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Michael Trent Reznor

Birthplace: Mercer, Mercer, PA, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of <private> Reznor and <private> Clark
Husband of Mariqueen Maandig
Father of Minor Child and Minor Child
Brother of <private> Montgomery (Reznor)

Occupation: singer-songwriter, composer, and record producer
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

    • Minor Child
    • Minor Child
    • <private> Reznor
    • <private> Clark
    • <private> Montgomery (Reznor)
    • <private> Reznor (N.N.)

About Trent Reznor

Michael Trent Reznor (born May 17, 1965) is an American singer-songwriter, composer, and record producer. As both a vocalist and multi-instrumentalist, Reznor has led the industrial rock project Nine Inch Nails since 1988; he left Interscope Records in 2007 and was an independent recording artist for around five years until he signed with Columbia Records. As of 2010, he and his wife Mariqueen Maandig are members of the post-industrial group How to Destroy Angels with Reznor's fellow composer Atticus Ross and graphic designer Rob Sheridan. Reznor and Ross scored the David Fincher films The Social Network and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, winning the Academy Award for Best Original Score for the former and the Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media for the latter.

Reznor was previously associated with the bands Option 30, The Innocent, and Exotic Birds in the mid-80s. He gained employment at Right Track Studios in Cleveland and began creating his own music during the studio's closing hours under the name of Nine Inch Nails. Reznor's first release as Nine Inch Nails, the 1989 album Pretty Hate Machine, was a commercial and critical success and Reznor has since released seven major studio albums. Outside of Nine Inch Nails, he has contributed to the albums of artists such as Marilyn Manson and Saul Williams. In 1997, Reznor appeared in Time magazine's list of the year's most influential people and Spin magazine described him as "the most vital artist in music".

Early life

Reznor was born in Mercer, Pennsylvania, halfway between Pittsburgh and Erie, the son of Nancy Lou (née Clark) and Michael Reznor. After his parents divorced, he lived with his maternal grandparents, while his sister Tera lived with their mother. Reznor is a descendant of George Reznor, who founded the Reznor Company, a heating and air conditioning manufacturing company, in 1888. The family sold the business in the 1960s. He is of German and Irish ancestry.

Reznor began playing the piano at the age of five and showed an early aptitude for music. In a 1995 interview, his grandfather, Bill Clark, remarked, "Music was his life, from the time he was a wee boy. He was so gifted." His former piano teacher Rita Beglin said "Reznor always reminded me of Harry Connick, Jr." when he played. Reznor has acknowledged that his sheltered life in Pennsylvania left him feeling isolated from the outside world. In a 1994 interview with Rolling Stone, he references his choices in the music industry.

"I don't know why I want to do these things, other than my desire to escape from Small Town, U.S.A., to dismiss the boundaries, to explore. It isn't a bad place where I grew up, but there was nothing going on but the cornfields. My life experience came from watching movies, watching TV and reading books and looking at magazines. And when your fucking culture comes from watching TV every day, you're bombarded with images of things that seem cool, places that seem interesting, people who have jobs and careers and opportunities. None of that happened where I was. You're almost taught to realize it's not for you.” —Trent Reznor, Rolling Stone

However, Reznor later said, "I don't want to give the impression it was a miserable childhood." At Mercer Area Junior/Senior High School, Reznor learned to play the tenor saxophone and tuba. He was a member of both the jazz and marching band. Former Mercer High School band director Dr. Hendley Hoge remembered Reznor as "very upbeat and friendly". Reznor also became involved in theater while in high school. He was voted "Best in Drama" by classmates for his roles as Judas in Jesus Christ Superstar and Professor Harold Hill in The Music Man. Reznor graduated in 1983 and enrolled at Allegheny College, where he studied computer engineering.

Personal life

During the five years following the release of The Downward Spiral, Reznor struggled with depression, social anxiety disorder, and the death of his grandmother (who raised him). During this period of intense grief, Reznor began abusing alcohol, cocaine, and other drugs. He eventually became addicted to alcohol and cocaine. Reznor reached his darkest moment with substance abuse while touring in London for The Fragile, when he mistakenly purchased china white heroin, which he believed to be cocaine; he consequently overdosed and was resuscitated at a local hospital.

In 2001, Reznor successfully completed rehab, and eventually moved from New Orleans to Los Angeles. In a 2005 interview with Kerrang, Reznor reflected on his self-destructive past: "There was a persona that had run its course. I needed to get my priorities straight, my head screwed on. Instead of always working, I took a couple of years off, just to figure out who I was and working out if I wanted to keep doing this or not. I had become a terrible addict; I needed to get my shit together, figure out what had happened". In contrast to his former suicidal tendencies, Reznor also admitted in another interview that he is "pretty happy". Nine Inch Nails' next full-length album, With Teeth (2005), reached number one on the Billboard 200.

Reznor married Mariqueen Maandig in October 2009. Their first son, Lazarus Echo, was born on October 10, 2010, and their second son, Balthazar, was born on December 31, 2011.


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Trent Reznor's Timeline

May 17, 1965
Mercer, Mercer, PA, United States