Linkin Park was formed in Agoura Hills, California in 1996 under the name Xero by vocalist Mike Shinoda and guitarist Brad Delson. Although widely associated with nu metal, the band's sound incorporates rap metal and alternative rock elements. The band is known for its distinct vocal style which often includes interplay between the contrasting vocals of Chester and Mike.

Linkin Park rose to international fame in 2000 with their debut album Hybrid Theory, which became a high commercial success and sold over 29 million copies worldwide, becoming one of the best-selling albums of all time. Linkin Park is one of the most successful acts of the 2000s and sold over 19 million albums in the United States alone (out of which 16 million were studio albums). They have sold 60 million albums worldwide and are the best selling band of the 21st century. The band has achieved three number-one Billboard 200 albums (Meteora, Collision Course and Minutes to Midnight), seven number one singles on the Modern Rock Tracks charts ("In The End", "Somewhere I Belong", "Faint", "Numb", "Lying From You", "Breaking the Habit" and "What I've Done"). Also, they are known for the hit singles "One Step Closer", "Crawling", "Numb/Encore", "Bleed It Out", "Shadow of the Day", "Leave Out All the Rest", "New Divide", and were featured in the X-Ecutioners' song "It's Goin' Down" and Busta Rhymes's "We Made It". Linkin Park has also won two Grammy Awards and as well been nominated three times.