Twenty-One Pilots currently consists of Tyler Joseph, lead singer and keyboardist, and Josh Dun, who plays drums. However, fans might not know that Dun was not a founding member of the group. In fact, twenty-one pilots were originally a trio.
The group was formed in 2009 at Ohio State University by Tyler Joseph and his two friends, Chris Salih and Nick Thomas, by Dispatch. At first the band consisted of just Salih and Joseph, but they quickly added Thomas (Joseph’s high school friend) when they thought they needed another instrument to complement their sound. From there, the trio flew away. They independently produced their debut album, titled “Twenty-one Pilots,” and embarked on a “performance strategy that prepared [them] for take off, âDispatch wrote.
They did a regional tour and focused on places outside of their hometown of Columbus. âI firmly believe this is what sets us apart from other local bands,â Salih said, via Dispatch. âWe didn’t want people to use the excuse, ‘We can go see them next week.’ We wanted them to wait a few months.â And although they were successful, in 2011 Salih and Thomas both did left the group, Thomas to go back to college and Salih to repay his student loans. âFor me, continuing to star in Twenty One Pilots would have been a middle finger for my parents,â Salih said in a statement (via AltPress). He recommended Dun, his colleague from Guitar Center, as a replacement, and the rest is history.