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Clap Your Hands Say Yeah

Lee Sargent, Alec Ounsworth and Sean Greenhalgh playing at Lupo's Heartbreak Hotel, Providence, Rhode Island
Background information
Origin Brooklyn, New York, United States
Genres Indie rock
Years active 2005–present
Labels Wichita
Associated acts Uninhabitable Mansions, Radical Dads, Flashy Python
Alec Ounsworth
Robbie Guertin
Lee Sargent
Tyler Sargent
Sean Greengalgh

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah (often abbreviated CYHSY) is an American indie rock group based in Brooklyn, New York and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Their debut album, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, was self-released in 2005.



The band, whose members met years earlier at Connecticut College, formed in the beginning of 2004 and played shows in Manhattan and Brooklyn.[1] They are notable for achieving their initial fame and commercial success via the internet rather than through a record label. Shortly after the release of their first album, they received attention from numerous MP3 blogs and a favorable review from Pitchfork Media, who gave the band a "Best New Music" commendation. The ensuing demand for the album was so great that the band was forced to repress the CD, as the initial production run was too small. They garnered even more press after David Bowie and David Byrne were spotted at some of the band's shows in 2005. [2] [3]

On October 3, 2005, they were signed to Wichita Recordings in the UK.

The band members live in Brooklyn, with the exception of Ounsworth who lives in Philadelphia.

Ounsworth has a solo project, Flashy Python and the Body Snatchers, and is said to be forming an "indie rock supergroup".[4] Meanwhile, Greenhalgh moonlighted as the frontman for Mr. Brownstone, a Guns N' Roses tribute band, until their breakup in June 2006.[5] Robbie and Tyler also play in another project called Uninhabitable Mansions,[6] along with Annie Hart from Au Revoir Simone. Robbie also plays the drums in Radical Dads.

The band has a fairly extensive repertoire that extends outside their two-album parameter. Several non-album songs are frequently performed at live concerts, most notably, "My Papa's Waltz" (also known as "Cigarettes" or "We Met at the Cemetery"), "Me and You Watson", "The Sword Song" (available on iTunes and Japanese CD only), "Wet Dynomite" (also known as "Pass Along This Way"), and "Telling the Truth and Going Away." They have also been known to cover the traditional Irish folk song Moonshiner, the ballad "Helpless," written by Neil Young, and Guided by Voices song "Motor Away."

The band released their second album, Some Loud Thunder on January 29, 2007 in the UK, and January 30, 2007 in the United States. Alec Ounsworth has said that he plans to professionally record some of his older songs for a solo release before moving CYHSY onward.

On September 18, 2007, Live at Lollapalooza 2007: Clap Your Hands Say Yeah was released on iTunes. It features the band's complete live set from Lollapalooza, professionally recorded on August 4, 2007.

In 2008, Lee and Tyler Sargent performed on James Lavino's score to the Alex Karpovsky film "Woodpecker." The soundtrack also featured performances by Radiohead bass player Colin Greenwood.[7]

On January 21, 2009, it was reported that CYHSY abandoned plans to head to the studio to record their third full-length album, and are "taking a break" while the band members pursue side projects.[8] However, some speculate that the break could be permanent due to vague statements given from CYHSY's manager, Nick Stern, that "[The internet is] probably reading a bit too much into things." [9] The public hiatus was to take official effect after the band performed at the Brooklyn Academy of Music on February 13, 2009, however, on March 4, they performed a new song on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, titled "Statues", which can be downloaded for free on their official website, .

The hiatus was later disproved when the band was signed on to headline the University of Texas in Austin's 40 Acres Fest







  • 2005: "Is This Love?" (UK #74)
  • 2006: "In This Home on Ice" (UK #68)
  • 2006: "The Skin of My Yellow Country Teeth" (UK limited vinyl – 1500 copies) (UK #149)
  • 2007: "Satan Said Dance" (released 19 February)


External links

Official sites
Unofficial sites


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