10 Famous Bands From Omaha

Omaha, Nebraska, quietly nurtures an eclectic music scene. Celebrated bands like Bright Eyes and 311, alongside the experimental sounds of The Faint, highlight this city’s role in shaping diverse American music genres. Omaha’s scene spans indie rock to electronica, a testament to its rich musical influence.

1. Bright Eyes

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Indie rock band Bright Eyes has been a central figure in the Omaha music scene, with artists from various genres drawing inspiration from their emotive storytelling and innovative soundscapes. Fronted by the prolific songwriter Conor Oberst, Bright Eyes has released several notable albums that have left an indelible mark on fans and fellow musicians alike.


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Formed in Omaha, Nebraska, 311 merged alternative rock with reggae influences, carving out a unique niche that led to their commercial breakthrough. Their success in the 90s, powered by their dynamic fusion sound, catapulted them onto the national stage, earning a dedicated fanbase and securing their place in music history.

3. The Faint

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The Faint infuses the Omaha music scene with their raw and danceable electropunk style, a departure from the heartland’s traditional soundscapes. Their association with Saddle Creek Records catapulted them to fame, especially with the release of their celebrated album Danse Macabre, which remains an influential work in the indie and electronic music communities.

4. Cursive

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Cursive has made a significant impact on the emo genre, with their visceral lyrics and innovative melodies resonating deeply with fans seeking authenticity and emotional depth in music. The band, led by Tim Kasher, has been critical in shaping the sound of emo with a string of influential albums that continue to influence new generations of musicians and listeners.

5. Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band

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Conor Oberst further showcases his versatility with his other project, the Mystic Valley Band, leaning more into the rich storytelling traditions of folk rock. This ensemble stands distinct from Bright Eyes, offering fans a different perspective on Oberst’s expansive songwriting prowess and the depth of his musical influences.

6. Tilly and the Wall

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Indie pop ensemble Tilly and the Wall brings a whimsical charm to Omaha’s music scene with their unconventional inclusion of a tap dancer as part of the rhythm section. Their creative synergy with Saddle Creek Records has nurtured a distinctive sound that marries traditional indie melodies with the percussive innovation of tap dance.

7. Mannheim Steamroller

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Mannheim Steamroller, hailing from Omaha, has reinvented the sound of Christmas music with a blend of classical compositions and modern synthesizer work. Founded by Chip Davis, this group created a fusion genre that breathes new life into holiday classics, becoming a staple sound of the festive season.

8. The Mynabirds

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The Mynabirds have emerged as an indie pop force from Omaha, with the vocal power and artistry of Laura Burhenn leading the charge. The band’s sound bears the hallmark of Omaha’s creative influence, highlighting Burhenn’s connection to the city’s vibrant and eclectic music community.

9. Rilo Kiley

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While Rilo Kiley is more often connected with the Los Angeles music scene, the indie rock outfit’s roots can be traced back to Omaha, where initial formation of Jenny Lewis’ earlier band took shape. The city played a part in the early development of their sound, which eventually blossomed on the West Coast.

10. Commander Venus

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Before his rise to fame with Bright Eyes, Conor Oberst cut his teeth in the Omaha music scene with the now disbanded group Commander Venus. This early career endeavor for Oberst contributed to the depth and growth of the city’s burgeoning indie rock landscape.