Yello was originally formed by Boris Blank (keyboards, sampling, percussion, backing vocals) and Carlos Perón (tapes) in the late 1970s. Dieter Meier (vocals, lyrics), a millionaire industrialist and gambler, was brought in when the two founders realised that they needed a singer. Meier and Blank's first release was the 1979 single called "I.T. Splash". The LP Solid Pleasure, featuring the hit dance single "Bostich", was released the following year.
In 1983 Yello received substantial media attention with the release of "I Love You" and "Lost Again". Perón left the band in 1983 to start a solo career. With their 1983 album You Gotta Say Yes to Another Excess, the band began a working relationship with Ernst Gamper, whose "corner cut" logo would represent them for three albums, and who would design covers for the group beyond the demise of this logo.
Yello's sound is mainly characterised by unusual music samples, a heavy reliance on rhythm and Dieter Meier's dark voice. Boris Blank has taken a couple of vocal turns; on "Swing" (from You Gotta Say Yes to Another Excess) and "Blazing Saddles" (from Flag), and guest vocalists have included Rush Winters (the first female diva to be featured on a Yello recording), Billy MacKenzie, Stina Nordenstam and Shirley Bassey. The group has shared writing credit with MacKenzie and Winters. Yello rarely uses samples from previously released music; nearly every instrument has been sampled and engineered by Boris Blank, who over the years has built up an original sample library of over 100,000 named and categorized sounds.
Meier is also a filmmaker, having written and directed the films Jetzt und Alles and Lightmaker as well as most of Yello's music videos. Additionally, Meier produces his own wine on his ranch.
In 2005, Yello re-released their early albums Solid Pleasure, Claro Que Si, You Gotta Say Yes to Another Excess, Stella, One Second and Flag, all with rare bonus tracks, as part of Yello Remaster Series.
A documentary on Yello, Electro Pop made in Switzerland, directed by Anka Schmid was premiered at the Riff Raff cinema in Zurich in September 2005.
Yello were commissioned to produce music for the launch of the Audi A5 at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2007 and for the Audi A5 commercial to be broadcast in May 2007.
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