The Proclaimers are a Scottish rock duo formed in 1983 by twin brothers Craig and Charlie Reid who were born on 5 March 1962. They came to attention with their 1987 single "Letter from America", which reached No. 3 in the United Kingdom, and the 1988 single "I'm Gonna Be ", which topped charts in Australia, Iceland and New Zealand. The Proclaimers have sold over 5 million albums worldwide.
First active from 1983 as an acoustic duo, the Proclaimers moved toward band-oriented rock in later works. The Proclaimers' style draws from a diversity of influences, including country, folk, and punk rock. Their playing range has included roots rock,alternative rock and folk rock, and their music is typified by their Scottish accents. The Proclaimers often tour internationally, and have released 12 studio albums since 1987, the most recent being 2022's Dentures Out, as well as three compilation albums and a DVD.
The band are also known for their support of Scottish independence, and have voiced support for Welsh independence.
Craig Reid and Charles Reid were born in Leith on 5 March 1962 and grew up in Edinburgh, Cornwall and Auchtermuchty. When they lived in Auchtermuchty, they attended Bell Baxter High School.
Alluding to the early careers of Craig and Charles Reid in 1989, Bill Wyman of Chicago Reader commented that the pair "got into music through punk". After Craig received a beaten-up drum kit and Charlie a guitar, the pair played in punk rock bands named Black Flag, Hippy Hasslers and Reasons for Emotion. Craig Reid, in a 2016 interview with Esquire Middle East, relayed that he loved punk acts such as The Clash, The Jam, the Sex Pistols, as well as "all the mid-60s stuff… The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, The Kinks".
Becoming aware of the potential of playing as a duo, the Reids established the Proclaimers as an acoustic duo in 1983. In allusion to their early sound, actor Peter Mullan said that the Proclaimers played "a mix of post-punk and folk". During this time, the duo attracted a regional fan-base, with Inverness having an especially dedicated community of supporters. Many of the duo's songs, such as "Letter from America" which was written in 1984 and reflected unemployment rates of the day, were conceived in this period.