Formed by childhood friends in Kingston, Ontario, The Tragically Hip worked hard to become hometown heroes. Signed by MCA Records in the mid-'80s, the band had to wait a few years before getting noticed in America. In 1989, they released their proper debut album, Up to Here, and had modest success on the college radio charts. Road Apples followed in 1991 with little notice, but 1993's Fully Completely gave the band the traction it needed when "Wheat Kings" and "Courage" were picked up by alternative radio stations. Although completely out of fashion in the grunge era, The Tragically Hip continued to record and tour throughout the 1990s, including a performance at the Woodstock '99 festival. The new millennium found principal songwriter Gordon Downie working on a book of poetry, but he rejoined his bandmates for their ninth release, In Violet Light. The Tragically Hip's greatest-hits effort, Hipeponymous, was released in 2005. World Container followed in 2006 and We Are the Same in 2009.