Counting Crows Overview
Counting Crows is an American rock rock music band originating from Berkeley, California, formed in 1991. The group gained po***rity in 1994 following the release of its debut album, August and Everything After, which featured the hit single "Mr. Jones Mr. Jones (Counting Crows song) ".
The band's influences include Van Morrison, R.E.M., Mike + The Mechanics, Nirvana Nirvana (band) , Bob Dylan, and The Band. They received a 2004 Academy Award nomination for the song "Accidentally in Love", which was included in the film Shrek 2.
According to the official band website, Counting Crows has sold over 20 million records worldwide.
Singer Adam Duritz (former member of the Bay Area San Francisco Bay Area band The Himalayans) and guitarist Dave Bryson David Bryson formed Counting Crows in San Francisco San Francisco, California in 1991. In addition to his experience in The Himalayans, Duritz had contributed to recordings by the Bay Area group Sordid Humor ("Barbarossa"), though he was never a member.
Counting Crows began as an acoustic acoustic music duo, playing gigs gig (musical performance) in and around Berkeley Berkeley, California and San Francisco. Another friend, guitarist David Immerglück, played with them from time to time, though he was not an official member of the group, experimenting with other musicians in the area. As the emerging band recorded some demo demo (music) s, and later, as other musicians joined the duo to make a full band, Immerglück recorded with the others on some of the songs on their first album. He declined joining the band at the time, because of his membership in two other locally po***r bands; Monks of Doom and Camper Van Beethoven. By 1993, the band had grown to a stable lineup of Duritz as vocalist, occasional pianist, and primary songwriter, Bryson on guitar, Matt Malley playing bass guitar, Charlie Gillingham on keyboard keyboard instrument s, and Steve Bowman, as drummer drum kit , and the band was a regular in the Bay Area scene. The same year, the band signed to Geffen Records. January 16, 1993, the band, still relatively unknown, filled in for Van Morrison at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame ceremony, and was introduced by an enthusiastic Robbie Robertson.
Before signing to Geffen, the band recorded demo versions of a number of songs, known as the 'Flying Demos'. These later surfaced among the Counting Crows fanbase. Tracks include "Rain King Rain King (Counting Crows song) ", "Omaha", "Anna Begins", "Einstein on the Beach (For an Eggman)", "Shallow Days", "Love and Addiction", "Mr. Jones Mr. Jones (Counting Crows song) ", "Round Here", "40 Years", "Margery Dreams of Horses", "Bulldog", "Lightning", and "We're Only Love".
Some songs from the tape later resurfaced (in reworked versions) on the band's debut album August and Everything After.
Origin of the name
The band took its name from a divination rhyme One for Sorrow (nursery rhyme) about the crow, heard by Duritz in the film Signs of Life Signs of Life (1989 film) .
Commercial success (August and Everything After)
From the beginning, Counting Crows focused on live performances. The band's debut album August and Everything After, produced by T-Bone Burnett, was released in late 1993. The band toured extensively in 1993 and 1994, both as headliners and in supporting roles with other artists, including *** *** (band) , the Cranberries, Suede Suede (band) , Bob Dylan, Los Lobos, Jellyfish Jellyfish (band) , and Midnight Oil. describing the desire of working musicians to make it big and the fantasies they entertain about what this might bring. Duritz sang the song in fun, enjoying the fantasy of making it big. However, he didn't realize that just months later, in December 1993, The album sold 7 million copies, but success took a toll on the band; drummer Steve Bowman left, which was not his first.
Recovering the Satellites
The band played only two gigs in 1995. After taking time off to recover, the band toured for the rest of 1997, concluding with a show at the Hammerstein Ballroom, New York. This concert was released as half of a double live album Across a Wire: Live in New York City. The other disc was a recording of a predominantly acoustic set from the band's appearance on the VH1 Storytellers show.
This Desert Life
In 1999, Counting Crows released This Desert Life, sales of which were propelled by the success of "Hanginaround" and "Colorblind" which was also featured in the movie Cruel Intentions. Supporting the album, the band embarked on a co-headlining tour with alternative rock band Live Live (band) . Counting Crows closed nearly every show. Frequently, Duritz joined the stage for Live's performance of "The Dolphin's Cry," and Live's Ed Kowalczyk sang a verse of "Hanginaround" with the Counting Crows.
Before this album and subsequent tour, the band invited session player and long-time friend David Immerglück to join the band as a permanent member. Immerglück had played on every Counting Crows album as a sideman, but early on had declined a permanent position with multiple other musical commitments that had previously prevented him from joining the band full-time. This time, however, "Immy" as Immerglück is known to other bandmates, joined as a full member. He plays a variety of instruments with the band, including acoustic, electric, and pedal steel guitars, slide guitar, and mandolin, as well as contributing backing vocals.
On July 9, 2002, the band released their fourth studio album, Hard Candy Hard Candy (Counting Crows album) . The album included a cover cover version of Joni Mitchell's song "Big Yellow Taxi." Vanessa Carlton contributed backing vocals to the single edit single (music) of the track, which appeared on the soundtrack for Two Weeks Notice and was re-released on future Hard Candy albums. The original version, without vocals by Carlton, appeared on the first album release as a hidden track. Hard Candy received better reviews than the previous efforts, with "radio friendly" songs, like "American Girls", and contains a more upbeat feel and tempo. The band toured with the Dutch Netherlands band, Bløf, and together, a song, "Holiday in Spain" came together as a result of the cameraderie between the two groups. It is sung partly as a dual language duet, and partly as a musical "round", with both lead singers singing in differing languages at the end of the song.
Midway through the Hard Candy tour, drummer Ben Mize (born February 2, 1971, Durham Durham, North Carolina , North Carolina) amicably left the band to spend more time with his family and pursue his own musical interests. After Mize completed the American leg of the tour, he was replaced by Jim Bogios, formerly a drummer with Ben Folds and Sheryl Crow.
In November 2003, Counting Crows released the greatest hits album, Films About Ghosts Films About Ghosts (The best of...) . (The title is taken from the lyrics of "Mrs. Potter's Lullaby," which appeared on This Desert Life.) The band also toured in 2003 with John Mayer John Mayer (musician) , Maroon 5, and the Graham Colton Band.
In 2004, the band's "Accidentally in Love" appeared on the soundtrack List of Shrek songs of the hugely po***r computer-animated computer animation film Shrek 2. The song was nominated and performed for an Academy Award Academy Award for Best Song , and later versions of the 2003 greatest hits album include the track, which was re-released in 2004.
Following the Hard Candy tour, longtime bassist Matt Malley left the band. He was replaced by Millard Powers, who played with Crows drummer Jim Bogios on Ben Folds' Rockin' The Suburbs tour.
New Amsterdam: Live at Heineken Music Hall
In June 2006, the band released New Amsterdam: Live at Heineken Music Hall New Amsterdam (album) , a live album assembled from performances on their 2003 tour in support of Hard Candy. Although it is composed mainly of performances of already released material, it also contains "Hazy" (co-written with tour support act Gemma Hayes) and various vendor-specific additional tracks, such as a cover of Jackson C. Frank's "Blues Run the Game".
Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings
Duritz hinted in an interview that Counting Crows' next studio record would be released in late 2007. He indicated that the band recently had spent three weeks working in a recording studio with Gil Norton, the producer behind Recovering the Satellites. On September 27, 2007, Duritz announced on his blog that the band had asked its record label to postpone the album's release until early 2008, citing the time pressures involved in preparing both the new album and an August and Everything After deluxe edition for release.
Duritz revealed the working title of the album to be Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings, explaining, "Saturday night is when you sin and Sunday is when you regret. Sinning is often done very loudly, angrily, bitterly, violently." Vickrey has stated that "the idea at the moment is to have kind of a rocking side and then an acoustic-y, maybe country-ish side. We got the first half done in May in New York, so half of it is pretty strong and done. And now we're going to work on the second half, the country tunes, during the tour."
On January 16, 2008, the band released a digital single on their official website as a free download. It features "1492 1492 (Counting Crows song) " from the "Saturday Nights" half of the disc and "When I Dream Of Michelangelo" from the "Sunday Mornings" half as its B-side.
The lead single "You Can't Count on Me", a track from the "Sunday Mornings" half of the record, was released on February 5, 2008.
The band's former bassist, Matt Malley, played the bass guitar on the track "Sundays". Former drummer Ben Mize played drums on the tracks "Los Angeles" and "Sundays".
Live from SoHo
iTunes Live from SoHo iTunes Live from SoHo (Counting Crows EP) was recorded on March 27, 2008, at an in-store performance in the SoHo Apple Store in New York City. The album was an iTunes exclusive. It featured many songs from the band's 2008 release Saturday Nights and Sunday Mornings along with old favorites such as "Rain King" and "A Long December."
Departure from Geffen
On the March 22, 2009, Duritz announced on the band's website that the band would be leaving Geffen Records, with whom they had worked for 18 years. On this day and a few weeks later, a message from Duritz himself was posted on the band's homepage. He ended the letter with a free download to the band's cover of Madonna Madonna (entertainer) 's "Borderline." The track was recorded live at the Royal Albert Hall in 2003.Counting Crows, and Adam Duritz in particular, have become renowned for the energetic, passionate nature of their live performances. Duritz frequently extends and rewrites songs live, adding extra verses or alternate middle sections and/or endings, sometimes fitting most of another of the band's other songs into the middle of the first. On a live performance on Howard Stern's SIRIUS broadcast radio show, he delivered an altered version of "'Round Here" that Stern said was one of the best performances in his studio he had ever heard, with anchor Robin Quivers agreeing. He often uses other artists' lyrics in these sections as well, ranging from well-known acts, such as Bruce Springsteen, Van Morrison and George Gershwin, to obscure Bay Area bands, including revisiting material from his days working with Sordid Humor.
Most songs have been altered at some point during the band's history; the ones most often subjected to this treatment include "Round Here", "Goodnight Elisabeth", "Rain King", and "A Murder of One". Examples of this can be heard on the MTV Live at the 10 Spot disc from Across a Wire: Live in New York City (on which "Round Here" contains lyrics from "Have You Seen Me Lately?") and the VH1 Storytellers disc ("Anna Begins" has an extended mid-section with new lyrics, and the introduction to "Mr. Jones" includes lyrics from "Miller's Angels" and from The Byrds' "So You Wanna Be A Rock & Roll Star"). Fansites have attempted to keep records of these alternate lyrics, or "alts".The band has drawn deep in covering artists such as Rod Stewart, Fairport Convention, Pure Prairie League, The Rolling Stones, Jackson C. Frank, Bob Dylan, Jackson Browne, Grateful Dead, Joni Mitchell, Bruce Springsteen, U2, Simon and Garfunkel and Oasis Oasis (band) .
The band has also become known for its acoustic performances, most notably recorded on the VH1 Storytellers disc from Across a Wire: Live in New York City. The band decided that it would not play any songs at the Storytellers concert for which it did not have substantially different acoustic arrangements. They have since performed variations of these acoustic arrangements at a number of concerts, often opening with a few acoustic numbers before launching into an electric set.
On August 1, 2008 the band launched a new website, offering band-approved, soundboard-quality recordings of its concerts.The band actively encourages the recording of its concerts and the distribution of the resulting bootleg recordings. The band hosts a trading network on its website to enable fans to swap concert recordings. Sale of fan recordings for profit is prohibited; fans must either trade bootlegs for other bootlegs or pay for blank media, postage, and packaging. An unofficial torrent site named Crowstown, offers a vast quantity of video and audio bootlegs for free.;Current members
*Adam Duritz (Vocals Singing , rhythm guitar) (1991–present)
*Dan Vickrey (guitar, keyboards keyboard instrument ) (1991–1997, 2004–present)
*Millard Powers (bass guitar, upright bass, piano, vocals) (2005–present)
*Jim Bogios (drums drum kit ) (2002–present)
*Marty Jones Marty Jones (musician) (bass guitar) (1991–1992)
*Gabriel Wilson (guitar, keyboards keyboard instrument ) (1997–2004)
*Ben Ulrich (drums drum kit ) (1991–1994)
*Ben Mize (drums drum kit ) (1994–2002)
*Matt Malley (bass guitar) (1992–2005)*1993: August and Everything After
*1996: Recovering the Satellites
*1999: This Desert Life
*2002: Hard Candy Hard Candy (Counting Crows album)
*2008: Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings*The band's songs have appeared in several films:
**Clueless Clueless (film) (1995): "The Ghost In You"
**Rounders Rounders (film) (1998): "Baby, I'm A Big Star Now"
**Cruel Intentions (1999): "Colorblind"
**VH1 Storytellers – Compilation Album (2000): "Rain King"
**Mr. Deeds (2002): "Goin' Down to New York Town"
**Two Weeks Notice (2002): "Big Yellow Taxi"
**Shrek 2 (2004): "Accidentally in Love" (nominated for Best Song and performed live at the 2005 Academy Awards)
*Boy Meets World character Shawn Hunter is mentioned as a Counting Crows fan.
*The song "Raining in Baltimore" is featured on the soundtrack of "The Last of the Watermen" episode of Homicide: Life on the Street.
*The song "Walkaways" is featured in an episode of the FOX series Party of Five.
* Songs by Counting Crows were played during television drama series such as Cold Case Cold Case (TV series) (several songs by the band have been used, such as "Anna Begins" and "Recovering the Satellites") and the following: Boston Public (the band made a personal cameo as "the band in bar"), Brothers & Sisters Brothers & Sisters (2006 TV series) , Dawson's Creek, The Days, Everwood, E.R. ER (TV series) , Laguna Beach, One Tree Hill One Tree Hill (TV series) , Party Of Five, Roswell Roswell (TV series) , Felicity (twice), and Scrubs Scrubs (TV series) .
* Counting Crows were featured on ESPN2's Cold Pizza and interviewed by PBS's Tavis Smiley in 2004.
* At the end of an episode of Family Guy Peter thanks the Counting Crows doing a parody of an SNL Saturday Night Live ending.
* In NBC's The Office (episode "Weight Loss"), Holly buys Counting Crows tickets as a surprise for the yoga instructor, but he never calls. Michael berates the yoga instructor in front of her for not calling her back, much to her apparent pleasure. He then offers to buy the tickets from her, only to tear them up in front of her.
* Counting Crows performed live before the 2007 MLB All-Star Game.
* In 2008, Counting Crows performed on The View The View (U.S. TV series) and Good Morning America in March, A&E A&E Network Private Sessions, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, and The Late Show with David Letterman in April (all for the promotion of their new release "Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings"), and again on Good Morning America in May, this time from a live concert in Bryant Park.
* On March 27, 2008, Counting Crows performed live on The Howard Stern Show. They played "Round Here", "Washington Square" and "Rain King", using Bruce Springsteen's "Thunder Road" as an alternative bridge to the last song.
* "When I Dream of Michelangelo" was played at the end of an episode of ABC American Broadcasting Company 's Brothers & Sisters Brothers & Sisters (2006 TV series) on April 27, 2008.
* The name of progressive metal band Between the Buried and Me is derived from the lyrics in Counting Crows' song "Ghost Train": "Took the cannonball down to the ocean/Across the desert from the sea to shining sea/I rode a ladder that climbed across the nation/Fifty million feet of earth between the buried and me." The band also recorded a cover of the song "Colorblind" by Counting Crows on their cover album The Anatomy Of.
* In 2004, Victory Records released a tribute album to the Counting Crows entitled "Dead and Dreaming". The records consists of various bands performing covers of the Counting Crows.
*The Counting Crows song "Anna Begins" served as the title of a 2008 Young Adult novel, and appears late in the book.
* The song Angels of the Silences appears in the 2009 game Band Hero
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