Chevelle was formed in 1995 in Grayslake, Illinois by brothers Pete, Sam, and Joe Loeffler. All three members of the band loved fast cars, so they named the band after one of their dad's favorite cars, the Chevrolet Chevelle. The band's first shows took place in and around Chicago while bassist Joe Loeffler was just 14 years old.
Before he became a well-known name on Saturday Night Live, comedian Fred Armisen appeared on Chevelle's first demo, 1999's Point #1. The record was produced by Nirvana and Pixies producer, Steve Albini, who works in Chicago near Chevelle's hometown of Grayslake, Illinois.
Arizona Diamondbacks infielder Geoff Blum used Chevelle's "The Red
" as his intro song when coming up to bat. Blum was a member of the 2005 World Series Champion Chicago White Sox. He is best known for ending the longest game in World Series history by hitting a tie-breaking home run in the bottom of the 14th inning.
In 2005, Chevelle bassist Joe Loeffler quit the band. At the time, his brothers and band mates claimed it wasn't the first time he had quit but this time it was permanent. Loeffler countered by claiming that his brothers forced him out and that he would be focusing on his family rather than music going forward.
In 2007, a trailer containing all of Chevelle's equipment was stolen from outside of a hotel in Fort Worth, Texas. The band posted a note on their website asking fans to keep a lookout for gear for sale marked "Chevelle." Of the 14 guitars that were stolen, 2 of them were eventually returned. The band also got their P.A. system and a few amplifiers back, but most of the gear was never found.
Chevelle's song "Face to the Floor" was inspired by the victims of Bernie Madoff's elaborate Ponzi scheme. The band added "it's for Kevin Bacon," since the actor was among the people Madoff had swindled.
The members of Chevelle are Christian, but they don't think of their band as a "Christian band." Drummer Sam Loeffler believes part of the reason why people have labeled them as such is because their first album appeared in some Christian bookstores. Their first record deal was with a company that was backed by Word, a Christian label that represented John Tesh and Amy Grant. Loeffler said seeing Chevelle's first album Point #1 in Christian bookstores was "an accidental thing."
In May 2008, Chevelle bassist Dean Bernardini injured his left hand very badly, forcing the band to cancel 8 shows with Nickelback and Hoobastank.
Bernardini learned to play bass by playing along with some of his favorite records. The first album he learned to play start to finish was Muse's Absolution.