6. The Kinks
Years active: 1964 - 1996 Influenced: British Invasion, R&B/Blues in rock Hometown: London, England. Jam: "You Really Got Me." The Kinks take take a crush and turn it into the impetus to act without regard for the consequences.
Aside from The Beatles, The Kinks are one of the most beloved "British Invasion" bands to make the leap across the pond. Incorporating influences as diverse as Little Richard, jazz, R&B and even early rock 'n' roll, The Kinks partially gained success through the "taboo" nature of their name which referenced sexual behavior in a veiled way—you know "kinky"—so cutting edge! By the time "You Really Got Me" hit airwaves, The Kinks had established themselves a presence within the British music scene and their use of striking, dynamic power chords sparked a trend. However, after touring America in 1965, the government issued a strange, unspecified ban that prohibited the group from re-entering the countryfor the next four years. In all honesty, this ban could be one of the reasons The Beatles achieved the crowning position of this time period instead of The Kinks. Either way, the band's success continued to build in Britain, and in 1969 when they were once again allowed to tour America they were bigger than ever. Although they continued releasing albums into the '90s, the band's success peaked in the beginning of the '80s and went downhill from there. Their influence on modern indie rock, along with their incorporation of folk, R&B and country elements, has left an indelible mark on the current music scene.