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Also Known As: Christopher Anthony John Martin Died:
Born: March 2, 1977 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Exeter, Devon, England, GB Profession:

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

An exceedingly earnest rocker, British singer-guitarist-keyboardist Chris Martin was the frontman for the massively popular alt-rock band Coldplay. Upon releasing the group's mellow debut, Parachutes, to considerable attention in 2000, the boyishly good-looking Martin and his three inconspicuous bandmates began playing before progressively bigger crowds. The charming musician's fame was solidified when Coldplay's second album, A Rush of Blood to the Head (2002) became even more successful, fittingly accompanied by a grander stadium-ready sound. In late 2002, Martin met willowy American actress Gwyneth Paltrow; the two were quickly inseparable, and they wed the following year. (The couple separated in March 2014.) After some downtime as a newlywed, Martin got back to the business of fronting Coldplay, unveiling the accessible and well-received X&Y in 2005. He and the lads next ventured into more dynamic sonic territory with Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (2008). The restless and bold album found favor with critics and audiences alike, though Coldplay's subsequent outing, the ambitious 2011 record Mylo Xyloto, didn't inspire quite the same level of enthusiasm. Outside of Coldplay, Martin has...

An exceedingly earnest rocker, British singer-guitarist-keyboardist Chris Martin was the frontman for the massively popular alt-rock band Coldplay. Upon releasing the group's mellow debut, Parachutes, to considerable attention in 2000, the boyishly good-looking Martin and his three inconspicuous bandmates began playing before progressively bigger crowds. The charming musician's fame was solidified when Coldplay's second album, A Rush of Blood to the Head (2002) became even more successful, fittingly accompanied by a grander stadium-ready sound. In late 2002, Martin met willowy American actress Gwyneth Paltrow; the two were quickly inseparable, and they wed the following year. (The couple separated in March 2014.) After some downtime as a newlywed, Martin got back to the business of fronting Coldplay, unveiling the accessible and well-received X&Y in 2005. He and the lads next ventured into more dynamic sonic territory with Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (2008). The restless and bold album found favor with critics and audiences alike, though Coldplay's subsequent outing, the ambitious 2011 record Mylo Xyloto, didn't inspire quite the same level of enthusiasm. Outside of Coldplay, Martin has worked with other pop/rock superstars, including his friend Jay-Z, and appeared in a number of film and television productions, most notably the satirical celebrities-are-jerks series "Extras" (BBC, 2005-07) and the gleefully garish big-screen comedy "Brüno" (2009). Consistently pegged as an amiable guy-next-door, Martin has tried to escape that image on occasion, while never indulging in clichéd rock-star antics or any other unseemly behavior.

Martin grew up as a child of the '80s in a rural area of Exeter, England. Inevitably influenced by his mother, a music teacher, he joined his first rock band in grade school, soaking up influences such as U2 and Echo & the Bunnymen, while going on to attend the prestigious Sherborne School. At University College London studying ancient history, he met future fellow Coldplay members Guy Berryman, Jonny Buckland and Will Champion. Formed in 1996, the group recorded briefly for the indie label Fierce Panda and began to refine its aesthetic, with Martin particularly inspired by the big, unapologetic approach of the aforementioned acts, as well as the Scottish ensemble Travis. Signing with the major label Parlophone, Coldplay gained buzz with the release of its 2000 debut, Parachutes, and found international success with the catchy hit single "Yellow," which showcased Martin's sensitive lyrics and distinctive falsetto-leaning vocals. Though Coldplay was off and running in the U.K., the band took longer to catch on in the United States. However, the band's slow, steady rise in America eventually paid off; in early 2002, Parachutes won a Best Alternative Music Performance Grammy. By that point, Martin was well into recording Coldplay's sophomore outing, A Rush of Blood to the Head, which amped up the ensemble's relatively laid back sound, giving it a sense of greater urgency. The album went on to win three Grammys, including another award for Best Alternative Music Performance.

While Coldplay's fortunes increased greatly with the warm reception of A Rush of Blood to the Head, particularly in regards to the surging piano-driven single "Clocks," Martin also found his personal life entering a new phase after meeting Oscar-winning Hollywood actress Gwyneth Paltrow. The ridiculously attractive pair soon started dating and married the next year, with Martin expanding his circle of friends to include many well-known American and British actors. In fact, English comedian Simon Pegg became a godfather to the couple's daughter, Apple (a name openly mocked by the media), born in 2004. The same year, Martin briefly appeared in Pegg's breakthrough film, the cheeky zombie comedy "Shaun of the Dead" (2004). After a short break, Martin reassembled Coldplay to record the act's third album, X&Y, which was another hit, but showed the rock band, now comfortably playing huge arenas, in a bit of a holding pattern with a number of anthem-like songs that didn't quite match the gravitas of earlier tunes. In the spring of 2006, Martin and Paltrow's son, Moses, was born, and the singer opted to skewer his nice-guy public image by reveling in brazenly opportunistic tendencies as both a guest on the biting Ricky Gervais comedy series "Extras" and the sitcom within the show.

Determined to continue challenging people's expectations, Martin turned up on a tune by pop singer Nelly Furtado and lent his plaintive pipes to tracks by hip-hop superstars Jay-Z and Kanye West. Carrying this more exploratory outlook over to Coldplay, Martin enlisted the glam/ambient-music legend Brian Eno as a producer for the ensemble's next outing, which evolved into the eclectic and atmospheric 2008 album Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends, the eventual recipient of three 2009 Grammys, including Best Rock Album. Detouring into more onscreen guest spots, first in Sacha Baron Cohen's willfully silly feature "Brüno" and then as an animated version of himself on "The Simpsons" (Fox, 1989- ), Martin additionally branched out by penning "Me and Tennessee," a Nashville-tinged tune performed by Paltrow and her co-star Tim McGraw in the 2010 drama "Country Strong." Martin returned to the studio with Berryman, Buckland and Champion, as well as Eno and other Viva la Vida collaborators, to work on the slick, colorful concept album Mylo Xyloto, which saw an October 2011 release. While the record didn't fare as well as Viva la Vida, it still reinforced Coldplay's status as one of the most popular bands on the planet and Martin's continued Everyman appeal as a thoroughly relatable rock star. Martin returned to the gossip pages in early 2014 when he and Paltrow announced their separation following months of rumours and speculation about their marriage.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Brüno (2009)
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Milestones close milestones

2000:
<i>Parachutes</i>, the debut album by Coldplay, debuts at no. 1 on the U.K. Albums Chart
2002:
<i>A Rush of Blood to the Head</i>, Coldplay's sophomore album, reaches no. 5 in the <Billboard</i> 200
2005:
<i>X&Y</i>, the third studio album by Coldplay, debuts at no. 1 in the <Billboard</i> 200
2008:
<i>Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends</i>, Coldplay's fourth record, is 2008's second biggest-selling album in the United States
2008:
The song "Viva La Vida" is Coldplay's first number one single in both the U.K. and the U.S.
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Education

University College London: -

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