Artist and Musician Biographies


Here is a YouTube Mix of music by Marilyn Manson.

"Harsh, Menacing, Confrontational, Ominous, Paranoid, Nihilistic, Malevolent, Acerbic, Aggressive, Tense/Anxious, Theatrical, Eerie, Cynical/Sarcastic, Cathartic, Angst-Ridden, Bitter, Bleak, Angry, Hostile" are the words used by the All Music Guide* to describe the music of Marilyn Manson. He and his band, the Spooky Kids, were discovered in 1993 by Nine Inch Nails (NIN) front man Trent Reznor, who offered them the chance to open for NIN and a recording contract with "Nothing Label", Reznor's company. In the company of other "Nothing Label" groups including Suicidal Tendencies and Meat Beat, Manson and the Spooky Kids have been known for intentionally testing the notion of censorship in the U.S.

Although their early work had a distinctly Industrial sound, the Glam influence of David Bowie and the Goth influence of the Cure are very part of the Manson style. As a part of their mission, band members adopted female first names and took on the last names of serial killers, and they soon became part of the Goth scene with their elaborate make-up and satanic special effects, as well as songs about drugs, sex and satan. Although they were often attacked by music critics, the group had an intense appeal to disaffected young people.

Brian Warner, aka Marilyn Manson, was born in 1969 in Canton, Ohio. The only child of a carpet salesman and his wife, Brian grew up with a fairly normal background. He had a close relationship with his mother due to his father's constant traveling. In an effort to ensure that he had a good education, his parents enrolled him in a Catholic high school. In high school, Brian began playing music with friends who recall that he was artistic and "different". When Brain graduated from high school he was well liked and had many friends. After graduation, his father moved the family to Florida, where Brian met Scott Mitchell. The two decided to form a band and Marilyn Manson was born.

Marilyn Manson and his band were first based in Florida, where they received much of their initial success. Some say that his Death Metal music and heavy disregard for any authority brings back to rock and roll the style of forefathers of shock rock, Alice Cooper, Ozzy Osborne and Iggy Pop many times over. Manson's debut album was recorded in 1994 and includes a number of songs that were mixed at the house where the Tate murders by the Manson Family took place. They broke into mainstream in 1995 with a cover of "Sweet Dreams" by the Eurythmics.

In 1996, the "church of Satan" reverend Manson released "Antichrist Superstar", which included the song "The Beautiful People" which became the group's best known song thus far. As Manson's cult-like popularity grew his concerts were regularly picketed by community and religious leaders. During much of the middle and late 1990's, Manson became the latest and most notorious of the drug abusing, cross-dressing, self-proclaimed Satanists stirring up the music scene.

In 1998, the group released "Mechanical Animals", an album that broke with Reznor and the Industrial Metal style to create an androgynous space alien called Omega, who in many respects resembles Ziggy Stardust, David Bowie's alter ego space icon from the early 1970's.

Following the Columbine tragedy, of which the perpetrators reportedly listened to and "lived by" Manson's music, Manson canceled his tour. In spite of it all, Manson has taken advantage of every opportunity to turn such events into media showcases for himself.

Although he has engaged in some shocking activities, some people call into question the sincerity of Manson as a true Satanist and see him as more of an intelligent media manipulator. Reading his autobiography "Long Hard Road Out of Hell" and taking a look at his website, on which he offers condolences to the victims of September 11th and disapproves of the actions of the Taliban, calls many of his actions into question. But those shocking and satanic actions are what made him popular, and it appears that this is what he and his music will remembered for, despite their theatrical origins, and the impact of his often innovative musical work.

A current discography of music by Marilyn Manson appears on AllMusic.

Page author: B.A.