Download Festival - Home

Before they were famous: The Download Festival Yearbook

Have you ever wondered what your favourite rock star looked like before they were famous? When just like you, they were getting through school with questionable haircuts and even more questionable fashion choices? Or, more precisely, what Rob Zombie looked like before the dreads and the beard? 

Well, wonder no more as we’re about to blow away the dust and open up the Download Festival Yearbook to take a look back at Slipknot‘s Corey Taylor, The Smashing Pumpkins‘ Billy Corgan, Lzzy Halestorm and many more #DL2019 rock stars before they were famous. 



Corey Taylor – Slipknot

Who would’ve guessed that the cherubic angel in the top left-hand picture would go on to be one of the greatest heavy metal frontmen, worshipped by legions of maggots? Teenage Corey’s front ponytail is more horrifying than any latex Slipknot mask.

Rob Zombie

Rob Zombie is unrecognisable as young Robert Bartleh Cummings in this yearbook photo from his time at Haverhill High School. We all loathed wearing school uniform and you can tell from the dead-eyed look on Rob’s face –  the hate was real.

Billy Corgan

Billy Corgan could disarm the steeliest of hearts in this photo that could’ve been ripped straight out of the Partridge Family photo album. Thankfully, teen Billy discovered Sabbath and Queen and quickly rocketed to success with The Smashing Pumpkins.

Ninja – Die Antwoord

Die Antwoord‘s Ninja is far from an ‘Ugly Boy’ in this pic of him when he was a kid growing up in South Africa. Real name, Watkin Tudor Jones, he wouldn’t go on to form Die Antwoord for another few decades – but, he was a part of the South African hip-hop scene as early as 2001.

Dream Theater

Dream Theater started out life as a band called Majesty when John Petrucci, John Myung, and Mike Portnoy were all studying at Berklee College of Music in Massachusetts. The photo on the left shows the guys hyped and ready to rock in room E19 at Berklee.

Palaye royale

This picture of art rockers Palaye Royale is just ‘awww’ inducing – just look at those happy faces! From left to right are Sebastian, Remington, and tiny Emerson. It’s no wonder that the Toronto brothers grew up to form a band that’s captured hearts around the world.

Lzzy hale

Fresh-faced teen Lzzy Hale in the left-hand picture wouldn’t be out of place in 90’s cult teen movie, The Craft. The Pennsylvania teen was already jamming with brother Arejay Hale and sowing the seeds for what would become hard rock heavyweights Halestorm.

Caleb shomo – beartooth

We nabbed this pic of Beartooth vocalist Caleb Shomo from his old MySpace page. Caleb was just 14 when he joined US metalcore band Attack Attack! and began writing material for what would later become, Beartooth. Their meteoric rise – and the astonishing difference between these photos – is proof that ‘You Never Know’ what could happen.

Enter Shikari

Back in their school days, vocalist Rou Reynolds, drummer Rob Rolfe and bassist Chris Batten played in a band called Hybryd. They met guitarist Rory Clewlow in 2003 and as fate would have it Enter Shikari was formed. The teens on the left look a far cry from the electro-rockers that’ll be headlining the Avalanche Stage this summer.

Make memories you can throwback to in the years to come and get your tickets for Download 2019.

Taking place in Donington Park on 14th-16th June 2019, you’ll get to mosh out to headliners Def Leppard, Slipknot, Tool and many more.