We’re all about originating in Vegas. Bands like the Killers, Panic! At The Disco, and Imagine Dragons all got their start in our fine city. Learn more about your favorite artists, along with some new local musicians to put on your radar!
One of the most iconic pop rock bands, Panic! At The Disco, found its start right in the Las Vegas suburbs. In 2004, childhood friends Ryan Ross and Spencer Smith started the band as a Blink-182 cover project. It has since become a legend in its own right, selling about 3.5 million copies of their five albums. With Ryan Ross, Spencer Smith, and Brent Wilson now out of the picture, Brendon Urie is the last original band member to carry on the group’s name.
Most people don’t know that in 2008, Dan Reynolds (lead singer) and Andrew Tolman (lead drummer) started out as friends and bandmates at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. After creating Imagine Dragons and garnering a large following in Provo, the band moved to Reynold’s hometown of Las Vegas where they recorded and released their first 3 EPs. Since then, Imagine Dragons has skyrocketed to the top of the charts with songs like “Radioactive” famous across the globe.
Perhaps the greatest success story of musicians in Las Vegas is the rock band loved by millions, The Killers. Throw it all the way back to 2001 when lead singer, Brandon Flowers, formed the group. It has been reported that the band snuck into UNLV to practice and write songs, including their top single “Somebody Told Me.” In the years to come, the band would release three studio albums and sell 18 million albums worldwide.
Did you know Ne-Yo was born as Shaffer Chimere Smith in Arkansas? This hip hop icon has come a long way from his midwestern roots and it all started when he was a student at the Las Vegas Academy of Arts. While he was there, he joined an R&B group called Envy, adopted the stage name GoGo, and made some TV appearances. After Envy disbanded in 2000, he went solo, changed his name to Ne-Yo, and has become a respected singer/songwriter working with artists like Rihanna, Celine Dion, and Leona Lewis.
Also known as 5FDP or FFDP, Five Finger Death Punch is a heavy metal band that formed right here in Vegas in 2005. Their first album, The Way of the Fist, already started as a huge success for the band, and by their second album, War is the Answer, the band hit platinum after selling 1,000,000 copies. With six of their eight studio albums hitting gold or platinum status and winning multiple metal music awards, 5FDP is arguably one of the most successful current metal bands, and it all started in Las Vegas.
It appears that Vegas is a haven for rock bands because Escape The Fate, a post-hardcore band, also started its journey right in the city. Their groundbreaking moment came in 2005 when they won a local radio contest hosted by My Chemical Romance. The Las Vegas musicians were lucky enough to open for the headlining group on tour and ended up landing a recording contract as a result. Since then, they have released three EPs and six full-length studio albums, making it onto the Billboard charts for many of them.
Ever heard of the Las Vegas music festival Life is Beautiful? Well, The Dirty Hooks actually performed live there a couple years ago when they reached new heights in the music industry. This alternative/indie band has been jamming out since the early 2000s in an effort to build their following, and they’ve done well so far with their full-length album Electric Grit and follow-up EP Kiss the Devil and Run. Check out some of their top hits to see just how talented these musicians in Las Vegas really are!
For a change of pace and a chance to expand your rap playlists, definitely take a listen to Vegas sensation, Ekoh. This up-and-coming rapper has been deemed king of “Heart Hop” in Vegas and has performed all across the Strip, even earning a headlining appearance at the Emerge Impact + Music Festival. “The Detour” and “Mid-Day Funeral” are just a couple of his newest hit songs.
If you ever find yourself at The Bunkhouse Saloon or Beauty Bar in Downtown Vegas, keep an ear out for Glass Pools. This group is most well-known for its New Wave sounds and is no stranger to the music scene in Las Vegas. The band’s lead man, Bryan Todd, has played in various other bands like Red Eye Radio and The Novelty Act, bringing his musical talent to Glass Pools. “Always I’ll Wait” is one of their newest singles, so go check it out!
If you love electro music, you’ll definitely want to keep an eye out for GoldBoot. This band from Las Vegas has been slowly making headway on their music career for about 10 years now, performing at different venues throughout the city. With a whole list of cool tracks like “Wild Feelings” and their rendition of “A Little Less Conversation”, this band is certainly turning up the heat and you don’t want to miss out on the journey.
Apart from the glitz, glamor, and gambling Las Vegas is known for, it has been the home of many music legends we all know and love. Next time you find yourself on The Strip, check out some of these up-and-coming artists to help support them on their journey to fame! For luxury accommodations during your stay, book your room or suite at Golden Gate Hotel & Casino where you can experience the historic and contemporary sides of Vegas all in one spot.