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Kings of Leon Biography


Home > Music > K > Kings of Leon > Biography


Birth Place: Nashville, Tennessee, United States
Years Active: 1999 – present
Genres: Alternative Rock, Garage Rock, Southern Rock


Kings of Leon is an American rock band that formed in Mt. Juliet, Tennessee in 1999, consisting of brothers Anthony Caleb Followill (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Ivan Nathan Followill (drums, percussion, backing vocals) and Michael Jared Followill (bass, backing vocals), with their cousin Cameron Matthew Followill (lead guitar, backing vocals). Each member of the family group is known by his middle name (second given name) as opposed to his first given name. The band's early music was an upbeat blend of Southern rock and blues influences, but it has gradually expanded its sound to include a variety of genres and a more alternative rock or arena rock sound.

The band released their debut EP, “Holy Roller Novocaine,” followed by “What I Saw,” in 2003. Their debut full-length studio album, “Youth and Young Manhood,” was released later in 2003, peaking at #1 on the Billboard Top Heatseekers chart and #3 on the U.K. Albums chart. The album has since been certified gold in the UK and three times platinum in Australia.

In 2004, Kings of Leon released their second album, “Aha Shake Heartbreak.” The album peaked at #55 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart and was their second album in a row to peak at #3 on the U.K. Albums chart. It was certified 2x platinum in Ireland, as well as platinum in Australia and the U.K. The album's first single, "The Bucket," was the band's first singles chart appearance in the United States, peaking at #23 on the Alternative Songs chart.

In 2007, their third album “Because of the Times” was released, peaking at #1 on the Irish, New Zealand and U.K. albums charts. The singles "On Call" and "Fans" both featured in the Top 30 of each of the singles charts of those countries. “Because of the Times” was certified 2x platinum in Australia, 3x platinum in Ireland and platinum in the U.K.

The band's greatest success to date came with the release of their fourth album, 2008’s “Only by the Night,” along with the singles "Sex on Fire" and "Use Somebody." “Only by the Night” peaked at #1 on the Australian, Irish, New Zealand and U.K. Albums charts, also peaking at #5 on the Billboard 200. It was certified 8x platinum in Australia, 4x platinum in New Zealand, 6x platinum in the U.K., and platinum in the U.S. "Sex on Fire" peaked at #1 on the Alternative Songs chart, as well as the Australian, Finnish, Irish and U.K. singles charts. The second single, "Use Somebody," entered the Top 10 on the Billboard 100, and peaked at #1 on the Alternative Songs chart. It also peaked in the Top 10 on the Australian, Belgian, Irish, New Zealand and U.K. singles charts. The third single "Notion" has also peaked at #1 on the Alternative Songs chart. "Sex on Fire" was nominated for Best Rock Song, and won the award for Best Rock Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group at the 51st Grammy Awards. In addition, the album earned a nomination for Best Rock Album. They then took home the Grammy Award for Record of the Year, Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal and Best Rock Song for "Use Somebody" at the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards. To date, “Only By the Night” has sold over 6.5 million copies worldwide.

Their album, “Come Around Sundown,” was released on the in 2010. The album debuted at #1 in Australia, Austria, Belgium (Flanders), Canada, Germany, Ireland, Switzerland and the U.K. It peaked at #2 on the Billboard 200. The lead single, "Radioactive" debuted and peaked at #37 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was nominated for the 53rd Grammy Awards in two categories: Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals and Best Rock Song.