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Nickelback is a rock band from Alberta, Canada consisting of lead vocalist Chad Kroeger, guitarist Ryan Peake, bassist Mike Kroeger and drummer Daniel Adair. They are often the subject of ridicule online and have inspired a number of image macros and parodies.

Online History


Nickelback was formed in 1995 by Chad Kroeger, Ryan Peake, Mike Kroeger, Brandon Kroeger of Alberta Canada. The name was inspired Mike Kroeger’s use of the phrase “Here’s your nickel back” while working at the coffeehouse chain Starbucks. Their first EP Hesher was released in March of 1996, followed by their first full length album Curb released several months later in May. Their album The State was released on March 7th, 2000 and went Platinum in Canada in 2002. The album Silver Side Up was released on September 11th, 2001 and included the single “How You Remind Me” which reached #1 on the Billboard[13] Hot 100. The band went on to release The Long Road on September 23rd, 2003, All the Right Reasons on October 4th, 2005, Dark Horse on November 18th, 2008 and Here and Now on September 8th, 2011.


Nickelback is commonly criticized for lacking musical ability and failing to innovate. The top voted Urban Dictionary[5] definition for Nickelback was submitted on August 11th, 2004 by user Chenorizets Hrabar and criticized the band’s musical ability.

Nickelback: Another mediocre somewhat popular nu-metal band, this time, from Canada, which isn’t a surprise considering their musical track record (Avril, Celine Dion, Barenaked Ladies, etc). Lead singer Chad is an extremely nasal “Marlboro Man” type vocalist who sounds constipated on a permenant basis. Guitar consists mostly of easy-to-play power chords that give the band a “tough” sound to the untrained ear, but a closer look reveals a band that has nothing to offer creatively. They were recently exposed recycling their music in their two hit singles, “How You Remind Me” and “Someday”, which sound nearly identical when played simultaneously.

On January 7th, 2007 a video was uploaded to YouTube of Nickelback lead singer Chad Kroeger getting hit with an object while on stage during a show in Portugal. The video accumulated over 3.6 million views in five years.

News media have often remarked about Nickelback’s poor public image. On April 3rd, 2010, The Montreal Gazette[10] published an article reporting on Nickelback’s poor critical reception. On November 1st, 2011, NME[11] reported that Nickelback had been voted the “biggest musical turnoff” on the music-based dating site Tastebuds[12] beating out Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga and Ke$ha.

On February 14th, 2012, Modern Primate[18] editor Chris Menning published an article titled “Explaining the Internet’s Hatred for Nickelback to my Step Dad”, speculating that some Nickelback anti-fandom is driven by class-ism.

Track Recycling Controversy

On May 16th, 2004, a post titled “Nickelback, Recycled songs?” was submitted on the Ebaumsworld[6] forums with a recording of the songs “Someday” and “How You Remind Me” played simulatenously, suggesting that they were very similar in structure.

On August 5th, 2007, the audio recording of “How You Remind Me” and “Someday” was uploaded to YouTube by user crockettjvinson. The video has received over 300,000 views as of February 2012.

Detroit Lions Football Game Petition

On November 4th, 2011, The Huffington Post[4] reported that an online petition to ban Nickelback was created in response to an announcement that the band would be performing during the Detroit Lions Thanksgiving football game.

On Facebook

The Facebook page “can this pickle get more fans than Nickelback?”[14] was created by Coral Anne on February 3rd, 2010. The page has since been removed, but on March 30th, 2010 the pickle page had 1,580,178 fans and Nickleback’s Facebook page had 1,487,303 fans.

On Reddit

Nickelback jokes are common on the social news aggregator Reddit and the trope is frequently referenced in the /r/circlejerk subreddit.[2] One of the first Nickelback-related posts to reach the front page was titled “I’ve finally found a way to make listening to Nickelback bearable!”[16] submitted on January 5th, 2010. The post linked to a YouTube Doubler[3] page with a Nickelback video (which has since been removed) accompanied by a crowing rooster.

On December 25th, 2010, a post titled “Reddit, why does everyone here hate Nickelback?”[17] reached the front page of the /r/AskReddit subreddit accumulating over 1,400 up votes prior to being archived. The top voted comment in the thread “Because they suck” was submitted by Redditor andrewsmith1986.

On Twitter

The official Nickelback Twitter[8] was created on April 7th, 2009 and accumulated over 150,000 followers within 3 years. On January 25th, 2011, Time[9] published an article about Nickelback’s official Twitter account responding to negative tweets directed toward the band. A compilation of Nickelback tweet responses was subsequently posted to the viral content site BuzzFeed[15] on January 29th.

According to the Twitter Sentiment[7], tweets with the keyword “nickelback” are 69% positive and 31% negative as of February 2012.


On April 10th, 2008, an Urban Dictionary[22] definition for the word “Nickelbacking” was submitted by user Chernorizets Hrabr, which defined the term as a game in which a person is forced to listen to a Nickelback song over the telephone.

“A twisted, vile game in which, upon hearing a Nickelback song on the radio, a person immediately calls a friend, cranks up the volume, and forces them to listen to Nickelback without saying anything else. The answerer of the phone must listen to Nickelback as long as can be tolerated before hanging up.”

On June 5th, 2012, the tech news blog Mashable[19] published an article titled “Is Nickelbacking the New Rickrolling”, which reported that the Tumblr blog “Secret Tumblr Tricks”[20] forwarded to the music video for Nickelback’s 2007 song “Photograph” in a bait-and-switch similar to the Rickrolling prank. The following day, the Internet culture blog The Daily Dot[21] published a post titled “Nickelbacking: The cruelest trick you could play on friends”, which called Nickelback the "most hated Canadian power ballad quartet.

Notable Images


On August 18th, 2007, comedian Scott Gairdner submitted a video titled “Guy From Nickelback: Private Eye” to Funny or Die.

Other notable parodies have been produced by YouTubers the Bloomington Bros, Jenna Marbles and JamesAtWar. Several “shreds” videos have been created as well in which footage from Nickelback performances have humorous audio edited over the original track.

Search Interest

External References

Recent Videos 15 total

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Top Comments

Blue Screen (of Death)
Blue Screen (of Death)

Nickelback may be good or bad, I really don’t care. But I think the hatred for them is somewhat memetic, so it is worth mentioning here

Nickelhate has spread around the internet about as much (probably more than) as Beiber hate. It has reached a point where people find out that that Nickelback is hated BEFORE they find out about Nickelback itself

I am my own example, I never even knew that Nickelback existed until I heard people telling me how much they sucked from people who never heard of them either. That’s pretty impressive spread IMO

(Of course I won’t judge Nickelback until I hear them for myself. Nor will I judge anyone that does or does not like them. That’s all just opinion)

Since music tastes are subjective and some people here do like them. I think this article should try to stay neutral towards Nickelback and only document the memetic spread of their infamy without suggesting that they really are that bad.

This message was brought to you by a completely neutral non-hater and non-fan who doesn’t even listen to this kind of music.


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