Every once in a while, a group of musicians who are perhaps a little bored with their ventures at the time- will come together and make some music amongst themselves. This phenomenon is known as the ‘Supergroup’ and over the years there have been many cases, some however much more memorable than others. Here’s a rundown of some of the most notable Supergroups who have formed to date-
10. A Perfect Circle
Formed in 1999 when Tool frontman Maynard James Keenan was approached by a friend/guitar tech who wanted him to sing on some demos he had been working on- A Perfect Circle have released 3 studio albums since, despite taking a break between 2004 and 2008. The project is often credited to have been started by Keenan, mostly due to its obvious musical similarities, however it was all aforementioned friend Billy Howerdel’s doing. Also featuring James Iha of Smashing Pumpkins fame as well as bass player Jeordie White (Twiggy Ramirez), who previously played with Marilyn Mason- it’s a bit of an obscure collection- but it works.
9. Them Crooked Vultures
In 2009 rock music was caught extremely off guard when 3 of its most high profile disciples formed a power blues rock trio the likes of which had not been seen since Cream. The men were Josh Homme, the notorious sex icon/Queens of the Stone Age frontman, Dave Grohl- who I’m sure needs no introduction (Nirvana, Foo Fighters) and an aged yet still flawless bass player named John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin). Releasing a self-titled album that year, as well completing several acclaimed tours and festival appearances- the project has died down a little bit since. However it is likely there will be activity from them soon, and I for one intend to get involved this time.
8. Traveling Wilburys
The late 1980’s must have presented themselves as very strange and foreign years for the star crooners of the 60’s and 50’s- with the music that was being thrown around by this point it’s no surprise some of them decided to work together in order to find a way through it. In early 1988- George Harrison, having release a string of decent solo albums in the years immediately previous- announced his plans with regards to a new group he was putting together called Traveling Wilburys. In the months that followed the group had grown from initial members Harrison and ELO’s Jeff Lynne to include Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison, Tom Petty and drummer Jim Keltner- a pretty amazing line-up I’d say. They released a couple of albums and went on to do quite well despite the death of Rob Orbison soon after their formation.
7. The Highwaymen
A country music Supergroup of epic proportions, The Highwaymen were active for 10 years between 1985 and 1995. The band was made up of Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Chris Kristofferson- musicians who, at the time of this groups formation, were already very respected and even celebrated in their fields. During their decade together they released three albums, the first of which was self-titled (although the band didn’t have an official name at the time of its release) and reached the number one spot in both the US and Canada.
Those familiar with the early 1990’s American heavy metal scene should know all about these guys, formed in 1991 by then Pantera frontman Phil Anselmo- Down have been active ever since- frequently touring and releasing 3 acclaimed albums despite all members still being active elsewhere. As well as featuring Anselmo on his trademark brutal vocal duties, the bands impactful and riff heavy sound is helped along by guitarists Pepper Keenan (Corrosion of Conformity) and Kirk Windstein (Crowbar).