Maroon 5 Biography
Review The Artist (16)
Sometimes Plan B can put Plan A to shame. Singer/guitarist Adam Levine, guitarist Jesse Carmichael, bass player Mickey Madden and drummer Ryan Dusick would second that emotion, seeing as how their first shot at the big time got them some rave notices, but not much else. Now, their second shot, in the form of neo-soul rock outfit Maroon 5, thanks to 2 songs, "Harder To Breathe" and "This Love", has the LA-based Maroon 5 looking like the Cinderella story for 2005.
Released as a single way back in the summer of 2002, seventeen months later "Harder To Breathe" hit #4 at top 40 radio. Over 500 live shows, including opening stints for John Mayer, Sheryl Crow, Train, and Counting Crows, and now a consistent headline act in its own right, has helped to underscore a list of reasons why Maroon 5's debut CD, Songs About Jane, had already sold more than 3,000,000 records and gotten the guys on the Tonight Show twice, The Today Show, Jimmy Kimmel Live, Last Call with Carson Daly and the Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn. The next single, "This Love" was #1 at top 40, VH1 and MTV, simultaneously! It was also the first song ever to be certified as a platinum download.
But perhaps we're getting ahead of ourselves. What about Plan A?
Known as Kara's Flowers, Levine, Carmichael and Madden were the toast of their West LA high school (Dusick, who’d known Levine since they were nine and seven, respectively, had already graduated). Here they were, 17 years old and making a CD with legendary producer Rob Cavallo (Green Day, Goo Goo Dolls, Michelle Branch). Life was grand.
This is where the good news ends. Following a disappointing run with their debut, The Fourth World, Kara's Flowers were granted their release from the label. Plan A had gone awry, leaving the quartet to consider their future. "We were like, Okay, what do we do now?" recalls Levine. "So we ran away to college to figure it out." Leaving Dusick and Madden behind to study at UCLA, Levine and Carmichael ran smack dab into Plan B in the dorms at the State University of New York.
"The halls would be blasting Gospel music and people would be listening to stuff that we’d never actually listened to, like Biggie Smalls, Missy Elliot and Jay-Z. The Aaliyah record had come out around then, and we were just blown away. When I think of songwriting, I think of The Beatles, Dylan, Simon & Garfunkel, the stuff that I grew up on, but then I was like, 'I want to do this.' Stevie Wonder came into my life at that point," Levine mentions, "and I just found a knack for doing it."
"I started singing differently," he told VH1, "and Jesse started playing keyboards; that's what changed it." When the duo hooked back up with Madden and Dusick in LA they were summarily reinvigorated by adding an R&B, groove-based tint to their explosive rock & roll. With the new musical frame-of-mind came a new name, Maroon 5, and a fifth member: guitarist James Valentine. "James came along right as we were deciding on the name," says Levine. "We clearly weren't Kara's Flowers anymore, with the addition of James and an entirely new approach to music. Also, if you name a band when you're 15, by the time you're 23 you're probably not gonna like it very much."
Fortified with a new attitude, a new sound and a new name, Maroon 5 quickly attracted attention from labels. Octone Records, a new independent label based in New York (Octone is a marketing co-venture partner of J Records/RCA Music Group), signed the group, and in 2001 Maroon 5 entered the studio with producer Matt Wallace (The Replacements, Faith No More, Blues Traveler). "I was all about making a hardcore, straight-up, funk R&B record," Levine remembers. "I have to give the people at Octone credit because they were really trying to push us to do this. Matt Wallace also thought we had so much chemistry as a rock & roll band that it would be a shame to lose that element. We went back and recorded live drums over loops, and wound up making more of a rock record, which I think makes it stand out way better."
The resulting album, Songs About Jane, was released in June 2002. Funky rhythms and classic soul melodies co-habiting with searing guitars and a powerful rock bottom end. On top of it all, Levine's expressive voice belts out tale after tale of an ex-girlfriend. You can probably guess her name.
"Harder To Breathe"” a powerhouse guitar workout, is ironically not a song about Jane. "There was a lot of pressure to write," Levine offers. "I just want to make music when I feel like making music, and when I feel forced it’s kind of frustrating. Granted, I don't have much to complain about, but I thought that I was done with the album. It turned out to be for the best because it pissed me off so much I wrote 'This Love' and 'Harder To Breathe', which are the first two songs on the record."
Plan B? Who says you don't get a second chance to make a first impression?
Thanks to Jess for submitting the biography.
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Fan | Reviewer: Jessy Vogler | 12/29/12
Excuse me Maroon 5 I'm a really huge fan of Maroon 5 and I was wondering when is Maroon 5 going to play down town in St.Louis Missouri? Because I would love to see you guys perform Maroon 5 is my idol and you guys are my favorite band ever please comment back thankyou very much for your time(:
OMG!!! I TOTALLY LOVE YOU GUYS!! | Reviewer: Monica :) | 3/4/09
hi, i am monica, ana 12-13 years old and i live in malta!!!!!!! i absalutly love you guys and when you came to play in malta ... live in 2007 i BEGGED my perents like hell to go!! i know all your songs by heart even little of your time (and that song is very fast!!) i got your otograph from my friend, and your friend Sabrina, when you came to malta and i still have it today!! well if i have promised my self 1 thing in my life is that when i am aloud to get a tatto i will jet one exacly like the one Adam had on his sholder on his left arm!!!
amd i wish to meet you guy some day ssssssssssooooooooooo bad!!!! love you guys like hell lots and lots and lots ect... of love monica :p
Final Performance World Tour Sydney Acer Arena | Reviewer: PAUL Johnston | 4/5/08
My 15 year old daughter dragged my crusty 43 year old ass to this gig and it was so good at times I felt like screaming like an hysterical teenager myself. Any impression I had of Maroon 5 being a cutesy pop outfit was obliterated . Guitar heaven without the wank. Up there with Jeff Buckley at the Metro for witnessing enormous talent.
a true review | Reviewer: Vixi | 12/17/07
I have loved this band eva since they released thier first single and no every word to every song on their first album, thier music is amazing, however the second album is not as good
its more soft, and not as rocky. You should have spent longer on it....sorry, but its still good i couldnt have done what you guys have achived in a million years.
lv ya x x
fan girl? | Reviewer: Anonymous | 12/12/07
i've never been one before. i feel that i'm a bit too old for that[ 21? ]. at first i really didn't like their music, but after hearing their music [i'm thinking WAKE UP CALL] on insane high rotation, it definitely grows on you. now i can't hear this song without breaking out into impromptu dance routines. maroon 5, you make stocking shelves fun!
i luv ur musik | Reviewer: Rosie bilson | 12/11/07
hey maroon 5 i love ur song wont go home with out you its such a nice song the first time i heard it it took my breath away
Maroon 5 4ever!! | Reviewer: MAROON.... | 11/5/07
I didn`t like this band so much,but when I heard songs from their new album....It`s great,fantastic!!Those guys are sooooo cool,and Adam is something special...He has beautiful voice and unbeliveable smile!!Guys-just go on making so good music,and please come in Serbia to make a concert..And fans-keep loving Maroon5!!! Love ya, Daria.....
A-D-A-M L-E-V-I-N-E 4ever!!!!!! | Reviewer: Katerina | 10/13/07
I've listening to their music for two years and I'amazed by it!!!It just sounds so different from all the others!!!I love both Songs "About Jane" and "It Won't Be Soon Before Long" very much!!!You guys are perfect!!!Especially you Adam!!!!!!You're so handsome, charming and sexy!!!!!!!!I love you!!!!!!!
WOW!!! | Reviewer: Ryan | 9/21/07
Ya know.....recently, I've been on this thing about expanding my horizons in music and my friend just happened to introduce me to Maroon 5. They are awesome!!!! They have a great sound and they put a twist on rock that makes everyone want to listen to it. It's a real change up from all the screaming. They should keep the tunes coming and never change their style. As of now, Maroon 5 is the future of music!!!!
About the band/music | Reviewer: Anonymous | 8/7/07
They are a great band with great music and their latest album is the best out right now!!!!
OUTSTANDING!!! | Reviewer: Milly | 7/2/07
I love this band, It is DEFENATLY my favorite... GREAT work guys, keep the music coming!!! I look forward to many years of listening pleasure.
different band, but good | Reviewer: rockon | 6/27/07
I've just now started liking Maroon 5 because I had never heard of them before I saw them on Saturday night Live. I just thought, wow these guys are really good. So I went out and bought It WOn't Be Soon Before Long and I love their stuff. It sounds way different, but it's really good. It's a nice change from some of the other bands I listen to.
Lyrical Geniuses, anyone? | Reviewer: Brittany | 6/18/07
When it comes down to it, an artist can sound pretty and look pretty but not know dittily squat about what they are singing. Maroon 5 is different. The lyrics they sing mean something. They were written by the artist with raw emotion and perfected style. They have a universal quality to their lyrics that's hard to find in this day and age. I wish the best for them and, if it's not too much, a rockin' concert too.
wow... | Reviewer: michelle | 3/17/05
First of all, Maroon 5 is by far the greatest band. The songs are AWESOME! Adam's voice is so different...but in a GREAT way. That is why i love them so much. I'm sick of all these other artists who sound like each other...they all sound the same on the radio. But then when Maroon 5 comes on it's like, hey...I know who sings this. Yea... they are the best. I listen to them everyday. My favorite song by them, by the way, is She Will Be Loved, they sound amazing.(sigh)
Amazing!!! | Reviewer: judith | 1/6/05
i think it isn't important how they look like...it's their music which is so great!!! I think it's very stupid to say:" they are so sexy!!!"
but i think i can't change this people...:D
I say they are so amazing because their music is so great and not because they look "so sexy"!!!
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