Metallica is an American heavy metal band. The band was formed in 1981 in Los Angeles by vocalist/guitarist James Hetfield and drummer Lars Ulrich and has been based in San Francisco for most of its career. The band's fast tempos, instrumentals and aggressive musicianship made them one of the founding "big four" bands of thrash metal, alongside Megadeth, Anthrax, and Slayer. Metallica's current lineup comprises founding members and primary songwriters Hetfield and Ulrich, longtime lead guitarist Kirk Hammett, and bassist Robert Trujillo. Guitarist Dave Mustaine (who formed Megadeth after being fired from the band) and bassists Ron McGovney, Cliff Burton, and Jason Newsted are former members of the band.
Aerosmith is an American rock band formed in Boston in 1970. The group consists of Steven Tyler (lead vocals), Joe Perry (guitar), Tom Hamilton (bass), Joey Kramer (drums) and Brad Whitford (guitar). Their style, which is rooted in blues-based hard rock, has also incorporated elements of pop rock, heavy metal, glam metal, and rhythm and blues, and has inspired many subsequent rock artists. They are sometimes referred to as "the Bad Boys from Boston" and "America's Greatest Rock and Roll Band". The primary songwriting team of Tyler and Perry is often known as the "Toxic Twins".
Perry and Hamilton, originally in a band together called the Jam Band, met up with Tyler, Kramer, and guitarist Ray Tabano, and formed Aerosmith; in 1971, Tabano was replaced by Whitford. They released a string of multi-platinum albums starting with their eponymous debut in 1973, followed by Get Your Wings in 1974. The band broke into the mainstream with Toys in the Attic (1975) and Rocks (1976). Draw the Line and Night in the Ruts followed in 1977 and 1979. Throughout the 1970s, the band toured extensively and charted a dozen Hot 100 singles, including their first Top 40 hit "Sweet Emotion" and the Top 10 hits "Dream On" and "Walk This Way". By the end of the decade, they were among the most popular hard rock bands in the world and developed a following of fans, often referred to as the "Blue Army". Drug addiction and internal conflict led to the departures of Perry and Whitford in 1979 and 1981. The band did not fare well and the album Rock in a Hard Place (1982) failed to match previous successes.
Bon Jovi is an American rock band formed in 1983 in Sayreville, New Jersey. It consists of singer Jon Bon Jovi, keyboardist David Bryan, drummer Tico Torres, guitarist Phil X, and bassist Hugh McDonald. Original bassist Alec John Such quit the band in 1994, and longtime guitarist and co-songwriter Richie Sambora left in 2013. The band has been credited with "[bridging] the gap between heavy metal and pop with style and ease".
Michael Joseph Jackson (August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009) was an American singer, songwriter, dancer, and philanthropist. Dubbed the "King of Pop", he is regarded as one of the most significant cultural figures of the 20th century. Over a four-decade career, his contributions to music, dance, and fashion, along with his publicized personal life, made him a global figure in popular culture. Jackson influenced artists across many music genres; through stage and video performances, he popularized complicated dance moves such as the moonwalk, to which he gave the name, as well as the robot. He is the most awarded musician in history.
The eighth child of the Jackson family, Jackson made his public debut in 1964 with his older brothers Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, and Marlon as a member of the Jackson 5 (later known as the Jacksons). Jackson began his solo career in 1971 while at Motown Records. He became a solo star with his 1979 album Off the Wall. His music videos, including those for "Beat It", "Billie Jean", and "Thriller" from his 1982 album Thriller, are credited with breaking racial barriers and transforming the medium into an artform and promotional tool. He helped propel the success of MTV and continued to innovate with videos for the albums Bad (1987), Dangerous (1991), HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I (1995), and Invincible (2001). Thriller became the best-selling album of all time, while Bad was the first album to produce five US Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles.
Queen are a British rock band formed in London in 1970 by Freddie Mercury (lead vocals, piano), Brian May (guitar, vocals) and Roger Taylor (drums, vocals), later joined by John Deacon (bass). Their earliest works were influenced by progressive rock, hard rock and heavy metal, but the band gradually ventured into more conventional and radio-friendly works by incorporating further styles, such as arena rock and pop rock.
Before forming Queen, May and Taylor had played together in the band Smile. Mercury was a fan of Smile and encouraged them to experiment with more elaborate stage and recording techniques. He joined in 1970 and suggested the name "Queen". Deacon was recruited in February 1971, before the band released their eponymous debut album in 1973. Queen first charted in the UK with their second album, Queen II, in 1974. Sheer Heart Attack later that year and A Night at the Opera in 1975 brought them international success. The latter featured "Bohemian Rhapsody", which stayed at number one in the UK for nine weeks and helped popularise the music video format.
Led Zeppelin were an English rock band formed in London in 1968. The group comprised vocalist Robert Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page, bassist/keyboardist John Paul Jones, and drummer John Bonham. With a heavy, guitar-driven sound, they are cited as one of the progenitors of hard rock and heavy metal, although their style drew from a variety of influences, including blues and folk music. Led Zeppelin have been credited as significantly impacting the nature of the music industry, particularly in the development of album-oriented rock (AOR) and stadium rock.
Paramore is an American rock band from Franklin, Tennessee, formed in 2004. The band currently consists of lead vocalist Hayley Williams, guitarist Taylor York and drummer Zac Farro. Williams and Farro are founding members of the group, while York, a high school friend of the original lineup, joined in 2007. The band is signed to Fueled by Ramen, a subsidiary of Atlantic Records, both owned by Warner Music Group. Williams was separately signed to Atlantic as she was scouted when she was a teenager, and they were the only label to let her stay in the band instead of going solo, but Atlantic said the rest of the band had to sign to Fueled by Ramen. She is also the only member to appear on all six of Paramore's studio albums.
Philip David Charles Collins is an English singer, musician, songwriter, record producer and actor. He was the drummer and later lead singer of the rock band Genesis and also has a career as a solo performer. Between 1982 and 1990, Collins achieved three UK and seven US number one singles as a solo artist. When his work with Genesis, his work with other artists, as well as his solo career is totalled, he had more US top 40 singles than any other artist during the 1980s. His most successful singles from the period include "In the Air Tonight", "Against All Odds ", "One More Night", and "Another Day in Paradise".
Def Leppard are an English rock band formed in 1976 in Sheffield. Since 1992, the band has consisted of Rick Savage, Joe Elliott, Rick Allen (drums), Phil Collen, and Vivian Campbell. They established themselves as part of the new wave of British heavy metal movement of the early 1980s.
David Robert Jones (8 January 1947 – 10 January 2016), known professionally as David Bowie ( BOH-ee), was an English singer-songwriter and actor. A leading figure in the music industry, he is regarded as one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century. Bowie was acclaimed by critics and musicians, particularly for his innovative work during the 1970s. His career was marked by reinvention and visual presentation, and his music and stagecraft had a significant impact on popular music.
Bowie developed an interest in music from an early age. He studied art, music and design before embarking on a professional career as a musician in 1963. "Space Oddity", released in 1969, was his first top-five entry on the UK Singles Chart. After a period of experimentation, he re-emerged in 1972 during the glam rock era with his flamboyant and androgynous alter ego Ziggy Stardust. The character was spearheaded by the success of Bowie's single "Starman" and album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars, which won him widespread popularity. In 1975, Bowie's style shifted towards a sound he characterised as "plastic soul", initially alienating many of his UK fans but garnering him his first major US crossover success with the number-one single "Fame" and the album Young Americans. In 1976, Bowie starred in the cult film The Man Who Fell to Earth and released Station to Station. In 1977, he again changed direction with the electronic-inflected album Low, the first of three collaborations with Brian Eno that came to be known as the "Berlin Trilogy". "Heroes" (1977) and Lodger (1979) followed; each album reached the UK top five and received lasting critical praise.
Guns N' Roses is an American hard rock band from Los Angeles, California, formed in 1985. When they signed to Geffen Records in 1986, the band comprised vocalist Axl Rose, lead guitarist Slash, rhythm guitarist Izzy Stradlin, bassist Duff McKagan, and drummer Steven Adler. The current lineup consists of Rose, Slash, McKagan, guitarist Richard Fortus, drummer Frank Ferrer and keyboardists Dizzy Reed and Melissa Reese.
Guns N' Roses' debut album, Appetite for Destruction (1987), reached number one on the Billboard 200 a year after its release, on the strength of the top 10 singles "Welcome to the Jungle", "Paradise City", and "Sweet Child o' Mine", the band's only single to reach number one on the Billboard Hot 100. The album has sold approximately 30 million copies worldwide, including 18 million units in the United States, making it the country's bestselling debut album and eleventh-bestselling album. Their next studio album, G N' R Lies (1988), reached number two on the Billboard 200, sold ten million copies worldwide (including five million in the U.S.), and included the top 5 hit "Patience". Use Your Illusion I and Use Your Illusion II, recorded simultaneously and released in 1991, debuted at number two and number one on the Billboard 200 respectively and have sold a combined 35 million copies worldwide (including 14 million units in the U.S.). The Illusion albums included the lead single "You Could Be Mine", covers of "Live and Let Die" and "Knockin' on Heaven's Door", and a trilogy of ballads ("Don't Cry", "November Rain", and "Estranged"), which featured notably high-budget music videos. The records were supported by the Use Your Illusion Tour, a world tour that lasted from 1991 to 1993. The covers album "The Spaghetti Incident?" (1993) was the last studio album to feature Slash and McKagan before their initial departure.
Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner, known as Sting, is an English musician and actor. He was the frontman, songwriter and bassist for new wave rock band the Police from 1977 until their breakup in 1986. He launched a solo career in 1985 and has included elements of rock, jazz, reggae, classical, new-age, and worldbeat in his music.
The Police were an English rock band formed in London in 1977. For most of their history the line-up consisted of primary songwriter Sting, Andy Summers (guitar) and Stewart Copeland. The Police became globally popular in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Emerging in the British new wave scene, they played a style of rock influenced by punk, reggae, and jazz.
Eric Patrick Clapton (born 30 March 1945) is an English rock and blues guitarist, singer, and songwriter. He is regarded as one of the most successful and influential guitarists in rock music. Clapton ranked second in Rolling Stone's list of the "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time" and fourth in Gibson's "Top 50 Guitarists of All Time". He was also named number five in Time magazine's list of "The 10 Best Electric Guitar Players" in 2009.
After playing in a number of different local bands, Clapton joined the Yardbirds in 1963, replacing founding guitarist Top Topham. Dissatisfied with the change of the Yardbirds sound from blues rock to a more radio-friendly pop rock sound, Clapton left in 1965 to play with John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. On leaving Mayall in 1966, after one album, he formed the power trio Cream with drummer Ginger Baker and bassist Jack Bruce, in which Clapton played sustained blues improvisations and "arty, blues-based psychedelic pop". After Cream broke up in November 1968, he formed the blues rock band Blind Faith with Baker, Steve Winwood, and Ric Grech, recording one album and performing on one tour before they broke up. Clapton embarked on a solo career in 1970.
Deep Purple are an English rock band formed in London in 1968. They are considered to be among the pioneers of heavy metal and modern hard rock, but their musical approach has changed over the years. Originally formed as a psychedelic rock and progressive rock band, they shifted to a heavier sound with their 1970 album Deep Purple in Rock. Deep Purple, together with Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, have been referred to as the "unholy trinity of British hard rock and heavy metal in the early to mid-seventies". They were listed in the 1975 Guinness Book of World Records as "the globe's loudest band" for a 1972 concert at London's Rainbow Theatre and have sold over 100 million albums worldwide.
Sir Elton Hercules John is a British singer, pianist and composer. Collaborating with lyricist Bernie Taupin since 1967, John has sold over 300 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling artists of all time. He is the most successful solo artist in the history of the U.S. Billboard charts. Acclaimed by critics and musicians, particularly for his work during the 1970s and for his lasting impact on the music industry, his music and showmanship have had a significant impact on popular music. His songwriting partnership with Taupin is one of the most successful in history. John has more than fifty Top 40 hits in the UK Singles Chart and US Billboard Hot 100, including nine number ones in the UK and US, as well as seven consecutive number-one albums in the US. His tribute single to Princess Diana, "Candle in the Wind 1997", a rewritten version of his 1974 single, sold over 33 million copies worldwide and is the best-selling chart single of all time. In 2021, he became the first solo artist with UK Top 10 singles across six decades.
R.E.M. was an American rock band from Athens, Georgia, formed in 1980 by drummer Bill Berry, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist Mike Mills, and lead vocalist Michael Stipe, who were students at the University of Georgia. One of the first alternative rock bands, R.E.M. was noted for Buck's ringing, arpeggiated guitar style; Stipe's distinctive vocal quality, unique stage presence, and obscure lyrics; Mills's melodic bass lines and backing vocals; and Berry's tight, economical drumming style. In the early 1990s, other alternative rock acts such as Nirvana and Pavement viewed R.E.M. as a pioneer of the genre. After Berry left the band in 1997, the band continued its career in the 2000s with mixed critical and commercial success. The band broke up amicably in 2011 with members devoting time to solo projects after having sold more than 90 million albums worldwide and becoming one of the world's best-selling music acts.
Simon & Garfunkel were an American folk rock duo consisting of singer-songwriter Paul Simon and singer Art Garfunkel. They were one of the best-selling music groups of the 1960s, and their biggest hits—including "The Sound of Silence" (1965), "Mrs. Robinson" (1968), "The Boxer" (1969), and "Bridge over Troubled Water" (1970)—reached number one on singles charts worldwide.
Simon and Garfunkel met in elementary school in Queens, New York, in 1953, where they learned to harmonize and began writing songs. As teenagers, under the name Tom & Jerry, they had minor success with "Hey Schoolgirl" (1957), a song imitating their idols, the Everly Brothers. In 1963, aware of a growing public interest in folk music, they regrouped and were signed to Columbia Records as Simon & Garfunkel. Their debut, Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M., sold poorly; Simon returned to a solo career, this time in England. In June 1965, a new version of "The Sound of Silence" overdubbed with electric guitar and drums became a US AM radio hit, reaching number one on the Billboard Hot 100. The duo reunited to release a second studio album, Sounds of Silence, and tour colleges nationwide. On their third release, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme (1966), they assumed more creative control. Their music was featured in the 1967 film The Graduate, giving them further exposure. Their next album Bookends (1968) topped the Billboard 200 chart and included the number-one single "Mrs. Robinson" from the film.
ZZ Top is an American rock band formed in 1969 in Houston, Texas. For 51 years, it was composed of vocalist-guitarist Billy Gibbons, drummer Frank Beard and vocalist-bassist Dusty Hill, until Hill's death in 2021. ZZ Top developed a signature sound based on Gibbons' blues guitar style and Hill and Beard's rhythm section. They are popular for their live performances, sly and humorous lyrics, and the matching appearances of Gibbons and Hill, who wore sunglasses, hats and long beards.
Van Halen was an American rock band formed in Pasadena, California, in 1972. Credited with "restoring hard rock to the forefront of the music scene", Van Halen was known for its energetic live shows and for the virtuosity of its lead guitarist, Eddie Van Halen. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007.
Underworld is a 2003 action horror film directed by Len Wiseman and written by Danny McBride, based on a story by Kevin Grevioux, Wiseman and McBride. Kevin Grevioux wrote the original screenplay. The film centers on the secret history of vampires and lycans. It is the first installment in the Underworld franchise. The main plot revolves around Selene, a vampire Death Dealer hunting Lycans. She finds herself attracted to a human, Michael Corvin, who is being targeted by the Lycans. After Michael is bitten by a Lycan, Selene must decide whether to do her duty and kill him or go against her clan and save him. Alongside Beckinsale and Speedman, the film stars Michael Sheen, Shane Brolly, and Bill Nighy.
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone is a 1997 fantasy novel written by British author J. K. Rowling. The first novel in the Harry Potter series and Rowling's debut novel, it follows Harry Potter, a young wizard who discovers his magical heritage on his eleventh birthday, when he receives a letter of acceptance to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Harry makes close friends and a few enemies during his first year at the school and with the help of his friends, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, he faces an attempted comeback by the dark wizard Lord Voldemort, who killed Harry's parents, but failed to kill Harry when he was just 15 months old.
The Silver Chair is a children's fantasy novel by C. S. Lewis, published by Geoffrey Bles in 1953. It was the fourth published of seven novels in The Chronicles of Narnia (1950–1956); it is volume six in recent editions, which are sequenced according to Narnian history. Like the others, it was illustrated by Pauline Baynes and her work has been retained in many later editions.
The Hobbit, or There and Back Again is a children's fantasy novel by English author J. R. R. Tolkien. It was published on 21 September 1937 to wide critical acclaim, being nominated for the Carnegie Medal and awarded a prize from the New York Herald Tribune for best juvenile fiction. The book remains popular and is recognized as a classic in children's literature.
The Hobbit is set within Tolkien's fictional universe and follows the quest of home-loving Bilbo Baggins, the titular hobbit, to win a share of the treasure guarded by Smaug the dragon. Bilbo's journey takes him from light-hearted, rural surroundings into more sinister territory.
The story is told in the form of an episodic quest, and most chapters introduce a specific creature or type of creature of Tolkien's geography. Bilbo gains a new level of maturity, competence, and wisdom by accepting the disreputable, romantic, fey, and adventurous sides of his nature and applying his wits and common sense. The story reaches its climax in the Battle of Five Armies, where many of the characters and creatures from earlier chapters re-emerge to engage in conflict.
Halo is a military science fiction media franchise, originally developed by Bungie and currently managed and developed by 343 Industries, part of Microsoft's Xbox Game Studios. The series launched in 2001 with the first-person shooter video game Halo: Combat Evolved and its tie-in novel, The Fall of Reach. The latest main game, Halo Infinite, was released in 2021.
Halo 2 is a 2004 first-person shooter game developed by Bungie and published by Microsoft Game Studios for the Xbox console. Halo 2 is the second installment in the Halo franchise and the sequel to 2001's critically acclaimed Halo: Combat Evolved. The game features new weapons, enemies, and vehicles, and shipped with online multiplayer via Microsoft's Xbox Live service. In Halo 2's story mode, the player assumes the roles of the human Master Chief and alien Arbiter in a 26th-century conflict between the United Nations Space Command, the genocidal Covenant, and the parasitic Flood.