You might be put off by the name of this electronic dance duo but you’ll love their music. According to founding members Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart, The Chainsmokers got their name in the band’s early days. Alex was in college and smoking a lot of weed so he decided to name his electronic dance duo after his smoking habit. Andrew Taggart likes to quip that it’s just a name.
And Andrew Taggart is pretty lucky to be in The Chainsmokers. He was not in the original duo founded by Alex Pall. Instead, he was introduced to Alex by a music manager while he lived in Maine working for Interscope Records. But he found out that Alex lost his partner and he swooped right in to begin creating DJ music under the banner name Chainsmokers.
And we are all lucky that he did. The Chainsmokers are now one of the most popular bands in the world. They did a few collaborations before hitting the world with a single entitled “#Selfie.” Fans of the band could be seen at their concerts wearing T-shirts with the title of the song printed on them. It became a global hit.
They released a few EP’s before dropping their debut album in 2017. “Memories… Do Not Open” hit the charts at number one right away. And now the album has tied the Gorillaz’s “Demon Days” for third-most time spent at the number one spot.
It’s crazy to think that this DJ duo’s music has experienced such a meteoric rise to fame. They tied the Gorillaz in just a year. “Demon Days” has been around for 13 years. That’s right, it took the legendary dance band 13 years to spend 34 weeks at the top position.
But the Chainsmokers are incredibly optimistic about their ability to surpass the Gorillaz. It seems likely that the young DJ duo will have their album hit number one yet again sometime in the near future. It seems very unlikely that the Gorillaz will be able to do the same for an album that came out more than a decade ago.
The Chainsmokers have exploded onto the EDM scene with their hit song Closer hitting number one on the billboards and holding its spot for 11 weeks. Finally the Chainsmokers sat down for an interview explaining how they attracted such a loyal international fan-base so quickly.
Alex Pall originally was a DJ as a hobby while working at an art gallery. He realized that music was the main focus in his life and decided to quit his job after his manager introduced him to Andrew “Drew” Taggart. Drew was in college at the time interning at Interscope Records; a long time electronic music fan. When they met, Pall invited Drew to join the Chainsmokers.
They would work all day on music: talking about what was working for other successful producers, what music they listened to, and what their identity as an artist should be. They didn’t want to become cookie cutter DJ’s that made the same music as everyone else, and began to explore for a sound that fit them. They chose to reveal themselves to their audience by stepping out from behind the DJ booth to sing their own songs.
When asked why they decided to sing the lyrics themselves, Drew responded by saying “’Well, why not?’ And the real answer for you is because none of these people write the lyrics to their songs.” By being involved in the songwriting, they made the songs their own.
Another decision they made was that they wanted to write vivid thought-provoking lyrics that the audience can relate to. To do this, they started telling the story of their own life. Closer was written about a run-in with an ex-girlfriend while inebriated at a bar, and hooking up despite him knowing everything about her.
The interview wrapped up by asking who The Chainsmokers audience was, and they replied that their core base had spread internationally and was between 16 and 25. They also mentioned that they are reaching a more diverse audience now, with many fans over 30 and under 16, proving that their music can appeal to any age group.