The Chainsmokers’ success feels like divine intervention when you look back at their start and progression from relatively unknown, underground DJ producers to a household name and the top of Billboard’s first Top Dance Chart. This month marks the one-year anniversary of their debut album, Memories…Do Not Open.
Happy 1 year to our first album! pic.twitter.com/vYjSAK8bLv
— THE CHAINSMOKERS (@TheChainsmokers) April 7, 2018
Let’s take a walk down that memory lane avoiding The Chainsmokers’ directive. We’re opening that box.
The Chainsmokers released their first album on April 7, 2017, under the Disruptor Records and Columbia Records umbrella. In their now usual style, the duo released individual singles first, dropping both ‘Paris’ and ‘Something Just Like This’ (with Chris Martin of Coldplay). Both of those singles hit the top ten in a few national charts.
We decided a few months ago that it was time to give you guys an album of music. As our song writing progressed and the music got more personal we started to feel like we had more to say. We were writing songs about our selves and different things we were dealing with from past present and future. We titled the album Memories… Do Not Open, because these songs are very personal to us, collections of private memories and thoughts that we now want to share with you and in the process make ourselves pretty vulnerable but that’s song writing and musics goal, to open up and relate to one another. The box in the artwork represents that collection of items your mom would throw together once you moved out and she changed your room into a gym or office. For us this is like coming home and opening up that box with each item symbolizing a memory and feeling. We think you’re going to love this album and we cannot wait to share it with you. We have poured our soul into this and we think it will show. So go get your advance Pre-Order copy now from the link in our bio. It’s going to be 10 brand new songs plus Paris and Something Just Like This. ❤
The album itself debuted at top on the US Billboard 200 with 221,000 album equivalent devices, of which 166,000 had been pure album sales. It continues to accumulate noteworthy wins such as the 2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards Dance Album of the Year.
If that isn’t enough, it makes Alex Pall make this face.
Memories’ Soft Announcement or the Leak Heard ‘Round the World
Chris Martin of Coldplay kind of dropped a huge spoiler about the album and Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart had no choice but to confirm. Martin tweeted about the record and the cat was out of the bag.
excited for @thechainsmokers‘ album; I’ve heard some songs and I love them. cm
— Coldplay (@coldplay) January 22, 2017
Up until that point, releases were simply isolated singles, so no one knew exactly what to expect and when a full-length album would emerge. Martin was the first to tweet publicly about the ‘album’ as a collective work we could eventually possess.
The album’s actual release date was also a bit of a slip, albeit a fun one. The public discovered when they could expect the record during an on-screen Grammy red carpet interview in which Drew tap danced around the subject and Alex Pall good-naturedly winced.
Entertainment Tonight caught up with the duo just after they won the Grammy for Best Dance Recording with ‘Don’t Let Me Down’ featuring Daya. As they spoke, Drew revealed more than he intended. “…it’s coming out April…7th? Am I supposed to say that?”
Alex Pall just shook his head slightly, chuckled and said, “No, but it’s alright.” It looked a lot like an ‘oh well’ moment shared between siblings.
Fans felt like they won quite a scoop just for tuning in for one of The Chainsmokers’ crowning achievements. Flub or not, it was a great gift to give those following each release closely.
From this moment, Memories started gaining serious momentum and positioning The Chainsmokers for the fame they’re enjoying (or struggling with given their recent lyrics) today.
The tour, which is still underway, includes stops in the US, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, and a residency at the Wynn in Las Vegas.
Memories… The Singles
The lead single, ‘Paris,’ emerged on January 13, 2017. The song was well received and peaked at number six on the coveted Billboard Hot 100. Fans will also remember that a little cover of this single by Tony Ann won him a slot in the band on the tour to promote the album.
— tony ann (@tonyann_) April 30, 2017
The next single, ‘Something Just Like This,’ a collaboration with Coldplay, also won acclaim for The Chainsmokers, including an iHeartRadio award for Best Collaboration. It was released on February 22, 2017, and rose to number three on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. All this happened before the album was even official.
Adding to the milestones, The Chainsmokers achieved three singles in the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 at the same time with ‘Something Just Like This,’ ‘Closer,’ and ‘Paris.’
The last single from the Memories album is titled ‘Honest.’ It hit top 40 radio on July 11, 2017, and rose to a more modest 77th on the Billboard Hot 100.
Gems like these come out of songwriting sessions that look like this, with Alex Pall making sheep noises while Drew tries to focus.
Watch the Memories… Do Not Open Tour on iTunes
If you just can’t get enough of behind the scenes moments like that, The Chainsmokers have you covered. When social media just isn’t sufficient to document your worldwide tour, you invite your friend Rory Kramer along to film it.
As usual, this was kept under fairly tight wraps until March 30th, when The Chainsmokers’ Twitter account announced that the Memories Docuseries is now available on Apple Music.
— THE CHAINSMOKERS (@TheChainsmokers) March 30, 2018
Not only does the series follow Alex Pall, Matt McGuire, Tony Ann, and Drew Taggart on the road, it also memorializes the release of the three most recent singles on the next album, which are yet to be released. The docuseries provides a peek behind the curtain of fame and into the close friendships The Chainsmokers made with their tour mates.
According to Billboard, more episodes of the series will follow featuring The Chainsmokers’ Las Vegas residency at XS Nightclub and The Encore Beach Club and work on material for the new album from ‘Sick Boy’ to ‘Everybody Hates Me.’ Other major moments likely to appear are award wins and their domination of the Ultra Miami stage.
— THE CHAINSMOKERS (@TheChainsmokers) April 10, 2018
Alex Pall probably summed up the special nature of a successful progression in an interview with Wynn Magazine. Alex told Wynn, “You never know where this journey’s gonna take you. When you get to where you’ve been traveling it’s always surreal. I remember sitting in our apartments four years ago and being like ‘How sick would it be to play stages like Avicii and Swedish House Mafia and make really dope music that everyone could jump to?’”
As we look back at the year since Memories…Do Not Open released, it looks more and more like the proverbial Jinn bottle housing the power to make all your dreams come true.
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