“Tom Petty, Springsteen, Neil Young, and Pearl Jam…these are the people I look to. They do what they want and follow their hearts, going wherever their music takes them. What were they holding on to, and do I hold on to that as well?”
Dashboard Confessional - The Beginning
The founder of Dashboard Confessional, Chris Carrabba, was born in New Jersey on April 10, 1975. When he was 16 they moved to Boca Raton, Florida, where he started his career as the original vocalist with Further Seems Forever, and lead for The Vacant Andys.
As a side project, in 2000, Chris recorded his acoustic The Swiss Army Romance. Charts show his first album peaking at 102 in Canada and 78 in the UK.
Chris left Further Seems Forever shortly after the release of their only album, The Moon is Down. In February 2001 the Drowning EP was released. March came with the sophomore album, The Places You Have Come to Fear the Most, with Carrabba composing all ten songs, being released. It successfully peaked at #1 on Top Heatseekers and #5 on Top Independent Albums and was certified gold by the RIAA.
In December 2001 the emo/acoustical lovelorn So Impossible EP concept album was released. The songs were performed on Dashboard Confessional’s MTV Unplugged with the video Screaming Infidelities (starring Chris Carrabba) garnering a MTV2 award at the 2002 MTV Video Music Awards. The video was released in 2002 as an album with Screaming Infidelities peaking at #22 on U.S. Billboard Alternative Songs chart.
Dashboard Confessional - Tour and MTV Success
On July 15, 2002, with a full band, the third album A Mark, A Mission, A Brand, A Scar was released. The album peaked at #2 on the U.S. Billboard charts and made gold. The single Hands Down stopped at #8 and The Shrek 2 soundtrack featured As Lovers Go. The bonus cd included Nightswimming, a remake of R.E.M.’s 1992 Automatic for the People ballad.
In 2004, Carrabba wrote Vindicated for the Spider-Man 2 soundtrack and end credit play-over replacing I Need a Sure Thing. The hit single charted at #2 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart. The B-side The Warmth of the Sand didn’t chart but was very popular with the followers from their first album. They toured with Trice on the Honda Civic tour and played Lollapalooza in 2005.
June 2005 saw album number 4 with producer Daniel Lanios released. Don Gilmore, who had produced Vindicated the year, refined Dusk and Summer and it was re-released in March 2006. So Long, So Long was available for free download on the bands website during summer 2005 and Don’t Wait spun off in May 2006. Again all of the songs on this album were composed by Chris Carrabba. The album made the #1 position on the iTunes Music Store on June 29, 2006 and again to the Top 10 on May 8, 2007.
The stealthily recorded return to Carrabba’s previous style was again produced by Dan Gilmore. The Shade of the Poison Trees was released August 16, 2007 debuting at 18 on the U.S. Billboard 200. In September the album posted in its entirety on Dashboard Confessional’s MySpace page and Carrabba offered Thick as Thieves to fans and invited them to create a music video with the winner receiving $2,500 in cash, 2 VP tickets to a Vagrant gig, and a Golden Ticket to Dashboard Confessional concerts for a year.
Alter the Ending was begun in 2008 and as special 2009 Valentine’s gift to fans being a free download of Even Now (Acoustic). The two disk album was finally released on November 10, one disk being the full-band version and the other acoustic.
With New Found Glory, Chris and John began a 13 date acoustic tour on November 30, 2009. Tour dates thru March 2010 include cities such as Portland, Seattle, Detroit, Denver, Las Vegas and Montreal, CA.
Did you know that...
- ...Carrabba’s Italian restaurant was started by a ‘shirt-tail’ relative of Chris Carrabba?
- ...fans emailed tattoos of Shade of Poison Trees album cover without ever hearing a note?
- ...Vindicated was written in 15 minutes?