Coldplay never intended to become England's favorite rock & roll sons when their signature rock melodies ruled the charts throughout 2000. The Brit-rock quartet -- composed of Chris Martin (vocals/piano), Jon Buckland (guitar), Will Champion (drums), and Guy Berryman (bass) -- yearned to mess around a bit, plucking their own acoustics for fun while attending the University College of London. All had been playing instruments since their early teens and had been influenced by the likes of Bob Dylan, the Stone Roses, Neil Young, and My Bloody Valentine.
They never imagined taking reign of the U.K.'s ever-changing rock scene. Each member had come from solid households of working-class parents that encouraged music to be played. Martin, the eldest of five, began playing the piano as a young child. He started playing in bands around age 15 and sought solace in the words of Tom Waits. Buckland, on the other hand, was into the heavy guitar work of Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix and was playing guitar by age 11. Scotland native Berryman was into funk instead of indie rock, therefore leaving him to play bass. The multi-instrumentalist, Champion, didn't plan to be a drummer until he joined Coldplay. He favored playing guitar, bass, and the tin whistle, but caught on to playing percussion when the band became official.
Coldplay was heart-rending like
Travis, passionate like Jeff Buckley, and as fresh as Oasis when they first
burst onto the scene, so it was ideal for the press and public to praise them. They
played their first gig at a festival for unsigned bands in
Their full-length debut Parachutes, which earned the band a Mercury
Music Prize nomination, was released in the
By fall, they headed into the studio for a second album. Rumor had it that it might be Coldplay's last album, for the band felt they might not capture such brilliance again. A Rush of Blood to the Head was released in August 2002.