Just curious, because I'm based in the US and know little about cultures outside my own. I know bands like The Allman Brothers, moe., Phish, etc.. tour all over the world, so I know they reach plenty of people outside the US. I'm just curious if any bands of this genre have formed outside the US, and, if so, have any of them gained any popularity outside their country?


To further explain - The genre Jam Band typically refers to bands I've mentioned above. Bands who are known for extensive meandering improvisation, usually featuring a particular instrument out front and often with multiple leads. For instance, a song will begin (complete with lyrics), then proceed to where a guitar solo might be on their CD release but instead it turns into a 5 minute keyboard solo, followed by a 6 minute guitar solo, etc... They usually have a song they're working off of, and then will often turn that song into an extended instrumental jam (hence "Jam Band"). Some of the more popular bands (in the US, at least) in this genre are Allman Brothers, Phish, Grateful Dead, Blues Traveler, Widespread Panic, moe., Gov't Mule and Umphrey's McGee.

  • [I'm UK, not US, btw...] As I always thought a 'jam band' was one who just guessed at popular tunes in a local pub/bar, sometimes actual songs, sometimes 12-bar-in-A-until-the-audience-look-bored, then segue into Brown Sugar... interchangeable members, plus sometimes members of the audience who fancy a go themselves. You might have to explain what your definition of Jam Band is, because I never expected it to include names I've heard of.
    – Tetsujin
    Jan 26, 2017 at 21:11
  • I did my best to expand on this question in my edit.
    – Johnny Bones
    Jan 26, 2017 at 22:19
  • In the late 70's I was in a post-punk/reggae band who could easily jam a 3-minute pop song & drop to heavy dub for half an hour. As no more than a handful of people these days would have any clue who we were, i'm pretty sure it doesn't qualify as an 'answer' ;)
    – Tetsujin
    Jan 30, 2017 at 18:23

2 Answers 2


Arguably, the "jam band" format is a throwback to an older style of music found in many cultures. I'm not an expert, but I believe extended, semi-improvisational variations on a central "groove" is more the rule than the exception for traditional music in Africa, India and the Americas, as well as among the Celtic parts of the British Isles.


I have found Mustered Courage from Australia which genre is defined as:

bluegrass, country, rock, jazz, and jam band with extended improvisational solo breaks.

They had some success in the US, as american newspaper The News & Observer says in this article about Mustered Courage invited at the International Bluegrass Music Association Awards:

The group put on an impressive series of performances, built around speed-of-light picking that belied just how road-weary they were.

“We’ve done 54 shows in 90 days and driven 19,000 miles through 43 states,” said guitarist Julian Abrahams after the second of three Tuesday night shows (out of 10 total for the week). “Getting to IBMA is what we’ve basically been working up to the whole time, and it’s taken three vans and four mental breakdowns to get here. And it’s been great.”

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