13 Incredible Bands Similar To Fleetwood Mac

Written by Dan Farrant

Fleetwood Mac, a legendary rock ensemble with roots in both Britain and America, has engaged listeners for generations with their original fusion of classic rock, folk rock, and popular music components.

Their status as one of the music world’s most impactful bands was firmly established with the 1977 launch of their groundbreaking album Rumours. Nonetheless, they aren’t the sole band to possess such a distinctive and mesmerizing sound.

In this blog post, we’ll delve into 13 incredible bands like Fleetwood Mac. Let’s get started.

1. Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers

From the heart of Gainesville, Florida, a distinctive rock sound emerged in 1976 that would go on to leave a lasting mark on the American music scene. This was the birth of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, a band that blended elements of heartland rock with a punk edge.

Tom Petty, the lead singer and rhythm guitarist, was the driving force behind the band. Their self-titled debut album was a slow-burning success, but it was their third album, Damn the Torpedoes, that catapulted them into the limelight.

With hit singles like “Refugee” and “Don’t Do Me Like That,” the album sold millions of copies, cementing their status as a major force in rock music.

Despite Petty’s untimely passing in 2017, the legacy of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers lives on. Their influence can be seen in countless bands that have since taken up the mantle of rock music.

For fans of Fleetwood Mac, delving into the discography of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers could prove to be a rewarding journey. There’s a certain authenticity and raw emotion in their music that resonates deeply, much like Fleetwood Mac’s timeless tracks.

2. Eagles

Emerging from the vibrant music scene of Los Angeles in 1971, one of the most influential American bands in rock-and-roll history crafted a signature West Coast sound marked by intricate harmonies. This band, The Eagles, shares numerous musical similarities with the likes of Fleetwood Mac.

As Grammy winners and music legends, the Eagles produced multiple chart-topping albums throughout their illustrious careers. Their magnum opus Hotel California, released just months before Fleetwood Mac’s iconic Rumours album in 1977, showcased their incredible talent as songwriters and musicians.

The Eagles’ influence can be seen in numerous bands and artists who have followed in their footsteps, blending rock with other genres to create a sonic journey that has enchanted listeners.

Despite the passing of frontman Glenn Frey in 2016, The Eagles’ legacy lives on, with their music continuing to inspire and entertain new generations of fans.

3. Crosby, Stills & Nash

Folk rock supergroup Crosby, Stills & Nash was known for their sound that blended folk, rock, and jazz. The band, formed in 1968, consisted of David Crosby, Stephen Stills, and Graham Nash, each from a different singing group before joining.

Their self-titled debut album was released in 1969 and was an immediate success. It showcased their harmonious vocals in hits like “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes” and “Marrakesh Express.” The album peaked at #6 on the Billboard 200 chart and was certified quadruple Platinum by the RIAA.

Crosby, Stills & Nash were part of the counterculture music scene that emerged during their era, and they wrote songs about political activism, such as “Ohio” (1970), which protested against the Kent State shootings.

Crosby, Stills & Nash separated in 2015 after over 45 years of performing. Nevertheless, they inspired multiple generations with their timeless music style. Sadly, Crosby passed away in October 2021 at the age of 81.

4. The Byrds

Emerging in the vibrant music scene of Los Angeles in the mid-1960s, The Byrds distinguished themselves as a band worth noting, and they proved it with a career that lasted some 30 years.

Like Fleetwood Mac, The Byrds was successful in fusing different genres to create a sound all their own. They skillfully merged elements of folk, rock, and country, crafting songs that attracted a wide audience.

They were pioneers in merging traditional folk with rock and roll. Their hit songs “Mr. Tambourine Man” and “Turn! Turn! Turn!” topped the charts and helped define a new era of music.

Later in their career, they delved into country music, releasing the critically acclaimed Sweetheart of the Rodeo album, which is often credited with launching the country-rock genre.

Today, The Byrds continue to be recognized as music legends with their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1991 and 2004, respectively.

5. The Doobie Brothers

Another band that shares similarities with Fleetwood Mac is The Doobie Brothers for their soft rock, pop, and blue-inspired sound. Formed in San Jose, California in 1970, they have garnered a loyal following and critical acclaim throughout their career.

Their discography is as diverse as it is impressive. They debuted with an eponymous album in 1971, but what propelled them to stardom was their second album, Toulouse Street, which contained the hits “Listen to the Music” and “Rockin’ Down the Highway.”

The band’s music continued to evolve, notably with the addition of Michael McDonald in the mid-1970s, which brought a more soulful, jazzy sound to albums like Takin’ It to the Streets and Minute by Minute.

The Doobie Brothers have achieved remarkable success throughout their career. Their most significant honors include being inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2004 and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2020, a testament to their enduring influence on the music industry.

6. Heart

American rock band Heart emerged from the Seattle, Washington, music scene in 1973. They’re known for their fusion of hard rock and, like Fleetwood Mac, folk rock. The band was founded by sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson, who remain the creative force behind Heart’s enduring success.

Their discography includes critically acclaimed early albums like Dreamboat Annie, Little Queen, and Dog & Butterfly. These records gave us timeless hits such as “Barracuda” and “Magic Man.”

Later on, they dropped their chart-topping eponymous album and the high-ranking Bad Animals and Brigade. These feature more fan favorites, like “These Dreams” and “Alone.”

Like many bands, Heart faced its share of challenges, including lineup changes and shifts in musical style. However, their perseverance and commitment to their craft kept them in the limelight, earning them commercial success and critical acclaim. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013, cementing their status as rock legends.

7. Loggins & Messina

Next up, Loggins and Messina was a popular American rock-pop duo that came together in 1971. Composed of singer-songwriter Kenny Loggins and musician Jim Messina, they created some memorable hits during their short career.

Their style was characterized by a blend of rock, pop, and country elements. This musical approach bears some similarities to Fleetwood Mac that fans can appreciate.

Loggins and Messina debuted with Sittin’ In, but a year later, they released a self-titled second album that further cemented their popularity. The album featured the hit single “Your Mama Don’t Dance,” which reached #4 on the Billboard chart.

Over the next few years, they released five more successful albums. However, even with their fame, the duo split in 1976, with Loggins and Messina going on to have successful solo careers. To the delight of fans, however, they have occasionally reunited for tours.

8. America

Formed in London in 1970, British-American rock band America quickly made a name for themselves for fusing soft rock, folk, and pop, much like Fleetwood Mac’s sound.

The founding members, Dewey Bunnell, Dan Peek, and Gerry Beckley, were all sons of US Air Force personnel stationed in the UK, which influenced their transatlantic sound.

Their discography is filled with catchy melodies that have stood the test of time. Examples of these are “A Horse with No Name,” “Ventura Highway,” and “Sister Golden Hair.”

The band’s influential albums, such as their self-titled debut and the follow-up Homecoming, have earned them accolades, including a Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 1972.

Even after the departure of Dan Peek in 1977 and subsequent lineup changes, America has continued to produce music and tour, with original members Bunnell and Beckley still at the helm.

9. The Rolling Stones

Often hailed as one of the greatest rock-and-roll bands of all time, The Rolling Stones emerged from London in 1962. The band’s original lineup featured the talents of Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Brian Jones, Bill Wyman, Charlie Watts, and Ian Stewart.

Renowned for their high-energy performances and rebellious persona, they quickly ascended to prominence during the British Invasion of the US music scene.

Fans of Fleetwood Mac may find parallels in The Rolling Stones’ blend of rock and blues and their ability to craft timeless hits. The Rolling Stones’s discography features iconic hits like “Paint It, Black,” “Angie,” “Sympathy for the Devil,” and “Start Me Up,” all of which have left a lasting impression on popular music.

Through a career that has spanned over six decades, The Rolling Stones have encountered lineup changes and personal conflicts, yet they have remained a cohesive unit. Their enduring popularity is a testament to their talent and their ability to adapt to changing music trends.

10. Little Big Town

Hailing from Homewood, Alabama, the country music vocal group known as Little Big Town has made a significant impact on the American music scene. Formed in 1998, the band has consistently comprised the same four members: Karen Fairchild, Kimberly Schlapman, Phillip Sweet, and Jimi Westbrook.

They debuted in 2002 with an eponymous album. It had moderate success, but Little Big Town soon followed up with The Road to Here, which topped the US Indie Albums chart.

Then in 2012, Little Big Town released Tornado. The album took the second spot on the Billboard 200 chart and #1 on the Top Country Albums. It spawned one of their greatest hits, “Pontoon,” a Best Country Duo/Group Performance Grammy Award winner.

Fleetwood Mac fans might appreciate Little Big Town’s focus on harmonies and their exploration of various genres within their music. Much like Fleetwood Mac, Little Big Town features multiple lead vocalists and is renowned for their vibrant live performances.

11. Jefferson Airplane

From the countercultural movement of the 1960s, we have next Jefferson Airplane, a pioneering force in the psychedelic rock scene. This American rock band was formed in the San Francisco Bay area in 1965 and quickly became a household name.

They are noted for their fusion of rock, folk, and psychedelic music, creating a sound that resonated with the cultural upheaval of their era. Some of their most memorable hits, such as “White Rabbit” and “Somebody to Love,” have become anthems of the 1960s.

Throughout their career, Jefferson Airplane released numerous albums that were influential in shaping the psychedelic rock genre. Their album Surrealistic Pillow is often cited as one of the key records of the so-called Summer of Love in 1967.

Just like Fleetwood Mac, Jefferson Airplane is known for their folk rock-influenced sound; however, they made it their own by blending psychedelic rock, acid rock, and garage rock too.

12. The Band

Emerging in the late 1960s, The Band was a notable Canadian-American rock group that left a significant mark on the music scene. The band was formed in Toronto, Ontario, and consisted of members Rick Danko, Garth Hudson, Richard Manuel, Robbie Robertson, and Levon Helm.

They were known for their rock sound with elements of country, folk, and blues, reminiscent of Fleetwood Mac’s style.

From 1968 to 1975, The Band enjoyed a period of great popularity and influence. Their debut album, Music from Big Pink, and their eponymous second album are often heralded as two of the best albums of the era. The members reunited in 1983 but separated again in 1999. Sadly, they did not come to reunite following this.

Despite disbanding, their music has continued to endure. Over the years, The Band’s influence can be heard in many artists who followed them, and their contributions to music have been recognized with inductions into both the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

13. Buckingham Nicks

Music duo Buckingham Nicks was composed of Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham, both of whom later became bandmates in Fleetwood Mac. The two were once friends and then romantic partners, which fueled their creative partnership and led to the creation of their eponymous album in 1973.

Although the album didn’t achieve commercial success at the time of its release, it contains songs like “Crying in the Night” and “Don’t Let Me Down Again” that hinted at the potential of the duo.

Their collaboration was short-lived, as a personal feud eventually led to their breakup. However, their work together has endured through time and is still appreciated today by fans of rock music.

Collectors and fans still seek out the Buckingham Nicks album due to its significance in the history of Fleetwood Mac and its display of the early chemistry between Buckingham and Nicks. Like Fleetwood Mac, Buckingham Nicks had a distinctive sound and a lasting impact, despite their brief existence.

Summing Up Our List Of Bands Like Fleetwood Mac

Thank you for joining us on this musical journey. We hope this exploration into bands similar to Fleetwood Mac has introduced you to some new favorites or rekindled your love for familiar names.

If there are any bands you believe should be on this list but weren’t mentioned, please feel free to share your suggestions. We’re always eager to discover new music and broaden our horizons.

Photo of author

Dan Farrant, the founder of Hello Music Theory, has been teaching music for over 15 years, helping hundreds of thousands of students unlock the joy of music. He graduated from The Royal Academy of Music in 2012 and then launched Hello Music Theory in 2014. He plays the guitar, piano, bass guitar and double bass and loves teaching music theory.