Breaking up is hard to do...but if it's your favorite band who's calling it quits, it's like getting dumped by 4 or 5 rock stars at once! Here is our list of the Top 5 Bands We Wish Were Still Together.
1. The Beatles
One of the most beloved and influential bands of all time, the Beatles were only together for about a decade. The Fab Four, made up of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison, was founded in 1960, previously using the name “The Quarrymen.” From their debut album Please Please Me, which was mostly recorded in a single day, to the release of the 1970’s Let it Be, the Beatles truly changed Rock and Roll forever.
As years went on, the four had ingrown and changed individually. Lennon and Yoko Ono had met and married—which the public liked to blame for the break-up—McCartney married Linda Eastman, Harrison had settled into his spiritual space and solo career, and Starr continued onto solo projects as well.
With John Lennon’s tragic death in 1980, and the passing George Harrison in 2001, only Paul and Ringo remain, making a Fab Four reunion virtually impossible
2. Led Zeppelin
Led Zeppelin formed in 1968 with a line-up that included vocalist Robert Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page, bassist John Paul Jones and drumming madman John Bonham. Zeppelin is recognized today as a pioneer of heavy metal, with a sound that was also full of the blues.
From 1969 onward, the band had a string of hit albums, from Zeppelin I, II and III, IV as well as Physical Graffiti, Houses of the Holy and others.
Three months after Bonham’s death, in December 1980, the band decided to call it quits. In September 2007, 19 years since the trio’s last performance, Zeppelin performed with Bonham’s son, Jason, at a tribute concert at London’s O2 Arena. The performance was released to high acclaim in the 2012 concert film, Celebration Day, but that may be the closest we get to a Led Zeppelin reunion for some time.
3. The Jimi Hendrix Experience
The Jimi Hendrix Experience consisted of drummer Mitch Mitchell, bassist Noel Redding, and of course Jimi Hendrix. The group’s first single, “Hey Joe,” sparked some attention, followed by the release of their full-length album Are You Experienced? The 1967 album remains one of the most popular rock albums of all time, featuring “Purple Haze” and “Foxy Lady.”
After a two-LP collection Electric Ladyland in 1968, the demand of touring and studio time had taken its toll on the group and after only a short time together they disbanded in 1969.
Hendrix went on to perform with Gypsy Sun & Rainbows at the Woodstock Music & Art Fair in August 1969, which included his unforgettable rendition of the “Star-Spangled Banner.” In 1970, Hendrix and Mitchell, along with bassist Billy Cox, formed a reformed Jimi Hendrix Experience.
Several tracks were recorded for another two-LP set before Hendrix tragically died on September 18, 1970 at the age of 27.
Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker formed the supergroup Cream for a brief two-year stint beginning in 1966. Three albums brought the band worldwide acclaim: Fresh Cream, Disraeli Gears and Wheels of Fire, the last of which went platinum. The band ushered in a new modern era of rock, as Clapton brought his original guitar playing to the stage.
After a feud led Baker to eventually fire Bruce, the two tried to put personal issues aside. But the constant arguing and the clashing of egos brought the band to its final days. After their two final performances at London’s Royal Albert Hall on November 26, 1968, Cream called it quits.
The band has done a few one-off performances since then, including a huge show at Royal Albert Hall in 2005, but it seems as though there are no new projects on the horizon for this supergroup.
5. Pink Floyd
Pink Floyd, a quintessential band of the past 50 years, was founded by Syd Barrett, Roger Waters, Rick Wright and Nick Mason in the mid-60s and the band released their debut album The Piper at the Gates of Dawn in 1967.
David Gilmour was brought in as a second guitarist, but after Barrett’s erratic behavior, he was replaced by Gilmour. Barrett left the band for good in 1968.
The group then released 1968’s A Saucerful of Secrets and found success on the Billboard charts with Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here and their ambitious rock opera, 1979’s The Wall.
Waters was the first to leave in 1987 and the band continued to tour without him. In 2005, fans were surprised when the band reunited at the global awareness festival Live 8 to play some favorites like “Money” and “Comfortably Numb.”
Roger Waters has since said that Pink Floyd will never get back together, though fans will continue to cross their fingers for just one more tour.