Sacramento bands to add to your playlist

Dance Gavin Dance formed in Sacramento in 2005. | Photo by benuski via Wikimedia Commons

Dance Gavin Dance formed in Sacramento in 2005. | Photo by benuski via Wikimedia Commons

Sacramento has no shortage of great musicians who have called it home. The city was recently even named as one of the best music cities in the nation, thanks to its affordable ticket prices + plethora of small venues.

While most Sacramentans are familiar with bands like CAKE or Tesla, we wanted to take a moment to shine a light on some of the other artists to come out of the Big Tomato who we think deserve a spot on your playlist.

Blackalicious 🎤

  • You may not know them by name, but you definitely know them from this viral video of Daniel Radcliffe rapping their hit “Alphabet Aerobics.” The duo of wordsmiths first met in the late 80s at John F. Kennedy High School before forming the band a few years later while member Xavier Mosley was studying at UC Davis.

Jackie Greene 🪕

  • After graduating from Oak Ridge High School, the Americana + blues singer/songwriter got his start playing in venues such as Fox & Goose. In addition to playing with the Black Crowes for a time, his 2005 song “I Will Never Let You Go” was featured in the film “Brokeback Mountain.”

DJ Shadow 🎛️

  • Making a name for himself as a disc jockey over campus airwaves at UC Davis, DJ Shadow — born Joshua Paul Davis — was influential in bringing the British-friendly trip hop sound stateside with albums like “Endtroducing…..” He would go on to found Solesides, an underground hip-hop label, with Blackalicious.

Dance Gavin Dance 🎸

  • While the lineup has changed over the years, the post-hardcore rock group was formed by its six founding members here in Sacramento in 2005. Two live albums, “Tree City Sessions” + “Tree City Sessions 2” pay homage to the city, with the latter having a streamed virtual concert from the Tower Bridge to coincide with its release.
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