Who is he?
John Anthony Gillis, often dubbed as Jack White III, was born on July 9, 1975 in Detroit, Michigan. He is a multi-instrumentalist, producer, singer-songwriter, and sporadic actor. He is mostly known for his role as the front-man, guitarist, and pianist of rock duo The White Stripes. His infamous, distorted guitar playing and uncontrollable style has landed him the 17th spot on Rolling Stone’s list of the 100 Greatest Guitarists.
How did he get started?
Jack White grew up in a bustling, musical home with nine siblings. Though he is widely acclaimed for his impeccable guitar playing, he started playing drums at the age of six before he took on the guitar at age nine. He even filled his bedroom with his instruments, leaving only a piece of foam on the floor as a mattress.
White played guitar and drums in several bands before he formed The White Stripes. In 1996, he married Meg White and took on her surname. A year later, Meg started playing drums and the two eventually started a musical project called The White Stripes, the simple yet unique garage-rock duo which shook the international music scene. They released six successful albums before separating in 2011.
However, White’s long-lasting success with the White Stripes is not his only impressive endeavor within the music industry. In 2001, he founded Third Man Records in Detroit, Michigan, through which he’s produced over 120 records by artists such as Jerry Lee Lewis, Karen Elson, and The Black Belles.
In 2006, he formed a band “made of old friends” called The Raconteurs. He led the pack with his signature fuzzy guitar riffs and dominant vocals, and experimented with other instruments that gave their songs their folky nuance.
Of course, he didn’t stop there. In 2009, he founded yet another super-group entitled The Dead Weather, and unexpectedly opted for the drums while occasionally doing backing vocals. Aside from his three successful bands, White has also collaborated with a diverse pool of artists, such as Alicia Keys, Bob Dylan, and Jay-Z.
In 2012, White released his first solo album, Blunderbuss, following the release of his first single “Love Interruption.” The record debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 within the first week of sales and landed several Grammy nominations, including Album of the Year and Best Rock Album.
In April 2014, eager fans got a taste of White’s forthcoming solo album Lazaretto with the release of “High Ball Stepper”. He is also working on a record with The Dead Weather that will be out in 2015