Who the hell needs real bands when there are so many great fictional ones? Here’s some of the best — our list goes to 11, of course:
10. Steel Dragon
The Mark Wahlberg-led Steel Dragon, from the 2001 flick Rock Star, was loosely based on the real-life saga of Tim “Ripper” Owens–frontman of a Judas Priest tribute band who for a spell in the late-’90s/early-’00s replaced Rob Halford in the actual Judas Priest. In addition to Wahlberg, the metallicious Steel Dragon featured Dominic West (later The Wire‘s “McNulty”) as guitarist “Kirk Cuddy” and actual musicians Zakk Wylde as guitarist “Ghode,” Jason Bonham as drummer “A.C.,” and Jeff Pilson as bassist “Jorgen.” Sadly, Wahlberg didn’t actually sing in the flick — his vocals were provided by Steelheart frontman Miljenko Matijevic. Of course, that wasn’t Wahlberg’s actual dick in Boogie Nights, either.
Not to be outdone by Anthony Kiedis blowing his own foot off in Point Break, Flea joins Peter Stormare and Torsten Voges in The Big Lebowski‘s Kraftwerk-spoofing nihilist band/faux kidnappers Autobahn, who don’t get much musical screen-time but the concept alone is brilliant enough.
8. The Silver Platters
Like you’re not gonna rock those pants this weekend.
From The Office, the best Police tribute band–nay, the best tribute band, period–of all time, featuring “Kevin Malone,” who made a fine choice ditching his Steve Miller Band tribute Jokers and Tokers, but maybe not so much with Scrantonicity II.
5. Wyld Stallyns
A couple of years before he became an F…B…I AGENT!, Keanu Reeves teamed up with Alex Winter to form Wyld Stallyns in 1989’s Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure. These days, Eddie Van Halen would probably knock down their garage door to join the band. Which could happen, as a third movie in the series is reportedly in the works (since there’s so many unanswered questions from 1991’s Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey).
4. Josie and the Pussycats
There’s a million great cartoon bands–from Adult Swim‘s Dethklok to The Simpsons‘ Sadgasm to South Park‘s Timmy and the Lords of the Underworld to Jem and the Holograms (voiced by Luna/Dean & Britta’s Britta Phillips) — but Josie and the Pussycats is simply the tops. Looks like Josie is playing a Vox Phantom guitar, also favored by Ian Curtis and Johnny Thunders, which makes her all the more awesome.
Who’d win in a rap battle between Ice Cold, Tasty-Taste, and Tone Def of Fear of a Black Hat‘s N.W.H. and Eazy-E, Ice Cube, Dr. Dre., et al. of N.W.A.? Our money’s on the former.
2. Spinal Tap
Like us, you probably know this entire movie by heart, and Spinal Tap would be the greatest fictional band of all time if not for:
1. Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem
Muppet bands win. Always. (And you can’t tell us this tune doesn’t slay.)