Biography All Music GuideWikipedia
All Music Guide:
Perhaps best known as the singer of the Hold Steady, Craig Finn is a Minnesota-bred singer, songwriter, and guitarist based out of New York City. Combining literary influences like Jack Kerouac and John Berryman with the musical influences of Bruce Springsteen and fellow Minnesotan Paul Westerberg, Finn's highly descriptive lyrical style has a focus on narrative, crafting whole worlds for the people in his songs to exist within. In 1994, the singer put this style to work with the indie rock band Lifter Puller, refining his craft over the course of their three albums before the band called it quits in 2000. After the band dissolved, Finn relocated from the Twin Cities to New York, where he would collaborate with producer Mr. Projectile on the short-lived project the Brokerdealer in 2001 before eventually reuniting with Lifter Puller bassist Tad Kubler to form the Hold Steady in 2004. While the band's whiskey-fueled bar rock sound was a departure from the angular, synth-filled sounds of Lifter Puller, Finn's lyrically dense storytelling style remained intact, making the Hold Steady the thinking man's bar band. After five albums with the band, the singer and songwriter tried his hand at a solo album during some downtime from his main project, and in 2012 released Clear Heart Full Eyes through Vagrant Records.
Craig Finn (born August 22, 1971) is an American singer and guitarist, best known as the front man for The Hold Steady and his former band, Lifter Puller. Described by Pitchfork as "a born storyteller who's chosen rock as his medium," Finn's lyrics are often noted for having a strong literary bent, stringing together recurring characters and storylines throughout.
During a five-month break from The Hold Steady, Finn recorded a solo album, Clear Heart Full Eyes, which was released in January 2012.
Personal life 
Born in Boston, Massachusetts, Finn grew up in Edina, Minnesota. He was raised Catholic. Finn attended Valley View Middle School and subsequently graduated from Breck School, and in 1993 from Boston College. In 2000, Finn moved to New York City, where he currently resides. Finn lives in Greenpoint, Brooklyn with his girlfriend Angie Bentfield, whom he has been dating since 2006.
Musical career 
With Lifter Puller 
With The Brokerdealer 
Craig Finn did a short stint of work with Mr. Projectile after moving to New York City in the fall of 2001. The result of this was two EP's.
Untitled EP 1If Not For Hipster PicturesGive Me My Body BackThe Last Ones Up Become Lovers
Untitled EP 2Sophomore SlumpMommy Can I Go Out and Chill TonightDo Me NailsThe Dead Ones Look Like Dolls
With The Hold Steady 
He moved to New York City in the fall of 2001, after Lifter Puller broke up, for a change and because he and his wife knew people there. He has said that lyrically, with The Hold Steady, he's been trying to produce a more positive, coherent, story-based message, in a natural way that he could imagine someone saying.
Work with other artists 
Craig Finn provided his voice to Titus Andronicus's second album, The Monitor. He is the voice of Walt Whitman at the very end of their song "A Pot in Which to Piss" .
He worked with Minneapolis rapper P.O.S on the song "Safety In Speed (Heavy Metal)" which was released on the 2006 album Audition. Always close to the Twin Cities music scene, he also contributed to Minnesota musician Mark Mallman's song "You're Never Alone in New York" on the 2009 album Invincible Criminal.
In between Lifter Puller and The Hold Steady, he did a project with Mr. Projectile known as The Brokerdealer, a techno styled group. They released two unnamed EPs on http://www.thebrokerdealer.net/. This website has shut down, but the songs are still floating around the Internet.
In 2010 he co-wrote, with Chris Cheney, the title track from The Living End's 2011 album, The Ending Is Just The Beginning Repeating, while Cheney was in New York. After working together, Cheney called Finn "a hell of a lyricist".
In July 2011, Finn started a Tumblr account and announced he was recording a solo record in Austin, Texas. He had played a few new songs earlier in the year on a Minnesota radio program. The album, entitled Clear Heart Full Eyes, was released January 24, 2012 through Vagrant Records.
Lyrical style 
Finn is most notable for his third-person narrative lyrical style, wherein he frequently makes reference to literature, pop culture, adolescence, partying, religion and drugs. Both with Lifter Puller and The Hold Steady, Finn's songs often follow a storytelling format that features recurring characters and locations, with Ybor City, Fla., and the Twin Cities having special prominence.
Particularly in later Hold Steady albums, Finn's songs have explored the darker aspects of his characters' party-centric lifestyles. Finn told an interviewer in 2012: "Artistically, I have always been really interested in the hangover; not just the celebration and the confetti but also the puke in the gutter." Finn has said that "irony is certainly not something I want to be accused of," instead hoping to bring "honesty and sincerity" through his songwriting. Although his stories involve violence and heavy drug use, Finn states his songwriting is not very personal or "confessional".
Finn's lyrics have been a frequent point of praise for The Hold Steady with Uncut Magazine describing his style as "narratives driven less by the wordy exposition of yore than acute observation, devastating detail, by turns exclamatory, epigrammatic and grainily authentic."
Finn has indicated that some of his greatest lyrical influences include Blake Schwarzenbach from Jets to Brazil and Jawbreaker as well as Bruce Springsteen. In a Guardian article, he described The Replacements' Let It Be as his "favorite ever record." He found The Doors' L.A. Woman to be influential in a different manner. As he told the same newspaper: "The music meanders, and Morrison was more like a drunk asshole than an intelligent poet. The worst of the worst is the last song, Riders on the Storm: 'There's a killer on the road/ His brain is squirming like a toad' - that's surely the worst line in rock'n'roll history. He gave the green light to generations of pseuds."