Basic Background Info
Detroit native Megan Martha White is the drummer and backing vocalist of duo The White Stripes with John Anthony 'Jack' Gillis. Meg and Jack married in 1996, and Jack took Meg's last name as his own. While Jack White worked with several bands, Meg White started playing the drums with him. Together they created a unique, minimalist, punk-folk-garage-indie sound.
They started playing local gigs as The White Stripes in 1997. Jack sang and played guitar, while Meg drummed and sang backup. Although they divorced in 2000, they stuck together as a duo and sold themselves as a brother/sister act. Jack later claimed that the ruse was intended to insure that the focus remained on the band's music and not their relationship.
The White Stripes became a cult favorite, but after releasing their second album (De Stijl), fans became critical. Jack and Meg had to win respect all over again. Jack and Meg persevered with their basic, original elements. The band based their musical elements around the number three: vocals, guitar, and drumsóor vocals, piano, and drums. Their fans were pleased.
Through their next several albums and consistent touring schedule, the White Stripes are making their old fans happy while simultaneously earning new admirers. Meg defends the simplicity of her playing, saying, 'That is my strength. A lot of drummers would feel weird about being that simplistic.'
Jack refutes suggestions that Meg's simple drumming limits the band. He says, 'No. I never thought, God, I wish Neil Peart was in this band. It's kind of funny: When people critique hip hop, they're scared to open up, for fear of being called racist. But they're not scared to open up on female musicians, out of pure sexism.' He continues, 'Meg is the best part of this band. It never would have worked with anybody else, because it would have been too complicated.'
Meg is very shy and typically allows Jack to speak for the band. However, she has opened up a bit, modeling for Marc Jacobs's Spring 2006 line.
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