The Chainsmokers just received some terrific news. “Closer”, their huge breakaway hit from 2016 has nabbed an impressive accolade, diamond certification from the RIAA. Diamond certified, or ten times platinum, is awarded to albums and singles that sell ten million plus copies. “Closer” which was a hit right out of the gate has spent two years accumulating sales to earn this. It is a very impressive accomplishment and a testament to the lingering effect of the Chainsmokers’ music. The duo of Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart were awarded huge plaques along with singer Halsey, who collaborated on the single with the group. They broke the news to their fans via Instagram in some photos that have since garnered multiple views.
The Chainsmokers officially began back in 2012. Although Alex Pall initially started the group some time earlier, it did not become the legit Chainsmokers until he was joined by Taggart. The two ran the gauntlet for two years before breaking through with their first hit “#Selfie”. They enjoyed marginal success thereafter, establishing themselves as strong EDM DJ’s. It was not until the release of “Closer” that the duet finally became considered as artists. The song featured both their songwriting and Taggart’s lead vocals, effectively making a jump from straight EDM to pop music.
“Closer” follows the story of a surprise hook up between exes after an accidental reunion. It has identifiable themes within it like; alcoholism, lost love, class definitions, and living in the moment. The song is most known for its catchy lyrics and solid beat. It is a fun song to listen to and the words can get firmly stuck in your head. Halsey’s vocals are spot on and leave no doubt as to why the single made her career.
The Chainsmokers have been preparing for their second studio release this year. 2018 has given fans a plethora of successful singles. The continuing success of their prior work has also been a huge factor. Their first studio album nabbed third longest-running non-consecutive No.1 for Billboard. Now with “Closer” gaining diamond certification the duo has a full body of work to be appreciated.
Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart of The Chainsmokers fame, have been enjoying mainstream success for about four years now. Their first breakthrough hit, “#Selfie”, hitting the charts in 2014. Since then it has been a thrill ride of success that has happened so fast their heads are still spinning. Now Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart are sitting down to talk about identity, pushing boundaries, and how Dashboard Confessional is responsible for their new sound.
According to Pall the duo gets together every day to work on who they are, it is an endless quest for self-discovery. “You have to try new things in order to stay engaged and interested” Pall says. This is certainly true of the Chainsmokers. They have been trying plenty of new things over the years. First and foremost, EDM DJs rely on other artists for a lot of things. Mainly songwriting and the song singing. The genre is awash in seven or eight remixes of the same source material. The 2016 release of charting single “Closer” pushed some boundaries as Taggart took the lead vocals. This is a very unique thing to do. The duo also involves themselves in the writing of their songs, taking part in some or all of its creation. When asked why they are forging in this new direction Pall responded with, “Why not? Nobody else was doing it.”
Andrew Taggart also revealed that their new wave of songwriting came from sitting on a tour bus listening to music. Namely they were listening to Dashboard Confessional and Taking Back Sunday. Taggart remembers thinking about how he missed songs like that, relatable and thought-provoking commentaries on the world at large. It was then that the duo decided to write songs about themselves. “We do not want to make an album of twelve songs that have no connection,” Pall says, “we want a cohesive album of work that relates to who we are.” Their newest 2018 release, “Sick Boy” is yet another step in staying relevant. When asked how Pall stays current with his listeners he credited Instagram for keeping him up to date on trends.
The Chainsmokers honored Avicii at the Billboard Music Awards. Alex Pall and Drew Taggart dedicated their award for Top Dance/Electronic Act to the Swedish DJ saying “…He is someone who made us all believe that this is something we could do with out lives. Inspired all of us.”
Just 28 years old, Avicii took his own life on April 20th. Geffen Records stated that they may still release some of his previously unreleased music.
Pall was studying art history and the music business at New York University before meeting Taggart, who was interning at Interscope Records. They stated working together making remixes of Indie bands. In December 2013 their single “#Selfie” was picked up by Dim Mak Records and rereleased in January 2014. They followed up their single in August 2014 with “Kanye” featuring SirenXX. They opened for Timeflies in September 2014 in their first live performance. In April 2015, they signed on with Disruptor Records.
Recently, their second single hit has reached one billion Spotify streams. They have the honor of becoming the first #1 Dance Artist / DJ to be on Billboards Dance 100 list. In January 2018, the Chainsmokers released the single hit “Sick Boy”, which feature Drew Taggarts vocal talents and more live instrumentals than before. The video for the single has already had over 136,000,000 views. In February, they released another hit “You Owe Me”. It quickly climbed to #4 on the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart. The accompanying dark video has a shocking ending, which pushed it to have 34,000,000 in a little over a month on YouTube. In March, their audio only single “Everybody Hates Me” achieved over nine million views in under a month. At the I Heart Radio Awards, they won Best Collaboration, Dance Artist of the Year and Dance Album of the Year. The hard working performers are pushing the boundaries of what DJ’s typically do.