Extreme Gary Cherone (Lead Vocals) Nuno Bettencourt (Guitar) Pat Badger (Bass) Kevin Figueiredo (Drums) It all started when four Boston-bred kids joined forces in the late 80s to form Extreme. With an original new sound and groundbreaking records, the foursome was immediately recognized as innovators in the world of rock & roll. The band has described their music as "Funky Metal" in the early days, but it would evolve much more in the mid-90s by blending classic rock influences with post-grunge and alternative rock.
The band's popularity is fueled by guitar virtuoso Nuno Bettencourt’s signature style, Gary Cherone’s resonant vocals and socially conscious lyrics, Pat Badger’s rock solid bass, and the hard hitting Kevin Figueiredo on drums. Their unwavering song craft and diverse musical approaches earned the band multi-platinum albums with chart topping hits and sold-out tours all over the globe.
The band achieved their greatest success with their 1990 album Pornograffitti, which peaked at number 10 on the Billboard 200, and was certified multi-platinum. The album is considered the definitive album of the band͛s career. Musically, Pornograffitti is dominated by blistering guitar riffs, often with funky, syncopated timing, and incendiary, high-speed rock/metal solos. The record provided Bettencourt with widespread admiration from rock guitar enthusiasts and continual exposure in leading guitar playing publications. But it was the the acoustic ballad single "More Than Words", that reached #1 on Billboard's Hot 100 in the United States landing Extreme their first #1 hit song. The subsequent single, "Hole Hearted", another acoustic track, was also successful, rising to #4 on the same popular music chart. "Decadence Dance" and "Get the Funk Out" were also released as singles both reaching the lower half of Billboard's rock chart and becoming fan favorites.
This was the album where we found ourselves, says vocalist Gary Cherone. Our first album showed us to be the bastard sons of Queen, Aerosmith and Van Halen. But on the second record, we discovered our style and sound.
Bettencourt was instrumental in initially composing the original songs, leaving Cherone alone to write the lyrics, which Cherone describes as a coming of age tale...about an innocent boy who is growing up and exposed to sex, drugs and rock n’ roll.
Bettencourt himself doesn’t see the Pornograffitti as a concept album, but admits, I suppose what happened was a little like writing a play, and then trying to make sure the songs fit into the plot.
It seems like another lifetime to me, says Bettencourt, I listen to it, and I can criticize some things. But I am still proud of it. And so many fans do still say it’s their favorite album.
We came into our own on this album, admits bassist/vocalist Pat Badger. We honed in on our hard rock sound. The songs were riff-driven yet also had a little funk groove. But we were still diverse, which has always been one of our trademarks.
To date, the Grammy-nominated EXTREME have released five albums, plus a greatest hits set—selling over 10 million records worldwide. The band’s trademark sound is a mix of hard rock funk in the spirit and style of their predecessors Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, Queen and Van Halen—fueled by BETTENCOURT’s signature guitar flights and CHERONE’s resonant vocals—and matched with a social consciousness in their lyrics.