At this point, I'm fairly certain almost everyone has heard of Twenty One Pilots. This incredibly unique, and very successful duo originally formed in 2009 in Columbus, OH. I was fairly surprised to discover that they didn't originally start off as a duo of best friends, they actually were once slightly different.
While the band now only consists of Tyler Joesph, who does the lead vocals and keyboard, and Josh Dun, who is the drummer. Originally the band consisted of Tyler Joesph, Nick Thomas and Chris Salih. Chris was the original drummer, and Nick who played bass. Josh didn't come into the picture until 2011, but rest assured, we're getting to that.
These three met in college, and actually came up with the band name while studying a play. The play is called All My Sons, and is written by Arthur Miller. The play takes place in World War II and is about a man who is faced with deciding what is best for his family after he knowingly sold faulty parts to twenty-one pilots who ultimately got killed.
Apparently they liked the way that sounded, and thus Twenty One Pilots was born! By the end of 2009, they released their debut album, which was self titled and began touring around Ohio.
Then in 2010, they released two tracks to their Soundcloud account, one original and one cover. Those two tracks were, "Time To Say Goodbye" and a cover of Christina Perri's "Jar Of Hearts. "Both songs were originally there for free downloads, but you can no longer do that now.
Then in 2011, both Nick and Chris decided to leave the band because they were simply too busy to keep up with it. They posted about this on the band's Facebook page, and there's not a ton more to be said about that. However, enter in Josh Dun, who actually used to tour with House of Heroes -an alternative rock band that formed in 1998, as their drummer.
Now this is where Twenty One Pilots as the world knows and loves them to be really came to be. On July 8, 2011, they released their second self release. This time it was just Tyler and Josh, and they actually threw a CD release party at New Albany High School. From there, they went on to sell out a show at the Newport Music Hall in Columbus, OH, and at that show were representatives for many different record labels. They ended up actually signing with Fueled by Ramen then in 2012, and released two other previously unreleased songs. These songs included the original version of "House Of Gold", and a song called "Two."
They followed it up in February 2012, by releasing a music video for "Goner" on their YouTube channel. They later re-wrote it and re-recorded it for the release of Blurryface, three years later. In July of that year, they released their first EP to be released through Fueled With Ramen. This one was just simply called Three Songs, and was quickly followed by a tour with Neon Trees and Walk To Moon.
After the tour concluded, they set out to record their first full length album, Vessel. Vessel finally came out on January 8, 2013, and did fairly well on the charts. It hit number 3 on the US Billboard Catalog Albums and Vinyl Records, and broke the top ten on three other US charts, South Korea's International charts, and charted in eight other countries. So it didn't do bad, by any means. For a 'debut album', it actually did very well.
This album actually holds two of the biggest songs Twenty One Pilot has. Those two songs are, "House Of Gold" and "Car Radio." I actually heard "House Of Gold" completely not realizing it was them, so there's a chance you did the same thing! Then "Car Radio" is quoted all over the internet, so there's a chance you were exposed to that even. If you've seen the quote, "Someone stole my car radio and now I sit in silence." You've been exposed to "Car Radio."
The popularity of the album helped land them an opening spot on Fall Out Boy's Save Rock And Roll arena tour later in the fall, which was a massive deal because it was one of FOB's comeback tours.
This set them up for a lot of great things that were going to happen over the next few months. In August, they got to go on the late night TV show, Conan, and perform, "House Of Gold." The music video followed in October.
Then on Christmas Eee, Tyler got to perform in New Albany, OH, at Five14 Church's Christmas With the Stars. He performed, "O come, O come, Emmanuel." The video of Tyler singing this Christian Hymn wasn't uploaded in Valentine's Day 2014.
But also in December, they released music videos for "Truce" and "Migraine." Sadly "Migraine" was only limited to the UK area, and for some reason both videos got deleted shortly after.
Early 2014 was rather quiet until they went to the MTVU Woodie Awards to perform during SXSW. During the course of 2014, TOP did a lot of great things, and performed at many festivals including Lollapalooza, Bonaroo, Boston Calling and Firefly. They also decided to take some requests from fans and used them on a world tour, which they called Quiet Is The Violent World tour. That began in September 2014.
Here is where we start getting into present day, and all they have going on now. In March of 2015, they announced that they would be releasing their fourth studio album, Blurryface on May 1. That same day, they released the first single, "Fairly Local."
The second single and third singles came out then in April. There was "Tear In My Heart", which came out with a music video on April 5, 2015. The third, and possibly most popular TOP song so far, "Stressed Out " came out with its music video on April 28. "Stressed Out" alone did so good that it hit number one on the top Hot Rock Songs and Alternative Songs charts, as well as number two on the Billboard Hot 100.
The album was set to come out on May 19, 2015, but then they surprised fans and actually released it on the 17th instead. It ended up becoming the band's first number one hit, and sold over 130,000 copies in its first week alone. It broke the top ten in six countries, including the US, and the top 50 in thirteen other countries. Its also already gone Platinum here in the US, and Gold in Canada, Denmark and the UK.
It also went on to win the Top Rock Album and Top Rock Artist awards at the Billboard Music Awards.
After the release of the album, they went out on the Blurryface World tour, which began in Glasgow, Scotland. This tour was supported by Echosmith and Finish Ticket, and took them all over the US, as well as into Australia, South East Asia, Japan and various places in Europe.
They didn't slow down from there either, because from there, they set out on the Emotional Roadshow World tour, which began in Cincinnati, OH. They're currently on this tour, and are going all over the US, Canada, Mexico, Europe and Australia.
The funny thing is, at one of the Canadian dates, they had fans rocking out so hard that they actually caused a mini earthquake. The venue they were performing at was above a gym, and actually caused some of the ceiling to fall apart. The vibrations from the show and the 9,000 fans at the venue were too much for the foundation. It was repaired fairly quickly, and the gym reopened, but that's pretty crazy.
The most recent thing I can say TOP has done, besides tour the world, is release a song and music video for a new song, "Heathens." "Heathens" is part of the Suicide Squad soundtrack and was released on June 16. The video followed just a few days later, and the soundtrack is available now.
So now you're all caught up with Twenty One Pilots and their history. If you want to stay completely up to date, please head on over to their official website. Over there you can see a full list of tour dates, and all sorts of updates can be found on their social media.
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