Blink-182 was an American pop punk trio formed in 1992 in Poway, California. The band, then known simply as Blink, originally composed of vocalist and guitarist Tom DeLonge, drummer Scott Raynor and vocalist and bassist Mark Hoppus. In 1998, midway through a U.S. tour, drummer Travis Barker replaced Raynor. DeLonge left the group in early 2005, with the band portraying it as an "indefinite hiatus". DeLonge went on to play alternative rock in Angels & Airwaves, while Hoppus and Barker continued in a similar genre with their band +44.
DeLonge cites punk rock bands Descendents and Screeching Weasel as influences, although the band's songwriting and production were driven by a pop sensibility. Blink-182 are known for their simple melodies, teen angst and lyrical toilet humour, and by their hit singles "Dammit", "What's My Age Again?", "All the Small Things", "Adam's Song", "The Rock Show", "First Date", "Stay Together for the Kids", "Feeling This" and "I Miss You".
Shortly after the release of Cheshire Cat, Blink was threatened with legal action by a pop band in Ireland of the same name. In order to avoid a dispute, Blink appended "182" to the end of their name.
After the release of Cheshire Cat, they released Buddha Promo; a promotional cassette intended to promote the re-release of Buddha, which would become available on CD as well as cassette. It is mostly a collection of old songs from the Flyswatter sessions. It also contained a few early versions of songs that appeared on Cheshire Cat and would later appear on Dude Ranch.
After the album's release, midway through a U.S. tour in 1998, drummer Scott Raynor left the band. There are two common explanations for his removal - that Raynor had a serious drinking problem and was asked to go into rehab or face ejection, or alternately, that he departed in order to attend college. Raynor claims he agreed to go to rehab, but that DeLonge and Hoppus were doubtful of his sincerity and subsequently fired him over the phone. Hoppus and DeLonge asked drummer Travis Barker of Blink-182's support band The Aquabats to fill in for Raynor for the remainder of the tour, thus he had to learn all of the songs in a matter of hours before the show. After the set, Hoppus and DeLonge sat down and discussed Barker joining the band. The next day he was offered the position and consequently left The Aquabats.
In 2000, the band released The Urethra Chronicles, a DVD which featured behind-the-scenes information, and The Mark, Tom, and Travis Show (The Enema Strikes Back!), Blink-182's sole live album, featuring songs from their three full-length records, including all their greatest hits coupled with previously unreleased material. The album quickly went out of print making it a much sought after item. A limited edition was printed in October 2006. The album also included one new studio song, "Man Overboard", among the live renditions. A demo of this song was previously featured on the Enema of the State Demo cassette.
Blink-182 co-headlined the Pop Disaster Tour with Green Day in 2002. The tour was documented on the DVD Riding in Vans with Boys. After taking some time off, DeLonge and Barker released a new album with their side-project Box Car Racer.
Recording of the band's next record began in early 2003. On November 18, 2003, Blink-182 released an untitled album, which spawned the hit singles "Feeling This", "I Miss You", "Down", and "Always". According to Barker, the album was supposed to represent a new Blink-182. Despite a major change in theme and tone that eschewed the juvenile singing and formulaic songwriting of past releases in favor of more conceptual, nuanced lyrics coupled with a darker, more experimental sound; their past foul-mouthed innuendo-filled writing was overtaken by a more serious, radio-friendly style. Robert Smith, whose band The Cure is often cited by Blink-182 as a major influence, appeared on "All of This".
During late 2003 through 2004 the band embarked on the memorable "DollaBill" tour, named for the inexpensive ticket costs which were originally planned to be completely free. A tour with No Doubt in the summer of 2004 was also very successful.
Geffen Records released a Greatest Hits compilation on November 1, 2005. It is essentially a collection of the band's singles. After many criticisms about the track listing from disappointed fans, the song 'Carousel' was added. A previously unreleased track was included on the CD, "Another Girl, Another Planet" (a cover song originally by The Only Ones). The song was also used as the theme song to Barker's new reality TV show, Meet the Barkers. Included was the previously issued "I Miss You" B-side and Blink-182 album bonus track "Not Now". The album reached number 6 on the Billboard 200 in the United States.
Hoppus and Barker's new project +44 surfaced on December 13, 2005, with the song "No, It Isn't". They released their first album When Your Heart Stops Beating on November 14, 2006, and debuted at number 10 on the Billboard 200. On May 25, 2008, Hoppus stated that the new +44 album was still in pre-production.
Since the band's breakup, there has been frequent speculation about the possibility of a reunion. In late July 2008, Travis Barker spoke to Metromix Los Angeles about whether Blink-182 will reunite in the near future, saying:
Blink-182 is one of the bands set to feature in a documentary about modern punk music. The film entitled One Nine Nine Four is expected to be released on 30 September 2008(US). Skateboarding legend Tony Hawk will narrate the film, which also features other punk acts such as; Rancid, Green Day, NOFX and The Offspring.
On September 19, 2008, Travis Barker sustained second and third degree burns to his lower body and torso in a plane crash in Columbia, South Carolina while headed to California following a free show with DJ AM. Barker's personal assistant Chris Baker, security guard Charles "Che" Still, and the two pilots of the aircraft were killed when the plane overran the runway and burst into flames. Barker and DJ AM were dumped out of the aircraft, and were reported by an eyewitness to be on fire. DJ AM was transported to hospital by air, while Barker was taken by an ambulance. According to doctors, both men are expected to make full recoveries within one year. Barker is currently in the Grossman Burn Center in Sherman Oaks, California.