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The band in 2008
Background information
Origin Seattle, Washington, United States
Years active 1991–present
Associated acts
Members Kevin Martin
Dave Krusen
Adam Kury
Mike Leslie
Brian Quinn
Past members Scott Mercado
Peter "Pete" Klett
Bardi Martin
Chad Williams
Robbie Allen
Shannon Larkin
Rob Redick (Reddick)
Stewart Griffin
Sean Hennesy (Hennesey)

Candlebox is an American rock band from Seattle, Washington. Since its formation in 1991, the group has released five studio albums, which have achieved multi-platinum and gold certification, as well as numerous charting singles, a compilation, and a CD+DVD.

Candlebox was the first successful act on Madonna's Maverick Records, which went on to sign Alanis Morissette, Deftones and The Prodigy. They found immediate success with the release of their self-titled debut album in July 1993. It featured some of the band's biggest hit singles, including "Far Behind" and "You", and was certified platinum by the RIAA four times.[6] Their next two albums, Lucy and Happy Pills, also sold well. After troubles with Maverick, Candlebox went on indefinite hiatus in 2000 after an alleged attempt to be freed from their contract. The band reunited in 2006, and two years later, they released their fourth album Into the Sun, followed by an extensive tour. Their latest album, Love Stories & Other Musings, was released in April 2012.

The band has toured or played selected shows with such bands as Living Colour, The Flaming Lips, Our Lady Peace, Rush, Henry Rollins, Aerosmith, Godsmack, Metallica, Radiohead, The Offspring,[7][8] Sponge, Seaweed, Hinder, Suicidal Tendencies and Danzig.[9][10] They were also a featured band on the main-stage at Woodstock '94 and made repeat live performances on Late Show with David Letterman.


Early career (1991–1992)[edit]

Formed in November 1990, Candlebox originally went by the name Uncle Duke; they changed their name the following year, purportedly inspired by lyrics from the Midnight Oil song "Tin Legs and Tin Mines". The band was originally composed of Kevin Martin on vocals and lead guitar and Scott Mercado on drums. They then added Peter Klett on lead guitar and Bardi Martin on bass in late 1991.[11][12]

Rise to fame (1993–2000)[edit]

Candlebox began performing together in 1991. By 1992 the were playing regularly in some of Seattle's favorite haunts, including the now defunct RKCNDY and Farside, to ever increasing audiences.

The band's 8-song EP, which had meanwhile been recorded, gained the attention of Maverick Records.[13] On July 20, 1993, Candlebox released their self-titled debut album. It sold more than 4 million copies and peaked at No. 7 on Billboard's album charts. Candlebox featured the hit singles "Change", "You", "Far Behind", and "Cover Me". "Far Behind" entered Billboard's top 20 in July 1993, peaked at No. 18, and stayed on the charts until January 1994. The tremendous radio, concert, and television success gained them a main-stage slot at Woodstock '94 and put Candlebox at the forefront of the 1990s post-grunge scene. Despite the 1993 release of their debut album, Candlebox won Metal Edge magazine's 1994 Readers' Choice Award for Best New Band.[14]

Hot off the success of Candlebox, the band was eager to progress and by April 1994 had 36 new songs for a follow-up record.[13] On October 3, 1995, Candlebox released their second album, Lucy. Although it marked the beginning of a commercial subsidence, Lucy was certified gold thanks to singles such as "Simple Lessons" and "Understanding". Two days after the release of Lucy, Candlebox appeared on Working Class Hero: A Tribute to John Lennon with their cover of "Steel and Glass". Drummer Scott Mercado left the band the following year and was replaced by former Pearl Jam member Dave Krusen.

On July 21, 1998, Candlebox released their third studio album, Happy Pills. While a return to the simpler sound of their debut, it gained only marginal success. The song "Glowing Soul" was also recorded for the soundtrack to The Waterboy and included at the request of Adam Sandler. Inspired by the film, the song was based on a Bo Diddley rhythm and recorded with vintage equipment.[11]

The following year would be a turbulent foreshadowing in the band's career. Krusen departed from Candlebox in 1999 and was replaced by Shannon Larkin of Ugly Kid Joe. Bardi Martin also left to attend college and was replaced by Rob Redick, formerly of Dig. By 2000, Candlebox went on hiatus. According to Martin, the band was unhappy with their record contract and attempted to be freed from Maverick by disbanding. The label considered Martin the sole remaining band member, but after two years of disputes over recording an obligatory fourth Candlebox album, Martin was terminated. As of 2007, Martin has received no royalties from album sales since 2001 and won't until the fourth record is paid back. Other band members, however, do receive royalties. It is reported that Kevin Martin now does receive royalties from record sales according to a response on the bands Facebook page to a question asked by a fan.[15]

The former Candlebox members would pursue other musical endeavors during the 2000s; in 2005, Kevin Martin recorded and performed as frontman of The Hiwatts. Peter Klett served as the leader of redlightmusic.

Reunion (2006–present)[edit]

Kevin Martin in 2010

In 2006, Rhino Records planned to release a "Best of" compilation of Candlebox, which prompted the original band lineup to reunite for the first time in 10 years. To promote the compilation, Candlebox embarked on a three-month North American tour from July to October of that year. Bardi Martin dropped from touring in 2007 to continue his education to become a lawyer, allowing Adam Kury to take his place. During the time, the band would begin writing new material despite having no record label.[15]

After several delays, Candlebox released its first album in 10 years, Into the Sun, on July 22 via Silent Majority/ILG records. The album was produced by Ron Aniello (Lifehouse, Barenaked Ladies) and features performances by both Scott Mercado and Dave Krusen on drums. The first single, "Stand," was released to radio in mid-May and Candlebox officially commenced touring in support of the new record in June 2008. "Stand" reached as high as No. 15 on the U.S. Mainstream Rock chart.

On July 4, 2008 Candlebox performed at the O'Fallon, Missouri Heritage and Freedom Fest in front of a record crowd. Two months later, the band released a live CD/DVD called Alive in Seattle.[16]

In 2009, Kevin Martin and Sean Hennesy formed The Gracious Few with Live members Chad Taylor, Patrick Dahlheimer, and Chad Gracey.

On August 9, 2010 Candlebox kicked off a five-show stint overseas performing for U.S troops at Camp Arifjan in Kuwait and continued on to Iraq.

As of 2010, Peter Klett and Scott Mercado formed Lotus Crush, consisting of: Terry McDermott (vocals), Peter Klett (guitar), Johnny Bacolas (bass), Scott Mercado (drums), and John Luzzi (guitar).

On April 3, 2012 Candlebox released their 5th studio album, Love Stories & Other Musings produced by Ken Andrews (Failure/Thousand Foot Krutch/Lostprophets).

Although the band had originally planned to put out a new album in 2015,[17] those plans were postponed after Candlebox parted ways with their record label at the time. Around this time in 2015, founding members Scott Mercado and Peter Klett announced they were leaving the band to focus on Lotus Crush, although the split was amicable, with Kevin Martin saying, "I wish them the best." Sean Hennesy left the band shortly thereafter.

Kevin Martin formed Le Projet, consisting of: Kevin Martin, Morgan Rose, Adam Kury, Lenny Cerzosie, and Brian Quinn. Kevin Martin also performed solo shows in 2015.

It was then announced in August 2015 that Candlebox had inked a record deal through Pavement Music and that they were working on a new record for an early 2016 release.[18] Lead singer Kevin Martin confirmed and elaborated on plans for the new record in an interview with The Gentlemen's Show podcast on August 27, 2015, stating that the targeted release date was March 11, 2016.[19]

Musical style[edit]

Candlebox's musical style, while predominately hard rock, has a wide range of influences. Some of their songs have strong references to blues, jazz, grunge, rock and even glam metal. Despite various aforementioned classic roots, their music is considered contemporary.[20]

Band members[edit]

Current members
  • Kevin Martin – lead vocals, guitar (1990–present)
  • Dave Krusen – drums (1997–1999, 2015–present)
  • Adam Kury – bass guitar, backing vocals (2007–present); guitar (2015–present)
  • Mike Leslie – lead and rhythm guitar, backing vocals (2015–present)[21]
  • Brian Quinn – lead and rhythm guitar (2015–present)[21]
Session members
  • Scott Heard – backing vocals on Candlebox (1993)
  • Randy Gane – Hammond organ on "He Calls Home" from Candlebox (1993); piano on Lucy (1995; credited as Randy Gaine)
  • Laurie Lewis – backing vocals on Candlebox (1993)
  • Kelly Gray – rhythm guitar on Lucy (1995)
  • Dave Krusen – drums (1996–2001, 2007, 2011); appeared on Happy Pills (1998); "Stand", "Surrendering", "Into the Sun", "Miss You", "How Does It Feel", "A Kiss Before Dying", "Breathe Me In (Intro)", and "Breathe Me In" from Into the Sun (2007); and Love Stories & Other Musings (2011)
  • Walker Gibson – keyboards on Love Stories & Other Musings (2011)
Former members
  • Scott Mercado – drums, percussion (1990–1997, 2006–2015)
  • Peter "Pete" Klett – lead and rhythm guitar (1990/1991–2015)
  • Bardi Martin – bass guitar (1991–1999, 2006–2007, 2013)
  • Robbie Allen – rhythm guitar (1998–2000)
  • Shannon Larkin – drums (1999–2000)
  • Rob Redick (Reddick) – bass guitar (1999–2000)
  • Sean Hennesy (Hennesey) – rhythm and lead guitar (2006–2015)


Studio albums
Title Album details Peak chart positions Certifications

Candlebox 7
  • US: 4× Platinum
  • Released: October 3, 1995
  • Label: Maverick
  • Formats: CD
  • US: Gold
Happy Pills
  • Released: July 21, 1998
  • Label: Maverick
  • Formats: CD
Into the Sun
  • Released: July 22, 2008
  • Label: Silent Majority Group
  • Formats: CD
32 4
Love Stories & Other Musings
  • Released: April 3, 2012
  • Label: Audionest
  • Formats: CD
82 12
Compilation albums
Live albums
  • Alive in Seattle CD+DVD (September 2, 2008)
Other recordings
Year Song Peak chart positions Album


1993 "Change" 18 Candlebox
1994 "You" 78 18 6
"Far Behind" 18 7 4
"Cover Me" 23 8
1995 "Simple Lessons" 12 5 Lucy
"Understanding" 19
"Best Friend"
1998 "It's Alright" 32 2 Happy Pills
"10,000 Horses" 13
1999 "Happy Pills" 17
2008 "Stand" 15 Into the Sun
"Miss You"
2009 "A Kiss Before Dying"
2012 "Believe in It" 28 Love Stories & Other Musings
Music videos
  • "Change"
  • "You"
  • "Far Behind"
  • "Cover Me"
  • "Simple Lessons"
  • "Understanding"
  • "Best Friend"
  • "It's Alright"
  • "Stand"
  • "Miss You"

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Steininger, Adam (August 23, 2013). "The 10 Worst Post-Grunge Bands". LA Weekly. Retrieved July 1, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Report: Reunited Grunge Band CANDLEBOX Ignites New Fans". Blabbermouth.Net. Retrieved 2013-04-10. 
  3. ^ DeRogatis, Jim (2006). Staring at Sound: The True Story of Oklahoma's Fabulous Flaming Lips. Three Rivers Press. p. 131. ISBN 978-0767921404. 
  4. ^ Grow, Kory (March 12, 2012). "Candlebox Premiere New Song "Believe in It"". Revolver. Retrieved July 1, 2015. 
  5. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Candlebox - Lucy". Allmusic. Retrieved July 1, 2015. 
  6. ^ "RIAA Gold & Platinum Database". 2004-09-21. Retrieved 2012-04-14. 
  7. ^ [1][dead link]
  8. ^ "". Retrieved 2014-04-25. 
  9. ^ "1994 » July". Concert Central. 1994-07-30. Retrieved 2014-04-25. 
  10. ^ "Suicidal Tendencies". Retrieved 2014-04-25. 
  11. ^ a b Glowing Soul keepinyaregular Volume 4, Issue 2 (December 1998). Retrieved on 12-14-10.
  12. ^ "Candlebox Biography". Retrieved 2010-05-18. 
  13. ^ a b Nussbaum, Beth R. Set to Ignite: Candlebox Playgirl (April 1994). Retrieved on 12-12-10.
  14. ^ Metal Edge, June 1995
  15. ^ a b Candlebox Interview Garage Radio Magazine (2007). Retrieved on 12-12-10.
  16. ^ "Alive in Seattle: Candlebox: Music". Retrieved 2011-07-15. 
  17. ^ "Believe In It. An interview with Kevin Martin of Candlebox.". Unsung Melody. 2013-01-31. Retrieved 2013-02-04. 
  19. ^ "The Gentlemen's Show - August 27th, 2015". 
  20. ^ "Candlebox". Encyclopedia of Popular Music. Oxford University Press. 2006. 
  21. ^ a b "Candlebox Officially Parts Ways With Guitarist Peter Klett, Drummer Scott Mercado -". BLABBERMOUTH.NET. 
  22. ^ a b c d e Peak chart positions for Candlebox in the United States:


  • Foege, Alec (January 27, 1994). "New faces: Candlebox". Rolling Stone (674): 24.

External links[edit]