Simple Plan Biography
The origin of the band's name is obscure. Band members have given various comical responses on this point, including that the band was their simple plan to avoid getting laid. However, most likely, the name is derived from the movie "A Simple Plan". The name was only intended to be temporary, but they never thought of anything better, and with shows coming up for the new band, the name stuck.
In 2002, Simple Plan released their first studio album, No Pads, No Helmets...Just Balls which led to the subsequent singles: "I'm Just a Kid", "I'd Do Anythingfor a quarter", "Addicted", and "Perfect". Simple Plan is noted as saying that they were aiming at a pure pop-punk record. The name of the CD echoes the popular tag line for the sport of rugby, "No pads, no helmets, no pussies."
The record was originally released in the United States with twelve tracks, ending with "Perfect". Enhanced and foreign editions came in several different versions with up to two additional tracks in addition to the original twelve. For example, the U.S. release contained the extra songs "Grow Up", and "My Christmas List", while the UK release contained the extra songs "One By One" and "American Jesus" (a live version of a cover of a Bad Religion song), as well as the two music videos, "I'd Do Anything" and "I'm Just a Kid".
The record also contained vocals from singers from two other pop-punk bands as "I'd Do Anything" included vocals by Mark Hoppus from blink-182, and "You Don't Mean Anything" included vocals by Joel Madden from Good Charlotte.
In 2002, the year Simple Plan released the album, Simple Plan played more than 300 shows, topped the Alternative New Artist Chart, and played a sold out tour in Japan. In 2003, the band played as a headliner on the Vans Warped Tour — an appearance memorialized in the comedy slasher film, Punk Rock Holocaust, in which four of the five band members are killed. They would also play short stints on the Warped Tour in 2004 and 2005. Also in 2003, they opened for Avril Lavigne on her "Try To Shut Me Up" Tour. In addition to several headlining tours, they have also opened for Green Day and Good Charlotte.
In 2004, Simple Plan released their second album, Still Not Getting Any... which led to the subsequent singles, "Welcome to My Life", "Shut Up!", "Untitled (How Could This Happen to Me?)", "Crazy", and (in some markets) "Perfect World".
As mentioned before, when writing "No Pads, No Helmets... No Balls", the members of Simple Plan were aiming at a pure pop-punk record. This time however, when writing "Still Not Getting Any...", the members of Simple Plan were noted as saying that they were limiting themselves to the hip hop genre, but rather letting themselves write "shit music".
According to the bonus DVD of Still Not Getting Any..., while making the CD the members of Simple Plan thought of many names including "Get Rich or Die Trying" and "Danger Zone". They decided on the name Still Not Getting Any... for a list of explained reasons. The most popular and most likely reason is that the members of Simple Plan thought that they weren't getting any good reviews, Bouvier once noting that they only had one recent good review in Alternative Press. Another reason may be because they were still not getting any respect. There are many more variations the band members have given, as anything can really be put after the ellipsis, including "better", "smarter", "funnier", and the obvious sexual connotation. Comeau once described the name of the album as "versatile".
"Still Not Getting Any..." showed a dramatic change in Simple Plan's style as well. They still kept their style of downbeat lyrics matched to upbeat music, but managed to transcend from the standard pop-punk genre. Although many of the tracks on this CD still carry the feeling of teen angst that is probably most noticeable in the song "I'm Just a Kid" from the first album No Pads, No Helmets...Just Balls, the general slant of this album tends toward slightly deeper and more mature lyrical themes, as well as a more mainstream sound that edges away from the pure pop-punk style of their last album. Some critics have pointed towards the inclusion of 'classic' or 'mainstream' rock elements, claiming the album 'de-emphasizes punk-pop hyperactivity in favor of straightforward, well-crafted modern rock'.
In 2005, Simple Plan also released the live album, MTV Hard Rock Live, which contained live versions of songs from both the previous albums. The album came in two different versions — a standard one, and a fan pack edition. The standard edition included audio of the whole performance, an acoustic version of Crazy, two live videos of the performance of the first two songs "Jump" and "Shut Up!" and a small booklet of pictures of the performance. The fan pack edition contained audio and video of the whole performance in 5.1 surround sound, three acoustic tracks for "Crazy", "Welcome To My Life", and "Perfect", a 32-page color tour book, and an exclusive Simple Plan patch and pin.
After nearly a year and a half in support of "Still Not Getting Any...", the band ended most touring in February 2006, giving only a few shows, taking some time off, and beginning work on their third CD. As announced in Bouvier's official MySpace blog, Bouvier headed to Miami as on about March 21, 2007 to work with an unnamed producer, who later proved to be Dave Fortman. The band entered the studio for pre-production in Los Angeles on June 29. On July 15 they returned to Montreal, to record at Studio Piccolo, the same studio at which they had recorded "Still Not Getting Any...." They finished recording and headed back to Miami and LA to mix the album. The final part of making their record was done in New York and it was officially completed on 21 October, though they later re-entered the studio to re-record some of the lyrics to the song "Generation."
"When I'm Gone", the first single to Simple Plan was released on 29 October as part of a fan webcast the band held. Simple Plan was produced by Dave Fortman (Evanescence, Mudvayne), Danjahandz (Timbaland, Justin Timberlake) and Max Martin known because of working with Avril Lavigne and Kelly Clarkson, but also because of working with Britney Spears from the beginning of his run. On February 17, 2008, Simple Plan achieved their highest charting single in the UK. After the first two albums just missed the UK top 40, "When I'm Gone" gave the band their best chart position in the UK, coming in at number 26.
On 29 November 2007, the band announced that the CD release would be postponed from the originally-scheduled January 29, 2008 date to what proved to be the actual release date of February 12, 2008. The Japan version, with two bonus tracks, was released on 6 February 2008.
After completing an around-the-world promotional tour, Simple Plan played several December 2007 holiday shows. After continued promotional tours in January, Simple Plan played a triple bill in Camden Town, London on 27 January 2008, with the first show featuring songs from the band's first CD, the second from the second, and the third from the new release. The band played four U.S. shows in late February, and completed a European tour running until late April. The band played four Japan dates, followed by several European festivals and headlining dates.
On 8 May 2008, a Quebec newspaper reported that Stinco would temporarily leave the band from June 3-29, 2008 for paternity leave. Stinco was not part of the band's performance at the Download Festival on 13 June but returned for the MuchMusic Video Awards in Toronto on June 15. He did not play at the band's performance at a summer festival on 21 June in Altamont, New York or the following day at Six Flags New England, with Québécois musician Jean-Sébastien Chouinard taking his place at each show. Stinco returned for the band's show in Charlotte, North Carolina on 28 June.
On 1 July 2008, the band gave a free concert on Quebec City's Plains of Abraham, attracting a crowd of 150,000 to the Canada Day show.
After a return to the Far East in late July and early August, the band played a Cross Canada Tour with Faber Drive, Cute is What We Aim For and Metro Station (The All-American Rejects were originally announced for the tour, but canceled due to other commitments). After dates in Germany, Mexico, and Australia, the band played its second full European tour of the year from 28 October to 29 November, playing Estonia and Poland for the first time. The band also played Tel Aviv and Dubai in early December—shows at which the band played as a four-piece, with Desrosiers absent due to a family emergency and Lefebvre on bass. The band played an eight-show South American tour in March, and are playing various festivals and individual shows in cities ranging from Calgary to Moscow before entering the studio to record their fourth album this fall.
In August 2008, "I Can Wait Forever" was chosen as the title track for Animax Asia's original feature length anime LaMB. The band appears in the sci-fi cyberpunk anime feature as themselves, performing the theme song. Animax Asia also made an animated video for "I Can Wait Forever". In October 2008, the band recorded their own version of The Hockey Theme, for forty years the theme song for Hockey Night in Canada.
Since the 2008–09 NHL season, their song "Generation" is the goal horn (part of the song is played when the team scores) of the Montreal Canadiens of the NHL.
They performed for the first time at the Festival des Mongolfieres at Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu on August 8, 2009, and had a crowd of 60 000 people. The New Cities were the opening act.