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Evanescence

Evanescence

Fact Sheet

Musical genre:Rock  
City  Little Rock, Arkansas, USA
Years active1996-
Evanescence is a rock band from Little Rock, Arkansas, consisting of:
  • Amy Lee - Vocals and founder of the band
  • Ben Moody - Former Lead Guitar (left October 2003)
  • David Hodges - Keyboards (left December 2002)
  • John LeCompt - Guitar
  • Rocky Gray - Drums
  • William Boyd - Bass
  • Terry Balsamo - Guitar (took Moody's place)
Originally considered by many to be part of the Christian rock scene — and for a short time promoted in Christian stores — the band have distanced themselves from such categorization, even though Fallen (2003), their first major-label release, had some religious themes. "Tourniquet", for example, is about suicide and redemption, with lyrics like "Am I too lost to be saved? My God, my tourniquet, return to me salvation." It should be noted however that the song was a cover, written by members of Rocky Gray's previous band, Soul Embraced.

The debut Evanescence single "Bring Me To Life" was a global hit for the band and reached #5 on the American Billboard Hot 100. It was included in the soundtrack for the action movie Daredevil. It also garnered recognition for the band at the Grammy Awards of 2004; the single was awarded Best Hard Rock Performance, and Evanescence was awarded Best New Artist.

Their first album, Origin (released in 2000), is relatively unknown, and previously released EPs in 1998 and 1999 are even less known, though very much sought after by collectors. Not atypically, Origin and the EPs contain demo versions of some of the songs on their first major-label album. In fact, the recording of "My Immortal" found on Fallen can also be found on Origin, minus a handful of additional instrumental accompaniments.

The group was founded by Amy Lee and Ben Moody, its former lead guitarist. The two met at a school camp in Arkansas, where Moody heard Lee playing Meat Loaf songs on the piano. They discovered they shared a love of Jimi Hendrix and Björk, and they began to write songs together. For some time they were unable to find other musicians to play with, and did not have the funds to pay for professional help, so they were not able to play any live shows. However, a song of theirs entitled "Understanding" found its way onto local music charts, and demand for a live show increased. When the band finally did make an appearance, they became one of the most popular acts in the area. Various people have joined and left the band since then, but the artistic vision never went beyond Amy and Ben.

In October 2003, Ben Moody left the band in the middle of a European tour. In an interview a couple of months later, Lee said "we'd gotten to a point that if something didn't change, we wouldn't have been able to make a second record."

Former Limp Bizkit guitarist Wes Borland had been mentioned as a replacement for Moody and Lee described him as a friend, and suggested they may write together on their next record. Eventually it was Terry Balsamo, from Cold who joined the band in Moody's place.