10 American Bands that are more successful in other countries than they are in their homeland

Second part, of myTake 10 Bands, Known In Many Countries But Failed To Make It In America.

This time I'll focus mainly on American bands, who might've been popular by some degree in America (or even not popular at all), but they were way bigger in Europe.

1) Calexico

It's actually a surprise how Calexico are actually more popular in Europe than in America, since their music is very American-friendly (Americana, Country, Tex-Mex)

2) Cock Robin

As I mentioned already, in my previous myTake, Cock Robin were more popular in Europe and in America they had only one minor hit, particularly When Your Heart Is Weak.

3) The Cramps

Definitely Punk Rock wasn't so much successful as a genre in America. They did better in the UK were Punk was bigger as a genre.

4) The Dandy Warhols

Actually what surprises me here, is the fact those guys are Americans. I'd not even assume about it, since they look and sound very "British". Their sound was much closer to the Britpop sound of mid-late 90s. So not surprising at all, that they weren't so successful in America, even if they're Americans themselves.

5) Garbage

Actually their lead singer (Shirley Manson) is Scottish, but band's origin is from Winsconsin. So they are considered an American band. Although they didn't do bad in America and they scored several Top 20 Hits in Moder Rock charts (yet this chart is inferior than Billboard Hot 100) , but they were forgotten after 90s ended. They did much better in the UK and Australia as well.

6) The Hooters

Their first album did better in America actually. And their second one did well there too. But since their third album Zig Zag , they weren't successful in America anymore, but they found success in continental Europe, in countries like Sweden, Netherlands or Norway. Although they don't release new material they're still active as a band.

7) Manowar

Actually it's a surprise, since Metal as a genre did well in America. Although in Manowar's case things were different. They did better in continental Europe, especially in Germany. But I don't get, what this True Metal thing,they use to talk about, is.

8. The Pixies

Not totally unknown in America, since they had 5 Top 10 hits in Modern Rock charts. But their albums didn't chart high in their homeland, unlike in the UK. So more or less they're considered more successful overseas.

9) Ramones

Not a surprise, since I mentioned in #3 Punk Rock didn't do well in America. Although it's a surprise since Punk Rock (and Garage Rock, which was one of the main Punk Rock influences) was invented to the US according to Wikipedia .

10) Sonic Youth

Although they started in the 80s, they became more popular in the 90s, but still they were never as popular as they were in the UK or in Australia. Also I've noticed many bands who do well in the UK they tend to do well in Australia and in New Zealand as well. Don't know if it's a coincidence or it's linked somehow.

Oh and sorry again about the wrong Topic. But seems like it's because of Cock Robin which's actually a nursery rhyme .


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  • Quite surprised I thought The PIxies and The Ramones were bigger stateside. Also I seem to remember David Hasselhoff was huge in Germany at one stage. I think you are correct in the assumption that it was the genres that didn't translate rather than the bands.

    • Not much, especially Ramones. And especially when they started. Punk wasn't so acceptable in US. Like Blondie when they started (when they were more a Punk band) they were unknown in the States. They became popular there when they changed their sound with "Heart Of Glass".