The White Stripes

Mostly Credited As: The White Stripes
Date Of Birth: 1997
Country Of Birth: USA
Birth Place: Detroit, Michigan
Date Of Death: 2011

The White Stripes

Detroit minimalist rock duo (specifically, southwest Detroit minimalist rock duo) the White Stripes -- Jack White, guitar and vocals, Meg White, drums -- formed in 1997 (Bastille Day, to be precise) with the idea of making simple rock & roll music. From the red-and-white peppermint candy motif of their debut singles, self-titled album, and stage show to their on-the-surface rudimentary style, they succeeded wildly and immediately with that mission. Their first recordings were a mix of garage rock, blues, and the occasional show tune. In frontman Jack (a former drummer for Detroit country outfit Goober & the Peas), the White Stripes have a formidable songwriter, guitar player, and vocalist capable of both morphing between styles and changing the musical styles themselves; ranging from the folk blues of Blind Willie McTell to soaring Kinks-esque pop and narrative pop tunes worthy of Cole Porter and into deepest Captain Beefheart territory within the span of 15 minutes is not an uncommon listening experience with either the White Stripes live show or on record. In drummer Meg, the White Stripes have a minimalist percussionist who seems to sense intuitively exactly when to not play. The White Stripes are grounded in punk and blues, but the undercurrent to all of their work has been the aforementioned striving for simplicity, a love of American folk music, and a careful approach to intriguing, emotional, and evocative lyrics not found anywhere else in the modern punk, or garage rock (or amongst postmodern "blues" practitioners such as Jon Spencer, for that matter).

While they may have sprung from the Detroit rock scene (and they remain regular fixtures on the Detroit club circuit, with Jack producing or working with many Detroit-area bands), the White Stripes quickly gained a national following after two successive tours with indie rockers Pavement and Sleater-Kinney in 1999 and 2000. The White Stripes released their second LP, De Stijl, in 2000 and it further spread the group's reputation. They followed its release with successful tours of Japan and Australia and entered the Memphis studio of renowned producer Doug Easley for 2001's White Blood Cells. The album was a critical smash and the White Stripes soon found themselves, along with the Strokes and the Hives, at the forefront of the new wave of rock & roll bands poised to take over the world. The band certainly did their best to achieve world domination, appearing on Late Night with David Lettterman, being written about in Time, The New Yorker, and Entertainment Weekly, playing the MTV Movie Awards, and having their video for "Fell in Love with a Girl" in heavy rotation on MTV. They also made the tough decision to jump to a major label; White Blood Cells was reissued on V2 in January of 2002 and their first two records followed suit in June. The White Stripes truly became big time rock stars when their "Fell in Love with a Girl" clip was nominated for four MTV Video Awards, including Best Video of the Year (alongside Eminem and *NSYNC!), Breakthrough Video, Best Special Effects in a Video, and Best Editing in a Video. That summer the group also played four triumphant shows with the Strokes, two apiece in the bands' respective hometowns. In spring 2003 their fourth full-length, Elephant -- recorded in two weeks at London's Toerag Studio and dedicated to "the death of the sweetheart" -- arrived to nearly unanimous critical acclaim. In 2005 the Stripes returned with Get Behind Me Satan, a dizzyingly diverse album that spanned disco-metal and light, marimba-driven pop and was written and recorded in two weeks that spring. While touring that year, the band covered Tegan and Sara's "Walking with a Ghost," which they released as a single at the end of 2005.

Studio Albums:

1999 - The White Stripes
2000 - De Stijl
2001 - White Blood Cells
2003 - Elephant
2005 - Get Behind Me Satan
2007 - Icky Thump

TV Appearances

Episode Cast Credits 

Late Night with Conan O'Brien (1993) 
  Tea Leoni, Tyrese Gibson, The White Stripes 14x157: (Jun/18/2007) As Themselves 
  Gisele Bundchen, Dane Cook, The White Stripes 13x47: (Dec/02/2005) As Themselves 
  John Cusack, Regina Hall, The White Stripes 10x110: (Apr/25/2003) As Themselves 
  Matt Dillon, Mariska Hargitay, The White Stripes 10x109: (Apr/24/2003) As Themselves 

The Simpsons (1989) 
  Jazzy and the Pussycats 18x02: (Sep/17/2006) Voiced  Themselves 

The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (1996) 
  The White Stripes 10x152: (Dec/01/2005) As Themselves 

Saturday Night Live (1975) 
  John McCain/The White Stripes 28x04: (Oct/19/2002) As Themselves, [Musical Guests]

The Late Show with David Letterman (1993) 
  John McCain, The White Stripes 09x117: (Mar/18/2002) As Themselves 
Featured Songs

Top 2000 Songs:
TOP 2000 trapt af! + 7 Nation Army 
Gilmore Girls Songs:
Keg! Max! + Fell In Love With A Girl 
Damages Songs:
Get Me A Lawyer + I Think I Smell a Rat 
Joan of Arcadia Songs:
The Fire and the Wood + Seven Nation Army 
House Songs:
Mirror Mirror + We’re Going To Be Friends 
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The White Stripes' main color scheme is red, black, and white. It is seen in the way they are dressed during performances and on album artwork.

Jack and Meg both claim not to be close friends. Jack said that he wouldn't want to ruin the music they make by meeting too much socially.

The band was founded basically by accident. Meg came home one day and heard Jack playing his guitar, then she sat down and started drumming a beat for him.

Their 2005 LP Get Behind Me Satan took less than 2 weeks to record.

The White Stripes Quotes
Jack White: When we started the band it was just some way of getting back to childhood without it being a comedy act. It was about how kids look at things. There's a sense of humour that is deeply buried under everything. I'd kind of like it if people saw us and just half-way through the set started laughing.