The Replacements are an alternative rock group that formed in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1979. The band originally started off as a hardcore punk outfit but began to incorporate folk and power pop influences in their sound. They become one of the leaders of the early alt-folk set and one of the flagship bands of the American 80s post-punk scene, being as well a major influence on 90s indie rock.
The band's best known lineup consisted of Paul Westerberg (vocals, guitar), Bob Stinson (guitar), Tommy Stinson (bass) and Chris Mars (drums). They were infamous for their abrasive, hard drinking lifestyles and their ragged stage performances, notorious for coming to some shows too drunk to play very well at all. Sometimes, they just performed entire sets of covers, their picks showing their debt to 70s hard rock outfits.
The sound of this band showed off what their many fans saw as the very best of independent rock n' roll. More than possibly any other band since The Rolling Stones and the the Ramones, the Replacements embodied the spirit of rock, from their raucous performances, drug addictions, charismatic and romantic frontman, and wild, sometimes basic and sometimes powerfully confessional songs. At any given time, almost any list of 'The Best Rock Albums Of All Time' will include either the album 'Let It Be' or 'Tim', sometimes both.
Their sound started off as a classic rock influenced shade of punk, mutating to a melodic hardcore sound reminiscent of local buddies Hüsker Dü. They also progressed into a relatively straightforward but heartfelt rock style, with a number of highly soulful ballads from the heart of Westerberg to round out the mix.
The band broke up in 1991. Bob Stinson, who was fired from the band in 1986 (and was subsequently replaced by Slim Dunlap), died in 1995. Westerberg and Mars both have solo careers, and Tommy Stinson formed several bands, like Perfect and Bash and Pop, and now plays bass for Guns and Roses and Soul Asylum.
In 2012, Paul Westerberg and Tommy Stinson reformed the Replacements and recorded an EP, "Songs for Slim" as a benefit for former member Slim Dunlap, who had suffered a stroke. The band played their first show since 1991 on August 24, 2013 at RiotFest in Toronto, and has since played at several festivals since. The band also currently includes Josh Freese on drums and Dave Minehan on guitar. The band played its final show in June 2015.