The band originally began under the name Groundswell in 1992, consisting of 5 teenagers from Norwood, Ontario Canada and performing their first gigs while still in high school. 5 years later in 1997 the band became a trio consisting of founding members Adam Gontier (vocals, guitar), Brad Walst (bass), and Neil Sanderson (drums) and from the ashes of Groundswell, renamed themselves Three Days Grace.
Gontier and Walst were raised in the small town of Norwood consisting of a meager population of 1500 people. According to them, the town, where everyone knew each other, provided much of the inspiration behind their songs. Sanderson also lived close by in a slightly larger town.
During the initial years of Three Days Grace, the band played as many gigs as possible and anywhere they could, including opening for a movie. While performing predominantly covers, the band slowly integrated their original music into their sets and this saw their popularity steadily grow. The hard and often dark rock sound was nothing new to the music world, with plenty of brooding and angst ridden rock acts already established. The difference was that Three Days Grace performed with an energy and sincerity rarely seen, while maintaining a hard edged sound that was still melodic.
Eventually the band decided to move to the much larger city of Toronto after speaking to their old manager who introduced them to producer Gavin Brown. Brown was given a private 90 minute performance by the band and he took advantage by using this show to begin to compile a demo for EMI Music Publishing Canada. Brown continued to work with the band polishing and producing the eventual single "(I Hate) Everything About You." It was on the strength of this demo and indeed this single, which saw them gain a publishing deal with EMI and they were then signed to Jive Records. It was now only a matter of time before Three Days Grace would enter the world of rock with the power of a sledgehammer combining their raw emotion and limitless energy.
In 2003 the band recorded what would become Three Days Grace's self titled debut album in a remote studio. The studio in Boston was once part of the production of Jeff Buckley's "Grace" album of which Gontier was a huge fan. Aside from this the remote studio ensured the band had little else to do but work, without distraction. The album was completed in Woodstock, New York and released on July 22, 2003. "(I Hate) Everything About You" was the first single and an instant success in both Canada and then the U.S. garnering continuous play on Alternative and College radio stations.
The other singles from the album were "Just Like You" and "Home". All three singles were top 100 in the U.S. billboard charts and top 5 in the U.S. Billboard Mainstream Rock and Modern Rock charts. "Just like you" was the most successful single peaking at number 1 in 2004 on the Modern Rock charts. Despite their heavy sound the band made no secret of its influences not least of which included early nineties alternative rock bands "Kyuss" and "Sunny Day Real Estate". However, Gontier also appreciated the classic lyrical genius of bands such as "the Beatles.
While only being around for a short time, after the success of their first album and supporting huge bands such as Nickelback, Three days Grace have already been given the next big thing tag.