The Flaming Lips are an American rock band from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The band was formed in 1983 by guitarist Wayne Coyne, lead vocalist Mark Coyne, bassist Michael Ivins and drummer Dave Kotska. Richard English joined the band in 1984 and the same year they released The Flaming Lips EP, the only project with Mark singing lead vocals.
After Mark Coyne’s departure, Wayne took over lead vocals, and the band released their first full-length record Hear It Is in 1986. The same lineup released Oh My Gawd!!! In 1987 and Telepathic Surgery in 1989. After lineup changes -- including Drummer Nathan Roberts replacing guitarist Jonathan Donahue -- the band released In A Priest Driven Ambulance in 1989. The next year, they signed to Warner Records (formerly Warner Bros. Records) after a show at Legion Hall in Norman, Oklahoma.
Following their first major-label debut with Hit to Death in the Future Head in 1992, The Flaming Lips saw more adjustments to their lineup, with the departures of Donahue and Roberts; they were replaced by Ronald Jones and Steven Drozd, respectively. In 1993, the successful Transmissions From a Satellite Heart was released, which landed The Flaming Lips on the opening tickets of tours with Red Hot Chili Peppers and Candlebox. Clouds Taste Metallic was released in 1995 and did not receive the same commercial success as its predecessor, a strain leading to Jones’ departure in 1996.
Following some experimental attempts to change their sound with the release of the 1997 Zaireeka, the 1999 release of The Soft Bulletin became a mainstream breakthrough for The Flaming Lips. The band won their first Grammy in 2003 for the Best Rock Instrumental Performance category for the track "Approaching Pavonis Mons by Balloon (Utopia Planitia)." The band would continue releasing projects through the 2000s, including continued success with At War With the Mystics in 2006 and a low-budget indie film Christmas on Mars in 2008.