Snow Patrol (formed 1994)
Snow Patrol is a Northern Irish band, though they are based in Glasgow, having formed the band in Dundee. The mainstream rock / pop band are signed to Polydor Records.
Snow Patrol: Formation
In 1994, Gary Lightbody formed a band called Shrug, with Mark McLelland whilst studying at the University of Dundee in Scotland. In 1995, the band changed its name to Polar Bear and then later changed it again to Snow Patrol.
In 1997, the band released the Starfighter Pilot EP on the Electric Honey label. Richard Colburn and Stuart Murdoch of Belle and Sebastian both appeared on the record.
The next EP, Little Hide was released on Jeepster Records and its follow-up single, 'One Hundred Things You Should Have Done in Bed' was a minor hit in the indie charts for the band. Jeepster also released their first two albums, Songs For Polarbears (1998) and When It's All Over We Still Have To Clear Up (2001).
Snow Patrol: The Breakthrough
Snow Patrol were eventually dropped by Jeepster but later signed to Polydor Records. Their single 'Run' went to number five in the UK singles chart. Their first album for Polydor, Final Straw (2003) peaked at number three.
The follow-up singles to 'Run', 'Chocolate', 'Spitting Games' and 'How To Be Dead' were all Top 40 hits.
The album's release in the United States saw sales over 250,000 units and in 2005 they supported U2 on the Vertigo Tour in Europe. They were also included on the bill at London's leg of the Live 8 concert. The band's cover of John Lennon's 'Isolation' was included on tribute album Instant Karma: the Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur.
Snow Patrol's second album, Eyes Open was released in May 2006. The song 'Chasing Cars' was featured on the hit TV show Gray's Anatomy, greatly helping the band's commercial success. 'Open Your Eyes' was also featured in an episode of ER and 'Tell Me You Love Me' was featured on the popular UK comedy show Gavin and Stacey. 'Signal Fire' was the lead song for the Spider-Man 3 soundtrack.
In 2006, Snow Patrol was the last band ever to feature on the long-running BBC show Top of the Pops.
Eyes Open was crowned the best selling album of 2006, despite fierce competition from Take That and Arctic Monkeys, with sales of 1.6 million.