Third Eye Blind
|Third Eye Blind|
Third Eye Blind performs at SUNY Geneseo on November 17, 2007
|Origin||San Francisco, California, United States|
|Genres||Alternative rock, post-grunge, power pop|
|Labels||Warner, Elektra, Sony RED Distribution|
|Associated acts||Year Long Disaster|
|Past members||Former members|
Third Eye Blind (sometimes abbreviated as 3eb) is an American alternative rock band formed in the early 1990s in San Francisco. The songwriting duo of Stephan Jenkins and Kevin Cadogan signed the band's first major label recording contract with Elektra records in 1996, which was later reported as the largest publishing deal ever for an unsigned artist. The band released their self-titled album, Third Eye Blind, in 1997, with the band largely consisting of Jenkins (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Cadogan (lead guitar), Arion Salazar (bass guitar), and Brad Hargreaves (drums). Shortly after releasing the band's second album, Blue, with the same line-up, Cadogan was released from the band under controversial circumstances. The band would continue on, but with many line-up changes and gaps between album releases. The band would release Out of the Vein in 2003 and Ursa Major in 2009, with only Jenkins and Hargreaves as the remaining core members. The band is currently working on a fifth studio album, without a title or prospective release date, and tours frequently, currently with Kryz Reid (lead guitar), Alex Kopp (keyboards), and Alex LeCavalier (bass guitar).
The band found commercial success in the 1990s, with Third Eye Blind and Blue going six and two times platinum in the United States respectively. Several songs were a commercial success as well, with "Semi-Charmed Life," "Jumper," and "How's It Going to Be," all reaching the Top 10 of the US Billboard Hot 100, and "Never Let You Go" breaking to Top 20. Third Eye Blind has sold around 12 million records worldwide.
Third Eye Blind recorded their first demo in 1993 with engineer/producer Mark Hensley. In 1994, the band recorded its second demo with band members: Stephan Jenkins (vocals), Kevin Cadogan (guitar), Arion Salazar (bass), and Steve Bowman/Tim "Curveball" Wright (drums), with Mark Hensley and later with David Gleeson. From late 1995 through early 1996, the band recorded its third demo with funds from RCA records to record with producer engineer Eric Valentine, which resulted in the band gaining major label attention, including that of Clive Davis, who invited the band to perform a showcase for Arista Records in New York City. During Third Eye Blind concerts at the time, it was customary for the band to have a piñata release candy above their mosh pits, yet at the showcase for the record executives, lead singer Stephan Jenkins released live crickets from the piñata instead.
In April 1996, after Jenkins had challenged Epic Records executive Dave Massey in a meeting, the band landed an opening gig for Oasis at the San Francisco Civic Auditorium. In an unlikely scenario for an opening act, the band was invited back for an encore after playing their initial set and was paid double by the concert promoter. In addition, Stephan Jenkins' production of The Braids' cover of Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" gained major-label attention. Afterwards, the band found themselves in a bidding war among record labels, and after a showcase in Los Angeles, Kevin Cadogan and Stephan Jenkins signed as artists professionally known as Third Eye Blind with Sylvia Rhone of Elektra Records because they believed it offered the most artistic freedom.
Self-titled and Blue (1997–2000)
Third Eye Blind's first album, Third Eye Blind, was released in 1997. The album had five singles: "Semi-Charmed Life," "Graduate," "How's It Going to Be," "Losing a Whole Year," and "Jumper." "Semi-Charmed Life" peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100, and was number 1 on the Modern Rock Tracks for 8 weeks. It also earned Third Eye Blind a Billboard Music Award for modern rock track of the year. The band performed "How's It Going to Be" on Saturday Night Live. To date, their eponymous debut has been the group's most successful album, selling 6 million copies in the U.S. alone. Smash Mouth drummer Michael Urbano played drums on four songs on the album. During this period they also opened a number of shows on U2's PopMart Tour.
In 1999, the band released their second album, Blue. Although not received as well as Third Eye Blind, the album sold 75,000 copies the first week of release, and by 2003, had sold 1.25 million in the U.S. Four singles were released from the album: "Anything," "Never Let You Go," "10 Days Late," and "Deep Inside of You." In early 2000, shortly after the release of the album, Kevin Cadogan was released from the band. Cadogan filed suit, alleging wrongful termination, adding that his production, recording, and songwriter royalties were withheld since being kicked out of the band. The lawsuit was settled out of court in June 2002, with the terms of the settlement undisclosed.
Out of the Vein (2001–2006)
After extensive international touring, the band took a break from performing, appearing only at charity events. They put on shows for the Tiger Woods Foundation and the Breathe Benefit Concert in Los Angeles after Jenkins' mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. During the four-year gap between albums, the band also built a recording studio in anticipation of their next album.
In 2003, the band released Out of the Vein. Two singles were released from the album: "Blinded," and "Crystal Baller." Out of the Vein did not sell as well as its predecessors, with numbers estimated around 500,000 copies as of March 2007. Elektra Records was being absorbed into Atlantic Records at the time, and the only music video created from the album was for the single "Blinded." Due to the merger, the band found themselves without label support; as Jenkins said, "Our record company ceased to exist. The month the record was released, Elektra Records imploded." In May 2004, Warner Music cut Third Eye Blind, along with over 80 other acts, from its roster. While no specific reason was given for Third Eye Blind being cut, Atlantic co-chairman Craig Kallman said the cuts were made to get Atlantic's roster down to an appropriate size where "we can give each of our acts top priority."
It would be over six years after the release of Out of the Vein until the band would release another full-length album. In the meantime, the band did release A Collection in 2006. This album was a collection of songs from the first three albums. Jude Gold, associate editor of Guitar Player Magazine, recognized that the liner notes falsely credited guitarist Tony Fredianelli with the creative work of former guitarist Kevin Cadogan, who was completely omitted from the band's biography included in the liner notes, which state: "As always, the band profited from the musical interplay between Tony Fredianelli, Stephan Jenkins, Arion Salazar and Brad Hargreaves." In regards to this, Gold stated, "It's like saying Gun's N Roses music always profited from the interplay between Axl Rose and guitarist Bucket Head."
Red Star and Ursa Major (2007–2009)
Third Eye Blind's fourth studio album Ursa Major was released on August 18, 2009. The album had been anticipated since mid-2007 and was previously expected to be named The Hideous Strength. The album was released under their own label, Mega Collider Records.
Third Eye Blind topped the Billboard Rock Albums chart, Top Alternative Albums chart, and Top Digital Albums chart with Ursa Major. The band released two singles, "Don't Believe a Word" and "Bonfire" as well, but neither charted on any radio formats.
Around the timeframe of Ursa Major's release, the band also spoke of a Ursa Minor album, that would have contained songs that were recorded over Ursa Major's recording sessions, but ultimately were left off the album. While the band spoke of releasing them in close succession to each other, in a similar fashion to a double album, Ursa Minor remains unreleased, with no plans for future release.
Fifth album (2010—present)
Longtime guitarist Tony Fredianelli was fired from the band in early 2010. According to an article which quotes a lengthy letter of his, Fredianelli "... is suing the band for apparently being denied songwriting credits and benefits that he allegedly was entitled to." On February 23, 2011, it was revealed that Fredianelli had filed a federal lawsuit against Jenkins for over eight million dollars in damages for not giving him credit for past work with the band. On October 21, 2013, a California jury awarded Fredianelli more than $438,000. According to an article by The Hollywood Reporter, the jury also asked to award royalties to the guitarist, but the judge had previously ruled against it.
On March 16, 2011, a song entitled "Ladies and Gentlemen" was released on Japanese singer and actress Chiaki Kuriyama's debut album. The track was written by Jenkins and Reid. On November 16, 2011, Third Eye Blind posted a new song, "If There Ever Was a Time," in support of the Occupy Wall Street movement, to their Facebook page, for free download.
On December 17, 2012, Stephan Jenkins announced via his Twitter page that the fifth studio album would be the band's final record. On April 25, 2013, Jenkins announced via his Twitter page that recording on the fifth album would begin in June. On January 5, 2014, Jenkins tweeted "My New Years resolution is album five by summer..." The next day he then tweeted "We are in fact at the East West Studios in Hollywood recording album 5. So there".
- 1997 – The band won a Billboard Music Award for Best Modern Rock Track ("Semi-Charmed Life").
- 1998 – At the California Music Awards, known as the Bammies and formerly the Bay Area Music Awards, Third Eye Blind won 3 awards (including Best Album, Best Songwriting, and Best Debut Work).
- 1998 – Jenkins and Cadogan won a California Music Award for Outstanding Songwriters.
- 1999 – Third Eye Blind were nominated for 2 American Music Awards for Favorite Pop/Rock New Artist and Favorite Alternative Artist.
- 1999 – Third Eye Blind won 3 California Music Awards for Outstanding Group, Outstanding Single ("Jumper") and Outstanding Artist of the Year (Stephan Jenkins).
- 2000 – Third Eye Blind were nominated for 7 California Music Awards.
- 2000 – Jenkins and Cadogan won a California Music Award for Outstanding Songwriters.
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