Long before A Great Big World‘s Ian Axel and Chad Vaccarino teamed up with Christina Aguilera on their latest single “Say Something,” they were making the rounds in small venues throughout New York. Axel met Vaccarino while both attended New York University and they began penning songs together. When Axel broke out as a solo artist, he and Vaccarino remained songwriting partners.
In 2012, the duo joined forces officially as A Great Big World and released a six-song EP, with a little help from fans via Kickstarter. Their single, “This Is The New Year,” which Axel had sang for years as a solo artist, was performed by the cast of Glee in 2013 and the band soon signed to Epic Records.