Maroon 5

Maroon 5
Maroon 5. Photo by Don Arnold / WireImage

Early Days and Formation of Kara's Flowers

Future Maroon 5 members Adam Levine, Jesse Carmichael, Mickey Madden and Ryan Dusick all went to high school together in west Los Angeles. They put together a band called Kara's Flowers and played their first public show at the legendary Whisky a Go Go in 1995. Their grunge style caught the attention of Reprise Records, and, despite production from Green Day producer Rob Cavallo, the album The Fourth World was a commercial flop.

All 4 members abandoned the project and headed to various colleges across the country.

Evolution Into Maroon 5

Adam Levine and Jesse Carmichael enrolled in the State University of New York. There the pair were exposed to a wider range of music, particularly R&B and hip-hop. Upon returning to Los Angeles, they re-connected with the other former group members, added guitarist James Valentine, and selected a new group name, Maroon 5. The band quickly generated label interest and signed with the independent Octone Records who had a distribution deal with BMG.

Maroon 5 Members

  • Adam Levine - Vocals and Guitar
  • James Valentine - Guitar
  • Jesse Carmichael - Keyboards
  • Mickey Madden - Bass
  • Matt Flynn - Drums

Songs About Jane

Maroon 5 headed into the studio with Matt Wallace, veteran of work with the Replacements and Faith No More, producing. The result was the album Songs About Jane first released in June 2002.

A great deal of the music on the album was inspired by Adam Levine's rough relationship with his ex-girlfriend, Jane. The album was not an instant commercial success, but constant touring generated eventual radio support. Songs About Jane peaked at #6 on the album chart in August 2004, over two years after initial release.

The first single "Harder To Breathe" reached the pop top 20. The second single "This Love" hit the top 10 and won a Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance By a Duo or Group With Vocals. Maroon 5 also picked up a Best New Artist Grammy Award. Songs About Jane generated one more major hit, the top 5 smash "She Will Be Loved."

Maroon 5 Reviews

  • It Wont' Be Soon Before Long
  • "Makes Me Wonder"
  • "Misery"
  • "Moves Like Jagger"
  • "One More Night"
  • "Payphone"
  • "Wake Up Call"
  • "Won't Go Home Without You"

Maroon 5 Videos

Maroon 5's videos for the top 10 hits "This Love" and "She Will Be Loved" generated controversy due to their erotic content. "This Love" was briefly banned by MTV. Watch the best of the band's music videos below.

It Won't Be Soon Before Long

The much-awaited second album by Maroon 5, titled It Won't Be Soon Before Long, was released May 22, 2007. It featured new drummer Matt Flynn, who replaced founding member Ryan Dusick in September 2006. The band said that the album was "sexier, stronger," and "lyrically darker" than Songs About Jane.

The first single "Makes Me Wonder" hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. The album opened at #1 on the charts selling over 400,000 copies in its first week. It was ultimately certified double platinum. The second single "Wake Up Call" also reached the pop top 20. "Makes Me Wonder" won a Grammy Award for Best Pop Performance By a Duo or Group With Vocal. It Won't Be Soon Before Long was nominated for Best Pop Vocal Album.

Hands All Over

Maroon 5 headed to Switzerland in 2009 to record their third studio album, Hands All Over, with producer Robert John "Mutt" Lange, who is responsible for seminal albums by the Cars, Def Leppard, his ex-wife Shania Twain, and many others. While it was a critical success, was a commercial disappointment. It only reached #2 on the album chart and failed to generate a top 10 pop single.

However, the band wasn't down for long. Following the surprise success of the TV show The Voice with Adam Levine as a mentor, the band recorded the single "Moves Like Jagger" with Christina Aguilera and it went to #1 and became the biggest hit of their career. "Moves Like Jagger" was included on a re-release of Hands All Over that returned the album to the top 10 and ultimately a platinum certification for sales.

Streak of Top 10 Hits

In the wake of the success of "Moves Like Jagger," Maroon 5 embarked on a phenomenal streak of eight consecutive top 10 pop hits singles spanning singles from their next two studio albums. The success helped bump the group into the upper reaches of top pop artists around the world.

Overexposed

Buoyed by the success of "Moves Like Jagger," Maroon 5 worked with a variety of pop producers and songwriters on their fourth studio album Overexposed including Max Martin, Ryan Tedder, and Benny Blanco. The result was a #2 charting album with a platinum certification and a string of four top 10 pop hits. They included "One More Night," the band's longest reigning #1 hit spending nine weeks at the top. It was produced and co-written by Max Martin's pop production team. Celebrated film director Peter Berg created the music video which features lead vocalist Adam Levine as a down-on-his-luck boxer.  The lead single "Payphone" hit #2 on the pop chart, includes a featured appearance from rapper Wiz Khalifa, and included a Samuel Bayer directed music video.

V

Maroon 5 titled their fifth studio album V for the Roman numeral that represents the number five.

It was the first Maroon 5 album released on Interscope after A&M Octone ceased operations and transferred Maroon 5 to the Interscope label. V became the band's second #1 hit album opening at the top of the chart. It generated three consecutive top 10 pop hit singles. The third single "Sugar" went to #2 on the pop singles chart and included a distinctive music video that featured Maroon 5 as wedding crashers. The song was originally written by Mike Posner for his album Pages, but he sent the song to Maroon 5 after his album release was cancelled. "Sugar" earned a Grammy Award nomination for Best Pop Duo or Group Performance.

Sixth Studio Album

In October 2016 Maroon 5 released the single "Don't Wanna Know" with a featured vocal from rapper Kendrick Lamar. It was co-written and co-produced by Benny Blanco. The sixth studio album is not expected until 2017. Lead vocalist Adam Levine told Howard Stern in a radio interview that it would be a, "super artistic record." "Don't Wanna Know" quickly became Maroon 5's twelfth top 10 pop hit single and it made 2016 their sixth consecutive year with at least one top 10 pop hit. "Don't Wanna Know" also hit the top 10 on the adult pop and mainstream pop radio charts.

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Lamb, Bill. "Maroon 5." ThoughtCo, Nov. 30, 2016, thoughtco.com/maroon-5-profile-3245451. Lamb, Bill. (2016, November 30). Maroon 5. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/maroon-5-profile-3245451 Lamb, Bill. "Maroon 5." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/maroon-5-profile-3245451 (accessed November 25, 2017).