- The Beatles
Always number one. They're so far up there that everyone should just leave them off lists. Like "Here are my favorite bands - oh, besides the Beatles, of course."
- They Might Be Giants
The first group I really enjoyed as a fan, as early as middle school. Thought I would grow out of it, but the songs get even more intelligent the longer I listen to them. Some of their stuff is hit or miss, but they keep trying. A lot.
Another band I liked super early (with Green, when I was a kid), and I'm very happy they turned out to be really good and not just a pop phase I went through. I'm in the minority, but I continue to like their current work immensely. Again and again, their songs I missed years ago turn out to be great on a relisten.
Unlike R.E.M., I think their work has deteriorated, but is still good. The Bends is a wonderful album, and OK Computer is a tour de force about our technological age.
- Ben Folds
Their Sessions at West 54th is my favorite music DVD. Incredible to watch Folds on the piano, and amazing live.
Screaming up the charts, I only got into Wilco more recently. I've tracked down all their albums, even their Woody Guthrie songs with Billy Bragg. Yankee Hotel Foxtrot is a great album, and everybody's favorite. I love it too ... but in my opinion, A Ghost is Born is even better. Not only are there great tracks, but the entire album works as a whole and it's groundbreaking and innovative. It demands many listens, and now serves me almost as some sort of meditative mandala.
Not really groundbreaking in any way, just an overlooked band that's a lot of fun and slips in some good poetry in their caustic, catchy beats.
I guess you could use this Spoon to eat that Cake.
- Bob Dylan
One of the most important contributors to music history, and his recent work is amazing too. Also, recently read his Chronicles.
- Paul Simon
- Flaming Lips
- The Dandy Warhols
- The Who
- Tom Petty
- Soul Coughing
- Pearl Jam
- Modest Mouse
- Ben Harper
- Flight of the Conchords