Blues Traveler Biography
Blues Traveler is an American rock band that formed in Princeton, New Jersey in 1987. They were a prominent element of the re-emerging jam band movement in the 1990s, spearheading the H.O.R.D.E. touring music festival, and were recognized for their extensive usage of segues in live performances. Singer and harmonica musician John Popper, guitarist Chan Kinchla, drummer Brendan Hill, bassist Tad Kinchla, and keyboardist Ben Wilson make up the current lineup. Following the death of original bassist Bobby Sheehan in 1999, Tad Kinchla and Ben Wilson joined the band.
When the naggingly catchy “Run-Around” hit the Billboard Top Ten in 1995, Blues Traveler were at the forefront of the 1990s jam band scene, the first of their generation to sign to a big label and one of just a few to have actual commercial success. H.O.R.D.E. was one of numerous Lollapalooza-inspired touring festivals, and it helped drive Blues Traveler to the top of the charts with their 1994 album Four, which went platinum six times. They didn’t last long in Billboard’s high reaches, but they never went away. They worked continuously throughout the 2000s and beyond, experimenting sometimes (2015’s Blow Up the Moon featured a slew of surprise guests), but always returning to the blues as their basis, as evidenced by the blues covers album Traveler’s Blues, released in 2021.
In 1992, Popper was involved in a terrible vehicle accident, which rendered him unable to perform for several months. He was able to heal, but he was forced to perform in a wheelchair for a time. Save His Soul, Blues Traveler’s third album, was released in April 1993 and earned the band’s first Top 100 hit.
The band’s fourth album, Four, was released in September 1994 and initially appeared to be a commercial flop, but it rebounded in 1995 when “Run-Around,” a single from it, became the band’s first chart hit. “Run-Around” was one of the year’s most popular singles, spending nearly a year on the charts and propelling Four to quintuple platinum status. In the summer of 1996, the band released the live double album Live from the Fall as they worked on the follow-up to Four.
Straight on Till Morning, the group’s fifth studio album, was released in the summer of 1997. Popper was forced to undergo an angioplasty after finishing his debut solo album, Zygote, in 1999, after months of chest discomfort; weeks later, tragedy struck when Sheehan was found dead in his New Orleans home on August 20, 1999. He was only 31 years old at the time.
With the arrival of keyboardist Ben Wilson in the new millennium, Blues Traveler was re-energized, and their sixth album, Bridge, was released in May 2001. Blues Traveler released the live album What You and I Have Been Through the following winter. In 2003, the studio album Truth Be Told was released, and Live on the Rocks, a live album, was released in 2004.
In 2004, the band returned to the studio and released Bastardos!, which was produced by Jay Bennett, in September of the following year. Cover Yourself, a collection of former hits remade with acoustic arrangements, was published by Blues Traveler in 2007. In 2008, Verve Forecast released the David Bianco-produced North Hollywood Shootout.
In March 2012, the band issued 25, a two-disc set commemorating the band’s 25th anniversary (one disc containing hits and key tracks, and the second disc of B-sides, demos, and rarities). Suzie Cracks the Whip, the group’s 11th studio album, was released in June and was produced by S*A*M & Sluggo, with guest appearances from Ron Sexsmith, Chris Barron (Spin Doctors), and Crystal Bowersox. Blues Traveler returned three years later with Blow Up the Moon, an album that featured collaborations with mainstream stars such as Jewel, Hanson, Plain White T’s, and JC Chasez. On 2018’s Hurry Up & Hang Around, Blues Traveler teamed up with producer Matt Rollings to return to their rootsy beginnings.
Traveler’s Blues, a Grammy-nominated covers album that was released in 2021 with guest performances by Keb Mo, Crystal Bowersox, Christone “Kingfish” Ingram, Warren Haynes, and Rita Wilson, continuing their back-to-basics approach.
|North Hollywood Shootout|
|Truth Be Told|
|Straight On till Morning|
|Save His Soul|
|Travelers and Thieves|
Frequently Asked Questions
Blues traveler is an american rock band that formed in 1987. The band’s music spans a variety of genres, including blues, folk, soul, and jam band.
Who Is The Lead Singer Of Blues Traveler?
The lead singer of Blues Traveler is John Popper.
What Was Blues TravelerS Biggest Hit?
The biggest hit for Blues Travelers was “Run-Around,” which peaked at number eight on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1995. The song was co-written by frontman John Popper and bassist Bobby Sheehan, and it appeared on the band’s fourth studio album, ‘four’.