DID YOU KNOW? Member Tim Rice-Oxley was invited by Chris Martin of Coldplay to join the band in 1997 after hearing him play the piano. Tim politely declined as he did not want to leave Keane.

Keane are an English rock band from East Sussex who were formed in 1995. They achieved mainstream and international success with the release of their debut album, “Hopes and fears” in 2004. There are five members of the band and three of them, Tom Chaplin, Tim Rice-Oxley and Jesse Quinn became friends when very young after attending the same school at 13 and later, going on to study at Tonbridge School, in Kent they met Dominic Scott and Richard Hughes. They each shared a collective bond in music but none of them considered music as a proper career at the time. Between 1998 and 1999 the band went touring London’s pub gig circuit.

In late 1999, and without a record deal, Keane recorded their first promotional single, “Call me What You Like” which was released on CD format through Keane’s own label, ‘Zoomorphic’ and only 500 copies were printed and sold. A few months after the “Call Me What You Like” re-recording session in February 2001, their second single, “Wolf at the Door” was released. Only fifty hand-made copies are known to have been made, using unlabelled CD-Rs. During 2002 times were very hard for the band, even though signed to BMG for their music to be published, they still had no record contract. All recording and live performances were stopped and certain members felt the band was going nowhere. By the end of the year they were back to live performances and one of their gigs was attended by Simon Williams, the same man who discovered Coldplay.

Williams offered to release the first commercial single by the band which was “Everybody’s Changing” and the single was released in May 2003. As a result of the attention created by this release and the reputation that had built up through constant UK touring at pubs and clubs, a bidding war ensued between major record labels for the band and they decided to sign with Island Records. After this release, Keane began to achieve recognition in the UK and US.

Keane’s debut album “Hopes and Fears”, was released on 10 May 2004 and debuted at number one in the UK Singles Chart and also became the second best- selling British album of the year.

Article by Candice Eastman. 

George Millington