(8/18/97) - According to music news service SpinRadio, the ex-girlfriend of Matchbox 20 lead singer Rob Thomas is demanding a share of the royalties for Matchbox 20's million-selling debut album, Yourself Or Someone Like You. The gold-digging ex is reportedly harassing Thomas, his friends and his band manager, claiming that Thomas would never have been able to pen the hit single "Push," a song dealing with emotional manipulation and abuse, had he not been inspired by their relationship. However, Thomas counters, "The wrong woman is contacting me. The song is about a relationship with someone else." Oops.
Matchbox 20 Makes A Match
(2/17/98) - A Nashville visit by Matchbox 20 proved a good time for Monument Records' new country act, the Dixie Chicks. Apparently the lithesome trio bumped into the Matchbox rockers at a downtown Nashville beer joint February 8th and everyone instantly hit it off.
Chicks singer Natalie Maines reports that the two groups proceeded to bar-hop around Nashville, played a "nasty road game called Would You Rather," and even shaved a music industry exec's eyebrow with a razor "sanitized" in beer.
"The said we were the most disgusting girls they'd ever met and they loved us," Maines boasts. In fact, the Match boys so loved the Chicks, they asked the girls to sing backup at their Ryman Auditorium concert February 9th.
Bomb Scares Matchbox Twenty In London
(6/18/00, 10 a.m. ET) - A bomb scare delayed Matchbox Twenty's gig at the Hammersmith Apollo in London on Thursday night (June 15). The band was temporarily evacuated from the backstage area of the venue after a man claimed to have left a suspicious package in the area, according to NME. The claim proved to be a hoax, but it did delay the show more than 30 minutes.
Fans were unaware of the reason for the delay until Matchbox Twenty lead singer Rob Thomas mentioned it from the stage midway through the band's set, according to a fan posting on MB20's official website (matchbox20.com). "I am guessing they were due on stage at 8:30 p.m. . . an extra whole 30 minutes we could have had," another fan lamented.
In attendance were R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe and Counting Crows' Adam Duritz and Charlie Gillingham, who joined MB20 for a version of Willie Nelson's classic country anthem, "Mama, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys," according to NME.
The day before (June 14), Thomas was the one joining others on stage. The singer appeared with Santana to perform a version of their smash hit "Smooth" at London's Wembley Arena, NME reports.
Matchbox Twenty/Third Eye Blind Feud Part 2?
(6/28/00, 12 p.m. ET) - Contrary to popular belief, the feud between Matchbox Twenty vocalist Rob Thomas and Third Eye Blind vocalist Stephan Jenkins is not over.
The battle appeared to be resolved when Jenkins, at the invitation of Matchbox Twenty, came to check out the band in San Francisco. Jenkins told LAUNCH, "So I go up to Rob, who's lean and mean and svelte, and I said, 'Hey, you big fat pig.' And he laughed and I laughed and we hugged each other and just said, 'Hello.' What I didn't realize was the window where I was talking to him was exposed," Jenkins continued, "and a part of the audience could see us. And they started cheering us. It was like, 'Aw, isn't it sweet?"
Thomas and guitarist Adam Gaynor told LAUNCH that they thought the bands had settled their differences, but heard differently through the grapevine. "I thought we did," said Thomas, "and then he was talking smack about me, again. Can you believe that? He showed up at our show in San Francisco and he was being nice and I thought we were all cool and we were friends. And then he was talking to someone who he didn't realize was our drummer's fiance's brother and just went off. And so he thought it would never get back to us, but it did. And I've got nothing bad to say about him, but I just want to say that's weak. Because I thought we had all patched things up."
Added Gaynor, "I'd like to say, you've just got to look at the source. You look at him -- is he a personality? Is he a good person? Is he a good Samaritan? And you answer that question for yourself."
Matchbox Twenty Gets 'Gone' After 'Bent'
(10/16/00, 1 p.m. ET) - Matchbox Twenty has had tremendous success with "Bent," the first single off Mad Season By Matchbox Twenty. Guitarist Adam Gaynor told LAUNCH that the tune's success has delayed the release of the album's subsequent singles "If You're Gone" and "Crutch."
As to when those two songs will hit the airwaves, Gaynor told us, "We always have a good problem, and the good problem we always have is that our songs won't go away," he said. "So what was going on was 'Bent' is still being spun pretty heavily, and I think 'If You're Gone' will be the biggest song we've pretty much had. I know that's a pretty blunt statement, but I do think that it's going to be a pretty strong song for us. I'm excited about it. I hope people love it, I hope everybody enjoys that song."
Matchbox Twenty's Thomas Talks About Working With Jagger, Nelson
(12/8/00, 12 p.m. ET) - Although Rob Thomas of Matchbox Twenty hit the jackpot on his collaboration with Carlos Santana on the mega-hit "Smooth," he told LAUNCH he'd rather focus on his band than work on outside projects. But he admits there some veteran artists he wouldn't turn down.
As Thomas explained, "I've talked with people that I really admire, people like Willie Nelson and Mick Jagger, who I know that if I do something with them, I can learn something. It's not just going to be about going out there and putting together a product," he added. "It's going to be something that I'm going to walk away with. So I'm trying to keep my focus [on] everyone that I work with."
Matchbox Twenty's latest album, Mad Season By Matchbox Twenty, has surpassed the 2 million mark in sales, but it's no match for the 11 million sales of the band's debut album, Yourself Or Someone Like You.
Matchbox Twenty's Adam Gaynor Shares Musical Memory Of Hanukkah
(12/21/00, 12 p.m. ET) - With Hanukkah, the Jewish Festival Of Lights, beginning tonight (December 21), Matchbox Twenty's Adam Gaynor tells LAUNCH the distinctions have become blurred between the Jewish holiday and Christmas. Growing up in his family, both holidays were celebrated.
"When I was younger, before the ol' big Bar Mitzvah, we had some Christmas celebrations and then we [alternated] every year because my sister wanted to do Christmas," he explains. "I remember getting the little paper drum set. It was really weird--you're sitting there, you hit them for three days, and then you have to throw the whole thing out. But I remember stuff like that, and I remember just sitting around with the family and everyone playing piano and stuff. It was really nice."
Matchbox Twenty's Rob Thomas Recalls Xmas 'Glory'
(12/25/00, 10 a.m. ET) - Rob Thomas is resting his voice now, but his band, Matchbox 20, will be back out on the road next year. Currently spending the holidays with his wife, the singer shared with LAUNCH his favorite childhood Christmas memory.
"I was living in South Carolina with my grandmother, and I got a drum set," he recalled. "I used to sit at my mom's house, and I had all of mom's old records, so I'd sit and play drums to Grease, and old Bread albums, and Al Green." The budding musician didn't stop at the drums, however. Thomas explained to LAUNCH: "Then one of my mom's boyfriends bought me a keyboard, and that, like, totally did it. That changed everything. I thought I was the man because I had learned, with one finger, how to play 'The Glory Of Love.'"
For the uninitiated, "Glory Of Love" was a hit for Chicago singer Peter Cetera in the '80s and was featured in Karate Kid II.
Grammy Nominee Matchbox Twenty Reports Nonstop Tour Plans
(1/4/01, 7 a.m. ET) - Matchbox Twenty was nominated for two Grammy Awards, with "Bent" picking up a nod for best rock song, and Mad Season nominated for best rock album. The Grammy Awards aren't the only thing on the band's plate for 2001, as singer-songwriter Rob Thomas told LAUNCH the band has extensive touring plans.
"We'll go out and do another tour of the States and do the major markets and go back to Europe and Japan and go to Australia again and just play," he said. "It's funny that's your whole job now--you make a record and you play."
Thomas added that in order to operate in the music business he has to just focus on the present. "You can't worry about your career. You can't worry about these things because you have no control over it. Do you know what I mean? Other than right there. If you play and you do the best you can, you make the best record you can, you put it out, you go out, you play the best you can every night. Whatever is going to happen is going to happen, but it's pretty much out of your hands. If you take that burden on, you go crazy, but if you realize that it's not your burden to bear, then it makes things pretty easy going."
Matchbox Twenty Gigs Sell Out In Minutes
(2/3/01, 7 a.m. ET) - Matchbox Twenty has sold out shows on its upcoming North American tour in a matter of minutes, literally. Tickets for its March 2 show at the Allstate Arena in Chicago went in 20 minutes, while those for the New York show at the Madison Square Garden on March 16 disappeared in just 45. And fans in Detroit and Boston nabbed tickets for their respective shows in a brisk four hours.
Meanwhile, seven other dates have been announced for the spring tour, which is the latest by the band in support of its triple-platinum sophomore effort, Mad Season. Among them is a trio of shows in the group's home state of Florida.
The tour kicks off on February 27 at the Target Center in Minneapolis. Everclear and Lifehouse serve as the opening acts.
Lead vocalist Rob Thomas tells LAUNCH that touring is still a big buzz to him. "I just love being out there. You know, I love having the band behind you, I love having the crowd in front of you, you know, I love hitting the bus and ever since I started taking my wife out on the road, there's really nothing down to the road. You know, like, we both have the same schedule. I never have to make that call, 'Oh, honey, I thought I was coming home but now I'm gonna be gone for another couple weeks.' Now I just have to, you know, go, 'OK, honey, we're not going home, we're gonna be out for another couple weeks.' And it makes things a lot more grounded."