Fuel performing in May 2010
|Origin||Kenton, Tennessee, United States and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, United States|
Fuel is an American rock band formed by guitarist/songwriter Carl Bell and bassist Jeff Abercrombie in 1994. They are known for their hit songs "Shimmer" from Sunburn, "Hemorrhage (In My Hands)" and "Bad Day" from Something Like Human, and "Falls on Me" from Natural Selection. The band has sold nearly four million records worldwide.
They have released five studio albums, most recently Puppet Strings in 2014. No original members of the band remain, except for vocalist Brett Scallions, who was out of the band himself from 2006 to 2010.
Early years (1985–1997)
Carl Bell and Jeff Abercrombie, childhood friends, started playing music together in junior high and high school. After graduating high school Bell, who was a few years older than Abercrombie, headed off to college where he met drummer Jody Abbott. Bell and Abbott formed a college campus band, Wanted (along with Robert Wagner and Mark Crawford) in Henderson, Tennessee. The band Wanted transitioned into Phoenix, which was a touring band for the college primarily used to recruit prospective students. After college, Bell and Abercrombie, who at the time was attending college at the University of Tennessee at Martin, reunited along with Abbott and formed the band Reel Too Real, playing cover songs at local clubs in Tennessee and eventually becoming a national touring club circuit band. Lead vocalist-guitarist Brett Scallions joined the group after bassist Jeff Abercrombie saw him performing in a bar in Jackson, Tennessee in 1993 and later asked him to join in 1994. That same year, the band moved to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, where they played at local Pennsylvania bars and nightclubs under the name Reel Too Real, playing cover songs. The band made a choice to go under a different name when showcasing its own original material. That name, for the time being, would be Small the Joy, which put out one EP in 1994. The band once again decided to change its name, this time settling on the name Fuel, before releasing their second EP, Porcelain, in 1996 as well as repackaging their first EP, Small the Joy, with the "Fuel" name on it. Porcelain sold well locally, spawning a small radio hit with "Shimmer". The popularity of the EP brought them to the attention of Sony's 550 imprint, which released their third EP, Hazleton, the following year.
Mainstream success (1998–2003)
Upon signing to Epic, the band entered Longview Farm recording studios in Massachusetts, along with producer Steven Haigler and session drummer Jonathan Mover due to problems with Abbott. The band's full-length debut, Sunburn, came out in 1998. "Shimmer" was again included and peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks charts, No. 11 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, No. 37 on the Adult Top 40 chart and at No. 42 on the Billboard Hot 100, as well as Platinum single sales in Australia; while, the other singles ("Bittersweet" which peaked at No. 15 on the Billboard Rock Mainstream charts, "Jesus or a Gun", and "Sunburn,") received some airplay. The songs "Shimmer" and "Sunburn" are also featured on the charitable album Live in the X Lounge. "Sunburn" was also featured in the movie Scream 3, and the band contributed the non-LP track "Walk the Sky" to the 1998 American Godzilla film. The band hit the road in support of the release. Once again due to problems with Abbott, Mover was enlisted, this time to play drums on tour while the band sought out a full-time drummer to join. Liner notes for the cassette and CD issues of "Sunburn" list the band members as Carl Bell (guitar), Brett Scallions (vocals), Jeff Abercrombie (bass), and Kevin Miller (drums), although Jonathan Mover is credited with playing all the drums and percussion on the record. The band picture includes Miller, though he did not play on the record. The album Sunburn was the band's first Gold and Platinum selling record.
In 2000, Fuel came back with their second album, Something Like Human, featuring the single "Hemorrhage (In My Hands)" which was No. 1 for 12 weeks on the U.S. Modern Rock Tracks chart. The single was also named Billboard's No. 5 Rock Song of the Decade according to their Best of the 2000s Rock Songs chart. In 2013 "Hemorrhage (In My Hands)" became the No. 6 Alternative Rock song of the past 25 years according to Billboard's Alternative Chart 25th Anniversary: Top 100 Songs. Something Like Human peaked at No. 17 on the Billboard 200 and was certified Double Platinum by the RIAA on September 25, 2001.
The group's third album, Natural Selection, named after Darwinian theory, was released in September 2003 and debuted at No. 15 on the U.S. Billboard charts. The extended lag time between Something Like Human and Natural Selection was due to legal problems and lead singer Scallions having to recover from surgery to repair a deviated septum he suffered from an on-stage collision with Bell. The album spawned the hit "Falls on Me", which hit No. 9 and No. 11 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks and the Modern Rock Tracks charts, and reaching No. 13 and No. 17 on the Mainstream Top 40 and Adult Top 40 charts, peaking at No. 52 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. The album was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2004 for best engineered album, and the band contributed the song "Won't Back Down" to the Daredevil soundtrack earlier in the year. They released their greatest hits album The Best of Fuel on December 13, 2005. Their song "Quarter" was featured in the games "Need for Speed: Underground", "NFL Street" and "NASCAR Thunder 2004".
Line-up changes and Angels & Devils (2004–2007)
After disagreements (both public and private), drummer Kevin Miller was dismissed from the band in 2004. On February 7, 2006, Fuel announced through their website that singer Brett Scallions had left the band. Fuel had already laid down the instrumental tracks for their fourth album and soon started auditioning singers so the band could move forward. Abercrombie and Bell took notice of American Idol contestant Chris Daughtry, after he performed "Hemorrhage (In My Hands)" on the show. The single shot up to the Top 10 download list on iTunes and stayed there for a number of days. This also sparked interest in other Fuel songs, which began to appear in the Top 100 download chart on iTunes. On March 3, 2006, judge Randy Jackson stated in an interview that Daughtry had been offered the opportunity to become Fuel's new lead singer. Fuel confirmed their interest on their official website. On May 11, 2006, Abercrombie and Bell appeared on the TV show Extra to officially offer Daughtry the job. However, though flattered, Daughtry turned down this offer. By this time also, Tommy Stewart, formerly of Godsmack, was named as Fuel's drummer on Fuel's Myspace page.
On June 8, 2006, Bell announced that the band had found a new lead singer but were waiting confirmation from the record label to announce it. Still, they officially entered the studio in mid-August with producer Scott Humphrey to start recording their fourth album. Due to other commitments Stewart was not available to play drums on the album, so Tommy Lee and Josh Freese performed drums in his place. The band posted photos from the studio fairly often on the band's website and MySpace.
On March 9, 2007, Carl Bell officially announced that Fuel's next album, complete with new band members, was fully mixed and going to mastering, and on April 19, 2007, he posted on Fuel's official website that their new lead singer was Toryn Green.
On May 15, 2007, Bell announced the title of the new album—Angels & Devils. On June 19, 2007, Fuel's first single from their new album, "Wasted Time", was released into rock radio and internet download and peaked at No. 24 on Billboard's Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks. The album was released on August 7, 2007. A second single, "Gone," was released on October 23. Angels & Devils debuted on the Billboard 200 at No. 42, selling about 15,000 copies in its first week. On October 20, 2008, Sony's catalog division Legacy Recordings released the album Playlist: The Very Best of Fuel on their Playlist series.
The return of Brett Scallions and Puppet Strings (2010–2016)
On April 8, 2010, the reformation of Fuel was confirmed in an official press release. The band consisted of Scallions with an entirely new lineup.
"There is only one original of anything" says Scallions, "and that includes Fuel. The original lineup with Carl, Jeff, Jody and myself will always be something special to all of us, and our first Fuelies (a term for Fuel fans) but it has been thirteen years since the original lineup was intact, and since then many great musicians have come and gone. The lineup I put together for Fuel is not meant to replace or diminish what any of the original members created. Just the opposite, it is to give our fans a live destination, and to keep the Fuel name alive for a new generation to discover. Maybe someday we'll all get on the same page and play together again, but life happens and the next thing you know you just can't jump on a bus and take off for a month, let alone a year."
It was later announced on June 25, 2010 that former Shinedown guitarist Jasin Todd had joined the band to replace Yogi Lonich on lead guitar. Lonich returned to the band in January 2011. Jasin Todd left the band on good terms.
In March 2011, Brett Scallions started a new band called World Fire Brigade  The lineup for World Fire Brigade included all current members of Fuel in addition to Smile Empty Soul vocalist/guitarist Sean Danielsen.
The band played Bethlehem Musikfest alongside Buckcherry, however Yogi Lonich was not on stage. A friend of Scallions, Martin Estrada, filled in for the show. Brett Scallions announced on his official Facebook page that Yogi Lonich was fired from the band for his lack of commitment or loyalty. Scallions also hinted that there is in fact a new Fuel record in the works and also introduced the band's new lead guitarist, Andy Andersson. The band continued its tour and played new material during their shows.
Fuel entered the studio on March 8, 2012 to record their fifth full-length studio album, Puppet Strings. Eddie Wohl, producer of the World Fire Brigade album, produced the new Fuel album. In late September the band re-entered the studio to complete the guitar and bass tracks for the record. As of February 2013 the band was still in the studio finishing off vocal and guitar tracks. Originally planned for a 2012 release the album had been pushed back to a possible mid-2013 release. This marked six years since the band released their previous album Angels & Devils.
On April 30, 2013 drummer Ken Schalk announced his departure from the band to spend more time with his family. On that same day Scallions announced new drummer Bryan "Keelgood" Keeling. The band, however, kept Schalk's drum tracks, as referenced by Keeling in his first interview since joining the band. On April 30, 2013 Brett Scallions announced that a new Fuel single was targeted for a mid-summer release via download once the "details have been worked out and handshakes have been made".
On June 26, 2013, Scallions announced that Bryan Keeling was going out on tour with Eric Sardinas in Europe and that Shannon Boone (current drummer for Puddle of Mudd) had joined the band. Scallions also commented on the new album; "The record has been recorded and is so close to being released for all of you I can taste it. There will be big announcements very soon regarding release dates, singles, videos, and much much more. Take care and we will see you all soon at a venue near you!"
Scallions confirmed that the new album was mixed by Ben Grosse who also collaborated with Fuel on the Something Like Human album. According to Scallions the new album was currently in the mastering stage of production.
It was announced through Guitar World on December 5, 2013 that the album indeed titled, Puppet Strings, would be released March 4, 2014. The song, "Yeah!" was released for free download on the website as well, although it was believed to be the first single, Scallions stated that it is not the first single, but rather a "teaser." The first single, "Soul To Preach To" was released late January 2014.
In May 2015 as Fuel geared up to join Everclear on their Summerland Tour, ex-Filter bass player Phil Buckman temporarily replaced Brad Stewart, with Stewart himself filling in for the band Saliva. Although Brad stated he was scheduled to re-join Fuel on June 9, the temporary switch proved to be permanent with Stewart continuing his new role in Saliva, as did Buckman with Fuel. In September Brett Scallions began working on material for a sixth album.
Upcoming sixth studio album (2016–present)
Brett Scallions has made many posts on Facebook and Instagram of him working in the studio on the new Fuel record. Scallions commented in one of the photos that the sixth album will be out on Spring or Summer of 2017, but has possibly been delayed to early 2018. The band toured in August and September in 2017 and will tour Australia and New Zealand in December 2017. Scallions has said that Fuel will tour in 2018 playing its first album in its entirety marking its 20th anniversary year.
- Studio albums
- Sunburn (1998)
- Something Like Human (2000)
- Natural Selection (2003)
- Angels & Devils (2007)
- Puppet Strings (2014)
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