Sum 41 started out as a NOFX cover band called Kaspir, formed by singer-songwriter Deryck Whibley and drummer Steve Jocz in Ajax, Ontario in Canada. 41 days into the summer of 1996, the duo changed their name to Sum 41 (as in "summer 41"). Lead guitarist Dave Baksh and bassist Jason "Cone" McCaslin were soon added to the line up.
The first song Sum 41 wrote together was called "Five-O Grind." It was inspired by a security guard who kept hassling the band while they were trying to skateboard.
In 1999, Sum 41 signed a deal with Island Records after sending the label a video tape of the band engaging in water gun fights while their music played in the background.
Sum 41 released their debut studio album All Killer No Filler
on May 8th 2001. "Fat Lip
," the album's first single, was a commercial success, topping Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart. All Killer No Filler
has since certified platinum in the United States, Canada and UK.
In May 2004, Sum 41 traveled to the Democratic Republic of Congo with the charity, War Child, in order to film Rocked: Sum 41 in Congo, a documentary about the war-torn African country. A few days into their visit, fighting broke out in Bukavu, near to the hotel where the band were staying. A UN peacekeeper, Charles "Chuck" Pelletier, helped Sum 41 and forty other civilians to safety. Sum 41 would go on to name their third album Chuck in honor of Pelletier.
Lead guitarist, Dave Baksh, left Sum 41 in May 2006 in order to focus on his Heavy Metal/Reggae side project, Brown Brigade. Baksh was replaced by Tom Thacker, who joined Sum 41 as a touring lead guitarist in 2007 before going on to become an official band member.
Up until the departure of Dave Baksh in 2006, Sum 41 would regularly appear on stage dressed as their alter-ego: 1980s Heavy Metal band, Pain for Pleasure. The faux-band appear in two Sum 41 music videos, "Fat Lip" and "We're All the Blame."
Front man Deryck Whibley tied the knot with Avril Lavigne on July 15, 2006 in Montecito, California. Just over three years later, on 9th October 9, 2009, Lavigne filed for divorce. The divorce was finalized on November 16, 2010, bringing to a close Whibley and Lavigne's union.
On March 29, 2011, Sum 41 released their first studio album in four years, Screaming Bloody Murder.