Belfast Telegraph

Friday 1 August 2014

20 fascinating facts about Snow Patrol

Alan Lewis - Photopress Belfast 19/3/2009..Picture by Justin Kernoghan..Snow Patrol on stage at the Odyssey Arena tonight...(Gary Lightbody, lead vocals, Jonny Quinn, drums, Nathan Connolly, lead guitar, Paul Wilson, bass guitar, Tom Simpson, keyboards).
Snow Patrol
19.03.09. Picture by David Fitzgerald. Snow Patrol performing in the Odyssey Arena last night.


  • The current line-up consists of three Northern Irish members, Gary Lightbody, Jonny Quinn and Nathan Connolly, and two Scotsmen, Tom Simpson and Paul Wilson.
  • Lead singer Lightbody still lives in Co Down, near his parents, but has bases in London and Glasgow.
  • Snow Patrol’s debut album Songs For Polarbears was a critical success but a commercial flop.
  • In 1999 Snow Patrol won the Phil Lynott Award for best new band.
  • The band released two albums through Jeepster before joining Polydor in 2002. Their third album, Final Straw, was their first commercial success.
  • Snow Patrol’s big breakthrough single was Run, co-written by Lightbody and friend Iain Archer.
  • The song was later released as a download single by Leona Lewis, following a performance on Jo Whiley’s The Live Lounge. Lewis’ version topped the charts, while Snow Patrol’s peaked at number five.
  • Following the relase of Final Straw, original member Mark McClelland left the band with Lightbody citing “a whole new set of new and unexpected pressures” as the reason behind his departure.
  • Final Straw won a prestigious Ivor Novello award in 2007.
  • Snow Patrol’s fourth album Eyes Open was the best-selling album of 2006, overtaking previous leader Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not by Arctic Monkeys.
  • The single Chasing Cars, taken from the album Eyes Open, was a massive hit both in the UK and the US. It was used in the season finale of US medical show Grey’s Anatomy and was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Rock Song.
  • Chasing Cars spent 94 weeks in the top 75 singles charts. It was voted the number one single of the Noughties in a Channel 4 poll and was also named the most widely played song of the decade by music licence body PPL.
  • On July 30, 2006, Snow Patrol were the last act ever to appear on long-running music show Top Of The Pops. They performed Chasing Cars.
  • The single, Take Back The City, taken from the album A Hundred Million Suns, was written by Lightbody about Belfast.
  • Just Say Yes was written by Lightbody and recorded by Pussycat Doll Nicole Scherzinger. Snow Patrol released it instead of Scherzinger after her debut solo album was shelved.
  • Lightbody has had a number of side projects, including The Reindeer Section, Listen... Tanks! and country supergroup, Tired Pony, which includes R.E.M.’s Peter Buck.
  • Snow Patrol founded a publishing company last year called Polar Music, to sign up-and-coming acts, irrespective of genre. The company’s first signing was Johnny McDaid, previously of Northern Irish band Vega4.
  • The band are big supporters of the Northern Irish music scene and Lightbody is on the board of the Oh Yeah Music Centre in the Cathedral Quarter.
  • Drummer Jonny Quinn is the nephew of actress Patricia Quinn, who starred in the TV show Dr Who and The Fortunes of War. She is best known for her role as Magenta in 1975 movie The Rocky Horror Picture Show.


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