10 Famous Singers From Sacramento

Sacramento’s music scene is a mosaic of talent, featuring bands like Cake and Deftones, and singers like Greta Gerwig. This piece examines the stories and distinct sounds of ten celebrated acts from this dynamic city.

1. Groovie Ghoulies

Groovie Ghoulies, a pop punk band from Sacramento, California, was known for their unique blend of punk rock, pop, and horror punk. Active from 1983 to 2007, their music often drew inspiration from horror movies. The band underwent several lineup changes, but bassist/vocalist Jeff Alexander (Kepi Ghoulie) was a consistent member. Influenced by early punk groups like the Ramones and The Misfits, as well as 1960s garage rock and 1950s rock and roll, their style was distinctive and eclectic.

2. Papa Roach

Image by Ciell License: CC BY-SA 3.0

Papa Roach, a rock band spearheaded by frontman Jacoby Shaddix, formed in Vacaville—a stone’s throw from Sacramento—and rocketed to international fame with their hit song “Last Resort.” The band’s connection to the Sacramento area contributes to its rich musical heritage and global impact.

3. Deftones

Image by Rafa Gil from Madrid, Spain License: CC BY-SA 2.0

The Deftones, formed in Sacramento, have risen to prominence as one of the world’s most notable alternative metal bands, led by dynamic vocalist Chino Moreno. This band’s roots in Sacramento have helped shape their unique sound and influential presence in the metal music scene.

4. Tesla

Image by Tesla_at_the_Chance.jpg: LindaLisa derivative work: Lewismaster License: CC BY 3.0

Tesla, the legendary hard rock band that formed in Sacramento, propelled to fame in the 1980s, particularly with their celebrated album “Mechanical Resonance.” Their Sacramento origins are a key part of their journey to becoming rock icons.

5. Cake

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Cake, an alternative rock band known for its distinctive musical style, originated from Sacramento and gained prominence with the release of their hit album “Fashion Nugget.” Their ties to Sacramento underscore the city’s eclectic contribution to the music scene.

6. Gregory Porter

Image by Tore Sætre License: CC BY-SA 4.0

Grammy Award-winning jazz musician Gregory Porter hails from Sacramento and has captivated audiences worldwide with his soothing baritone voice. His Sacramento roots are integral to his identity as a globally recognized singer and Grammy laureate.

7. Mozzy


Mozzy, a rapper from Sacramento, has not only established a dedicated following but has also made a significant impact in the wider hip-hop community. His work reflects the urban narratives of Sacramento, contributing to the city’s influence in the hip-hop genre.

8. Mandisa

Image by Jyle Dupuis from Canada License: CC BY-SA 2.0

Mandisa, a singer with a dynamic voice hailing from Sacramento, is a celebrated artist in contemporary Christian music. She gained national attention as a standout contestant on “American Idol,” propelling her career forward and shining a light on her Sacramento roots.

9. The Brodys

The Brodys, an indie rock band, have become local legends within the Sacramento music scene, known for their regular performances in venues across the city. Their contributions have solidified their status as staples in Sacramento’s vibrant music culture.

10. Oleander

Oleander, a post-grunge band from Sacramento, broke through to commercial success in the late 90s, adding a layer of diversity to the rock music palette of the city. Their Sacramento origins play an important role in their identity and contribution to the genre.