded, Rutlemania can thrive on its own.

2. Spinal Tap

Christopher Guest’s 1984 mockumentary of the travails of rock dinosaurs Spinal Tap incisively satirized the pomp and excess of 70s era arena rock to such a degree that many stars who lived through that period cringe at its accuracy. The movie has worked its way so deeply into pop culture that any mishap with stage props, mishandling of concert promotion or simple head-scratching “but this one goes to 11” style proclamations bring Spinal Tap to mind. In exploring the fine line between clever and stupid, Christopher Guest, Michael McKeon and Harry Shearer mined a treasure trove of comedy, mocking the overgrown egos and outsized theatrics of a whole era. Parody that hewed unnervingly close to reality, Spinal Tap now serves as a hilarious warning for today’s artists. Not only did they make fun of the culture and lifestyle, they expertly lampooned the lyrics by going so far over the top with double entendre and sexual innuendo, they stand alone as their own stroke of genius. Even though the movie depicts them as increasingly irrelevant, the songs themselves are strong enough to get over the fact that Tap were once supposed to be one of the great hard rocking bands. “Hell Hole” and “Sex Farm” are delicious bits of pop metal, “Stonehenge” remains an indulgent masterpiece of medieval, D&D based heavy metal and, as evidenced by Live Earth, “Big Bottom” is simply an orgy of bass. This Is Spinal Tap truly struck a resonant chord. More than 20 years after its release, it's still quoted reverently by musicians and fans and remains one of rock and roll’s most influential films.

1. Dr. Teeth & The Electric Mayhem


Even though they didn't know it at the time, children of the Baby Boomers got their first real exposure to Seventies-era rock culture from The Electric Mayhem. Led by Dr. Teeth, an acid-inspired amalgamation of Elton John, Dr. John and other flamboyant rockers, Electric Mayhem served as the house band for Kermit The Frog, Miss Piggy and the rest on The Muppet Show. The individual members of The Electric Mayhem comprise some of Jim Henson’s trippiest and hippest creations: Zoot is the prototypical hep-cat saxophone player; Janice, the super-groovy, blissed out rock chick; Sgt. Floyd Pepper is literally a pink Floyd and of course, Animal, the embodiment of the id of every over-the-top, insane drummer from John Bonham to Keith Moon. Henson presented The Electric Mayhem without irony. Not only did they look like the freakiest rock band since Parliament/Funkadelic, they acted like it too, with their personalities and laid-back attitudes (well, not Animal) more apropos to a be-in than a children’s show. Over the course of their career, they played with luminaries like Elton John, Paul Simon, Dizzy Gillespie and Diana Ross and lent a weird aura to performances by Phyllis Diller, Sylvester Stallone and Tony Randall. Directly inspired from the classic rock music and personae of the late Sixties and early Seventies, Mayhem was the world of rock ‘n’ roll condensed and simplified for pre-teens. Think Jim Henson didn't have an ear for rock 'n' roll? Check out 1979's Can You Picture That? Given The Muppet Show’s target demographic, The Electric Mayhem indelibly imprinted the colorful world of rock and roll upon millions of young minds, easily making them the most influential rock band that never really existed.


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Comments:
What about Jimmy Thudpucker? He appeared on at least a couple of Rolling Stone covers (I believe) and has had a (fictional) career running more than 30 years...

D.
 
The Rutles' spoof on "Magical Mystery Tour" is actually "Tragical History Tour." Thought you might want to make the correction.
 
what about BAD NEWS?
 
Well, that is a cool list, but remember: Some of those bands actually perform, or did, on stage. The Blues Brothers did a few gigs, and Spinal Tap still plays sometimes, right, like at the Earth concert.
 
I don't understand how can you have a list like this without Wyld Stallion.

The band who's rock brings peace to Earth and unites the universe in harmony. You can't possibly beat that.
 
DETHKLOK or GTFO
 
Ditto on Wyld Stallyns, and my favorite "Never Existed Band" is Blackwater (from Cameron's movie Almost Famous)... a couple of rockin' tunes, not bad for a movie!
 
what about Steel Dragon?
 
Sgt. Pepper...'nough said
 
This will probably show my age but what about The Partridge Family or the Monkeys?
 
What a rubbish list! The Partridge Family, the Archies, The Monkees, all missing. Seems very poorly researched - you even got 'Tragical History Tour' wrong.

All the best
14
 
what about The Riverbottom Nightmare Band from the HBO special Emmett Otter's Jugband Christmas??

James
 
Disaster Area - Loudest band in the universe.
 
joebesta - it was actually Stillwater in Almost Famous. Good point, though, a great fictional band with some totally rocking tunes - really made it much easier to suspend disbelief which watching that flick.

I'm pretty cool with the list as a whole, though. Make it longer next time. Plenty of fake bands out there to choose from. ;-)
 
I've always loved The Riverbottom Nightmare Band from Emmet Otter's Jug Band Christmas-- the lead singer is a snake!!!
 
The constantly adapting gimmicks of The Juicy Fruits from The Phantom of the Paradise merit a mention.
 
Nice list. I have the Rutles album on vinyl.
 
Bill & Ted, much?
 
You forgot Dethklok
 
How about "The Beats" from the nickelodeon show Doug? Such classic tunes as "I Need More Allowance" and "Killer Tofu".
 
Cool list. I don't know that I could ever limit something like this down to just ten, because it seems like every minute I think about the subject, several more candidates come to mind.

Oh, and brilliant pick with the American Medal Association.
 
Nice list. Also, there is Camel Toe (actually the band L7) from the movie Serial Mom.
 
Kind of odd concept of what "bands that never existed" means. Blues Brothers? They actually toured as a band and recorded albums. Ditto Spinal Tap. And I still listen to my Rutles record. By this apparent definition, Gorillaz should be on the list.

Seems to me that, if the "band" has actually appeared on public stage and/or actually recorded music, then that band, in fact, actually does exist.

Besides, everyone knows Disaster Area is the true "greatest band that never existed"
 
How did they miss Bill & Ted's, Wyld Stallyns???
 
Extra Points for The Electric Mayhem as #1!

what about the Banana Splits of my childhood?
How could you miss The Hong Kong Cavaliers of Buckaroo Banzai. Yet another band that saves the world between gigs.
 
Metallica from National Lampoon's "LEMMINGS", way before todays Metallica existed.
 
Stillwater if you want pure rock.

I am still amazed that the Gorrilaz are not on the list. They are cartoons for gods sake and they had more actual hits then the chipmunks. Yeesh.
 
This post has been removed by the author.
 
The Beats from Doug definitely the best. I need more allowance.
 
Does anybody else remember The Boys Next Door, the Monkees-like parody of the New Kids on the Block?

I agree with djrock3k, bonus points for putting the Electric Mayhem at #1.
 
Stillwater.

The Hong Kong Cavaliers.

Come on, is this just a list of stuff you personally remember? Because that doesn't really make a great list, especially not for something this good.
 
Rob Reiner directed 'This Is Spinal Tap', not Christopher Guest. Chris, Mike, Harry, and Rob all wrote it, so I wouldn't call it 'Christopher Guest's mockumentary'.
 
The Sacred Cows!
http://www.ilovegetsmart.com/cows.html
 
What?! No Disaster Area from Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy?
Also, check out: The Rocklopedia Fakebandica
 
All of the praise heaped on Eric Idle for the Rutles' music is unwarranted. The true genius of the tunes was Neil Innes, ably backed with support from Ollie Halsall, John Halsey and Rikki Fataar. Eric Idle has nothing to do with the music.
 
he's right. Neil Innes deserves most of the praise for The Rutles. 'Cheese and Onions' is one of the most beautiful songs ever written... by a fake band or not.
 
Everyone seems to have forgot about "Eddy & the Cruisers".
 
You forgot Rod Torkelson's Armada (featuring Herman Menderchuk).
 
has anyone forgotton.
"the river bottom nitemare band" from jim hensons emmet ottters jugband christmas special from the 80's
 
What? No Stillwater from "Almost Famous"?

And Alvin? Really? Come on - even Jessie and the Rippers are better than them...
 
And where's Strange Fruit, from 'Still Crazy'? Great band, great music
 
also homer simpsons the b sharps and Australia's Boytown
 
yes! bad news!
and the bedrock rockers
archie and the jugheads
and my favourite of all time, Norways BOYSVOICED
 
Here's another vote for Disaster Area, Douglas Adams' band that played remotely from space and the nearest safe distance to listen to them was 10 miles. They were so loud they changed the ecology of the region they played in.
 
Let us not forget the eponymous and groundbreaking Band With Rocks In, from Terry Pratchett's "Soul Music".
 
NWH - Niggaz Wit Hats, from the movie Fear of a Black Hat. An excellent parody on hip hop music, with extremely good songs.
 
What about the Oneders?
 
BAD NEWS!!!!!!!!
 
Dude! What about the fabulous Citizen Dick?
Some serious overlooking has been done here, even if we take the Top Ten limitation into consideration.
 
Nobody has mentioned the 1969 "band" "The Masked Marauders".
 
This post has been removed by the author.
 
What about: The Evolution Revolution (Lancelot Link)

Max Frost and the Troopers (Wild in the Streets)

The Beau Brummelstones (The Flintstones)

The Wonders (That Thing You Do)
 
The Traveling Wilburys? I think they qualify as a fake band. If so, they're #1 immediately.

Leaving off the Monkees is a wilful act. You know they belong on this list! For the "Last Train to Clarksville," "Daydream Believer," "A Little Bit Me...," "Listen to the Band" and that song from "Head" about porpoises, at least. Good music, no matter how it got packaged.
 
The Weird Sisters
(Harry Potter)
 
What about Ming Tea, from the Austin Powers movies (featuring Susanna Hoffs, among others)?
 
Sorry...

Josie and the Pussycats, baby!!! Whoooyeah! Some bubblegum pop-rock that really worked it.

And for that matter, the boyband parody (Du Jour) was freaking highlarious!

Both the original cartoon and the movie work for me.

Others? I don't remember the name of Marty McFly's band in 1985, the Marvin Berry and the Starlighters weren't bad in 1955...

And one I've been looking for for years... Cotton Candy was a TV movie about a battle of the bands. Directed by Ron Howard, and starring Charles Martin Smith and Ron's brother Clint... Some good time music in that one!

Ok, I could go on and on...

Good call Ronnie and Westvirginiarebel on the Wonders (Oneders)!

And I have to agree with those that mentioned Stillwater from Almost Famous. I have their songs on my iPod as top favorites. They blend seamlessly with the classic rock they emulated. And no wonder, with Frampton and Dreamboat Annie penning the tunes. Awesome stuff...
 
Let's not forget Dethklok from Adult Swim's Metalocalypse - they are to Spinal Tap what Spinal Tap is to metal.

http://www.myspace.com/dethklok
 
What about "The Soggy Bottom Boys" from "Oh Brother, Where Art Thou"? "Man of Constant Sorrow" was a great tune, ably lipsynched by the actors.
 
"Zoot" was not actually a prototype - he was named after the saxophonist John Haley "Zoot" Sims. My father, who met the late Zoot, says that the Muppet fairly accurately describes Zoot.
 
BTW, What about "The Beetles" from Sesame Street? "Letter B" is a classic! Or King Thunder from Quantum Leap?
 
As long as everyone is giving a shout-out to fictional bands, I gotta give one to "Otis Day and the Knights." They played "Shout" at a frat party in Joe Dante's "Animal House," and performed most memorably in a roadside lounge where Boone, Otter, Pinto and Flounder drove with their dates. They were the only palefaces there and the band was visibly ashamed to know them when they shouted: "Otis, my man!" That whole scene was a comedy classic, from the "Mind if we dance with yo' dates" to the getaway, Flounder's borrowed ride smashing into cars in the parking lot as the boys hightail it out of there. There is a cameo of Robert Cray as the bass player.

/Robbie
 
How about 'The Lone Rangers" from Airheads
 
the fraggels, the cheeta girls, hannah montana, lustfaust, the list continues....
 
Where's Eddie and the Cruisers? Their song, On the Dark Side kicked much ass! They were far better than most of the bands on the list.
 
Rank for your favorite bands that never existed here:
http://unspun.amazon.com/Best-Bands-That-Never-Actually-Existed/list/show/7850
 
That's not the AMA, that's the JAMM (obviously) - a real band that were inspired by the Illuminatus books.

Also: The Hong Kong Cavaliers
 
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