RCA released Dave Matthews Band’s third studio album, Before These Crowded Streets, on April 28, 1998. The critically acclaimed recording was the band’s first album to debut at No. 1 on The Billboard 200 – and ended the Titanic soundtrack’s stranglehold on the top spot. Produced by Steve Lillywhite, Before These Crowded Streets featured such guest artists as Béla Fleck, the Kronos Quartet and Alanis Morissette.
Rolling Stone praised the band for pushing in “adventurous new directions,” noting: they play as if their lives – and yours—depended on it.” “Don’t Drink the Water,” “Crush” and “Stay (Wasting Time)” were among the hit singles, which is now certified triple Platinum.
The band was on the road from mid-April through December, touring North America, Europe (where DMB opened for the Rolling Stones on numerous dates in addition to playing a mixture of headline shows and festivals) and Brazil.