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After her parents divorced in 2002 at the age of 13, Hayley moved from her hometown, Meridian, Mississippi to Franklin, Tennessee. Before she was discovered Hayley was frequently bullied as a teenager and she was very timid growing up. She met band members Josh and Zac Farro in her new school. While still attending school Hayley tried out for a local funk cover band The Factory where she met Jeremy Davis.
In 2003 Hayley Williams was discovered by managers Dave Steunebrink and Richard Williams. They signed Hayley who was 14 years old at the time to a two year production deal. Hayley was introduced to Atlantic Records A&R Tom Storms by Richard Williams’ attorneys Jim Zumwalt and Kent Marcus and eventually was signed to the label by Jason Flom. The label’s original plan was to turn Hayley into a solo pop artist, but she rejected this by saying that she wanted to be part of a band and play alternative rock music.
Atlantic decided to go along with Hayley’s wishes and Paramore was born as a result. The band consisted of Josh Farro (lead guitar/backing vocals) , Zac Farro(drums) and Jeremy Davis (bass guitar) at the time. For the sake of the image of the band it was decided that it would be better to have their music released through a cooler niche label called “Fueled by Ramen”. Paramore’s debut album was released in 2005 when Hayley was just 16 years old.
In 2007 Hayley appeared in the music video for New Found Glory’s “Kiss Me”. Hayley won Kerrang!’s 2008 poll for “Sexiest Female” and again in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012.
Hayley wrote and recorded the song “Teenagers” which appears on the soundtrack for the movie “Jennifer’s Body”. In 2010 Hayley appeared on alternative rapper B.o.B’s debut album “B.o.B Presents: The Adventures of Bobby Ray“. The single “Airplanes” was hugely successful and peaked in the Top 10 in 19 countries including number 1 in the UK and New Zealand.
In 2006 Paramore started touring outside of the United States for the first time, which included a headlining tour in the UK supporting The Blackout on the Give It A Name Festival in Europe.
The band has released three studio albums All We Know Is Falling, Riot! and Brand New Eyes as well as 2 live albums and 3 EPs. In June 2009 Taylor York was added as an official member, even though he was playing as a touring member with the band since 2007.
In December 2010 two of the founding members (Josh and Zac Farro) of the band left. It was announced on Paramore’s website by Hayley. Josh posted a controversial blog post confirming their departure.
Paramore almost ended entirely, but it took a while for the band to get used to the new lineup and they decided to continue playing music. The band went on a mini tour of South America just to ease back into playing live and getting used to the new lineup.
The band wrapped the recording of their fourth album which is self-titled “Paramore” on the 1st of November 2012. The album will be released on the 9th of April 2013. Their first single called ” Now” was released on the 22nd of January 2013. Paramore will start touring in the early spring after the album comes out. The band is still looking for a drummer, but as far as the touring goes Paramore’s crew is pretty permanent.
The music video for the latest single from Paramore “Now”. I love the message behind the video and the video itself is captivating.
Hayley’s voice is crisp, clear and angelic, but the contrast her voice creates when combined with alternative rock music is fantastic! I can see why the music industry wanted to turn her into a solo pop artist, but I’m so glad she stood her ground.
You can follow Hayley on Twitter: https://twitter.com/yelyahwilliams
You can follow Paramore on Twitter: https://twitter.com/paramore