White Stripes was an American rock band, formed in 1997 in Detroit,
Michigan. The group consisted of the songwriter Jack White (vocals, guitar,
and keyboards) and drummer Meg White (drums and occasional vocals). Jack and
Meg White were previously married to each other, but are now divorced. After
releasing several singles and three albums within the Detroit music scene,
the White Stripes rose to prominence in 2002, as part of the garage rock
revival scene. Their successful and critically acclaimed albums White Blood
Cells and Elephant drew them attention from a large variety of media outlets
in the United States and the United Kingdom.
The White Stripes used a low-fidelity, do-it-yourself approach to writing
and recording. Their music featured a melding of punk rock and blues
influences and a raw simplicity of composition, arrangement, and
performance. The duo was also noted for their fashion and design aesthetic
which featured a simple color scheme of red, white, and black as well as the
band's obsession with the number three. The band's discography consists of
six studio albums, one live album, two extended plays (EP), one concert
film, one tour documentary, twenty-six singles, and fourteen music videos.
Their last three albums each won the Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music
Album. After a long hiatus, The White Stripes formally announced their
professional split on February 2, 2011.
Jack White first played as a professional musician in the early 1990s, as a
drummer for the Detroit cowpunk band Goober & the Peas. This led to work
with various other bands, such as the garage punk band The Go (on their 1999
album Whatcha Doin'), for whom White played lead guitar, and Two-Star
Tabernacle. Also, neighbor Brian Muldoon (later of The Muldoons) played
drums with Jack White — still known then as Jack Gillis—and the duo
informally called themselves Two Part Resin. Their post-breakup 7-inch
single Makers of High Grade Suites, released in 2000 on Sympathy for the
Record Industry, is credited to The Upholsterers.
Gillis married local bartender Megan Martha White on September 21, 1997. In
unorthodox fashion, he took Meg White's surname. While the newly-christened
Jack White continued to play in multiple bands, Meg White first began to
learn to play the drums in 1997. In Jack White's words, 'When she started to
play drums with me, just on a lark, it felt liberating and refreshing. There
was something in it that opened me up.' The duo then became a band, calling
themselves The White Stripes. They first performed publicly on July 14, 1997
at the Gold Dollar in Detroit.
The White Stripes began their career as part of the Michigan underground
garage rock scene, playing with local bands such as Bantam Rooster, The
Dirtbombs, The Paybacks, and Rocket 455. The White Stripes were signed to
Italy Records, a small and independent Detroit-based garage punk label, in
1998 by Dave Buick. Buick approached them at a bar and asked if they would
like to record a single for the label. Jack White initially declined, but
eventually reconsidered. Their debut single 'Let's Shake Hands' was released
in February 1998. Its first pressing was 1,000 copies on vinyl only. This
was followed in October 1998 by the 'Lafayette Blues' single. Again, 1,000
copies were released on vinyl only. A third single, 'The Big Three Killed My
Baby' on Sympathy for the Record Industry followed in March 1999.
During the early phase of their career, Jack and Meg White provided various
descriptions of their relationship. In many early interviews, Jack claimed
that he and Meg were siblings; this claim was widely believed and repeated
despite rumors that they were, or had been, husband and wife. In 2001, proof
of their 1996 marriage emerged, yet they continued to insist publicly that
they were brother and sister. The couple were divorced in March 2000 just
before the band gained widespread attention. In a 2005 interview with
Rolling Stone magazine, Jack White claimed that this open secret was
intended to keep the focus on the music rather than the couple's
'When you see a band that is two pieces, husband and wife, boyfriend and
girlfriend, you think, 'Oh, I see...' When they're brother and sister, you
go, 'Oh, that's interesting.' You care more about the music, not the
relationship—whether they're trying to save their relationship by being in a
The White Stripes (1999)
The White Stripes' debut album, The White Stripes, was released on June 15,
1999 on the independent label Sympathy for the Record Industry.
The self-titled debut was produced by Jack White and engineered by Jim
Diamond at his Ghetto Recorders studio in Detroit. The album was dedicated
to the seminal, Mississippi Delta blues musician, Son House—an artist who
greatly influenced Jack White. The track 'Cannon' from The White Stripes
contains part of an a cappella version, as performed by House, of the
traditional American gospel blues song 'John the Revelator'. The White
Stripes also covered House's song 'Death Letter' on their follow-up album De
Looking back on their debut during a 2003 interview with Guitar Player, Jack
White said, 'I still feel we've never topped our first album. It's the most
raw, the most powerful, and the most Detroit-sounding record we've made.'
Allmusic said of the album:
Jack White's voice is a singular, evocative combination of punk, metal,
blues, and backwoods while his guitar work is grand and banging with just
enough lyrical touches of slide and subtle solo work... Meg White balances
out the fretwork and the fretting with methodical, spare, and booming
cymbal, bass drum, and snare... All D.I.Y. punk-country-blues-metal
singer/songwriting duos should sound this good.
At the end of 1999, The White Stripes released 'Hand Springs' as a 7' split
single with fellow Detroit band The Dirtbombs on the B-side. 2,000 copies
came free with the pinball fanzine Multiball. The record is currently—like
the majority of vinyl records by The White Stripes—out of print and
difficult to find.
De Stijl (2000)
White Stripes in the back room of Club Shinjuku Jam, Tokyo, to an audience
of 10-20 people, in their first Japanese tour.
The White Stripes' second album, De Stijl (Dutch for 'The Style'), was
released on the Sympathy for the Record Industry label on June 20, 2000.
Considered a cult classic and self-recorded on an 8-track analog tape in
Jack White's living room, De Stijl displays the simplicity of the band's
blues and punk fusion prior to their breakthrough success.
The album title derives from the Dutch art movement of the same name; common
elements of the De Stijl aesthetic are demonstrated on the album cover,
which sets the band members against an abstract background of rectangles and
lines in red, black and white. The White Stripes have cited the minimalist
and deconstructionist aspects of De Stijl design as a source of inspiration
for their own musical image and presentation. The album was dedicated to
furniture designer Gerrit Rietveld of the De Stijl movement, as well as to
the influential Georgia bluesman Blind Willie McTell.
Party of Special Things to Do was released as a 7' on Sub-Pop in December
2000. It comprised three songs originally performed by Captain Beefheart, an
experimental blues-rock musician.
De Stijl eventually reached #38 on Billboard Magazine's Independent Albums
chart in 2002 when The White Stripes' popularity began establishing itself.
The song 'Why Can't You Be Nicer To Me' was also used in The Simpsons
episode 'Judge Me Tender.'
White Blood Cells (2001)
The White Stripes' third album, White Blood Cells, was released on July 3,
2001 on Sympathy for the Record Industry. The band enjoyed its first
significant success the following year with the major label re-release of
the album on V2 Records. Its stripped-down garage rock sound drew critical
acclaim in the UK, and in the US soon afterward, making The White Stripes
one of the most acclaimed bands of 2002.
Several outlets praised their 'back to basics' approach, with Daily Mirror
calling them 'the greatest band since The Sex Pistols.' In 2002, Q magazine
listed The White Stripes as one of '50 Bands to See Before You Die'. White
Blood Cells peaked at number 61 on the Billboard 200, reaching Gold record
status and selling over 500,000 albums. It reached number 55 in the United
Kingdom, being bolstered in both territories by the 'Fell in Love with a
Girl' single and its Lego-animation music video directed by Michel Gondry.
The video won in three awards at the 2002 MTV Video Music Awards:
Breakthrough Video, Best Special Effects, and Best Editing. It was also
nominated for Video of the Year, but fell short of winning, although Stylus
magazine later rated White Blood Cells as the fourteenth greatest album of
2000–2005, while Pitchfork Media ranked it eighth on their list of the top
100 albums from 2000–2004.
he White Stripes' fourth album, Elephant, was released in 2003 on V2. It
marked the band's major label debut and was their first UK chart-topping
album, as well as their first US Top 10 album. The album eventually reached
double platinum certification in Britain, and platinum certification in the
Elephant was recorded in 2002 over the span of two weeks with British
recording engineer Liam Watson at his Toe Rag Studios in London. Jack White
self-produced the album with antiquated equipment, including a duct-taped
8-track tape machine and pre-1960s recording gear.
Elephant garnered much critical acclaim upon its release. It received a
perfect 5 out of 5 star rating from Rolling Stone magazine, and enjoys a
near-unanimous 92% positive rating on Metacritic. Despite the band's
increased fame, Allmusic believed the album 'sounds even more pissed-off,
paranoid, and stunning than its predecessor... Darker and more difficult
than White Blood Cells.' Elephant was additionally notable for premiering
Jack White's first formal use of guitar soloing, and Rolling Stone Magazine
placed him at #17 on its list of '100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time'. That
same year, Elephant was ranked number 390 on the magazine's list of the '500
Greatest Albums of All Time'. In 2009, the album came in at #18 in NME's
'Top 100 Greatest Albums of the decade'.
The album's first single, 'Seven Nation Army', was the band's most
successful. Its success was followed with a cover of Burt Bacharach's 'I
Just Don't Know What to Do with Myself'. The album's third single was the
successful 'The Hardest Button to Button'. 'There's No Home for You Here'
was the fourth single. In 2004, the album won a Grammy for Best Alternative
Music Album, while 'Seven Nation Army' won a Grammy for Best Rock Song.
Get Behind Me Satan (2005)
The White Stripes' fifth album, Get Behind Me Satan, was released
in 2005 on V2. The title, Get Behind Me Satan, refers to a well-known
quotation of Jesus from the Gospel against the disciple Simon Peter, in
Matthew 16:23 of the New Testament (in the King James Version, the quotation
is slightly different: 'Get thee behind me, Satan').
Get Behind Me Satan was recorded in Jack White's then-Detroit home. It has
garnered positive reactions from fans, as well as critical acclaim. With its
reliance on piano-driven melodies and experimentation with marimba on 'The
Nurse' and 'Forever For Her (Is Over For Me)', Get Behind Me Satan
downplayed the explicit blues and punk styles that dominated earlier White
Stripes albums. However, despite this, Jack and Meg White were critically
lauded for their 'fresh, arty reinterpretations of their classic
inspirations.' Jack White plays with different technique than in past
albums, trading in his electric guitar for an acoustic on all but a few of
tracks, as his trademark riff-based lead guitar style is overtaken by a
predominantly rhythmic approach. Rolling Stone ranked it the third best
album of the year and it received the Grammy for Best Alternative Music
Album in 2006.
Three singles were released from the album, the first being 'Blue Orchid', a
popular song on satellite radio and some FM stations. The second and third
singles were 'My Doorbell' and 'The Denial Twist', respectively, and music
videos were made for each of the three singles. 'My Doorbell' was also
nominated for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal.
Jack White married British model Karen Elson, whom he had met on the set of
the 'Blue Orchid' music video, on June 4, 2005. The White Stripes released a
cover version of Tegan and Sara's song 'Walking with a Ghost' on iTunes in
November 2005. The song was later released in December as the Walking with a
Ghost EP featuring four other live tracks.
The White Stripes postponed the Japanese leg of their world tour after Jack
White strained his vocal cords, with doctors recommending that Jack not sing
or talk for two weeks. After a full recovery, he returned to the stage in
Auckland, New Zealand to headline the Big Day Out tour. Jack subsequently
relocated to Nashville, Tennessee with Elson.
In October 2006, it was announced on the official White Stripes website that
there would be an album of avant-garde orchestral recordings consisting of
past music written by Jack White called Aluminium. The album was made
available for pre-order on November 6, 2006 to great demand from the band's
fans; the LP version of the project sold out in a little under a day. The
project was conceived by Richard Russell, founder of XL Recordings, who
co-produced the album with Joby Talbot. It was recorded between August 2005
and February 2006 at Intimate Studios in Wapping, London using an orchestra.
Before the album went out of print, it was available exclusively through the
Aluminium website in a numbered limited edition of 3,333 CDs with 999 LPs.
On January 12, 2007, it was announced that in the process of reconstruction,
V2 Records would no longer release new White Stripes material, leaving the
band without a label. However, the band's contract with V2 had already
expired, and on February 12, 2007, it was confirmed that the band had signed
a single album deal with Warner Bros. Records.
Icky Thump (2007)
The White Stripes' sixth album, Icky Thump, was released in 2007 on
Warner Bros. Records. This was their first record with Warner Bros., since
V2 closed in 2006, and it was released on a one-album contract. Icky Thump
entered the UK Albums Chart at number one and debuted at number two on the
Billboard 200 with 223,000 copies sold. By late July, Icky Thump was
certified gold in the United States. As of March 8, 2008, the album has sold
725,125 copies in the US. On February 10, 2008, the album won a Grammy for
Best Alternative Music Album.
Following the well-received reception of Get Behind Me Satan, Icky Thump
marked a return to the punk, garage rock and blues influences for which the
band is known. It was recorded at Nashville's Blackbird Studio and took
almost three weeks to record—the longest of any White Stripes album to date.
It would also be their first album with a title track. The album's release
came on the heels of a series of concerts in Europe and one in North America
Prior to the album's release, three tracks were previewed to NME: 'Icky
Thump', 'You Don't Know What Love Is (You Just Do as You're Told)' and
'Conquest'. NME described the tracks as 'an experimental, heavy sounding
70's riff,' 'a strong, melodic love song' and 'an unexpected mix of big
guitars and a bold horn section,' respectively. On the US Billboard Charts
dated May 12, 2007, 'Icky Thump'—the first single—became the band's first
Top 40 single, charting at #26, and later charted at #2 in the UK charts.
On April 25, 2007, the duo announced that they would embark on a tour of
Canada performing in all 10 provinces, plus the Yukon, Nunavut and Northwest
Territories. In the words of Jack White: 'Having never done a tour of
Canada, Meg and I thought it was high time to go whole hog. We want to take
this tour to the far reaches of the Canadian landscape. From the ocean to
the permafrost. The best way for us to do that is ensure that we perform in
every province and territory in the country, from the Yukon to Prince Edward
Island. Another special moment of this tour is the show which will occur in
Glace Bay, Nova Scotia on July 14, The White Stripes' Tenth Anniversary.'
Canadian fiddler Ashley MacIsaac opened for the band at the Glace Bay show;
earlier in 2007, MacIsaac and Jack White had discovered that they were
distantly related. It was also at this time that White learned he was
related to Canadian fiddle player Natalie MacMaster.
The White Stripes giving an impromptu show for fans on a bus in Winnipeg, MB
On June 24, 2007, just a few hours before their concert at Deer Lake Park,
The White Stripes kicked off their cross-Canada tour by playing a 40 minute
set for a group of 30 kids at the Creekside Youth Centre in Burnaby. The
Canadian tour was also marked by concerts in small markets such as Glace
Bay, Whitehorse and Iqaluit, as well as by frequent 'secret shows'
publicized mainly by posts on The Little Room, a White Stripes fan
messageboard. Gigs included performances at a bowling alley in Saskatoon, a
youth center in Edmonton, a Winnipeg Transit bus and The Forks park in
Winnipeg, a park in Whitehorse, the YMCA in downtown Toronto, the Arva Flour
Mill in Arva, Ontario, Locas on Salter (a pool hall) in Halifax, Nova
Scotia, and an infamous one-note show on George Street in St. John's,
Newfoundland. Video clips from several of the secret shows have been posted
to YouTube. As well, the band filmed its video for 'You Don't Know What Love
Is (You Just Do as You're Told)' in Iqaluit.
On September 11, 2007 the White Stripes announced the cancellation of 18
tour dates due to Meg's suffering from acute anxiety problems. Following
this, the duo cancelled the remainder of their 2007 tour dates including
their scheduled tour of the UK.
Later work and breakup (2008–2011)
Jack reported that The White Stripes were working on their seventh album.
Furthermore, Jack formed a group called The Dead Weather featuring himself,
Jack Lawrence, Dean Fertita, and Alison Mosshart; although Jack stated at
the time that the White Stripes album was his top priority. Jack published a
poem on July 6 in the Detroit Free Press, clearing up misconceptions about
his love for his hometown of Detroit due to previous comments about the
city's 'negative' music scene, and his move to Nashville in 2006. In
September 2008, Jack White slipped a disc in his neck, causing him to cancel
his scheduled appearance on the MTV Europe Awards in November.
A concert film, Under Great White Northern Lights, was premiered at the
Toronto International Film Festival on September 18, 2009. The film,
directed by Emmett Malloy, documents the band's summer 2007 tour across
Canada and contains live concert and off-stage footage. Jack and Meg White
appeared at the premiere and made a short speech before the movie started
about their love of Canada and why they chose to debut their movie in
Toronto. A second feature titled Under Nova Scotian Lights was prepared for
the DVD release.
The White Stripes performed live for the first time since September 2007 on
the final episode of Late Night with Conan O'Brien on February 20, 2009,
where they performed an alternate version of 'We're Going to Be Friends'.
The performance proved to be their last, upon their breakup in 2011.
In an interview with Self Titled, Jack White alluded to the creation of a
White Stripes film to be released later in 2009. In an article dated May 6,
2009 with MusicRadar.com, Jack mentioned recording songs with Meg before the
Conan gig had taken place, saying, 'We had recorded a couple of songs at the
new studio.' About a new White Stripes album, Jack said, 'It won't be too
far off. Maybe next year.' Jack also explained Meg's acute anxiety during
the Stripes' last tour, saying, 'I just came from a Raconteurs tour and went
right into that, so I was already full-speed. Meg had come from a dead-halt
for a year and went right back into that madness. Meg is a very shy girl, a
very quiet and shy person. To go full-speed from a dead-halt is
overwhelming, and we had to take a break.'
In 2010, a Super Bowl ad by the U.S. Air Force Reserve caused The White
Stripes to 'take strong insult and objection to the Air Force Reserve
presenting this advertisement with the implication that we licensed one of
our songs to encourage recruitment during a war that we do not support'. The
Air Force Reserve denied the song was The White Stripes and the music was
scored by an advertising agency for the commercial.
In an interview with contactmusic.com Jack White claimed that working with
The White Stripes would be 'strange'. 'It would definitely be strange to go
into The White Stripes again and have to rethink my game,' adding 'But that
would be the best thing about it, because it would be a whole new White
In September 2010, it was announced that the White Stripes would contribute
the song 'Rated X' to a compilation album Coal Miner's Daughter: A Tribute
To Loretta Lynn. It is a reissue of their previous cover of the song.
In late 2010, The White Stripes reissued their first three albums on the
Third Man Records label on 180-gram vinyl along with 500 limited edition,
'split-colored' records to accompany. Jack White hinted at a possible White
Stripes reunion in a 2010 interview with Vanity Fair. White says, “We
thought we'd do a lot of things that we'd never done: a full tour of Canada,
a documentary, coffee-table book, live album, a boxed set…Now that we've
gotten a lot of that out of our system, Meg and I can get back in the studio
and start fresh.”
On February 2, 2011, the duo announced that they would officially cease
recording and performing music as The White Stripes. The announcement
specifically denied any artistic differences or health issues, but cited 'a
myriad of reasons ... mostly to preserve what is beautiful and special about
The musical and stylistic elements of The White Stripes are grounded and
rooted in blues, garage rock, and early punk .
Specifically, the band's most prominent influences include blues musicians
such as Son House, Blind Willie McTell and Robert Johnson, garage rock bands
such as The Gories and The Sonics, the Detroit pre-punk sound of bands like
the MC5 and The Stooges, and the early Los Angeles punk band The Gun Club.
Jack has stated on numerous occasions that the blues is the dominant
influence on his songwriting and the roots of the band's music, stating that
he feels it is so sacred that playing it does not do it justice. Of The Gun
Club's music in particular, Jack White has said, ''Sex Beat', 'She's Like
Heroin To Me', and 'For The Love Of Ivy'...why are these songs not taught in
schools?' Heavy blues rock bands such as the Rolling Stones and AC/DC have
also influenced the band, particularly Led Zeppelin, as Jack has claimed
that he 'can't trust anybody who doesn't like Led Zeppelin.'
Traditional country music such as Hank Williams and Loretta Lynn, rockabilly
acts like the Flat Duo Jets, Wanda Jackson and Gene Vincent, and folk music
like Lead Belly and Bob Dylan have also influenced the band's sound. Meg
White has said one of her all-time favorite musicians is Bob Dylan; Jack has
performed live with him, and has claimed 'I've got three fathers—my
biological dad, God and Bob Dylan'.
Instruments and equipment
Main articles: Jack White's musical equipment and Meg White's musical
The White Stripes are notable for having only two musicians, limiting the
instruments played live. Jack, the principal writer, has said this has not
been a problem, and that he 'always centered the band around the number
three. Everything was vocals, guitar and drums or vocals, piano and drums.'
Early on, the band drew attention for their preference for antiquated
Jack White live in 2005
With few exceptions, Jack White has shown a continued partiality
towards amps and pedals from the 1960s. Jack uses a number of effects
to create his sound, a DigiTech Whammy IV to reach pitches that would be
otherwise impossible with a regular guitar. For instance, without the pedal,
'Seven Nation Army' and 'The Hardest Button to Button' would require a bass
guitar and 'Black Math' would be very difficult to play without a 29th fret
(which does not exist on most guitars) on the highest string. When
performing live, Jack White uses a Randy Parsons custom guitar, a 1964 JB
Hutto Montgomery Airline, a Harmony Rocket, a 1970s Crestwood Astral II, and
a 1950s Kay Hollowbody. Also, while playing live, White uses an MXR
Micro-Amp, Electro-Harmonix Big Muff Pi distortion/sustainer, and an
Electro-Harmonix POG (a polyphonic octave generator). He also uses a Boss
TU-2 tuner pedal. He plugs this setup into a 1970s Fender Twin Reverb, and
two 100-Watt Sears Silvertone model 1485 6x10 amplifiers. In addition to
standard guitar tuning, Jack White also uses several open tunings.
White also plays other instruments such as a black F-Style Gibson mandolin,
Rhodes bass keys, and a Steinway piano. Jack plays a custom-made red and
white marimba on 'The Nurse', 'Forever for Her (Is Over for Me)' as well as
on the non-album tracks 'Who's A Big Baby' and 'Top Special'.
Meg White's minimalistic drumming style is a prominent part of the band's
sound. Meg has never taken a lesson. She plays Ludwig Drums with Paiste
cymbals, and says her pre-show warm-up consists of 'whiskey and Red Bull.'
Jack White downplays criticisms of her style, insisting:
'I never thought 'God, I wish Neil Peart was in this band.' It's kind of
funny: When people critique hip hop, they're scared to open up, for fear of
being called racist. But they're not scared to open up on female musicians,
out of pure sexism. Meg is the best part of this band. It never would have
worked with anybody else, because it would have been too complicated... It
was my doorway to playing the blues.'
Of her playing style, Meg White herself says:
'I appreciate other kinds of drummers who play differently, but it's not my
style or what works for this band. I get [criticism] sometimes, and I go
through periods where it really bothers me. But then I think about it, and I
realize that this is what is really needed for this band. And I just try to
have as much fun with it as possible ... I just know the way [Jack] plays so
well at this point that I always know kind of what he's going to do. I can
always sense where he's going with things just by the mood he's in or the
attitude or how the song is going. Once in a while, he throws me for a loop,
but I can usually keep him where I want him.'
While Jack is the lead vocalist, Meg does sing lead vocals on four of the
band's songs: 'In the Cold, Cold Night' (from Elephant), 'Passive
Manipulation' (from Get Behind Me Satan), 'Who's a Big Baby?' (released on
the 'Blue Orchid' single), and 'St. Andrew (This Battle is in the Air)'
(from Icky Thump). She also accompanies Jack on the songs 'Hotel Yorba' and
'This Protector' from their album White Blood Cells, on 'You Don't Know What
Love Is (You Just Do as You're Told)' and 'Rag & Bone' from their album Icky
Thump, 'Rated X' and also sings alongside Jack and Holly Golightly on the
song 'It's True That We Love One Another', from the album Elephant.
Recording sessions and live performances
The White Stripes playing at the Big Day Out in Melbourne 2006
Several White Stripes recordings were completed rapidly. For example,
Elephant was recorded in about two weeks in London's Toe Rag Studio. Their
2005 follow-up, Get Behind Me Satan, was likewise recorded in just two
For live shows, The White Stripes are known for Jack's employment of heavy
distortion, as well as audio feedback and overdrive. The duo performs
considerably more recklessly and unstructured live, never preparing set
lists for their shows, believing that planning too closely would ruin the
spontaneity of their performances.
In 2007, music by the White Stripes was used by the British choreographer
Wayne McGregor for his new production Chroma, a piece he created for The
Royal Ballet in London, England. The orchestral arrangements for Chroma were
commissioned by Richard Russell, head of XL Recordings, as a gift to the
White Stripes and were produced by the British classical composer Joby
Talbot. Three of these songs, 'The Hardest Button To Button', 'Aluminium'
and 'Blue Orchid', were first played to the band as a surprise in Cincinnati
Music Hall, Ohio. McGregor heard the orchestral versions and decided to
create a ballet using the music. Talbot re-orchestrated the music for the
Royal Opera House orchestra, also writing three additional pieces of his own
composition. The world premiere of the ballet took place on November 16,
2006 at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, London. The ballet
subsequently won the 2007 Laurence Olivier Award fr Best New Dance
The White Stripes have been using this color combination profusely in their
live shows and artwork:
Rolling Stone Magazine: Were red, black and white your favorite colors as a
Jack White: After I apprenticed as an upholsterer for a few years, I opened
my own shop, Third Man Upholstery. Everything was yellow, black and white.
All my power tools were yellow and black. I had a yellow van. I ran my
business like a cartoon. I was making out bills in crayon and writing poetry
inside people's furniture. I didn't care if I made any money. I was so happy
to pull up in front of someone's house wearing a yellow-and-black uniform,
with a yellow clipboard. But the White Stripes' colors were always red,
white and black. It came from peppermint candy. I also think they are the
most powerful color combination of all time, from a Coca-Cola can to a Nazi
banner. Those colors strike chords with people. In Japan, they are honorable
colors. When you see a bride in a white gown, you immediately see innocence
in that. Red is anger and passion. It is also sexual. And black is the
absence of all that.
— Rolling Stone Magazine: September 8th, 2005.
Appearances in other media
Jack and Meg White appeared in Jim Jarmusch's film Coffee and Cigarettes in
2003, in a segment entitled 'Jack Shows Meg His Tesla Coil'. This particular
segment contains extensions of White Stripes motifs such as childhood
innocence and Nikola Tesla. In 2004, the band released its first music film
Under Blackpool Lights, which was filmed entirely using 16 mm film and was
directed by Dick Carruthers. That same year, Jack White appeared in a small
role in Cold Mountain, and contributed five songs to its soundtrack. He also
teamed up with Alicia Keys to write the theme song for the latest James Bond
film, Quantum of Solace, entitled 'Another Way to Die'.
In 2004, a film titled Nobody Knows How to Talk to Children was produced.
Its release was suppressed by the band's management after discovering that
director George Roca had been showing it at the Sundance Film Festival
without permission. The film chronicles The White Stripes' four-night stand
at New York City's Bowery Ballroom in 2002, and contains live performances
and behind-the-scenes footage. It was shot in high-contrast black, white and
red, and has relatively poor sound quality. It remains a highly-prized
bootleg. Jack White also appeared in Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story as Elvis
Presley. The band also appeared as themselves in The Simpsons episode 'Jazzy
and the Pussycats' in 2006. Jack White is one of three guitarists featured
in the 2009 documentary 'It Might Get Loud', Meg White appears as well in
segments that include The White Stripes.
Ball and Biscuit, a track from The White Stripes' 2003 album Elephant, can
be heard at the beginning of the movie The Social Network (2010) as well as
the Captain Morgan rum commercials . Icky Thump also appears in The Other
Guys (2010) during the investment meeting gunfight between protagonists
Allen Gamble and Terry Hoitz and David Ershon's investors. It is also on the
film's soundtrack list.
The song 'We're Going to Be Friends' was also featured in the opening
credits of Napoleon Dynamite, but not on the soundtrack. The songs 'Red
Death at 6:14' and 'Blue Orchid' are heard in the 2011 movie The Green
Hornet. The song 'Catch Hell Blues' is heard in the 2011 remake of
Their songs also are featured in video games, the song 'Girl, You Have No
Faith In Medicine' appears on the 2007 skateboarding game Skate. While the
song 'Blue Orchid' is a playable song in the 2009 music video game Guitar
Hero 5 and in SingStar Rocks!. the song 'Seven Nation Army' is on Guitar
Hero: Warriors of Rock and also 'The Hardest Button to Button' is a playable
track in Rock Band 3. 'Icky Thump' is a learnable track for the guitar based
video game Rocksmith.