This Desert Life
Counting Crows is an American rock band originating from Berkeley, California. Formed in 1991, the group gained fame in 1993 following the release of their debut album, titled 'August and Everything After', when track "Mr. Jones" became a big hit. Known for their melancholic yet melodic songwriting, the band started when singer Adam Duritz (previously of The Himalayans and Sordid Humor) teamed up with guitarist David Bryson (local producer and former member of the band Mr. Dog) in San Francisco, California in 1990. Counting Crows originally performed as an acoustic duo, playing gigs in and around the cities of Berkeley and San Francisco.
For the group's first album, Adam and David added bassist Matt Malley, multi-instrument talent Charlie Gillingham, and drummer Steve Bowman. David Immergluck served as the second guitarist on the first album, but he did not officially join the band until 1999. Guitarist Dan Vickery was added just as the band set out on their first tour. As stated before, 'August and Everything After' provided the band with a surprise yet very welcome success, garnering them critical praise. Released on September 14, 1993 through Geffen Records, the album hit #2 on Billboard's Heatseekers chart, showing that their tunes had tapped into something.
Counting Crows, with their intimate and confessional yet smooth, often catchy musical approach, achieved a large fan base among melodic rock fans over the years. Their 90s acclaim reflected that a significant music scene looked for something different from the raging guitars of the Seattle-based grunge movement as well as from either boilerplate pop music or the budding electronic music subgenres. The group kept on releasing new songs into the new millennium.
The band's more recent successes include the 2004 hit song "Accidentally In Love", which was featured on the Shrek 2 soundtrack (that has sold over 1,000,000 copies). That song has also garnered nominations for a Grammy Award, a Golden Globe Award, and an Academy Award. That same year, the band released their first ever best of set, which they titled 'Films about Ghosts'. That album features songs from every phase of the Counting Crows' recording career. To date, the band has sold over 20 million albums worldwide.
The group made the news when 'Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings' was released on March 25th, 2008. In addition, on January 16, 2008, the band released a digital EP as a free download on their official web site, consisting of the songs "1492" and "When I Dream Of Michelangelo". The lead single from the album was "You Can't Count On Me", which was released for radio play on February 4, 2008.
The album itself is thematically and stylistically divided into two parts: the first, more rock-influenced Saturday Nights, and the second, more country-influenced Sunday Mornings. Theme changes along with style; in the Sunday Mornings portion of the album, songs become more reflective. The iTunes release contains several bonus tracks, including a track-by-track interview with Duritz.
Members of the band:
Adam Duritz - lead vocals, piano, wurlitzer, tamborine
David Bryson - guitars, dobro, vocals
Charles Gillingham - piano, organ, accordion, mellotron, vocals
Dan Vickery - guitars, sitar, banjo, vocals
David Immergluck - guitars, bass, electric sitar, mandolin, vocals
Jim Bogios - drums, percussion loops, vocals
Millard Powers - bass guitar, upright bass, piano, vocals
Ex-members of the band:
Matt Malley - guitars, double bass, vocals
Ben Mize - drums, percussion, tambourine, bulbs, vocals
Steve Bowman - drums, vocals
Ben Ulrich - drums
Marty Jones - bass guitar
Lydia Holly - keyboards
Toby Hawkins - drums
August And Everything After - (September 14, 1993)
Recovering The Satellites - (October 14, 1996)
Across a Wire - Live in New York City - (1998)
This Desert Life - (November 1, 1999)
Hard Candy - (July 8, 2002)
Films About Ghosts: The Best Of - (November 25, 2003)
*New Amsterdam: Live At Heineken Music Hall - (June 19, 2006)
August And Everything After, Deluxe Edition - (Fall 2007)
Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings - (March 25, 2008)
Somewhere Under Wonderland - (September 2, 2014)
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