Belle And Sebastian


Belle and Sebastian (formed 1996)

Belle and Sebastian are an indie pop band from Glasgow, Scotland. They are often compared to some of their main influences, such as The Smiths, Nick Drake and Bob Dylan. They were named after a French children's book, by Cecile Aubry. The band originally released records on Jeepster Records before signing to Rough Trade Records in the UK and Matador Records in the United States.

Belle and Sebastian: Formation

Belle and Sebastian was originally formed by Stuart Murdoch and Stuart David and recorded some songs with Alan Rankine, Stow College's music professor. The demos found their way onto a compilation from college's own label, Electric Honey. The label then went on to release the band's debut album, Tigermilk, original copies of which now change hands for vastly inflated amounts of money.

Following the positive response received by the band, the two Stuarts decided to transform the band into a full-time project, adding Stevie Jackson (guitar & vocals), Isobel Campbell (cello & vocals), Chris Geddes (keyboards) and Richard Colburn (drums) to the line-up.

Belle and Sebastian: Rise to Fame

The second album from Belle and Sebastian was the critically-lauded If You're Feeling Sinister, which was released in November 1996, just a few months after the release of their debut. Sarah Martin joined the band on violin and vocals just before its release.

The band then released a series of EPs, including 'Dog on Wheels' and 'Lazy Line Painter Jane', which featured Monica Queen singing on the title track.

The third LP from Belle and Sebastian was entitled The Boy With the Arab Strap and was released in 1998, reaching number 12 in the UK charts. This was followed by another EP, This Is Just a Modern Rock Song.

In 1999, Belle and Sebastian beat Steps and 5ive to win the 'Best Newcomer' award at the BRIT awards, despite being on their third album. After hosting their own festival, the Bowlie Weekender, Belle and Sebastian went on to release their fourth studio album, Fold Your Hands Child, You Walk Like A Peasant. The band's slow burning popularity started to cross over into the mainstream and their song 'Seymour Stein' was featured on the soundtrack to High Fidelity (which starred John Cusack and Jack Black), as well as being featured in the film's script. Their music was also played over the end credits of the TV series Teachers.

Stuart David left the band and was replaced by Bobby Kildea and in 2002, the band worked on a soundtrack to the Todd Solondz film Storytelling, which starred Selma Blair and Leo Fitzpatrick. Later that year, Belle and Sebastian left Jeepster Recordings and signed to Rough Trade. Their first album for the cult underground label was Dear Catastrophe Waitress and was produced by Trevor Horn, who has produced a number of bands, such as Paul McCartney, Tina Turner and Mike Oldfield, as well as fronting his own band, Buggles. The success of the album led to Belle and Sebastian being nominated for the Mercury Music Prize in 2004, though they lost out to Franz Ferdinand. They were also nominated for an Ivor Novello award that same year.

A compilation of some of the band's Jeepster recordings was released in 2005, entitled Push Barman to Open Old Wounds.

Belle and Sebastian's seventh album, The Life Pursuit, was released in 2006. The band followed its release with an historic performance at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, accompanied by the Los Angeles Philharmonic. They were supported by The Shins. Later that year, some members of the band contributed to an album of children's songs, named Colours Are Brighter. The Flaming Lips and Franz Ferdinand also contributed. 2008 saw the band release The BBC Sessions.

Along with Kimya Dawson, Mott the Hoople and Cat Power, Belle and Sebastian were included on the soundtrack to the popular indie film Juno. The film starred Ellen Page, Michael Cera and Jason Bateman.

The eighth album from Belle and Sebastian was Belle & Sebastian Write About Love. It was released in 2010.

Biography by
Read More
Subscribe to Belle And Sebastian

The 15th Anniversary Line-Up For Primavera Sound Is Finally Here!

by Holly Williams | News | Music / Festivals | 22nd January 2015

Fans and hopeful attendees of Barcelona's Primavera Sound were delighted to discover that the preview app they downloaded was a video game displaying the full line-up for the festival's fifteenth anniversary.Already announced were Friday and...

Tags: Primavera Sound Festival - Ride - The Strokes - Black Keys - The Replacements - Antony and the Johnsons

Belle And Sebastian - Girls In Peacetime Want To Dance Album Review

by Andrew Lockwood | Review | 19th January 2015

Rather like Rennie Macintosh before them, The Glasgow School of Art he designed and the artistic and architectural movement he helped create, Belle And Sebastian have become one of the more unlikely Glaswegian institutions to...

Tags: Belle And Sebastian

Belle and Sebastian - The Cat With The Cream

Video | 8th January 2015

Belle and Sebastian have unveiled a brand new track entitled 'The Cat With The Cream', which comes ahead of their highly anticipated new album 'Girls In Peacetime Want To Dance', out January 19th 2015 through...

Tags: Belle And Sebastian

From Steely Dan To Raekwon And Ghostface Killah: Who's Been Announced For Coachella 2015?

by Holly Williams | News | Music / Festivals | 7th January 2015

It's that time of year again as the full line-up announcement for Coachella 2015 arrives following some spectacular headliners: AC/DC, Jack White and Drake will all top the bills at the two-weekend event in April.Well...

Tags: Coachella - AC DC - Jack White - Drake - Action Bronson - Alabama Shakes

Belle and Sebastian - Nobody's Empire

Video | 15th December 2014

Belle and Sebastian will be releasing their ninth studio album 'Girls in Peacetime Want To Dance' on January 19th 2015 through Matador Records. A nostalgic clip montage video has been unveiled for track one, 'Nobody's...

Tags: Belle And Sebastian

Belle and Sebastian - The Party Line Video

Video | 3rd December 2014

With their new album 'Girls in Peacetime Want To Dance' out on January 19th 2015 through Matador Records, Belle and Sebastian have unleashed the very first single entitled 'The Party Line'. The band also have...

Tags: Belle And Sebastian

Belle And Sebastian Musician's Side-Project 'God Help The Girl' Is Translated To Film [Trailer]

by Holly Williams | News | Music / Festivals | 16th August 2014

Stuart Murdoch of Belle & Sebastian presents his directorial debut with music drama 'God Help The Girl', starring 'Pompeii' star Emily Browning as an emotionally complicated budding young singer-songwriter.Olly Alexander & Hannah Murray both appeared...

Tags: Emily Browning - Belle And Sebastian - God Help The Girl - Hannah Murray - Olly Alexander - Years & Years

God Help The Girl

Video | 14th August 2014

Eve is a young woman living in Glasgow, Scotland struggling to cope with huge emotional stress and various personal problems in her life. She is in hospital to combat her mental anxieties, but finds that...

Tags: Emily Browning - Olly Alexander - Hannah Murray - Pierre Boulanger - Belle And Sebastian - God Help The Girl

Early 'Sundance' Favourites Already Generating A Buzz For Upcoming Movies

by Joe Wilde | News | Movies / TV / Theatre | 10th January 2014

The Sundance Film Festival is the place to be for young, aspiring filmmakers hoping to crack into the hotly-contested business of the movies. By the end of the film festival, which this year runs from...

Tags: Robert Redford - William H Macy - John Slattery - Tilda Swinton - Tom Hiddleston - Amy Poehler

Bestival 2013 - Live Review

by Dom Gourlay | Review | 11th September 2013

Q: What do you get if you leave 55,000 people on the Isle Of Wight for four days in September?A: Possibly the messiest weekend of excess on the UK's summer festival calendar.Having become the official...

Tags: Bestival - Mia - Wu Tang Clan - Jagwar Ma - Belle And Sebastian - Polyphonic Spree

Union Park Prepares For Its Seventh Annual Pitchfork Music Festival

by Holly Williams | News | Music / Festivals | 15th July 2013

Pitchfork Music Festival is due to hit Chicago's Union Park again this weekend featuring some exciting headline sets from Bjork, Belle & Sebastian and R. Kelly.Every summer this globally loved festival presents some 40 plus...

Tags: Pitchfork Music Festival - Bjork - Belle And Sebastian - R Kelly - Joanna Newsom - Foxygen

LateNightTales - Belle and Sebastian vol. 2

by Joe Wilde | Review | 22nd March 2012

When you manage to pip the likes of 5ive and Steps to the much-coveted title of 'Best Newcomer' at the 1999 BRIT Awards you are pretty much set for a successful and lasting career. Now...

Tags: LateNightTales - Belle And Sebastian

Belle And Sebastian - Write About Love

by Andrew Lockwood | Review | 16th December 2010

Prolific purveyors of finely captured real life pop, Belle & Sebastian, have little left to prove after 7 previous studio albums, various artistic off shoot activities and the nurturing of some unique talent along the...

Tags: Belle And Sebastian

Belle & Sebastian - The Blues Are Still Blue

by Ben Davy | Review | 21st March 2006

Belle & SebastianThe Blues Are Still BlueSingle Review"The Blues Are Still Blue" is probably the sweetest love song which uses a trip to the launderette as an allegory. Or at least in the top ten...

Tags: Belle And Sebastian

Belle and Sebastian - The Life Pursuit

by Mike Rea | Review | 16th January 2006

Belle and SebastianThe Life PursuitRough TradeBelle and Sebastian are one of those bands who enjoy a fair size cult of fairly laid-back arty types, who love their non-mainstream releases. Unfortunately for the cult, The Life...

Tags: Belle And Sebastian

Back to top

Belle And Sebastian Images

More Belle And Sebastian Pictures

Back to top