Guns N’ Roses

HISTORY Guns N’ Roses, often abbreviated as GNR, is an American hard rock band from Los Angeles formed in 1985. The lineup, when first signed to Geffen Records in 1986, consisted of vocalist Axl Rose, lead guitarist Slash, rhythm guitarist Izzy Stradlin, bassist Duff McKagan, and drummer Steven Adler. Guns N’ Roses have released six studio albums, accumulating sales of more than 100 million records worldwide, including shipments of 45 million in the United States, making them the 41st best-selling artist of all time. Guns N’ Roses’ debut album, Appetite for Destruction (1987), reached number one on the Billboard 200 …

Def Leppard

HISTORY Def Leppard are an English rock band formed in 1977 in Sheffield as part of the new wave of British heavy metal movement. Since 1992, the band has consisted of Joe Elliott (lead vocals), Rick Savage (bass, backing vocals), Rick Allen (drums, backing vocals), Phil Collen (guitar, backing vocals), and Vivian Campbell (guitar, backing vocals). This is the band’s longest-standing line-up. The band’s strongest commercial success came between the early 1980s and the early 1990s. Their 1981 album, High ‘n’ Dry, was produced by Robert John “Mutt” Lange, who helped them begin to define their style, and the album’s …

Paramore

HISTORY Paramore is an American rock band from Franklin, Tennessee, formed in 2004. The band currently consists of lead vocalist Hayley Williams, guitarist Taylor York and drummer Zac Farro. The group released its debut album All We Know Is Falling in 2005, with the album reaching number eight on the UK Rock Chart and number thirty on Billboard’s Heatseekers Chart. While it only had a minimal commercial performance initially, the album and its lead single “Pressure” were eventually certified Gold by the RIAA after the success of the band’s later material. The band’s second album, Riot!, was released in 2007. …

Black Sabbath

HISTORY Black Sabbath were an English rock band, formed in Birmingham in 1968, by guitarist and main songwriter Tony Iommi, bassist and main lyricist Geezer Butler, singer Ozzy Osbourne, and drummer Bill Ward. Black Sabbath are often cited as pioneers of heavy metal music. The band helped define the genre with releases such as Black Sabbath (1970), Paranoid (1970) and Master of Reality (1971). The band had multiple line-up changes, with Iommi being the only constant member throughout its history. Formed in 1968 as the Polka Tulk Blues Band, a blues rock band, the group went through line up changes, …

Van Halen

HISTORY Van Halen is an American hard rock band formed in Pasadena, California, in 1972. From 1974 until 1985, the band consisted of guitarist Eddie Van Halen, vocalist David Lee Roth, drummer Alex Van Halen, and bassist Michael Anthony. The band went on to become major stars, and by the early 1980s they were one of the most successful rock acts of the time. 1984 was their most successful album. The lead single, “Jump”, became an international hit and their only single to reach number one on the Billboard Hot 100. The following singles, “Panama” and “I’ll Wait”, both hit …

Rush

HISTORY Rush is a Canadian rock band composed of Geddy Lee (bass guitar, lead vocals, keyboards), Alex Lifeson (guitars, backing vocals) and Neil Peart (drums, percussion, lyrics). Forming in 1968, the band went through several configurations until arriving at its current line-up when Peart replaced original drummer John Rutsey in July 1974, two weeks before the group’s first United States tour. Rush is known for its musicianship, complex compositions, and eclectic lyrical motifs drawing heavily on science fiction, fantasy, and philosophy. The band’s musical style has changed several times over the years, from a blues-inspired hard rock beginning, later moving …

Red Hot Chili Peppers

HISTORY Red Hot Chili Peppers, also sometimes shortened to The Chili Peppers or abbreviated as RHCP, are an American funk rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1983. The group’s musical style primarily consists of rock with an emphasis on funk, as well as elements from other genres such as punk rock and psychedelic rock. When played live, their music incorporates elements of jam band due to the improvised nature of many of their performances. Currently, the band consists of founding members vocalist Anthony Kiedis and bassist Flea, longtime drummer Chad Smith, and former touring guitarist Josh Klinghoffer. Red Hot …

Iron Maiden

HISTORY Iron Maiden are an English heavy metal band formed in Leyton, East London, in 1975 by bassist and primary songwriter Steve Harris. The band’s discography has grown to thirty-eight albums, including sixteen studio albums, eleven live albums, four EPs, and seven compilations. Pioneers of the new wave of British heavy metal, Iron Maiden achieved initial success during the early 1980s. After several line-up changes, the band went on to release a series of UK and US platinum and gold albums, including 1982’s The Number of the Beast, 1983’s Piece of Mind, 1984’s Powerslave, 1985’s live release Live After Death, …

KISS

HISTORY Kiss (often stylized as KISS) is an American rock band formed in New York City in January 1973 by Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons, Peter Criss, and Ace Frehley. Well known for its members’ face paint and stage outfits, the group rose to prominence in the mid-to-late 1970s with their elaborate live performances, which featured fire breathing, blood-spitting, smoking guitars, shooting rockets, levitating drum kits, and pyrotechnics. The band has gone through several lineup changes, with Stanley and Simmons the only remaining original members. The original and best-known lineup consisted of Stanley (vocals and rhythm guitar), Simmons (vocals and bass …

Nirvana

HISTORY Nirvana was an American rock band formed by singer and guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist Novoselic in Aberdeen, Washington, in 1987. Nirvana went through a succession of drummers, the longest-lasting being Dave Grohl, who joined in 1990. Despite releasing only three full-length studio albums in their seven-year career, Nirvana has come to be regarded as one of the most influential and important alternative bands in history. Though the band dissolved in 1994 after the death of Cobain, their music maintains a popular following and continues to influence modern rock and roll culture. In the late 1980s, Nirvana established …

The White Stripes

HISTORY The White Stripes were an American rock duo formed in 1997 in Detroit, Michigan. The group consisted of Jack White (songwriter, vocals, guitar, piano, and mandolin) and Meg White (drums and vocals). After releasing several singles and three albums within the Detroit music scene, The White Stripes rose to prominence in 2002, as part of the garage rock revival scene. Their successful and critically acclaimed albums White Blood Cells and Elephant drew attention from a large variety of media outlets in the United States and the United Kingdom, with the single “Seven Nation Army” and its guitar line becoming …

Killswitch Engage

HISTORY Killswitch Engage is an American metalcore band from Westfield, Massachusetts, formed in 1999 after the disbanding of Overcast and Aftershock. Killswitch Engage’s current lineup consists of vocalist Jesse Leach, guitarists Joel Stroetzel and Adam Dutkiewicz, bassist Mike D’Antonio, and drummer Justin Foley. The band has released seven studio albums and one DVD. Their latest album, Incarnate, was released on March 11, 2016. Killswitch Engage rose to fame with its 2004 release The End of Heartache, which peaked at number 21 on the Billboard 200, and was certified gold by the RIAA in December 2007 for over 500,000 shipments in …

David Bowie

HISTORY David Robert Jones, known professionally as David Bowie, was an English singer, songwriter and actor. He was a leading figure in popular music for over five decades, acclaimed by critics and other musicians for his innovative work. His career was marked by reinvention and visual presentation, his music and stagecraft significantly influencing popular music. During his lifetime, his record sales, estimated at 140 million albums worldwide, made him one of the world’s best-selling music artists. In the UK, he was awarded nine platinum album certifications, eleven gold and eight silver, releasing eleven number-one albums. In the US, he received …

Led Zeppelin

HISTORY Led Zeppelin were an English rock band formed in London in 1968. The group consisted of guitarist Jimmy Page, singer Robert Plant, bassist and keyboardist John Paul Jones, and drummer John Bonham. The band’s heavy, guitar-driven sound has led them to be cited as one of the progenitors of heavy metal, though their unique style drew from a wide variety of influences, including blues, psychedelia, and folk music. After changing their name from the New Yardbirds, Led Zeppelin signed a deal with Atlantic Records that afforded them considerable artistic freedom. Although the group was initially unpopular with critics, they …

Bad Company

HISTORY Bad Company are an English hard rock supergroup formed in Westminster, London, in 1973 by two former Free band members—singer Paul Rodgers and drummer Simon Kirke—as well as Mott the Hoople guitarist Mick Ralphs and King Crimson bassist Boz Burrell. Peter Grant, who managed the rock band Led Zeppelin, also managed Bad Company until 1982. Bad Company enjoyed great success throughout the 1970s. Their first three albums, Bad Company (1974), Straight Shooter (1975), and Run With the Pack (1976), reached the top five in the album charts in both the UK and US. Many of their singles, such as …

Alanis Morissette

HISTORY Alanis Nadine Morissette is a Canadian alternative rock singer-songwriter, musician, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, and actress. Morissette began her career in Canada in the early 1990s, with two commercially successful dance-pop albums. Afterwards, she moved to Holmby Hills, Los Angeles, and in 1995 released Jagged Little Pill, a more rock-oriented album which sold more than 33 million units globally and is her most critically acclaimed work. Her following album, Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie, was released in 1998. Morissette took up producing duties for her subsequent albums, which include Under Rug Swept (2002), So-Called Chaos (2004), and Flavors of Entanglement (2008). …

Aerosmith

HISTORY Aerosmith is an American rock band, sometimes referred to as “the Bad Boys from Boston” and “America’s Greatest Rock and Roll Band”. Their style, which is rooted in blues-based hard rock, has come to also incorporate elements of pop, heavy metal, and rhythm and blues, and has inspired many subsequent rock artists. They were formed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1970. Guitarist Joe Perry and bassist Tom Hamilton, originally in a band together called the Jam Band, met up with vocalist/pianist/harmonicist Steven Tyler, drummer Joey Kramer, and guitarist Ray Tabano, and formed Aerosmith. In 1971, Tabano was replaced by Brad …

AC/DC

HISTORY AC/DC are an Australian rock band, formed in 1973 by brothers Malcolm and Angus Young A hard rock/blues rock band, they have also been considered a heavy metal band, although they have always dubbed their music simply “rock and roll”. AC/DC underwent several line-up changes before releasing their first album, High Voltage, in 1975. Membership subsequently stabilized until bassist Mark Evans was replaced by Cliff Williams in 1977 for the album Powerage. Within months of recording the album Highway to Hell, lead singer and co-songwriter Bon Scott died on 19 February 1980 after a night of heavy alcohol consumption. …