The White Stripes

Formed 14 July 1997. Disbanded 2 February 2011.
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White Stripes: Seven Nation Army

Jack White explains how the Seven Nation Army riff no longer belongs to him

Featured in BBC Music Clips


The White Stripes was an American rock duo, formed in 1997 in Detroit, Michigan. The group consisted of Jack White (songwriter, vocals, guitar, bass and keyboards) and Meg White (drums and occasional vocals), who were married from 1996 to 2000. After releasing several singles and three albums within the Detroit music scene, the White Stripes rose to prominence in 2002, as part of the garage rock revival scene. Their successful and critically acclaimed albums White Blood Cells and Elephant drew attention from a large variety of media outlets in the United States and the United Kingdom, with the single "Seven Nation Army" and its now-iconic guitar line becoming a huge hit. The band recorded two more albums, Get Behind Me Satan in 2005 and Icky Thump in 2007, and dissolved in 2011 after a lengthy hiatus from performing and recording.

The White Stripes used a low-fidelity approach to writing and recording. Their music featured a melding of garage rock and blues influences and a raw simplicity of composition, arrangement, and performance. The duo was also noted for their fashion and design aesthetic which featured a simple color scheme of red, white, and black – which was used on every album and single cover the band released – as well as the band's obsession with the number three. The band's discography consists of six studio albums, one live album, two extended plays (EP), one concert film, one tour documentary, twenty-six singles, and fourteen music videos. Their last three albums each won the Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album.

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BBC Reviews

  1. Review of Icky Thump

    Icky Thump 2007

    Reviewed by Chris Jones
    The Detroit blues minimalists turn in their most widescreen offering yet.
  2. Review of Get Behind Me Satan

    Get Behind Me Satan 2005

    Reviewed by Damian Jones
    Get Behind Me Satan is a brave but weird fifth album recorded in just two weeks and...
  3. Review of Elephant

    Elephant 2003

    Reviewed by Matt Harvey
    Strange, camp blues-rock might just be able to save the world...
  4. Review of White Blood Cells

    White Blood Cells 2001

    Reviewed by Jon Lusk
    ...a lean and highly engaging set.
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