29. Blink-182 Where Are You? And I’m So Sorry


Our Sources:

Background on the Band


Mark Allan Hoppus was born on March 15, 1972, in Ridgecrest, California. He mostly grew up outside of Washington, D.C. before his family moved back to Ridgecrest.

Hoppus left Ridgecrest in the summer 1992 to attend college. He got a  job at a local music store in San Diego. He studied at California State University, San Marcos, with plans to become an English teacher. He dropped out in the early 1990s after “things began to take off with Blink-182” and lived with his mother for many of the early years of the band.


Thomas Matthew DeLonge was born in Poway, California, on December 13, 1975. His mother was a mortgage broker and his father was an oil company executive. He has a brother named Shon and a sister named Kari. His first musical instrument was a trumpet, which he received as a Christmas gift at age 11. He originally planned to become a firefighter, and participated in the San Diego Cadet Program. He first picked up the guitar from a friend at church camp, and became preoccupied by the instrument. He rec

DeLonge’s parents constantly fought during his years, this led to a divorce when he was 18. Not long after, his mother lost her job. So, he moved out, feeling as though he needed to start his own life. He worked on construction sites, where he drove a Diesel truck and handled concrete and piping. He quit when Blink-182 signed to MCA Records in 1996.


Barker was born in Fontana, California on November 14, 1975. When Barker was four, his mother gave him his first drum kit, which was the same one he would have until he was 15. Barker began taking drum lessons at age five with a drummer, who would expose young Barker to many different playing styles. At this time, he also began taking trumpet lessons. In junior high, Barker learned to play the piano and briefly tried singing with a choir. 

Barker also had non-musical hobbies; he wanted to become a professional surfer and skateboarder. 

Barker has described himself as a stoner during High School. His mother, who had been diagnosed with Sjögren syndrome three months earlier, died the day before he started high school. She told him to keep playing music and to follow his dreams. At Fontana High School, Barker played the drum set in the jazz ensemble and snare drum in the marching band. He gained a lot of experience performing at regional competitions and festivals. Barker employed a variety of styles including military and jazz rhythms, but was attracted to the driving rhythms of hip-hop and punk rock.

After graduating from Fontana High School, Barker worked as a trashman in Laguna Beach and played with the punk rock band Snot and Feeble, where he met Chad Larson. Larson went on to co-found the ska punk group the Aquabats in 1994 and Travis joined the band. 

How They Got Together

Blink-182 was formed in August 1992 in Poway, California, a suburb of San Diego. Tom had been expelled from Poway High School for being drunk at a basketball game and was forced to attend another school, Rancho Bernardo High School, for one semester. There, he performed at a Battle of the Bands competition, where he was introduced to drummer Scott Raynor. He also befriended Kerry Key, who was also interested in punk rock music. Key was dating Anne Hoppus, sister of Mark Hoppus, who had recently moved from Ridgecrest, California, to work at a record store and attend college. Both Hoppus and DeLonge grew up listening to the same punk rock bands.

Anne introduced her brother to DeLonge on August 2, 1992. The pair instantly connected and played for hours in DeLonge’s garage, writing lyrics and songs together. The trio began to practice together in Raynor’s bedroom, spending time writing music, seeing movies and punk concerts, and playing practical jokes. 

The trio first operated under a variety of names, including Duck Tape and Figure 8, until DeLonge rechristened the band “Blink”. 

The band began booking shows and was on stage nearly every weekend. 

In 1994, they put out a demo called Buddha. This led to the band recording its first album, and first music video, and developing a larger following. Cargo Records offered to sign the band on a “trial basis”.

In February of 1995, the band released their debut album—Cheshire Cat. They started to get some airplay, which got the attention of an Irish band called Blink. In order to avoid a lawsuit, they added the random number 182 to their band name. 

The band began touring heavily and joined Warped Tour in 1996. Their new popularity led to a bidding war between record labels. MCA promised the group complete artistic freedom and ultimately signed the band, however, drummer Raynor was not happy with this decision. 

The band was criticized by the punk community for signing with a major label. 

Their second album, Dude Ranch, was released in June 1997 and they headed out on Warped Tour again. Dammit, the second single off the album was featured in the Can’t Hardly Wait soundtrack and received heavy airplay. 

You may have noticed we’ve hit 1998 with no mention of Travis…

It’s October 1998. The Aquabats have released their album, The Fury of the Aquabats!, and they go on tour nationwide with Blink-182, who had recently completed their second album Dude Ranch.

In mid-1998, Raynor was fired from Blink-182 because of his heavy drinking. Since Travis and his band were on tour with them, he began to fill in. He actually learned Blink-182’s 20-song setlist in 45 minutes before the first show. By July, he joined the band full-time.

Over the next 7 years, they put out 3 more albums (including Enema of the State and Take Off Your Pants and Jacket), becoming one of the most famous pop-punk bands with numerous #1 hits and songs and videos featured on TRL on MTV. Like, All the Small Things, What’s My Age Again, The Rock Show, I Miss You, and more. 

So, what went wrong?

In February 2005, their record label issued a press statement announcing the band’s “indefinite hiatus. 

DeLonge felt increasingly conflicted both about his creative freedom within the group and the toll touring was taking on his family life. He eventually expressed his desire to take a half-year break from touring in order to spend more time with family. Hoppus and Barker felt this was an overly long break. Rehearsals for a benefit concert grew contentious, rooted in the trio’s increasing bitterness toward one another. DeLonge considered his bandmates’ priorities “mad, mad different,” coming to the conclusion that the trio had grown apart as they aged, had families, and reached fame. The breakdown in communication led to heated exchanges, resulting in his exit from the group.

What Happened Next???

The band members did not speak at all for 3 years, from their breakup in 2005 until 2008.


In the interim, DeLonge founded Angels & Airwaves, both a band and “multimedia project” composed of albums, films, and interactive services.


Played with the band +44


Barker became increasingly famous in the public eye due to his hip-hop remixes and his MTV reality series Meet the Barkers. His rocky relationship with former Miss USA Shanna Moakler made them tabloid favorites.

What changed in 2008? The Plane Crash

In September of 2008, Barker and collaborator Adam Goldstein (DJ AM) were involved in a plane crash that killed four people, leaving them the only two survivors. Barker sustained second and third-degree burns and developed post-traumatic stress disorder, and the accident resulted in sixteen surgeries and multiple blood transfusions. 

DJ AM’s injuries were less severe, but less than a year later, he died from a drug overdose. Barker’s brush with death prompted him, DeLonge, and Hoppus to meet that October, laying the grounds for the band’s reunion. 

Back Together – For A Bit

So, they reunited from 2009-2014. They head out on a North American reunion tour in 2009, but it’s difficult because of Travis’ PTSD and his refusal to fly. For their European tour in 2010, he traveled by ocean liner. 

They released a new album, Neighborhoods in 2011 (I’m not familiar with the songs on it.)

The band continued to tour in the early 2010s, despite remaining friction between the members. Then, DeLonge abruptly quit sometime in mid-2014. He said, “Never planned on quitting, [I] just find it hard as hell to commit.”

Hoppus and Barker decided to continue on without DeLonge, and enlisted Alkaline Trio vocalist/guitarist Matt Skiba to “fill in”. He stayed with them into 2021 and together they released two more albums. California (2016) and Nine (2019)

Where are they Now?

The Kardashian effect

Travis and Kourtney Kardashian were friends for years. They were both raising their kids in the same Calabasas gated community. In September 2018 rumors they were dating began to circulate. They officially confirmed they were a couple in January 2021. 

In August 2021, Travis flies with Kourtney to Italy. This is his first flight since his plane crash 13 years earlier. It also sparks significant excitement about what this could mean for Blink-182 touring. On October 16, 2021, they became engaged and they married in Portofino, Italy on May 22, 2022, with Blink-182 band member Mark Hoppus in attendance. 


On June 23, 2021, Hoppus confirmed that he had been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and had been receiving treatment in secret for the last three months. He’d actually accidentally shared a picture of himself undergoing chemotherapy treatment to his public Instagram Story. 

After his cancer diagnosis, it was reported by sources that Hoppus had met with DeLonge and Barker together at his home to discuss old problems, personal issues, and Hoppus’ cancer diagnosis. Hoppus was declared cancer-free later that year, but he continues with screenings every six months.

Tom’s Second Return

On October 11, 2022, DeLonge’s official return was announced alongside a world tour for the next two years, and they were working on a new album. DeLonge return was also accompanied by a new single, “Edging”, later that week. The song performed well in the US, becoming their fourth and longest-running number-one hit on Billboard’s Alternative Airplay chart, and their highest-charting single on the Hot 100 in eighteen years.


Blink-182 made a surprise appearance at Coachella in April 2023, marking DeLonge’s first appearance with the band in nine years. The band then served as a replacement Sunday headliner of the festival’s second weekend after singer Frank Ocean was unable to perform.

The first weekend’s headliner, Frank Ocean, pulled out of the festival Wednesday due to an ankle injury — after performing what many described as a disappointing set last weekend. Blink-182 was announced as the Sunday headliner on Thursday night.

“It’s been a hellish five years, and two years ago, I found out I had cancer,” Hoppus said, getting serious for a moment. “And tonight I’m here with you. Music brings us all together. Thank you very much for being here with us.”

To listen to the full deep dive on this topic, check out our episode of Tell Me More: A deep dive on… on Apple or Spotify. Don’t forget to subscribe so you know exactly when each episode is released!


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