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Top 5 “The Other Guys” in bands

January 19, 2017


Exemplary logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming


When I hear “The Other Guys” I think of:

a) The Will Ferrell movie, The Other Guys

b) The Seinfeld episode where nobody could remember the name of the 3rd Tenor

Either way, it’s a funny memory, partially because of the scenes in the above movie & episode, but also because remembering the names of “The Other Guys” is easier said than done.

I enjoy asking my students, “name one member of Maroon 5…not named Adam Levine?”

Although 100% of the students know the group, 0% have successfully answered the question!

But I can’t gloat: I have entire discographies of some of these artists and the names of some members still escape me.

In the examples below, each of these musicians has made unforgettable contributions to songs & albums that I adore.

The question is, do you remember the names of these other guys?

Answers @ the bottom, good luck!


5. The bassist & drummer for The Jam?


4. The bassist & drummer for U2?


3. The bassist & drummer (it appears there’s a pattern here!) for The Smiths?


2. Anyone currently playing in The Cure…besides Robert Smith?


1. Anyone from Radiohead…besides Thom Yorke/Johnny Greenwood?








Answers: Bruce Foxton, Rick Buckler, Adam Clayton, Larry Mullen Jr., Andy Rourke, Mike Joyce, Simon Gallup, Roger O’Donnell, Jason Cooper, Reeves Gabriels, Colin Greenwood, Ed O’Brien, Philip Selway.

Congrats if you remembered any/all of them!


Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate that Dan @ Dan the Man’s Movie Reviews always has a strong post-opening line to hook readers like me!

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  1. Interesting discussion! I could only name two.

    • I think if I was given a multiple choice I could name some of them – but just name based on picture, not so easy!

      • I agree! I was surprised I couldn’t answer the Maroon 5 one either!
        Have I mentioned that you must be quite the cool teacher? I don’t recall any of mine coming up with popular music references.

      • Haha, thanks Danica – I’m just fortunate my music nerdiness is becoming more socially acceptable these days!

  2. Oooft. I could name the members of Radiohead, but I have been listening to them for 20 years.

    Think I’d have decent results if I flicked through the record collection. Well, when it comes to stuff I’ve been listening to for 20 years. As long as there have been no line-up changes (like The Flaming Lips).

    • I wonder if that’s the key timeframe – if the band has been intact for 2 decades and we’ve been listening along the whole time.
      That would be true of the Hip & Sloan for me, and those names are ones I’m unlikely to forget!

      • It’s likely a safe bet that if the band have been with you that long you’d be more familiar with the members.

        Maybe it’s because we consumed less music when we were younger? It’s so easy to access new music now and perhaps we don’t quite appreciate it, or those involved so much?

        Or maybe it’s as simple as spending so long with the booklet and thinking “man, that drummer/ bass player / whoever is great… who is that”.

      • I’d agree completely with that inverse correlation – the easier the music is to access, the less personal investment we make.
        When you physically take the bus, go to the store, buy the album, go home, open it up, put it on vs. click play on Apple Music, we’ve invested so much more time & energy that we’re keen to hear who was involved in the production too!

      • I don’t tend to sit down and look at the credits and whatnot when I have something playing via iTunes or a streaming service. I dare say I tend to have the music on while doing something else. However, when I buy an LP or such, I sit and take it all in.

  3. Knew The Jam and U2 but that’s it!

    • I think 5 out of 5 here might be the impossible dream – I made the quiz and I’m not sure if I’d get 5 today!

  4. I only knew U2!

    • And thanks to their mission impossible theme from ’96 (you know, those other guys in U2!) – I learned who Adam & Larry were!

      • Yeah that must have been a tidy little payday for those two…I forgot about that it was a cool kinda remake….they should have toured on it! haha

  5. You got me on the Cure and Smiths! I got the rest.

  6. I started off strongly, knowing all names from The Jam and U2, then only got one of the Smiths guys (which isn’t bad considering I’ve never been much of a fan…mostly because of Morrissey’s voice but I do really like Johnny Marr’s guitar work), completely stumped on The Cure and then redeemed myself with one member of Radiohead (the drummer, naturally). All in all I feel good about my performance. Great post, by the way.

  7. Can definitely name the Smiths (just finished Moz’s book!), I think I can name someone from The Cure (double-checked, my guess was right)? I think I need to do some research haha, I should know these things…

    • I actually got the idea for ‘the other guys’ from a Smiths book (THe songs that saved your life, Simon Goddard, Absolutely essential reading!!) – in the mid-90s trial over song-writing credits, Morrissey said “I feel tremendous indifference towards Bruce & Rick,” belittling the contributions by Andy & Mike by comparing them to the rhythm section of The Jam.
      So, he’s not so good at making friends, but I appreciate Morrissey giving me the idea for acknowledging “the other guys!”

  8. I did pretty good on this quiz! Four out of five. I could have named the bassist and drummer for The Cure circa 1980 but as for now…no idea at all.

    • And I was rock solid on the Cure lineup from ’89-2000, less confident now – 4 out of 5 is a solid score!

  9. I can do #4 and #1.

  10. I’m a huge Radiohead fan so can name all the other members. obsessed? maybe 🙂

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