The ShazamView in iTunes
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Led by guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter Hans Rotenberry, the Shazam are a contemporary power pop band from Nashville, Tennessee, who've earned a loyal following among pop obsessives for their sharp, rollicking, and often witty British-influenced sound. The Shazam were formed in 1997 when Rotenberry teamed up with bassist Mick Wilson and drummer Scott Ballew. The band released its self-titled debut album in 1997, which was produced by Brad Jones and found Rotenberry composing tunes with the likes of Jenny Toomey and Brett Gurewitz. The band expanded to a four-piece on 1999's Godspeed the Shazam with the addition of guitarist Jeremy Ashrock; the track "Super Tuesday" also earned the Shazam a mention in a piece on election-year songs in The New Yorker. Two more albums followed, 2000's Rev9 and 2002's Tomorrow the World, which like their earlier works were produced by Jones, received enthusiastic reviews, and racked up minimal sales. The Shazam unveiled a new lineup on 2009's Meteor, with Rotenberry, Ashrock, and Ballew joined by new bassist Mike Vargo; the album also found the Shazam exploring their love of 1970s and '80s classic rock as they were joined in the studio by Mack (aka Reinhold Mack), a producer and engineer who had worked with Queen, Billy Squire, and Black Sabbath. In 2010, Rotenberry teamed with Brad Jones to write and record a duo project, Mountain Jack. ~ Mark Deming