Has any band been together with all its founding members longer than U2?
Forming in 1978 at Mount Temple High School in Dublin, the four members of U2 have now spent an extraordinary 28 years together (as of 2006). But UB40 has kept an eight-man lineup for just as long, while Los Lobos check in at 33 years, and ZZ Top at 36. The original members of the Four Tops beat all of them with 43 years together, from 1954 to the 1997 death of Lawrence Payton. The best way to guarantee that a band acts like a family, however, is actually to be one: the Osmonds had approximately 25 uninterrupted years together, while the Neville Brothers have 29 years together (and counting). And Barry, Maurice, and Robin Gibb started performing as the Bee Gees in 1958, which means they logged 45 years of improbably high-pitched harmonies as a trio before Maurice’s death in 2003.
(Excerpted from the 2006 book Is Tiny Dancer Really Elton’s Little John?: Music’s Most Enduring Mysteries, Myths, and Rumors Revealed, published by Three Rivers Press, written by Gavin Edwards.)