Background Information
Origin Hermosa Beach, California
Genre Punk Rock
Melodic Hardcore
Years active 1988-present
Label(s) Theologian
Associated Acts Con 800
One Hit Wonder
Chaos Delivery Machine
The Black Pacific
Website http://www.pennywisdom
Zoli Téglás
Fletcher Dragge
Randy Bradbury
Byron McMackin
Former Members
Jason Thirsk
Jim Lindberg

Pennywise is an American punk rock band that was formed in 1988, and is named after the monster from the Stephen King novel, It.

Between their 1991 self-titled debut and 2005's The Fuse, Pennywise had released an album every two years on Epitaph Records, a label owned by Bad Religion guitarist Brett Gurewitz. To date, the band has released nine full-length studio albums (the last being 2008's Reason to Believe), one live album, two EPs and one DVD. Although their first two studio albums were critically acclaimed, Pennywise would not experience worldwide commercial success until the 1995 release of their third studio album, About Time, which peaked at number ninety-six on the Billboard 200, and number fifty-five on Australia's ARIA Charts. By 2007, the band had independently sold over 3 million records worldwide,[1] making them one of the most successful independent punk acts of all time.

Pennywise's line-up, which remained constant from 1996 to 2009, consisted of Jim Lindberg (vocals), Fletcher Dragge (guitars), Randy Bradbury (bass) and Byron McMackin (drums). They had kept their original line-up until bassist Jason Thirsk committed suicide in 1996, due to issues with his alcoholism, after which Bradbury joined as his replacement. In August 2009, Lindberg decided to leave the band; he was replaced in February 2010 by Ignite singer Zoli Téglás.[2]

Band historyEdit

Early years (1988–1992)Edit

Pennywise was formed in 1988 in Hermosa Beach, California, by singer Jim Lindberg, guitarist Fletcher Dragge, drummer Byron McMackin and bassist Jason Thirsk. They released two EPs A Word from the Wise and Wildcard (both 1989). Each of the band members had played in other bands in the Hermosa Beach area and attended Mira Costa High School except for drummer Byron McMackin who attended Redondo Union High School.

The group signed to Epitaph Records in 1990 and released their first album Pennywise (1991). The album quickly spread throughout the punk community, earning the band some nation-wide recognition. Lyrics in the album endorsed a positive mental attitude, helping promote progressive ideals for Generation X. Lindberg left the band soon after the debut record. Bass player Randy Bradbury joined the lineup as Thirsk took over lead vocal duties. In 1992, The Vandals lead singer Dave Quackenbush took over on vocals for a brief stint. Bradbury left the band and Thirsk returned to bass.

Increasing popularity and Thirsk's death (1993–1996)Edit

Lindberg got married and returned to the group in 1992 in time for their second album Unknown Road released in August 1993, an underground hit that established the band as a force in punk music. While the album did not chart on the Billboard 200, it gained Pennywise supporting slots on national and world tours with bands such as The Offspring (who were also not very well known at the time). It contained 13 tracks and one hidden track, "Slowdown".

By 1995, a number of punk bands, such as Bad Religion, Green Day, The Offspring, Rancid and NOFX, had hit the mainstream and Pennywise refused invitations to join several major labels. About Time, Pennywise's third studio album, was released on June 13, 1995. It was their first album to chart on the Billboard 200, ranking 96. It also charted 55 on the Australian Album Chart, and produced one single "Same Old Story". This was also the last album to feature Jason Thirsk playing bass throughout.

In 1996, Pennywise began recording their fourth album. Thirsk left the band in an attempt to conquer alcoholism. He was successful but relapsed and died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest on July 29, 1996.

New bassist and continued popularity (1996–2002) Edit

Following Thirsk's death, Bradbury rejoined the band as bassist and recorded their next album, Full Circle (1997). Despite the loss of the band's friend and bassist, the album came out several months after Thirsk's death and dedicated in his honor. In tribute of Thirsk, the band re-recorded a song from their first album "Bro-Hymn" and renamed it "Bro-Hymn (tribute)". The album artwork of Full Circle resembles the cover art from their first album.

The band's next album Straight Ahead was released in 1999. The album reached 62 on the Billboard Top 200, and 8 on the Australian Albums Chart. The album's only single is "Alien", which reached 36 on the Hot Modern Rock Tracks. An 18th track was released only in Australia, a cover of the Men at Work song "Down Under."

A live album, Live at the Key Club was released in 2000. It contained songs from all their previous albums. Land of the Free? was released in 2001 and ranked 67 on th Billboard Top 200 and number 21 on the Australian ARIA Albums Chart. The song "Who's On Your Side" was co-written by Brett Gurewitz (also known as Mr. Brett), a guitarist and song writer for Bad Religion.

From the Ashes and The Fuse (2003–2006)Edit

From the Ashes was released on September 9, 2003 (United States), and reached number 54 on the Billboard Top 200, number 4 on the Top Independent Albums chart, and 13 Australian Albums Chart, marking the highest initial charting album in Pennywise's career. The album contained 14 tracks and retained no singles, although the song "Yesterdays" saw regular radio play on some stations.

Home Movies, the band's only video was originally released in 1995 and had been out of print since 1997. Home Movies was re-released on DVD for the first time in 2004. More footage of Pennywise can be seen on the Steve Martin film 45 Revolutions: A Slice of XVI St. Life, XVI St. being the place where Jason and Fletcher hung out in Hermosa Beach.[3]

The band's eighth album, The Fuse, was released in Europe on June 27 and in North America on August 9, 2005. The album retained 15 tracks and charted number 36 on the Australian ARIA Album Charts. The band's Australian tour was canceled leading to breakup rumors, which Lindberg denied. Also that year, digitally-remastered versions of the first four studio albums were released.

Around 2006, Pennywise recorded a cover of Sick of It All's "My Life" for the band's 2007 tribute album Our Impact Will Be Felt. Pennywise were one of many bands to contribute to the tribute.

Reason to Believe and split with Lindberg (2007–2009)Edit

The band returned to the studio in 2007 to begin work on their ninth album, Reason to Believe which was released on March 25, 2008. The album did not do well on the charts. It peaked at #98 in the United States on the The Billboard 200, and #46 in Australia on the ARIA Albums Chart. Reason to Believe did, however, retain three singles, "The Western World", "Die For You", and "One reason".

In August 2009, Jim Lindberg announced he was leaving the band.[4] Lindberg released the following statement:

"After 20 years, nine albums and thousands of shows around the world, my time in Pennywise has come to an end. Being the singer for this band has been an amazing experience, and along the way we made some of the best fans anyone could ask for. I want to express my deepest thanks to all of you for sticking with us over the years, especially through the passing of Jason years ago. It's your support and encouragement that kept me going this long. There are few things that made me more proud than seeing people at our shows singing our songs. I would also sincerely like to thank everyone who helped us along the way, in every capacity, we never could have done it without you, and I wish everyone in the Pennywise family the best of luck and continued success. Yours truly, Jim."

By the time Lindberg left the group, Pennywise had begun writing new material for a tenth studio album.[5]

New singer and future directions (2009–present)Edit

Front man for OC hardcore/punk band Ignite Zoli Téglás previously filled in on vocals during the band’s set on the 2009 Smokeout Festival, while Lindberg was filming a documentary based on his book, Punk Rock Dad: No Rules, Just Real Life.[6]

In September 2009, BYO Records released a compilation entitled "Let Them Know – The Story of Youth Brigade and BYO Records" including Pennywise's cover of "We're Gonna Fight", by 7 Seconds.[7] This was the final song Jim recorded with Pennywise; he is now in The Black Pacific.

It was announced on February 16, 2010 that Téglás would become Jim's permanent replacement.[2] In an interview with Zoli, he talked about his joining Pennywise and plans for a brand new Pennywise album. Zoli and the Pennywise gang are already writing a new Pennywise album from scratch with no Jim influence. Ignite will continue on as a band with Zoli. The release of their new album may be delayed, due to commitments with 2010's Warped Tour. According to guitarist Fletcher Dragge, Pennywise will release their new album around the beginning of 2011.[8]

Pennywise did a six-date South American tour in December 2010.[9] After that, they will tour Europe in January and February, followed by Australia's Soundwave in February and March and three live dates in Japan in April.[10][11]

Style and influencesEdit

Pennywise's style is mostly made up of punk rock, but it also contains elements from other genres including alternative rock, metal/crossover thrash and 1990s grunge. Their songs and lyrics tend to focus on political and moral wrongs; this can be seen in the songs "Land of the Free?" and "The Western World". Their lyrics also cover a wide range of topics, including the degradation of the United States and society in general with songs like "Society", "Victim of Reality", "Fuck Authority", "Anyone Listening" and "God Save the USA".

Their influences include the The Adolescents, Agent Orange, ALL, Bad Religion (their guitarist is the owner of Pennywise's longtime label Epitaph), Black Flag, the Buzzcocks, the Circle Jerks, The Clash, D.I., Dead Kennedys, The Exploited, Fear, Generation X, The Germs, Hüsker Dü, Minor Threat, the Misfits (with Glenn Danzig), the Ramones, The Replacements, 7 Seconds, Suicidal Tendencies, the Sex Pistols, Social Distortion, The Teen Idles, and Youth Brigade.[12] They are also influenced by metal bands, such as Black Sabbath (with Ozzy Osbourne), early Guns N' Roses, Iron Maiden, Metallica, Pantera, Sepultura and Slayer.

Discography Edit

Further information: Pennywise discography

Band membersEdit

Current members
  • Zoli Téglás – lead vocals (2010–present)
  • Fletcher Dragge – guitar, backing vocals (1988–present)
  • Randy Bradbury – bass, backing vocals (1991–1992, 1996–present)
  • Byron McMackin – drums, backing vocals (1988–present)
Former members
Touring musicians

References Edit

  2. 2.0 2.1 "Pennywise officially names Zoli Teglas of Ignite as new vocalist." February 16, 2010.
  3. Home Movies hosted on Vimeo
  4. "Vocalist Jim Lindberg leaves Pennywise." August 21, 2009.
  5. "Pennywise writing next album." June 2, 2009.
  6. "Pennywise frontman leaves group." August 21, 2009.
  7. "Let Them Know – The Story of Youth Brigade and BYO Records." Let Them Know The Movie September 7, 2009.
  12. Pennywise at

External links Edit

Smallwikipedialogo.png This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Pennywise (band). The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Less Than Jake Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.