Queensrÿche is an American progressive heavy metal band formed in 1981 in Bellevue, Washington. The band has released eleven studio albums and several EPs and DVDs and continues to tour and record.
Queensrÿche has been successful in the progressive scene, having sold over 20 million albums worldwide including over 6 million albums in the United States.
The foundations for Queensrÿche began in the early 1980s. Guitarist Michael Wilton and drummer Scott Rockenfield were members of a band called Cross+Fire, who covered songs from popular heavy metal bands such as Iron Maiden and Judas Priest. Before long Cross+Fire added guitarist Chris DeGarmo and bassist Eddie Jackson to their lineup, and changed their name to The Mob. The Mob, who were without a singer, recruited Geoff Tate to sing for them at a local rock festival. At the time, Tate was already in a band called Babylon. After Babylon broke up Tate performed a few shows with The Mob, but left because he was not interested in performing heavy metal.
In 1981, The Mob put together sufficient funds to record a demo tape. Once again, Tate was enlisted to help. The group recorded four songs - "Queen of the Reich," "Nightrider," "Blinded" and "The Lady Wore Black." The group brought their demo to various labels and were rejected by all of them. Tate also was still committed to staying in his then-current band, Myth.
At the urging of their new manager, The Mob changed their name to Queensrÿche. The name is derived from the title track of their demo, "Queen of the Reich", and is the only known use of the letter Y with an umlaut in English. It was a modification of the spelling "Queensreich" to prevent association of the band with Nazism. As they later joked: "The umlaut over the 'y' has haunted us for years. We spent eleven years trying to explain how to pronounce it." Fanart Banner