Members: Brad Arnold - Vocals, Matt Roberts - Lead Guitar, Todd Harrell - Bass, Greg Upchurch - Drum
Bio: Escatawpa, Mississippi Grunge quintet 3 DOORS DOWN stood out from the crowd with their February 2000 debut 'The Better Life' by warrant of employing lead vocalist Brad Arnold not just behind the microphone but also the drum kit. Although many critics found the album too formula the group scored a massive radio hit with the single 'Kryptonite'.
The group's origins lay in Alabama, forged by bassist Todd Harrell in 1996 and taking their name from a sign on a wall in Foley, Alabama. Initially 3 DOORS DOWN operated as a trio of Harrell, vocalist and drummer Brad Arnold and guitarist Matt Roberts, performing their debut gig at a friend's party with a repertoire of two originals, a METALLICA track and a BUSH song. An independently released album would be made for sale at gigs. Local station WCPR in Biloxi included the opening track 'Kryptonite', written by Arnold in his high school algebra class, into their local tent focus 'The Home Grown Show'. Such was the audience reaction that the station director put 'Kryptonite' onto major rotation and, infectiously, the song spread across the regions. Word of this reached the Republic arm of major label Universal Records but, upon receiving the CD, were faced with a puzzle. The band had neglected to include any contact details. A detective spirit prevailed and the album 'Thanks' list was scoured and duly contacted until the band was reached. Following a performance at CBGB's in New York the Republic snapped the band up during 1997. Boosting the band's compliment Chris Henderson was duly added as second guitarist and Richard Lyles as drummer.
The release of 'The Better Life', produced by Paul Ebersold and mixed by Toby Wright, was promoted by immediate high profile nationwide touring as support to CREED and SEVENDUST in March of 2000. By April, with 'Kryptonite' blazing across US radio, 'The Better Life' had surpassed gold sales status for half a million records sold and a few short weeks after attained the platinum mark. 'Kryptonite's success was such that it remained steadfastly at the top of the Billboard 'Modern Rock tracks' chart for a reign of 11 weeks, breaking into the national singles charts in July. That month 3 DOORS DOWN performed at Canada's largest music festival, the 'Edgefest', as 'Kryptonite' maintained its momentum. 'The Better Life' passed the two million sales target as 'Kryptonite' kept on selling. By October it had clawed its way all the way up to the US no. 1 spot. The album showed no signs of flagging either, reaching treble platinum that month and by December, quadruple platinum.
This success was recognized in early 2001 as 3 DOORS DOWN received an American Music Award for 'Favorite Pop/Rock New Artist' and were shortly afterward nominated for a prestigious Grammy for 'Kryptonite' in the 'Best Rock Song' category. The band launched into a headline tour in February, propelling follow up singles 'Loser', 'Duck And Run' and 'Be Like That' into the charts. Further touring in June, with TANTRIC and LIFEHOUSE as support, provided a backdrop for 'The Better Life's fifth platinum award.
3 DOORS DOWN did not have it all their own way with the media the following year. Despite Arnold being honored with no less than BMI Pop Awards for songwriting, also being named 'Songwriter of the Year' the band suffered some adverse publicity in May when Harrell turned himself into the Mississippi police department for a 'misdemeanor simple assault' charge. Apparently a claim had been filed that Harrell had attacked a man at a party a few days before. The bassist was found not guilty.
November of 2002 found the band's second offering 'Away From The Sun' in stores, this time recorded with Daniel Adair on the drums. Although the single 'When I'm Gone' went top forty on Billboard the band's rapid ascendancy displayed by their debut did not repeat itself. 'Away From The Sun' had sold a million albums by January of 2003, with Grammy nominations once again on offer for 'Best Rock Song' and 'Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal' for 'When I'm Gone'. The track, given a boost by its unofficial but poignant use by military families as a theme song to America's war in Iraq, subsequently gave 3 DOORS DOWN their second no. 1 single. The band ploughed their money back into a common passion by novelly sponsoring Tony Stewart's NASCAR championship, the driver's Chevrolet Monte Carlo decked out in a distinctive 3 DOORS DOWN paint scheme. Fans could even buy scale models of the car. On the road 3 DOORS DOWN topped a billing comprising OUR LADY PEACE, SEETHER and SHINEDOWN.
Quite incredibly the follow up, 'Here Without You', also eased its way to no. 1. However, the public's attention was still focussed on their previous outing and steady sales found 'The Better Life' standing at the six million point by June. To celebrate, a live mini album 'Another 700 Miles' was issued in November, this collectible including a cover version of LYNYRD SKYNYRD's 'That Smell'.
The group's profile was maintained into 2004, not only by the title track lifted off 'Away From The Sun' breaking into the Billboard top forty but also further charges of violence being laid on Harrell, allegedly punching and kicking a newspaper deliveryman. Chris Henderson took time out to act as producer for latest Sony Music signings LOVE.45.
The proof is in the multiple new signature songs overflowing on this 2011 treasure chest. Test ride the searing title track “Time Of My Life,” the full-throttled ‘band favorite,’ “Round And Round,” or the powerful ballad, “Back to Me.”. The album’s initial offering to fans and radio, “When You’re Young,” sent online followers searching for adjectives that accurately reflected that magical 3 Doors Down territory, noting the band’s colorful past and their take-no-prisoners attitude toward the future. The group is also joined this time round by world-class record producer Howard Benson (Daughtry, Theory Of A Deadman, Apocolyptica).
Sources: Official Website, MusicMight, MySpace pages
More info: http://www.musicmight.com/artist/united+states/mississippi/escatawpa/3+doors+down
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