1996, California—SuperXero was born. The name may be unfamiliar to you, but this was the name of a band that had ingeniously combined the sounds of rock and rap with brilliant results. It was this year when six friends formed the band: Rob Bourdon on drums, Brad Delson on the guitar, Mike Shinoda for vocals, Dave Farrell on the bass, Joe Hahn running the turntable and Mark Wakefield as the lead singer. The name SuperXero was soon changed to Xero due to low interest from its target audience. This poor level of enthusiasm from the potential fan base triggered the band’s lead singer to leave. It’s rare to hear music by the early iteration of the band, SuperXero on any local or Internet radio
A year before the beginning of the new millennium, a new member, Chester Bennington, came to join the band, the name of which was changed to Hybrid Theory. Just like the initial two band names, the new name subjected the band to accusations of copying another band. In honor of a memorial park in Santa Monica, California, the band name was changed again to Lincoln Park. However, searching for this name online returned hundreds of irrelevant results, compelling the band members to change their name (once and for all) to Linkin Park, which allowed users to easily find them online whether they were looking for tickets or free online
The name Hybrid Theory was never forgotten. In fact, it was carried by their first album which was released in 2000. The millennium year must have been the band’s luckiest year ever, as their album quickly became a success. It was even considered as one of the biggest debuts of all time and sold roughly 10 million copies just in the States. Linkin Park since then has become one of the most sought after bands in the rap rock genre, even on 977music.com’s online radio pages.
Who doesn’t know Cypress Hill or Snoop Dogg? Imagine getting them on one stage to perform a combo act. Two years after the successful debut album launch, Linkin Park launched Projekt Revolution, which brought together different bands and artists from the genres of hip hop and rap. The next year, another album, Meteora, was released. Then a year after, another record, Collision Course, was released. This album, which was a collaboration of Linkin Park and Jay-Z, topped the Billboard chart.
Naturally, Linkin Park’s success couldn’t get by without some negative attention: one of their songs, “One Step Closer” was been linked to a violent incident in their home state; accusations flew thick and fast that this song had violently compelling lyrics.
Back when the band was experimenting with which name to use, they faced different controversies with each name they chose. Before the name Linkin Park was finalized, critiques insinuated that the name Linkin Park was chosen so that it would have competitive placement in record stores as it would sit side-by-side with Limp Bizkit’s CD’s. The name Hybrid Theory was changed to Linkin Park because of legal complications with claims to the name by the Welsh electronic music group “Hybrid”.
Taking advantage of the power of the internet, the band generated fans by promoting their name and music online. Because of what a strong Internet presence can do, the band was able to extend to their audience exponentially. Today, Linking Park is one of those bands which we are watching make music history with their collective talents.