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Tears For Fears Biography

Home > Music > T > Tears For Fears > Biography

Birth Place: Bath, England, United Kingdom
Years Active: 1981 – present
Genres: New Wave, Pop Rock, Synthpop

Tears for Fears are an English pop rock band formed in the early 1980s by Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith. Founded after the dissolution of their first band, the mod-influenced Graduate, they were initially associated with the New Wave synthesizer bands of the early 1980s but later branched out into mainstream rock and pop, which led to international chart success.

Their platinum-selling debut album, “The Hurting,” reached number one on the UK Album Chart. The album contained Tears For Fears' first three hit singles; "Mad World", "Change", and "Pale Shelter" - all of which reached the Top 5 in the UK.

Their second album, “Songs from the Big Chair,” achieved multi-platinum status in both the UK and the United States. The album peaked at no.2 in the UK (where it remained in the Top 10 for over six months and in the Top 40 for over a year) and reached no.1 (for five weeks) in the US. The album's success came in conjunction with the array of hit singles it yielded: "Mothers Talk" (rerecorded yet again for its US release in 1986), "Shout" (#4 UK, #1 in the US, Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and a huge hit in other territories, in fact one of the biggest hit songs of the 1980s), "Everybody Wants to Rule the World", (their highest-charting UK and Irish hit at #2 and another #1 in the US and in Canada), "Head over Heels" (UK #12, US #3, Ireland #5, Canada #8) and "I Believe (A Soulful Re-Recording)" (UK #23 and Ireland #10).

Following the release of their third platinum-selling album, “The Seeds of Love” (1989), Smith and Orzabal parted company, though Orzabal retained the Tears for Fears name throughout the 1990s. The duo reformed in 2000, and released an album of new material (“Everybody Loves a Happy Ending”) in 2004.

To date, Tears for Fears have sold over 22 million albums worldwide, including more than 8 million in the U.S.