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10 Classified Ads That Launched Classic Bands

You wouldn’t believe the number of bands that got started because someone answered a classified ad.

We often wonder how the bands of the Internet era are going to cope without these ads?

For now though, we offer you 10 classified ads that launched 10 classic bands!

Roxy Music

Well, technically Roxy Music was already a band when they sent out an ad in 1971 for the Perfect Guitarist.

Oddly, they found him in Phil O’List who quit almost immediately after a row with the drummer and he was replaced by Phil Manzanera, who had been turned down before and taken a job as their roadie, instead. 

Public Image Limited

You’d think that PIL could do better than “Drummer Wanted” but it clearly worked for them. 

There wasn’t even a hint at the music style or anything else.

Spice Girls

So, they may have been a manufactured act, but the original line up (which did not include Emma Bunton but rather Michelle Stephenson who would be sacked) answered a classified ad.

Sadly, for the guys who placed the ad, they didn’t make them sign a contract and The Spice Girls were “stolen” by Simon Fuller and their first single sold 4 million copies!

Motley Crue

Mick Mars sold himself to Nikki Sixx and Tommy Lee with his ad which read, “Loud, rude and aggressive guitarist available.” 

Guns N Roses

You’ve got to start somewhere, and G’n’R started with Steven Adler and Slash and nobody else. 

So, he threw up an ad that said that he needed a bass player with classic rock influences and invited that person to “call Slash”.

Duff McKagan did. Then they formed a band called Road Crew. Which was not good. So, they split up. Then they met Axl Rose, reformed the band and called it Guns N Roses.

Duran Duran

Duran Duran had already sold a record or two which is why they got to cite Virgin Records in their classified ad. 

But the advert brought them Andy Taylor, the rhythm guitarist that would get them their unique sound and turn them into a smash hit pop sensation.


Kiss lost Ace Frehley and decided to advertise for his replacement by popping an ad in Billboard Magazine.

They were more concerned with the new guy’s height rather than his skills mind you as they were conscious of the fact that a stage act would look better if they were all about 6 feet tall.

The Monkees

The greatest pre-packaged Beatles rip-off of all time was The Monkees and just like the Spice Girls, they began as a classified ad.

But this time, the managers did make them sign contracts, which was good because The Monkees would sell more than 75 million records across the course of their career.


It was Lars Ulrich that advertised for “other metal musicians to jam with Tygers of Pan Tang, Diamond Head, and Iron Maiden.”

And only two people even bothered to get in touch. But one of them was James Hetfield and the rest is history.

The E-Street Band (And, of course, Bruce Springsteen)

The band was formed but they needed a new drummer, so in 1974, they popped an advert in The Village Voice and were soon playing with Max Weinberg!

If you enjoyed this list, you may also enjoy our list of the greatest Christmas songs of all time, the best 80s songs and the best new indie alternative African music of the year too.