Black Rebel Motorcycle Club is an American rock band, originally from San Francisco. It is currently > based in Los Angeles, consisting of Peter Hayes (vocals, guitar, bass), Robert Turner (real name Robert Levon Been, bass, guitar, vocals) , and Leah Shapiro (drums). Robert Turner has chosen a pseudonym to overcome the influence of his father, Michael Been, singer of The Call .
The first tracks of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club are to be found in 1995, when Peter Hayes and Robert Turner, then high school students, get to know San Francisco. Both are passionate about British bands in the early 1990s, especially those of the label Creation (The Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine, Ride ...) . However, they join each other group while trying to keep in touch to start their own group as soon as possible. Peter Hayes once worked as a guitarist with one of the most prolific bands on the American underground scene of the 1990s, The Brian Jonestown Massacre for that, part of the cast of documentary rock shot by Ondi Timoner, Dig! telling the story of two bands, the Dandy Warhols and the Brian Jonestown Massacre in the world of the music industry.
It was in 1998 that they left their respective projects and formed, with the drummer Nick Jago, a native of Cornwall, a group called The Elements. Their first concert took place in November 1998, but the group changes name shortly after discovering a namesake and opts for Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, in reference to the movie The Wild Equipee (1953); The Black Rebel Motorcycle Club is the motorcycle gang led by the character Marlon Brando.
In 1999, a demo 16 tracks is recorded and pressed to 500 copies, all sold during concerts. The band then moved to Los Angeles and was noticed by the radio station KCRW; but the excitement it provokes quickly reaches the Old Continent, where the BBC Sheffield names their "Record of the Week" demo. The demo even falls into the hands of Noel Gallagher, Oasis's coleader, who tells Mojo magazine that Black Rebel Motorcycle is his new favorite band . In fact, the group benefits from the craze of the music press around the "revival of rock", led by the Strokes or the Kings of Leon. The proposals flock , majors as well as independent labels, but it was finally on Virgin Records that Black Rebel Motorcycle Club was signed in March 2000.