Sunday, June 10, 2018

Heart


Origin: Seattle, Washington (USA)

HEART
Heart: Mark Andes - Denny Carmassi - Ann Wilson - Nancy Wilson - Howard Leese
Mark Andes - Denny Carmassi - Ann Wilson - Nancy Wilson - Howard Leese
Discography:

Heart [st - 1985] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyrics 80sst - 1985 (with lyrics)

Notes:

- Sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson are the creative spark behind Heart, a hard rock group who initially found success in the mid-'70s only to reach greater heights after engineering a major comeback a decade later. The daughters of a Marine Corps captain, Ann (born June 19, 1950) and Nancy (born March 16, 1954) grew up in both Southern California and Taiwan before the Wilson family settled in Seattle, Washington. Throughout their formative years, both were interested in folk and pop music; while Ann never took any formal music lessons as a child (she later learned to play several instruments), Nancy took up guitar and flute. After both sisters spent some time at college, they decided to try their hand as professional musicians, and while Nancy began performing as a folksinger, Ann joined the all-male vocal group Heart.

Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Heart was actually formed in 1963 by bassist Steve Fossen and brothers Roger Fisher and Mike Fisher; initially dubbed the Army, they later became White Heart before settling on simply Heart at the beginning of the '70s. After her arrival in the group, Ann became romantically involved with guitarist Mike Fisher; when Nancy joined in 1974, she in turn began a relationship with guitarist Roger Fisher. Soon after Nancy's arrival, Mike Fisher retired from active performing to become the band's sound engineer. After gaining a following in Vancouver, Heart was approached by Shelly Siegel, the owner of the Canadian label Mushroom and, augmented by keyboardist Howard Leese and drummer Michael Derosier, they recorded their debut album, Dreamboat Annie, in 1975.

After selling more than 30,000 copies north of the border, Mushroom issued the LP in the U.S., where it quickly achieved platinum status on the strength of the hit singles "Crazy on You" and "Magic Man." In 1977, Heart jumped ship to the CBS affiliate Portrait, resulting in a protracted legal battle with Siegel, who in 1978 released the unfinished LP Magazine on Mushroom shortly after the band issued its true follow-up, Little Queen, on Portrait. The single "Barracuda" was another massive hit, and like its predecessor, Little Queen sold over a million copies.

After 1978's Dog & Butterfly, both of the Wilson/Fisher romances ended and Roger Fisher left the group. In 1980, Heart issued Bebe le Strange; following a lengthy U.S. tour, both Fossen and Derosier exited and were replaced by ex-Spirit and Firefall bassist Mark Andes and former Gamma drummer Denny Carmassi. After 1982's Private Audition and 1983's Passionworks slumped, the group was largely written off by industry watchers, and moved to Capitol Records.

In 1985, however, Heart emerged with a self-titled effort that ultimately sold more than five million copies on its way to launching four Top Ten hits: "What About Love?," "Never," the chart-topping "These Dreams," and "Nothin' at All." 1987's Bad Animals continued their comeback success; "Alone" was another number one hit, and both "Who Will You Run To" and "There's the Girl" achieved considerable airplay as well. Brigade, issued in 1990, featured the number two smash "All I Want to Do Is Make Love to You," as well as the Top 25 hits "I Didn't Want to Need You" and "Stranded." In the early '90s, the Wilson sisters took a brief hiatus from Heart to form the Lovemongers, an acoustic quartet fleshed out by Sue Ennis and Frank Cox; in 1992, they issued a four-song EP that included a cover of Led Zeppelin's "The Battle of Evermore." Heart returned in 1993 with Desire Walks On, on which Andes and Carmassi were replaced with bassist Fernando Saunders and drummer Denny Fongheiser. With 1995's The Road Home, Heart enlisted onetime Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones to produce a live acoustic set, reprising hits like "Dreamboat Annie," "Crazy On You," and "Barracuda."

Heart was on hiatus by the late '90s, as the Wilson sisters concentrated on the Lovemongers, issuing a pair of albums: 1997's Whirlygig and 1998's Here Is Christmas. But Heart wasn't completely silent: they were the subject of one of the better episodes of VH1's Behind the Music; a pair of best-of sets were issued (1998's Greatest Hits covered their early classics, while their later years were spotlighted on 2000's Greatest Hits: 1985-1995), and their music continued to pop up in movie soundtracks (2000's The Virgin Suicides, among others). In 1999, Nancy released her first solo album, Live at McCabe's Guitar Shop, and a year later penned the score to her husband Cameron Crowe's hit motion picture Almost Famous, while Ann continued to play with others -- in the summer of 2001, she participated in the A Walk Down Abbey Road: A Tribute to the Beatles tour, which also featured Todd Rundgren, John Entwistle (the Who), and Alan Parsons (the Alan Parsons Project). Heart returned to active recording for Jupiters Darling, released on Sovereign Artists in 2004, and issued Dreamboat Annie Live (a live performance of tracks from the band's debut album, recorded in Los Angeles in 2007) three years later. Red Velvet Car, an all-new collection of original material, was released in August 2010.

Heart picked up the pace in 2012. In June, Legacy released the retrospective box set Strange Euphoria. In September, the Wilson sisters became authors with the publication of their memoir, Kicking and Dreaming: A Story of Heart, Soul, and Rock & Roll. Capping off the year was Fanatic, a collection of all-new studio material that appeared in October. A seasonal Christmas album, Home for the Holidays, appeared in 2014. The Wilson sisters and a host of collaborators completed the recording of a new album in early 2016. Entitled Beautiful Broken (for a bonus cut from Fanatic), the album included ten tracks that balanced new material and re-recordings of songs that originally appeared on albums between 1980-1984 -- the band felt they weren't captured correctly the first time. The set also featured a guest appearance from Metallica's James Hetfield on the title cut. Beautiful Broken was released by Concord in July. -

(https://www.allmusic.com/artist/heart-mn0000671953/biography)




- Heart is an American rock band that first found success in Canada and later in the United States and worldwide. Over the group's four-decade history, it has had three primary lineups, with the constant center of the group since 1973 being sisters Ann Wilson (lead singer) and Nancy Wilson (guitarist). Heart rose to fame in the mid-1970s with music influenced by hard rock and heavy metal, as well as folk music. Their popularity declined in the early 1980s, but the band enjoyed a comeback starting in 1985 and experienced even greater success with album-oriented rock hits and hard-rock ballads into the 1990s.

To date, Heart has sold over 35 million records worldwide, including over 22.5 million in album sales in the U.S. They have had top 10 albums on the Billboard 200 in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, and 2010s. The group was ranked number 57 on VH1's "100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock". They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013.


History

1967–1972: Formation
In 1967, bassist Steve Fossen formed a band, The Army, along with Roger Fisher on guitar, Don Wilhelm on guitar, keyboards and lead vocals, and Ray Schaefer on drums. They played for several years in and around the Bothell, Washington, area (northeast of Seattle). They frequently played Bothell High School, Inglemoor High School and Shorecrest High School, as well as many taverns and club venues. In 1969 the band went through line-up changes (Gary Ziegelman (former lead singer of Buffalo Clancy) on lead vocals, Roger on guitar, Steve on bass, James Cirrello on guitar, Ron Rudge on drums, Ken Hansen on percussion, and a new name, White Heart. The name White Heart came from a discussion Roger Fisher's brother Mike Fisher had with Michael Munro, who had come up with the name White Hart (without the "e", a reference to Arthur C. Clarke's Tales from the White Hart) for a band with Toby Cyr on lead guitar. Fisher asked and received permission to use the name for the Army, added the "e", and the Army became White Heart. For a brief time in 1970 this line-up shortened its name to Heart and dropped "White"; however, the band went through more personnel changes. In 1971, Heart consisted of Steve Fossen, Roger Fisher, David Belzer (keys) and Jeff Johnson (drums). After Ann Wilson joined (in 1970 or 1972), the band was renamed Hocus Pocus.

Mike Fisher, Roger's brother, was set to be drafted into the military. Nancy Wilson has stated that when he did not report for duty, his home was raided, but he slipped out a rear window, escaped to Canada and became a Vietnam War "draft dodger". One day in 1972 (or 1971), Mike crossed the border to visit family and, by chance, met Ann at a Hocus Pocus (or White Heart) show. According to Nancy, that meeting was "when she and Michael fell in love" and Ann decided to follow Mike back to Canada. Steve Fossen finished his college education before he also decided to move to Canada in late 1972, and Roger followed in late 1972/early 1973. Along with Ann, Brian Johnstone (drums) and John Hannah (keyboards), the band Heart was officially formed. Ann's sister Nancy Wilson joined in 1974, and soon after became romantically involved with Roger.


1975–1976: Commercial breakthrough
The group played numerous shows around their new home in Vancouver, and they recorded a demo tape with the assistance of producer Mike Flicker and session-guitarist and keyboard player, Howard Leese. Hannah and Johnstone had left by this time, and soon after Leese became a full-time member. Flicker produced the band's first five albums. This team recorded the debut album, Dreamboat Annie, at Can-Base Studios in Vancouver (later known as Mushroom Studios). Mike Derosier eventually joined Heart as full-time drummer. Some of the same Canadian investors who had backed the studio also backed a separate company Mushroom Records, which was managed by Shelly Siegel. Drummers Duris Maxwell, Dave Wilson, Kat Hendrikse, Michael Derosier, keyboardist Rob Deans, and Bassist Brian Newcombe were among those who also played on the sessions for the album. The album was picked up by Siegel and sold 30,000 copies in Canada in its first few months. Siegel soon released the album in the US, where, helped by two hit singles in 1976 ("Crazy on You" and "Magic Man", which reached numbers 35 and nine, respectively, on the Billboard Hot 100), it reached number seven in the Billboard 200. It eventually sold over one million copies.


1977–1979: Mainstream success and band split
In 1977 Mushroom ran a full-page advertisement in the pulp tabloid National Informer showing the bare-shouldered Wilson sisters (as on the Dreamboat Annie album cover) with the suggestive caption, "It was only our first time!" This event was cited by the Wilson sisters as a key part of their decision to leave Mushroom in a July 28, 1977, interview with Rolling Stone. Later, when a reporter suggested, backstage after a live appearance, that the sisters were sex partners, the infuriated Ann returned to her hotel room and began writing the lyrics to "Barracuda". Heart broke its contract with Mushroom and signed a contract with CBS subsidiary Portrait Records, resulting in a prolonged legal battle with Siegel. Mushroom released the partly completed Magazine in early 1977, just before Portrait released Little Queen. Both sides attempted to prevent the other from releasing any Heart music. A Seattle court forced Mushroom to recall the album so that Heart could remix tracks and add new vocals, and the album was re-released in 1978. It peaked at No. 17 in the US, generating the single "Heartless", which reached No. 24 in the chart, and eventually achieved platinum status.

Little Queen, with the hit "Barracuda" (No. 11, 1977) became Heart's second million-seller. Ann and Nancy appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone on July 28, 1977 (issue No. 244). Heart performed at the second California Jam on March 18, 1978, in Ontario, California, at the Ontario Motor Speedway, in front of 350,000 people along with Aerosmith, Ted Nugent, Foreigner, Santana, Bob Welch, Mahogany Rush, Dave Mason, and others. Heart performed at the first Texxas Jam on July 4 weekend in 1978 in Dallas, Texas, at the Cotton Bowl in front of 100,000 people, along with Aerosmith, Van Halen, Ted Nugent, Journey, Frank Marino, Atlanta Rhythm Section, Head East, and Walter Egan.

In late 1978, the double-platinum Dog and Butterfly peaked at 17 on the Billboard 200 and produced top 30 hits with its title song and "Straight On" which hit number 15.

In 1979, the Wilson-Fisher liaisons ended—Roger Fisher was voted out of the band by the other members, and his brother Mike left the orbit of the group within a month. Nancy Wilson and Howard Leese shared the guitar role, and childhood friend Sue Ennis helped with song collaborations.


1980–1984: Commercial decline
Heart released Bebe le Strange in 1980. It became the band's third top ten album, peaking at number five, and yielded the Top 40 hit "Even It Up". The band embarked on a 77-city tour to promote the album. By the end of the year, the band scored their highest charted single at the time; a version of the ballad "Tell It Like It Is", which peaked at number eight. In November 1980, the double album Greatest Hits/Live was released and reached number twelve on the US chart, eventually achieving double platinum status. The two-disc set featured studio versions of most of Heart's singles to date, plus a couple of new studio tracks and six live tracks, amongst which were versions of "Unchained Melody", Led Zeppelin's "Rock and Roll" and the Beatles' "I'm Down". But with a total of only two hit singles in 1980 (five singles were actually released) and a hiatus of almost two years to their next studio album, sales following this greatest hits package were weaker than previous efforts.

Their next album Private Audition (1982), provided the minor hit "This Man Is Mine" (No. 33 on Billboard) and was the first not produced by Mike Flicker. Initially the band turned to Jimmy Iovine, one of the leading producers of the time, who suggested that the material lacked potential hits, but eventually the Wilson sisters produced the album themselves. The track "Perfect Stranger" foreshadowed the power ballads that would dominate the band's mid-1980s sound. At the end of recording Derosier and Fossen were fired from the band. They were replaced by Denny Carmassi on drums and Mark Andes on bass for Passionworks (1983), while at the record company's insistence the band turned to established producer Keith Olsen. Both Private Audition and Passionworks had relatively poor sales, failing to reach gold status. Despite the albums' poor sales, the single "How Can I Refuse" was a success reaching number one on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Chart. In 1984 Ann Wilson recorded a duet, with Mike Reno of hard rock band Loverboy, the pop ballad "Almost Paradise", which was featured on the soundtrack of the movie Footloose. The song reached number seven on the US pop chart, and strongly influenced the band to use other songwriters and to change their sound. Nancy Wilson made cameo appearances in the films Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982) and The Wild Life (1984), both written by journalist, screenwriter and director Cameron Crowe, whom she married in June 1986.


1985–1990: Comeback
The band moved to Capitol Records and their first album for their new label was simply titled Heart (1985). The move to Capitol coincided with a glam metal makeover that included minimizing the acoustic and folk sounds characteristic of their early work. The album reached number one, sold five million copies and launched four Top-10 hits: "What About Love" (No. 10, 1985), "Never" (No. 4, 1985), the chart-topping "These Dreams" (1986) and "Nothin' at All" (No. 10, 1986). A fifth single, "If Looks Could Kill" also charted, giving the band five hit singles from the same album for the first time.

Heart's next album, Bad Animals (1987), named after reactions to the band when they entered an upmarket Memphis hotel, continued the move away from the band's folk and acoustic leanings towards a glossier arena rock sound. It contained the hit singles "Alone" (1987), which reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100, "Who Will You Run To" (1987), which reached number seven, and "There's the Girl" (1987), which reached number 12. Bad Animals also became the band's first top 10 album success in the UK, peaking at number seven on the UK Album Chart.

In 1990, Brigade became the band's sixth multi-platinum LP and added three more Top 25 Billboard Hot 100 hits: "Stranded" and "I Didn't Want to Need You", which reached numbers 12 and 24, respectively; "All I Wanna Do Is Make Love to You" reached number two, but created controversy when it was argued that its story line might endanger women by encouraging them to pick up hitch-hikers. Three other album cuts, "Secret", "Wild Child", and "Tall, Dark Handsome Stranger" were Billboard Mainstream Rock Chart hits. Brigade was the band's highest charting album in the UK, reaching No. 3.


1991–2001: The Lovemongers, Desire Walks On, and Hiatus
Following the 1990 tour, Heart released their first complete live album in the autumn of 1991. Rock the House Live! largely featured tracks from the Brigade album rather than more familiar hits in an effort to capture the harder rock side of the band. The album's single, a version of John Farnham's "You're the Voice" received moderate airplay on rock stations and hit No. 20 on the Mainstream Rock chart. The Wilson sisters then put together an informal acoustic group called the Lovemongers with Sue Ennis and Frank Cox. Their first show was a Red Cross benefit for troops in Seattle. A four-song EP, that included a live version of Led Zeppelin's "The Battle of Evermore" and an updated version of the Heart standard "Crazy On You", came out in late 1992. Their cover of "The Battle of Evermore" also appeared on the original soundtrack for the 1992 film Singles.

Heart returned in 1993 with Desire Walks On, on which bass player Andes was replaced with Fernando Saunders. The album peaked at No. 48 on the Billboard 200, eventually being certified Gold. The lead track "Black on Black II" was an AOR (Album Oriented Rock) hit peaking at No. 4 on Billboard's Mainstream Rock chart, while the single "Will You Be There (In the Morning)" was a moderate pop hit reaching No. 39 on the Billboard Hot 100. A third single, "The Woman In Me" hit No. 24 on the Adult Contemporary chart but missed the Hot 100. An interactive CD-ROM, Heart: 20 Years of Rock & Roll, with five hours of audio footage, was released in 1994. Their next album, The Road Home (1995), offered live acoustic versions of the group's best-known songs and was produced by Led Zeppelin's John Paul Jones.

In 1995 Nancy decided to take a break from music to concentrate on raising a family. Ann toured that year with a band that was alternately called the Ann Wilson Band or Ann Wilson & the Ricola Brothers.

The Lovemongers released a full-length album titled Whirlygig in 1997, and a collection of mostly self-penned Christmas songs titled Here is Christmas in 1998. This was re-released as a Heart album with the title Heart Presents a Lovemongers' Christmas in 2001. In 1998, the band maintained its profile by being the subject of an episode of VH1's Behind the Music. The band released a Greatest Hits boxed set covering their early work (a second volume focusing on the later part of their career followed in 2000). Also in 1998, Ann toured without Nancy, billed as "Ann Wilson and Heart". The lineup was the same as it had been in 1995, but without Scott Adams. This was longtime band member Leese's last tour with Heart; he left the band later in the year. Nancy kept busy scoring her husband's movies Jerry Maguire (1996), Almost Famous (2000), Vanilla Sky (2001) and Elizabethtown (2005). In 1999 Nancy released a solo album, Live at McCabe's Guitar Shop. Also in 1999, Nancy and Ann undertook their first tour without a backing band. In 2001 Ann participated in the A Walk Down Abbey Road: A Tribute to the Beatles tour, which also featured Todd Rundgren, John Entwistle of the Who and Alan Parsons. The sisters also appeared at benefits and special events, including the tribute to Brian Wilson at New York's Radio City Music Hall in March 2001.


2002–2006: Reformation
In 2002, Ann and Nancy returned to the road with a brand-new Heart lineup that included Scott Olson, Ben Smith, Alice in Chains bassist Mike Inez, and keyboardist Tom Kellock. In 2003, Heart released a DVD of their last stop in the tour as Alive in Seattle. Also in 2003, Gilby Clarke (ex-Guns N' Roses) and Darian Sahanaja replaced Olson and Kellock for an American tour.

In 2004, with the new lineup, Heart released Jupiters Darling, their first studio album since 1993. It featured a variety of songs that included a return to Heart's original hard rock sound, as well as a blend of vintage pop and new textures. Stand-out tracks included the singles "The Perfect Goodbye", "Oldest Story in the World" (No. 22 Billboard Rock Airplay, 2004) and "Lost Angel". In 2005 the Wilsons appeared on the CMT Music Awards as a special guest of country singer Gretchen Wilson (no relation) and performed the Heart classic, "Crazy on You", with Gretchen.


2007–2009: VH1 Rock Honors to Touring with Journey
Heart was honored at the second annual VH1 Rock Honors (May 24, 2007), and also performed along with Ozzy Osbourne, Genesis and ZZ Top. Gretchen Wilson and Alice in Chains honored the group by performing "Barracuda".

In September 2007, Ann Wilson released her first solo album, Hope & Glory, which, beside her sister Nancy, featured Elton John, Alison Krauss, k.d. lang, Wynonna Judd, Gretchen Wilson, Rufus Wainwright, Shawn Colvin, and Deana Carter.

On October 28, 2007, Activision put their song, "Barracuda", in Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock.

On April 9, 2008, the band appeared on Idol Gives Back with Stacy "Fergie" Ferguson, who sang "Barracuda" in harmony with Ann. In mid-2008, Heart undertook a U.S. tour with Journey and Cheap Trick. Performing live, alongside Jackson Browne (Something Fine), Venice (Crazy on You) and over 70 members of the Santa Monica High School (SaMoHi) Orchestra and Girls Choir (Bohemian Rhapsody), the benefit helped to provide funds for the continuation of Music Education in public schools. The event was filmed and recorded by Touring Video and Post by On the WAVE Productions. The video was produced by Harry Rabin of OTW and at one time could be seen on the AFTA Foundation website.


2010–2012: Red Velvet Car to Kennedy Center Honors
A new studio album, Red Velvet Car was released in 2010. It marked a stylistic return to Heart's melodic hard rock and folk sound of their early albums. The album peaked at number 10 on the Billboard 200, becoming the group's first top 10 album in 20 years. It also reached number three on Billboard's Rock Album Chart. Red Velvet Car spawned two singles. The folky "Hey You" peaked at number 26 on Billboard's AC chart, while the hard rocker "WTF" peaked at number 19 on Billboard's Top Selling Singles chart. The album release was accompanied by a North American tour, which commenced in January and ran until December 2010. On November 4, 2010, it was announced that Heart would do its first cross-Canada tour in thirty years, beginning on January 28, 2011, in St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador. A live DVD and Blu-ray disc, A Night at Sky Church, recorded before the tour at the Experience Music Project in Seattle, was released in 2011. Ann and Nancy Wilson played as part of the 2010 VH1 Divas Support the Troops, along with acts including Katy Perry and Paramore; they performed "Crazy on You" with Grace Potter and the Nocturnals.

In May 2010 there was a reunion of former male members of the band, including Roger Fisher and Steve Fossen; they performed at the Synergia Northwest concert in Tacoma, Washington.

Coming off their latest Top 10 album and cross-country tour of Canada, Heart embarked on a 2011 summer tour co-headlining with Def Leppard. Heart released a career spanning box-set titled Strange Euphoria in June 2012 which contains many of their biggest hits, unreleased demos, and rare live cuts. On September 18, 2012, the Wilson sisters released their autobiography, Kicking and Dreaming: A Story of Heart, Soul, and Rock and Roll, which was co-written with Charles R. Cross (Heavier Than Heaven: A Biography of Kurt Cobain). On September 25, 2012, Ann and Nancy received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for their contributions to music.

The band released their 14th studio album, Fanatic, on October 2, which became the group's 12th Top 25 album (No. 24, 2012) and was supported by a North American tour including both the US and Canada.

On December 26, 2012, CBS televised the annual Kennedy Center Honors which recognizes artists for their lifetime contributions to American culture through the performing arts. Ann and Nancy Wilson were asked to perform at the event in tribute to Led Zeppelin. The Wilson sisters, along with Jason Bonham (son of the late Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham) performed a version of Zeppelin's signature tune "Stairway to Heaven" complete with an orchestra and two choirs. Their rendition of "Stairway" earned a standing ovation from the crowd and tears of joy from Robert Plant. The video went viral on YouTube with over 4 million hits in the first five days after the show, and prompted the Kennedy Center to issue a limited edition iTunes single of the performance. Although the single was only available for two weeks, it immediately went to No. 1 on iTunes Rock Singles chart and reached No. 20 on Billboard's Hot Rock Songs chart.


2013–2016: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Beautiful Broken
At the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony on April 18, 2013, the original members of Heart (the Wilson Sisters, Howard Leese, Michael Derosier, Steve Fossen, and Roger Fisher) reunited for the first time in 34 years to play "Crazy on You". The band was inducted by Chris Cornell, who emotionally talked about what heroes and role models Ann and Nancy Wilson had been to him and other musicians in Seattle. "For me, and for countless other men and women, they have earned, at long last, their rightful place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame", Cornell said.

In 2014, the band released another live album, Fanatic Live from Caesar's Colosseum which peaked at No. 13 on Billboard's Top Hard Rock Albums chart.

In January 2016, Ann Wilson announced that Heart was working on a new album that should be completed by June, and released sometime in 2016. Wilson indicated that the new album would be different than 2012's Fanatic which focused primarily on the band's heavier rock side, and would "have more contours". The new album would follow a tour of Canada (with Joan Jett) and potentially coincide with an early summer tour of the UK.

On June 29, 2016, Heart performed at the Royal Albert Hall with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and a DVD and CD of this performance was released in November 2016.

The album Beautiful Broken was released on July 8, 2016. The hard-rocking title cut featuring Metallica's James Hetfield trading vocals with Ann Wilson was the first single. Beautiful Broken reached number 9 on Billboard's Rock Album Chart and number 30 on Billboard's Top Selling Albums Chart.

Immediately following the new album's release, the band embarked on The Rock Hall Three For All, a 30-date headlining tour of the US with Joan Jett and Cheap Trick supporting.


2016-present: Controversy and side projects
On the morning of August 27, 2016, Ann's husband Dean Wetter was arrested and subsequently pleaded guilty to assaulting Nancy's 16-year-old twin sons after the boys had left the door to his RV open. The incident took place during a Heart performance at the White River Amphitheater in Auburn, Washington, the previous night.

Although the band played the remaining 2016 tour dates that were already booked, the Wilson sisters only spoke to one another through third parties for the remainder of the tour. Following the end of the tour in October 2016, the sisters opted to tour with their own side project bands. The pair's relationship was strained by the incident; an April 2017 article in Rolling Stone reported that although they remain on amicable terms, they had not spoken to one another since the 2016 tour ended, and only sporadically contacted one another through text messaging.

In January 2017, Nancy formed a new band, Roadcase Royale, with singer Liv Warfield and Heart members Ben Smith (drummer), Dan Rothchild (bass), and Chris Joyner (keyboards). Later that month, Ann announced a solo tour, which included Heart guitarist Craig Bartock along with some other non-Heart musicians.

In April 2017, Ann described Heart as being on hiatus, although both sisters claim the band has not permanently disbanded.

Heart performed with Gretchen Wilson on VH-1's March 10, 2006, tribute to the band, "Decades Rock Live!". The special also featured Alice in Chains, Phil Anselmo, Dave Navarro, Rufus Wainwright, and Carrie Underwood. Later in the year, bass player Inez left Heart to re-join the reformed Alice in Chains.


Legacy
Heart has sold over 35 million records worldwide, had 20 Top 40 singles, seven Top 10 albums and four Grammy nominations. Heart achieved Top 10 albums on the Billboard charts in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, and 2010s, with chart singles in each decade. This span of over four decades gives them the longest span of Top 10 albums by a female fronted band.

One of Heart's defining characteristics is their diversity in music styles which has been evident in their chart successes. The band has had singles on Billboard's Hot 100, Mainstream Rock Tracks, and Adult Contemporary charts. Throughout their history, Heart has been labeled as Hard Rock, Folk, Easy Listening, Heavy Metal, and Adult Contemporary, many times demonstrating two or more of these styles on the same album. Their album title Dog and Butterfly was a symbol of their sometimes contradictory styles, with the "Dog" side of the album focusing on rock tunes and the "Butterfly" side made up of ballads. Their epic "Mistral Wind" from this album captured both styles in one song, starting as a mellow acoustic ballad and building to a metal crescendo.

Heart was ranked in 2008 as number 57 on VH1's "100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock", and Ann and Nancy Wilson ranked number 40 (in 1999) on VH1's "100 Greatest women in rock and roll". Also, Ann Wilson was ranked in Hit Parader's 2006 "Greatest Heavy Metal Vocalists of All Time" at number 78. In 2009 the Wilson sisters were awarded ASCAP's Founders Award in recognition of their songwriting career.

In 2011, Heart earned their first nomination for induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for the 2012 class, but were ultimately not picked. After a second nomination, the band were announced as inductees to the 2013 class on December 11, 2012. Their Hall of Fame page described the Wilson sisters as the first women to front a hard rock band, and "pioneers ... inspiring women to pick up an electric guitar or start a band".

In his book titled "Heart: In the Studio", Jake Brown described the band as beginning "a revolution for women in music ... breaking genre barriers and garnering critical acclaim".

In addition to their own recording careers, the Wilson sisters have played a role in the Seattle music scene. Among the artists that have used their Bad Animals Studio up to 1995 were Neil Young, R.E.M., Pearl Jam, Soundgarden and Alice in Chains. -

(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heart_(band))

Heart [st - 1985]


Heart [st - 1985]

Origin: Seattle, Washington (USA)

Heart [st - 1985] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyrics 80s

Take a listen on youtube

Line-up:

Ann Wilson - Vocals
Nancy Wilson - Vocals, guitar, mandolin, backing vocals
Howard Leese - Guitar, keyboards, mandolin, backing vocals
Mark Andes - Bass
Denny Carmassi - Drums
Peter Wolf - Synthesizers, acoustic piano

Additional musicians:

Holly Knight - Keyboards
Frankie Sullivan - Guitar
Mickey Thomas - Backing vocals
Johnny Colla - Backing vocals
Grace Slick - Backing vocals
Lynn Wilson - Backing vocals


Tracks:

1. If Looks Could Kill lyrics
2. What About Love lyrics
3. Never lyrics
4. These Dreams lyrics
5. The Wolf lyrics
6. All Eyes lyrics
7. Nobody Home lyrics
8. Nothin' At All lyrics
9. What He Don't Know lyrics
10. Shell Shock lyrics

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Player [Room with a view - 1980]


Player [Room with a view - 1980]

Origin: Los Angeles, California (USA)

Player [Room with a view - 1980] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyrics

Take a listen on youtube

Line-up:

Peter Beckett - Vocals, guitar
Ronn Moss - Bass, backing vocals
John Friesen - Drums

Additional musicians:

Miles Joseph - Guitar, backing vocals
Gabriel Katona - Keyboards, backing vocals


Tracks:

1. Room With a View lyrics
2. It's for You lyrics
3. Upside Down lyrics
4. Who Do You Think You Are lyrics
5. Bad News Travels Fast lyrics
6. All Tied Up lyrics
7. Givin' It All lyrics
8. It May Never Happen lyrics
9. Tip of the Iceberg lyrics

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Night


Origin: Los Angeles (USA)

NIGHT
Night: Chris Thompson - Robbie McIntosh - Stevie Lange - Billy Kristian - Bobby Wright - Bobby Guidotti
Chris Thompson - Robbie McIntosh - Stevie Lange - Billy Kristian - Bobby Wright - Bobby Guidotti
Discography:

Night [Long distance - 1980] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyricsLong distance - 1980 (with lyrics)

Notes:

- Night was a rock band formed in 1978 in Los Angeles whose personnel were veteran British-based session musicians.

Night's vocalists Stevie Vann (aka Stevie Lange) and Chris Thompson had met when Vann had provided backing vocals for the 1978 album Watch by Manfred Mann's Earth Band then fronted by Thompson. Soon afterwards Thompson invited Vann to join him in a new outfit, Vann's session group known as Bones having recently disbanded and Thompson having reduced his involvement with Manfred Mann's Earth Band.

Richard Perry produced two albums by Night for his Planet label; the group's eponymous 1979 debut album yielded two US Top 40 hits: "Hot Summer Nights" (#18) and "If You Remember Me" (#17).

"Hot Summer Nights", a cover of a minor Walter Egan hit, featured Lange on lead vocals and gave Night their one international hit most significantly in Australia at No. 3 with more moderate success in Canada (#23), the Netherlands (#21), New Zealand (#28) and South Africa (#13).

"If You Remember Me", recorded as the theme song for the film The Champ, was introduced on the Night album but in its single release credited solely to Chris Thompson with another album track "Cold Wind Across My Heart" - featuring both Thompson and Vann - being marketed as the second Night single; the latter track failed to chart and the Night album peaked at a moderate No. 113, the group's gig opening for the Doobie Brothers failing to significantly boost their popularity.

A second album release by Night in 1980 entitled Long Distance produced a minor hit in its single release: "Love on the Airwaves", and was otherwise overlooked. Night had no further recordings released but did not officially disband until 1982.

Night can be seen in the 1980 film The Monster Club performing "The Stripper". -

(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Night_(band))



- There's a connection somewhere between New Zealand, South Africa, and good ol Blighty with this band. NZ'er Thompson previously sang with South African Manfred Mann and his Earth Band, Stevie Lange is a South African by birth (at one stage married to producer Robert 'Mutt' Lange, her maiden name is Van Kerken), Billy Kristian is a NZ'er as well, while McIntosh is English. Not sure about the other two, but near enough is good enough. The band came together in 1978, and released their debut album the following year. A slightly different lineup for that one, which yielded the hit single 'Hot Summer Nights', a favourite on Classic Rock stations, and heard quite often on radio at the time. It also featured many L.A musicians, including members of Toto.

With 'Long Distance' their sophomore effort, the sound shifted between the cosy radio friendly environment of Fleetwood Mac and Heart, but had more of an AOR edge to it. Most of the songs are punchy, and see the vocal lead split between Lange and Thompson. Standouts include the smooth AOR of 'Don't Break My Heart', the superb jingly-jangly 'Love On The Airwaves' and the desperate musical heat of 'Callin' Me Back'. The pent-up energy continues on 'Stealin', though by this stage, the foot is taken off the accelerator with the lukewarm efforts of 'Miss You (Like I Do) and 'Day After Day'. Perhaps because of that, the album is not as immediate as the debut, and this is where the major difference is apparent.

Though the band released two albums, they deemed their existence and lack of success as a failure, and subsequently all the members moved onto greener pastures. McIntosh had a stint with The Pretenders while Chris Thompson extended his solo career, while Lange reverted to studio work, of which she's done a heap over the years, as well as appearing as a solo artist under the name Stevie Vann. -

(http://www.glorydazemusic.com/articles.php?article_id=433)

Night [Long distance - 1980]


Night [Long distance - 1980]

Origin: Los Angeles (USA)

Night [Long distance - 1980] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyrics

Take a listen on youtube

Line-up:

Stevie Lange - Vocals
Chris Thompson - Vocals, guitar
Robbie McIntosh - Guitar, backing vocals
Billy Kristian - Bass, backing vocals
Bobby Guidotti - Drums
Bobby Wright - Keyboards

Additional musicians:
Kevin Savigar - Keyboards, piano
Graham Todd - Piano
Morris Pert - Percussion
Vicky Brown - Backing vocals
Kay Garner - Backing vocals


Tracks:

1. Dr. Rock lyrics
2. Don't Break My Heart lyrics
3. Love On The Airwaves lyrics
4. The Letter lyrics
5. Callin' Me Back lyrics
6. You Cried Wolf lyrics
7. Stealin' lyrics
8. Miss You (Like I Do) lyrics
9. Day After Day lyrics
10. Good To Be Back In Your Arms lyrics
11. Hot Summer Nights (Bonus track)

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Leyden Zar


Origin: Quebec (Canada)

LEYDEN ZAR
Leyden Zar: Paul Strauss - Pascal Mailloux - Eddie Stevens - Jimmy Lenz - Jo jo Boaz
Paul Strauss - Pascal Mailloux - Eddie Stevens - Jimmy Lenz - Jo jo Boaz
Discography:

Leyden Zar [st - 1985] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyricsst - 1985

Notes:

- Leyden Zar was first assembled throughout 1976 as the backing band for Robert Leroux, then one of Montreal's biggest club signers. Consisting of bassist Paul Grondin and keyboardist Pascal Mailloux both handling lead vocals, guitarists Jacques Noel and Brian Wilson, and drummer Serge Gratton, they broke out on their own in '78 and toured the circuit while working on their own material.
After submitting demos to just about every management company in La Belle Province, they were signed by Michel Regimbauld and Michel Perrotte to Sens Unique Enterprises in 1980. They went to Le Studio at Morin Heights later that year with producers Nick Blagona and Andre Perry, and released their self-titled debut the next spring. Filled with all original compositions, their sound was a mix of new wave and rock sensibility of the day, creating a unique blend of keyboard-driven commercial pop. But despite the singles "Money Talks Loud" and "Backstreet Girl," the album was received with little fanfare.

Less than a year later, A & M dropped the band, and Grondin and Wilson both parted ways with the band. By the summer of '82 they were back to a quartet, with new guitarist Eddie Stevens replacing Wilson. Mailloux had assumed the frontman duties and the band released LEYDEN ZAR II through Epic Records in 1985, produced by Walter Rossi. "That's Alright" was the first single from the record and also featured the band's entry into video, the 'b' side to the single being the previously unreleased "I Wanna Be Lovin' You."

The band fell apart the next year, but Unidisc re-released both albums on CD in 1996. -





- Leyden Zar were a Quebec based band and were formed as early as 1976. Apparently the band members were originally part of the backing band for French Canadian singer Robert Leroux. The members (listed above) hooked up together to do their own thing. Interestingly enough, three of the members could all sing lead vocals, and it shows on their first self titled album released on A&M/Unidisc. The main feature of the band are the quirky keyboard arrangements of Pascal Mailloux, on what is predominantly an album of radio oriented rock. On the back cover they look like a cross between new-wavers and remnants of seventies styled rockers a la Starz, Gambler etc. -





- I kinda like this Canadian band. As mentioned in an earlier review of their 1981 debut album (see Related Articles below), I thought they were very underrated, but extremely good nonetheless. That debut was quite 'new wavy' for want of a better phrase, though still displaying some nifty and quirky AOR perhaps similar to The Tubes and Harlequin. Despite the passing of four years, the majority of the band stayed intact, except for the lead guitar role: Eddie Stevens coming in for the departed Brian Wilson. On this album, the band forge a slightly new direction, this time taking on a sound similar to fellow Canadians Body Electric and Straight Lines. They leave the quirky styles from yesteryear in the closet, this set of tunes an improvement on what was (for me at least) an already excellent debut. -


Leyden Zar [st - 1985]


Leyden Zar [st - 1985]

Origin: Quebec (Canada)

Leyden Zar [st - 1985] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyrics

Take a listen on youtube

Line-up:

Pascal Mailloux - Vocals, keyboards
Eddie Stevens - Guitar, backing vocals
Jimmy Lenz - Guitar
Paul Strauss - Bass, backing vocals
Jo jo Boaz - Percussion


Tracks:

1. It's Alright
2. Sucking On Her Fingers
3. Still In The Race
4. I Want You Back
5. Don't Talk About Love
6. All To Myself
7. Out Of Touch
8. Communicate

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Diving for pearls


Origin: Boston (USA), settled in New York (USA)

DIVING FOR PEARLS

Diving for pearls: Peter Clemente - Jack Moran - Danny Malone - David Weeks - Yul Vazquez
Peter Clemente - Jack Moran - Danny Malone - David Weeks - Yul Vazquez
Discography:

Diving for pearls [st - 1989] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyricsst - 1989 (with lyrics)

Notes:

- Diving For Pearls, named after a line in an Elvis Costello song, was an American melodic rock band founded in 1984 whose self-titled debut album was released in 1989. A follow-up, Texas, was issued in 2006 without much fanfare.

Diving For Pearls originated in Boston, MA and was formed by Danny Malone (lead vocals, guitar) and Jack Moran (keyboards), both former members of local act The Trademarks. After slugging it out on the Boston scene for a couple of years, Malone and Moran moved to New York City where they were eventually joined by Yul Vazquez (guitar, vocals), formerly with Urgent, and Peter Clemente (drums), who had played with the Michael Monroe fronted NY act Secret Chiefs and appears on Monroe's 1987 debut solo album, Nights Are So Long; Vazquez and Clemente had also both been part of Jean Beauvoir's Drums Along the Mohawk touring band. L.A. native David Weeks (bass) would complete the DFP line-up.

Things began to move for the band when Epic Records A&R man Michael Kaplan came out to a NY gig in 1988 and convinced Epic to sign the band to a $20,000 development deal. He subsequently introduced the members to up and coming producer David Prater who cut half a dozen songs with the group. Not fully convinced yet, Epic head of A&R, Don Grierson, allotted some extra money and another half a dozen songs were recorded under the guidance of Prater. One of the new tracks was "New Moon" and according to Malone, it was this particular track that convinced Grierson to sign the group.

Diving For Pearls eponymous debut was recorded from April 14 to June 10, 1989 at the Eleven-Eleven Sound Studios in Nashville, TN with Prater at the helm. The album's release in October 1989, was preceded by the release of the first single and MTV video, "Gimme Your Good Lovin'", and spawned another radio favorite, "I Don't Want To Cry". The record went on to sell over 250,000 copies in the U.S. alone and was named as one of Kerrang! magazine's Top 20 for 1989. A second album was in the works but never completed when the band was dropped by the label due to the changing musical climate.

Diving For Pearls was remastered and re-issued by English label Rock Candy in 2006, including 5 bonus tracks, a studio demo of The Beatles' "Dear Prudence", and 4 live cuts recorded at the Toy Tiger club in Louisville, KY in 1990, including a cover of The Cult's "She Sells Sanctuary".

Danny Malone would move on to join Band Of Angels, led by Elliot Easton of The Cars, whose Roy Thomas Baker produced album for Atlantic Records was shelved and remains unreleased. However, 5 songs from the BOA sessions with Malone on lead vocals would surface as bonus tracks on the 1996 re-issue of Easton's solo album Change No Change, originally released in 1985. Malone would also team up with former Styx member Glen Burtnik in a short lived band called Dunaways who played a half dozen shows at New York's famed CBGBs before calling it quits.

In 2002, Malone resurrected Diving For Pearls and secured a recording contract with Swedish label Atenzia Records. A new album, Texas, eventually surfaced in 2006; it was their first release in 17 years. The band now consisted of Malone as the only original member along with contributions from returning producer David Prater. Though the CD was well written and performed it received little fanfare. As of 2008, Malone was studying for his art major in his hometown of Boston.

Since the demise of Diving For Pearls in the early 1990s, guitarist Yul Vazquez has gone on to a successful TV and movie acting career, starting in 1992 with a role in the movie The Mambo Kings. Between 1995 and '98, he appeared in several episodes of Seinfeld as Bob, The Intimidating Gay Guy. Vazquez was nominated for a 2011 Tony Award for "Best Featured Actor in a Play" for his role of Cousin Julio in The Motherfucker With the Hat. In 2009, Vazquez played acoustic guitar with Ian Astbury of The Cult under the name The Soft Revolt appearing at The Bowery Electric in New York City on the opening night of John Patrick Shanley's play Savage in Limbo, which Astbury was producing. They performed songs by The Cult and Astbury solo material as well as covers by the Rolling Stones, Radiohead, among others.

Peter Clemente later became vice president and director of online entertainment practice at Internet customer relationship management firm Cyber Dialogue. Early in his career, he had been a member of The Mundanes, a new wave band based in Providence, RI, whose 1982 demo was produced by Mick Ronson.

Former bassist David Weeks made the headlines in 2002 as a lawyer representing Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee in their infamous sex video lawsuit against Seattle-based Internet Entertainment Group. He is head of his own law firm based in Westlake Village, CA. -

(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diving_for_Pearls)




- Their one and only album may have been released back in 1989, but the music of Diving For Pearls is still deeply etched in the memories of melodic rock fans the world over. They still clamour over rare copies of the bands classic self-titled debut on eBay, and have been eagerly anticipating its long-awaited follow-up since news broke that vocalist Danny Malone was once again working on new material.

Well now the wait is over, Diving For Pearls sophomore album Texas, has been released on Atenzia Records. It feels great to finally have this record completed and ready for release, says Malone. I think the songs stand up to, and perhaps in some ways are even better than, the songs on the first record. Diving For Pearls aficionados will undoubtedly be excited at such a statement of intent, and with a host of ready-made successors to cherished classics such as New Moon and Gimme Your Good Lovin on Texas, its certainly not without good reason.

Founded in 1988 by Malone and named after a line in the Elvis Costello song, Shipbuilding, Diving For Pearls 1989 self-titled debut gained a coveted five-K review in rock bible Kerrang! But the grunge revolution and poor promotion by Epic prematurely ended the bands career and it would be more than a decade before Malone would reunite with producer David Prater to recreate the distinctive Diving For Pearls sound. Texas was recorded in Allen, Texas and latterly, Massachusetts, during 2004, and the musical chemistry between the two during recording sessions in 1989 was evident in abundance this time around too. Danny affirms: Only David Prater could have produced this record and got the vocal performances that he did out of me. He has a reputation for being extremely demanding, but I would have to say, he has always been capable of getting the best out of me.

While Texas remains true to the timeless sound of Diving For Pearls, the albums 12 tracks demonstrate a contemporary edge and the result is an effortless combination of the modern and the classic, as Malone notes. David and I wanted the new record to have a sense of continuity with the first record without sounding nostalgic, he says. We are both fans of the records being made by bands like the White Stripes and Audioslave, and wanted to see if we could incorporate a few of the elements that they use, without abandoning the sound that we established on the first record.

Crunching opener Thinking About Things That Will Never Be certainly achieves that aim along with possible standout track, The Colours Show and the bluesy album closer, Stop The World From Turning but those traditional Diving For Pearls melodies and Malones superb vocals are always at the forefront. There are a good amount of similarities between the new material and the old material, says Malone. I hope the fans are able to relate to the songs melodically, in the same way that they related to the stuff on the first record.

With material as strong as the heart-stopping ballad The Truth Is, the rocking If I Only Knew and Lonely Is The Dark, that wont be too hard for Diving For Pearls fans to do. Former Diving For Pearls keyboardist Jack Moran contributed to the song writing on three tunes on Texas but Malone believes the albums highlight to be Thinking About Things That Will Never Be, one of his solo compositions. Thats the most notable song for me, Im actually very proud of that particular song as I wrote it myself, he says. I guess that most of the songs started with an idea of mine, and because I enjoy working with other people, were finished with someone elses help. But the contributions of Jack along with David Zycheks guitar and bass guitar playing really helped to shape a sound that is both reminiscent of the first record, without sounding like a obvious attempt to mimic it.

Diving For Pearls were cruelly denied the opportunity to build on such a glorious start to their music career, and though the musical landscape has significantly altered in the 15 years since the band first burst onto the scene, with the release of Texas, Malone believes some things never change.

Were still a good little rock n roll band, with good songs, and hopefully a believable lead singer, he says. And I dont think that weve strayed too far away from what weve always been good at…melodic rock. -

(http://melodic-hardrock.com/bios/diving-pearls/)

Diving for pearls [st - 1989]


Diving for pearls [st - 1989]

Origin: Boston (USA), settled in New York (USA)

Diving for pearls [st - 1989] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyrics


Line-up:

Danny Malone - Vocals, guitar
Yul Vazquez - Guitar, backing vocals
David Weeks - Bass
Peter Clemente - Drums
Jack Moran - Keyboards
David Prater - Backing vocals


Tracks:

1. Gimme Your Good Lovin' lyrics
2. Have You Forgotten? lyrics
3. I Close My Eyes lyrics
4. New Moon lyrics
5. Never on Monday lyrics
6. You're All I Know lyrics
7. Mystery Me lyrics
8. I Don't Want to Cry lyrics
9. Keep Our Love Alive lyrics
10. The Girl Can't Stop It lyrics

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Drive, She Said [Drivin' wheel - 1991]


Drive, She Said [Drivin' wheel - 1991]

Origin: New York (USA)

Drive, She Said [Drivin' wheel - 1991] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyrics

Take a listen on youtube

Line-up:

Al Fritsch - Vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards
Mark Mangold - Keyboards, drums, backing vocals

Additional musicians:

Tony Bruno - Guitar
Aldo Nova - Guitar
Rick Kolster - Guitar
Ray DeTone - Guitar
Paul St. James - Bass
Benny Mardones - Backing vocals
Fiona - Backing vocals
George Morton - Backing vocals
Perrita Kitson - Backing vocals
Mike Charzuk - Backing vocals


Tracks:

1. Think of Love lyrics
2. Drivin' Wheel lyrics
3. Hard to Hold lyrics
4. When You Love Someone lyrics
5. Can't Get Enough lyrics
6. Veil of Tears lyrics
7. It's Gonna Take a Miracle lyrics
8. It Just Keeps Comin' lyrics
9. Just For the Moment lyrics
10. Do You Believe lyrics

Monday, March 19, 2018

Rick Springfield


Origin: Guildford, New South Wales (Australia)

RICK SPRINGFIELD
Rick Springfield
Rick Springfield
Discography:

Rick Springfield [Tao - 1985] aor melodic rock music blogspot full albums bands lyricsTao - 1985 (with lyrics)

Notes:

- To the uninitiated, the name Rick Springfield conjures up everything 1980s: Jessie’s Girl, General Hospital , Polo shirts and Converse tennis shoes. Dig a little deeper and you’ll find that Rick Springfield is much more than the mistakenly categorized “actor turned musician”. A songwriter and guitar player to rival the greats, Rick Springfield is a musician that has stood the test of time and the decades since his surge of fame starting in 1981.

Rick Springfield was born Richard Lewis Springthorpe on August 23, 1949.  He grew up in various locations, spending most of his childhood in Melbourne, Australia.  An army brat (his father was a colonel in the Australian Army), Rick found that he was often the new kid in town.   His teen years landed him in England, just in time for, as he recalls, "girls and music".  Returning back to Australia, Rick eventually dropped out of high school to pursue his music.  His first band, Rock House, landed a gig in Vietnam during the height of the conflict there, and Rick found himself dodging bombs and throwing grenades.  While the band didn't last long, this lead him to the wildly popular Australian teen band, Zoot.  In Zoot, Rick honed his songwriting and performance tactics, so much so that he was plucked out of the group to try his hand at solo music.

By 1971, Rick had top hit in Australia, "Speak to the Sky".  Record companies in the US were courting him.  It left Rick with some difficult personal decisions:  leave his homeland for the unknown of the US?  His father, with whom he credits his passion for music, had recently suffered a debilitating stroke, and needed a great deal of care.  Though Rick hesitated to leave him, Rick finally made the decision to try his luck in Hollywood.

Steve Binder and Robie Porter helped produce Rick's first US album, "Beginnings", which included a re-recorded version of "Speak to the Sky".  Seeming success was quick quick for the newly named Rick Springfield:  "Speak to the Sky" landed in the US Top Ten and "Beginnings" found it's way into the top twenty.  Unfortunately, most of Rick's press was coming from teen magazines, who were selling him right along with David Cassidy and Donny Osmond.  The radio stations suspected foul play:  a teen sensation who had no real following.  They refused to play the song and it quickly dropped off the charts.

Binder and Porter were not deterred by this, though Rick calls this time "a real heavy time."   They signed Rick to a new deal at Columbia Records, and soon Rick released his second stateside album, "Comic Book Heroes".  Recorded in London, this album tried to fight the critics with serious songs such as "The Photograph".  Unfortunately, with most of his publicity again coming from the teen mags, the album was never taken seriously by radio.   Again Rick was left without a record deal.

In 1974, Rick was asked to create music and star in an animated series called "Mission Magic".  Rick was excited about the idea of showcasing his songs on a weekly TV show.  The show aired on ABC's Saturday morning line up.  While Rick still continued to record and write serious music of his own (much of which ended up on the never released "Springfield" LP of 1974), most of the music from Mission Magic was necessarily fluff.  The show was cancelled after the second season.

Personally for Rick, a bright spot during 1974 was his live in relationship with Linda Blair ("The Exorcist").  Rick calls it his first "grown up relationship,"  though at the time Linda Blair was only fifteen.  The relationship lasted a year, and both still recall the time fondly.  "He's someone I'll always love," said Linda in VH-1's Behind the Music.  Rick says that of all his former girlfriends, Linda is the only one he remains friends with.

By 1975, Rick was in  "the worst time of my life," he says.  He had no job and no prospects.  He'd had two record deals that had fallen through.  He had records that released and did poorly, he had records that never had been released.  Despite fan letters that asked to see his mansion in Hollywood, Rick was scraping by on almost nothing.  He felt like a failure.  The depression that had haunted him since fifteen reared it's head again and Rick had thoughts of suicide.

Eventually, he dropped Binder and Porter and decided to strike out on his own.  He began acting classes to support his music career.  "Most guys were out there waiting tables while they waited for acting jobs.  I was acting while I was waiting for a music job."  He recorded his 1976 album, "Wait for Night" during this time.  While the album was strong musically, recorded with Elton John's rhythm section of Nigel Olson and Dee Murray, the Chelsea label it was recorded on folded soon after the album's release.

Rick spent the next few years earning acting paychecks and writing tunes for the next album.  He had a new management team which included Tom Skeeter, and they were determined to land their artist a deal.  In 1980 he recorded "Working Class Dog" on a shoestring budget, recording on off hours when the studio time was cheaper.  It was there that he met his future wife, Barbara Porter.   She was working as a receptionist there at the time, and later people would jokingly ask her if she indeed was "Jessie's Girl."  "She had a lot of energy," recalls drummer Jack White of that time.

Though his managers were negotiating a deal with RCA to release "Working Class Dog,"  Rick auditioned for the soap opera, "General Hospital."  He was used to album deals folding, or records not doing well, and the steady paycheck of the soap was enticing.  He signed to the soap as Dr. Noah Drake in early 1981, and RCA released his album very shortly after.

Almost overnight, Rick's star shone brightly:  his album was being played on the radio, he was recognized from his work on TV, and Rick was suddenly famous.  Rick was ready.  He'd waited for ten years for this moment, and he was excited to see the faces turn when he walked by.  "It was so fast," he recalls, "Just a few weeks."  The soap opera made Rick's face recognizable to millions, the radio made his music so.

"I've heard that sometimes, especially from others who have experienced fame, that when what you want most is given to you, inevitably something else is taken away,"  Rick said on TNN's "Life and Times of Rick Springfield."  Within a few months of fulfilling his dreams of success, Rick's father took a turn for the worse and passed away.  For Rick, it was a cruel blow.  He always felt that his father was his champion, giving him the support he needed to get through the tough times and stick to his goal of being a successful musician.  His father would be right there along with him with every success and failure.  The pain struck Rick deeply, though he didn't have time to indulge in his grief;  with only a three day hiatus from General Hospital to fly to Australia for the funeral, Rick threw himself into making his success last.  Rick can still be seen in interviews today, eighteen years later, getting choked up and shedding tears when his father is brought up.  "It hits me where I live," he has said.  "I still have a lot of pain about it."  The musical thread his father gave him continues to be seen in his music...references to his father can be found on every album he made after his father's death.

Rick recorded his next album, "Success Hasn't Spoiled Me Yet" during his off hours on General Hospital and toured in the same way.  "I have never seen anyone work that hard," recalled drummer Jack White on VH-1's Behind the Music.  While critics still didn't quite trust a rocker with such a pretty face and huge teen following, many were beginning to come around to see Rick's talent as a rocker.  In 1982, Rick was awarded a Grammy Award for Best Male Vocal.  MTV played his videos in heavy rotation, and Showtime aired a live special, "Live and Kicking."  Rick Springfield was here to stay.

But the hard work was burning Rick's candle at both ends.  By 1983, he was ready to be released from his contract at General Hospital and concentrate on his music.  His release that year, "Living In Oz," heralded a new Rick.  His look was tougher, harder, and so were his songs.  Gone were the pink suits and purple Converse; Rick wore torn leather and armbands to prove his point.  Fans loved it; the album went multi platinum and spawned three top twenty songs.

With more free time on his hands, movies were the next logical step for Rick in terms of his acting.  A true multimedia success story, he jumped in with both feet.  While he was offered many supporting roles such as one in "A Few Good Men", Rick chose one which would showcase him.  More an ego choice than anything, Rick released the movie "Hard to Hold" in which he was the sole star.  "I thought I could make anything work," he said.  Unfortunately, "Hard to Hold," with it's nude scenes and screaming teens, brought Rick's movie career to a screeching halt.  But the soundtrack was solid and it still flew off the shelves.   Rick turned back to his music.

In 1984, after years of dating, Rick and Barbara Porter decided it was time to get married.  They wed in October of that year, after Rick's summer tour was completed.  They were married in his family's church in Australia, and kept the marriage quite low key.  Most fans did not realize until much later that Rick had in fact married.  Keeping with a tradition that continues to this day, Barbara maintained a very low profile and protected the privacy of her new family.  She soon became pregnant with their first son.

During Barbara's pregnancy, Rick released his eighth (counting only released solo albums) album, "Tao".  Full of strife and questions about life, this album heralds a time when Rick moved away from "girl songs" and into questions about "la raison d'etre".  1985 saw Rick tour with this album, touting songs such as "Celebrate Youth" and "State of the Heart".  After the tour ended, Rick returned home for the birth of his first son, Liam, in October.  Most fans remember this as the time they found out about Rick's marriage:  when he announced the birth of his son.

The birth of Liam brought about some huge emotional issues for Rick.  Having lost his father and dealing with fatherhood without him was a difficult time.  He was used to being a rock star, a musician, an actor...he wasn't sure that all that he'd worked for made one bit of a difference in terms of fatherhood.  It was another difficult time for Rick as he entered psychoanalysis to find the source of his depression.

As the six month break he'd planned turned into two years of off time, Rick searched for meaning.  His search is documented in his 1988 release, "Rock of Life".  It tells of the difficulty of marriage, of not being ready to be a father, of finding his reason for living in being a father...heavy, deep, emotional songs.  While most of Rick's fans weren't quite old enough to understand the depth of these songs, they appreciated the raw emotion shared in them.  Rick looked forward to touring to promote the album, but it never happened.  Rick suffered severe injuries in a motorcycle accident just prior to the start of the tour.  The entire tour had to be cancelled.

For many fans, this is where they all thought the story ended.  Rick dropped out of sight as he recovered from his injuries, staying at home for the birth of his second son, Joshua, in March of 1989.  Rick slowly began to take on acting jobs for TV movies and shows.  This allowed him to stay at home and make family a priority.  Fans often remember the pilot of "Nick Knight" in which Rick played a vampire, or "Human Target" where Rick morphed into different people to solve mysteries.  Several TV movies followed into the early nineties.

Rick toured a brief summer tour in 1993 to test the waters for a comeback.  Touring again was a great rush for Rick as he realized that a great many fans were still out there and waiting for him to stage a comeback.  He began to start writing a new album that would provide just that.  Fans were teased with news of this new album, but it would turn out to be many years in the offing.

In 1994, Rick was offered a role in the syndicated show, "High Tide".   The show centered around two brothers who run a surf shop but endlessly get caught up in solving mysteries that happen all around them.  First shot in New Zealand, then San Diego, and finally in Santa Barbara, the steady show took up much of Rick's time for the three seasons it ran.  A mixture of comedy and detective work, "High Tide" earned favorable reviews and allowed fans to see that Rick was still busy in Hollywood.

When "High Tide" was not renewed in 1997, loyal fans breathed a sigh mixed with sadness and relief.  Finally now Rick was able to concentrate on his new music promised to them years ago.  He teased them with the release of "Sahara Snow" in July of 1997, a collaboration between Bob Marlette, Tim Pierce and Rick.  Excited fans bought up so many copies of the first new music in nine years that online outlets sold out of this import.

In 1998, Rick began to tour, promoting his new album, "Karma", which was supposed to be released later that year.  Though the album was delayed until April of 1999, that didn't matter to the thousands who flocked to see him live.  Stories of fans who traveled by plane great distances began to circulate as the press began to realize that Rick Springfield was back in the game.  The hype around "Karma" was so great that when the Japanese Import was released prior to the US release, fans snatched it up online and created a need for a second pressing.

The Karma Tour surpassed everyone's, including Rick's, expectations, and allowed Rick to play to over 2,000,000 fans from it's beginning in June of 1998 until it's close on New Year's Eve, 2000. The success was so great that it prompted Rick to record and release his latest CD, "The Greatest Hits Alive." Now currently available in stores all over the US, this special disc was released in a special collectible limited release in September of 2000.

But the success of reconnecting with fans and releasing a new live disc weren't enough for Rick Springfield. In December of 2000 he announced that he would take over the lead role in the Vegas spectacular, EFX Alive. The show was retooled to fit Rick's style and now includes two original tunes Rick penned just for the show, "The Rhythm of the Beat" and "Forever". The show, known for it's wonderful special effects, opened on January 30, 2001, the same day "Alive" hit the stores. The reviews of both of Rick's newest projects have been favorable.

Rick spent the next several years starring in the Vegas hit, "EFX Alive" (renamed and retolled just for Rick's rockstar angle in the show). The two and a half year stint living away from his family provided just enough solitude and stress to give Rick material for a new record. The 2004 release "shock/denial/anger/acceptance" chronicles this time period of anger and struggle.  The critically acclaimed disc showed a much harder edge to Springfield. Rough and raw in parts, disarmingly sad and simple in others, "shock/denial/anger/acceptance" is a highly personal romp through Rick's darker side. While the two singles from the record failed to gain Billboard chart status, the ensuing tour brought in thousands of newly minted Rick Springfield fans who gained a deeper admiration for his musical skills.  The tour gained Rick popular recognition from coast to coast as his tour schedule filled with sold out venues.

2005 brought Rick new management, a live DVD recorded for high definition TV, and a new record to promote. "The Day After Yesterday" gave fans a break from Rick's angry, angst filled tunes from the previous record. The record was filled with cover tunes from the Adult Contemporary mold, and was released in July, 2005. While the record did yield lackluster sales, it got the attention of his old friends at General Hospital. Talks ensued, and in December 2005, Rick returned to his old haunts in Port Charles as an older, drunker and more disheveled Dr. Noah Drake.

Rick continues to record and appear on General Hospital, and the "Human Touch Tour" "07" seems an appropriate way to showcase Rick's unique mix of old and new, of energy and appreciation for his past.  The weekend tour that began nine years ago with questions as to whether fans remembered him has turned into full blown hysteria at times, with fans flying from coast to coast to find their next "Rick Fix".

It makes one wonder what Rick's got up his sleeve next. Well into his 50s, Rick just seems to be getting better with age, and certainly more energetic.

"You’ve got to be committed," Springfield says of overcoming life’s obstacles, whether it’s winning back your life or winning over skeptics. "You’ve got to love to do it just on your own, sitting in your own room or in your own studio or playing to 30 people instead of 30,000. You’ve got to get the joy out of doing that, and I do."

"My sole [and soul] point in writing is, first of all, the  process," he continues, "and also to connect with people through what I write. The greatest thrill is when someone comes back to me about a song I’ve written that mirrored an event in their life."

And that simplicity of what Rick does and what he stands for, despite all the complexities of his life, is what keeps his loyal fan base coming back for more, every time.  What goes around truly does come around for Rick Springfield. -

(http://www.rickspringfield.us/library/biography.html)



- Although Rick Springfield's music was frequently dismissed as vapid teen idol fare, his best moments have actually withstood the test of time far better than most critics would ever have imagined, emerging as some of the most well-crafted mainstream power pop of the 1980s. A singer-turned soap opera star-turned singer, Springfield was born Richard Springthorpe on August 23, 1949, in Sydney, Australia, to a military man; the family moved around Australia and England a great deal during Rick's childhood, and he sought his escape from the difficulty of making friends in books and music. He formed a band in high school and eventually joined a '50s revival group called Rock House, moving on from there to join the teenybopper band Zoot in 1968. Zoot became one of the most popular groups in Australia until 1971, scoring several hits. Springfield went solo after the breakup and garnered his first U.S. success the following year with a re-recording of his Australian hit "Speak to the Sky"; the song reached number 14 in the U.S., but would prove to be his last major success for quite some time. Subsequent '70s albums stiffed, and record company difficulties prevented Springfield from recording after 1976.

In the meantime, Springfield had begun taking acting classes; he signed a contract with Universal Studios in 1980 and appeared on several television programs. Although Universal dropped him shortly thereafter, he was able to secure a recording contract with RCA on the strength of his demos; in the midst of recording his debut for the label, he was signed to play the young, eligible Dr. Noah Drake on General Hospital in 1981. Springfield's popularity skyrocketed, setting the stage for the release of Working Class Dog later that year. Powered by the classic single "Jessie's Girl," which eventually hit the top of the charts, and the Top Ten follow-up "I've Done Everything for You," Working Class Dog was a smash success, and Springfield eventually returned to his first love of music when concerts conflicted with his television career. The follow-up, Success Hasn't Spoiled Me Yet, was released in 1982, spawning the Top Ten smash "Don't Talk to Strangers"; 1983's Living in Oz offered more of the same, including the Top Ten "Affair of the Heart," although it betrayed signs that the gears were beginning to wear down on the Springfield machine.

Springfield made the leap to the big screen in 1984 with Hard to Hold, which was much more successful at the box office than with critics; the soundtrack spawned his last Top Ten hit to date, "Love Somebody." His career seemed to bottom out afterward, although he recorded several more albums over the rest of the '80s, and continued to land television roles into the '90s. In 1999, Springfield returned with a new album, Karma. Shock/Denial/Anger/Acceptance and Day After Yesterday followed in 2004 and 2005, respectively. In 2007, Springfield released the holiday-themed Christmas with You, along with the Early Sound City Sessions collection. The following year, a live DVD documenting his ultra-popular '80s concerts (Beat of the Live Drum) was issued, as well as an album of all new material, Venus in Overdrive. A year later, he released the children's album My Precious Little One: Lullabies for a New Generation. In 2012, he returned to major labels, signing with Universal's Hip-O for a new album called Songs for the End of the World.

In early 2013, Springfield's profile got a boost when he appeared in Dave Grohl's documentary Sound City, in which Springfield spoke of his experiences recording at the California studio that gave the film its name. Springfield also appeared on the film's companion album, Sound City: Real to Reel, performing the song "The Man That Never Was" with members of Grohl's band the Foo Fighters. Springfield took a look back at his career on an album of songs and stories, 2015's Stripped Down but the record was overshadowed by his acclaimed performances in the second season of True Detective and, especially, his role in Jonathan Demme's Ricki & the Flash, where he held his own with Meryl Streep. Next up was the February 2016 release of Rocket Science, a studio album that featured songwriting collaborations with Jay DeMarcus of Rascal Flatts and Tad Kubler of the Hold Steady. -

(https://www.allmusic.com/artist/rick-springfield-mn0000359613/biography)



- Background
Springfield grew up in a military family, and moved as his father, who was in the army, was posted to various military bases throughout Australia and Great Britain. Springfield started playing piano at age 9. He began playing the guitar at age 13, and writing songs at 14.

Musical career
In 1967, Springfield dropped out of high school to begin his professional music career. His first appearance in a band was as a singer/guitarist in the band Rock House. In 1968, the band changed the name to MPD, Ltd, then embarked on a tour of Vietnam to entertain the troops stationed there.

In 1969, when Springfield returned to Australia, he formed a band named Wickedy Wak with MPD bandmates Danny Finley and Paul Shannon, along with a keyboardist who went by the name of Ray Wight. Later that year, he joined the band Zoot. Zoot became one of the most popular Australian groups of the late 1960s. Another notable member of Zoot was Beeb Birtles, who in 1975 went on to form the Little River Band. In May 1971, when Zoot broke up, Springfield began a solo career. He had a #1 hit single in Australia, “Speak to the Sky.”

After his success in Australia, the 22-year-old Springfield relocated to Hollywood, California in 1972. Capitol Records signed him, and he recorded his first album Beginnings. “Speak to the Sky” was re-released as a single in the US, and reached #14 in the Billboard Top 100. Exposure on American Bandstand, as well as being regularly featured in teen fan magazines such as 16 magazine and Tiger Beat, sparked interest amongst teenage girls. In 1973 a Saturday morning cartoon called Mission: Magic! was centered around Springfield and ran for one year, with a soundtrack album also released.

According to the 2005 A&E Documentary Rick Springfield: Behind The Image, radio stations became suspicious of the album “Beginnings” and refused to play it, because of rumors that the record company, Capitol Records, was paying people to purchase it. Capitol denied the rumor, but Springfield was subsequently dropped from the label. However, in 1973 he was signed by Columbia Records, who released his second album Comic Book Heroes (1974). It received very good reviews from Rolling Stone Magazine, but it failed to chart. Springfield was dropped from that label as well, and plans to release an album entitled Springfield were also scrapped.

In 1976, Springfield released a third album Wait for Night under the Chelsea Records label. But while he was out touring to promote the album, the record company went bankrupt. Despite one single, “Take A Hand”, grazing the Top 40, the album still fell off the charts. Throughout the rest of the 1970s, Springfield performed in various clubs on the Sunset Strip and throughout Los Angeles, but was unable to maintain a career at the top of the charts.

After a break of several years to do some acting (see section below), Springfield returned to music in 1981 with the album Working Class Dog. Most notable on this album were the singles “Jessie’s Girl”, which went to #1 on the Billboard charts, and “I’ve Done Everything for You” which was written by Sammy Hagar. Springfield won a Grammy in 1982 for “Best Male Rock Vocal Performance” for “Jessie’s Girl”. Springfield was also nominated for a second Grammy in 1982 and a third Grammy in 1983. His subsequent release in 1982, the album Success Hasn’t Spoiled Me Yet, also contained a string of top 40 hits including the #2 hit “Don’t Talk to Strangers” and the ballad “What Kind of Fool Am I?”

His 1983 album Living in Oz contained more serious subject matter, and more of a hard-rock sound. The album went platinum on the strength of the hits “Human Touch”, “Souls”, and “Affair of the Heart”. That same year he won an American Music Award for “Favorite Pop/Rock Male Artist” along with John Cougar Mellencamp.

His 1984 single “Love Somebody” (from the soundtrack album to the Hard to Hold movie he starred in that year) was his last top ten hit in the U.S. to date. He stopped touring in 1985, for the birth of his first son, Liam.

Springfield was one of several performers who participated in the Live Aid charity concert. After releasing the album Tao in 1985, Springfield chose to take a break from recording to spend more time with his family, and to deal with the depression that had affected him since his adolescence.

In 1987, Springfield returned to the studio and released the album Rock of Life. The next year, he was seriously injured in an ATV accident. Since he was unable to play the guitar for six months, the planned tour to promote his album was canceled. It would be nearly a decade before Springfield would return to the studio to record the albums Sahara Snow (1997) and Karma(1999).

From 1999 onward, he has held several concert tours throughout North America. In February 2004, he released the critically acclaimed album “Shock/Denial/Anger/Acceptance” (in short S/D/A/A) on his own “Gomer Record” label. It went up to #8 on the Top Independent Albums chart, and #22 on Top Internet Album Sales chart.

In 2005, Springfield released his latest album, The Day After Yesterday - a collection of his covers of “songs [he] wish[es] [he] had written.”

On April 28, 2006, Springfield performed a medley of his hits at the 33rd Daytime Emmy Awards, and received an enthusiastic response, which included a standing ovation from his acting peers. Springfield’s latest release is a live concert DVD entitled Live in Rockford.

In late-August 2007, Rick took part in the Countdown Spectacular 2 concert series in Australia. It was the first time Rick had performed live in Australia for some 35 years. -

(http://www.eventim.co.uk/rick-springfield-biography.html?affiliate=EUK&doc=artistPages/biography&fun=artist&action=biography&kuid=474386)




- Born Richard Springthorpe, August 23, 1949, in Sydney, Australia; son of Norman James (a career officer in the Australian Army); immigrated to U.S., 1972; married; children: Liam. Addresses: Agent-- Triad Artists, Inc., 10100 Santa Monica Blvd., 16th Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90067. Management-- Ron Weisner Entertainment, 9200 Sunset Blvd., Penthouse 15, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

In 1981 Rick Springfield gained a large audience in two mediums; he watched his smash hit single "Jessie's Girl" race up the charts from the vantage point of his newly landed spot as a regular on the popular television soap opera General Hospital. The pull of Springfield's musical success proved stronger than that of his soap career, however, and he left the show to follow up "Jessie's Girl" with spirited hits like "Don't Talk to Strangers" and "Affair of the Heart." As David Wild summed up in a Rolling Stone review, "Over the years [Springfield has] come up with some delectable ear candy."
Springfield was born August 23, 1949, in Sydney, Australia. His father was a career officer in the Australian Army, and the family moved around a great deal throughout Rick's childhood. Because of this, he had difficulty making friends and hated school, especially during the years his father was stationed in England. He told Edwin Miller of Seventeen, "In England, I was the Australian pig, the new kid with the funny accent. It was really traumatic. Because of the country schooling I had, I knew less than the English kids my age in the same class, and I got cut to pieces." Springfield's dislike of school, however, did not prevent him from becoming an avid reader; in fact, he would often stay home from school to read, favoring science fiction and humor. Eventually Springfield began writing stories like the ones he read.
Springfield also enjoyed listening to music and used it as a conscious form of rebellion against his parents. He tried to make his own guitars until his parents bought him one when he was 15 years old. While still in high school he formed a band called the Jordy Boys; the youngest member, he was also the least worldly. Springfield recollected in Irwin Stambler's Encyclopedia of Pop, Rock, and Soul: "The other members had been in jail for things like armed robbery. They were 25 and I was 16. One time we were parked near a milk bar and they ran into it and held it up. I stayed out in the car. Lucky we didn't get caught or it might have started me on the wrong foot."
Eventually Springfield made his way into better bands, including Rock House, which even played for U.S. troops stationed in Vietnam, and Zoot, which became the most popular musical act in Australia during his tenure with the group. When Zoot split up, Springfield went solo, scoring an Australian hit in 1971 with "Speak to the Sky." As he had hoped, this recording received the attention of U.S. record companies; he was signed by Capitol Records in 1972, prompting his move to the United States.
Many of Springfield's other Australian efforts were included on his American debut album, Beginnings. "Speak to the Sky" became a minor hit in the United States, but much to Springfield's distress, he was pegged by fans and critics as a teen idol like singers David Cassidy and Donny Osmond. The following year, in hopes of circumventing Capitol's encouragement of his bubble gum rocker status, Springfield switched to Columbia Records and released Comic Book Heroes. The album failed miserably, and Columbia did not renew his contract.
Springfield's problems mounted as he became entangled in various legal disputes with his management and was forced to withdraw from the music business for a few years. When he returned, none of the major labels were interested in his demos, so he opted to record Wait for the Night on the smaller Chelsea label. Before the album could gain much exposure, however, Chelsea declared bankruptcy, dashing Springfield's plans. Still able to live off his Australian royalties, he continued to write material and record demos, convinced that the right record deal would come along.
In the meantime, Springfield followed a friend to acting class and rapidly gained enthusiasm for dramatic performance. Soon he and a girlfriend decided to produce and direct themselves in a one-act play, and, as Springfield told Seventeen' s Miller, "We invited every casting director and agent in Hollywood" to see it. Fortunately, the only one who accepted, a representative of Universal Studios, recognized the Australian's talent. Springfield was signed to a contract, which meant he got paid even when he didn't work, and soon began appearing in television programs such as Battlestar Galactica, The Rockford Files, Wonder Woman, The Incredible Hulk, and The Six-Million Dollar Man.
Though eventually dropped by Universal, Springfield was adequately consoled when RCA records, after listening to his demos, signed him to a contract in 1980. While he was recording what would become Working Class Dog, a casting director for General Hospital signed Springfield to play the role of Dr. Noah Drake, a young, eligible physician, and he began appearing on the show in 1981. The soap's audience found Springfield very appealing; he quickly became one of its most popular cast members. Then "Jessie's Girl," a song based on Springfield's experience of coveting a friend's love interest, was released as Working Class Dog' s first single. The song won him a Grammy for best male rock vocal. Another cut from the album, "I've Done Everything for You," also became a smash. Suddenly, Springfield had to balance filming with concert appearances.
Springfield's follow-up album, Success Hasn't Spoiled Me Yet, featuring "Don't Talk to Strangers," also proved popular; his 1983 effort, Living in Oz, which included the hits "Human Touch" and "Affair of the Heart," was favorably received as well.
Not forgetting his acting career, though, Springfield made his 1984 big-screen debut in Hard to Hold. The film portrayed a rock star, played by Springfield, who survives an automobile accident and falls in love with a children's counselor. The woman, in turn, is torn between returning the musician's love and rejecting him because of his excessive lifestyle. Critics gave Springfield lukewarm acceptance at best; the romantic tale did relatively well at the box office, however, many female fans perhaps drawn by the promise of seeing Springfield's naked buttocks for a fleeting moment as his character loses his towel in one scene.
Despite his successes, which counted fans from many age groups, Springfield continued to be most popular with young girls--a curse that had always undermined his credibility with music critics. Perhaps to combat the teen idol image, he released a more ambitious album in 1985. But Tao was dismissed by Rolling Stone' s Wild as "an overwrought, misguided bid for respectability." Voicing similar concerns, Stereo Review contributor Steve Simels explained what he viewed as "production overkill" by suggesting that Springfield may have had "lingering suspicions that he's a pretty face rather than a musician." Still, Simel did note that "when he's dealing with relationships, Springfield is capable of writing with a fair amount of verbal facility and genuine feeling." Springfield's 1988 album, Rock of Life, fared much better with critics; Wild praised the cut "Honeymoon in Beirut," and People reviewer Ralph Novak pointed out that "even [Springfield's] standard romantic tunes get away from romantic cliches."
Springfield continued to act, landing roles in various short-lived television series, including Nick Knight and in 1992, ABC's The Human Target. The latter was based on a DC comic book and starred Springfield as Christopher Chance, the "target"--a hero who aids crime victims by physically assuming the identity of whomever he's helping. Chance's sidekicks are a special-effects expert, a research assistant, and a chauffeur/bodyguard; all travel in Chance's rocket ship. Said Entertainment Weekly' s Ken Tucker of the program, "If I were a kid, I guess I'd like all the nifty disguises, but to a grown-up, The Human Target seems campy in a dumb way, with stilted dialogue and stiff action scenes." Tucker gave the show a C-. People also coughed up a C-, complaining about the "truly dopey" dialogue, and exclaiming, "The summer wouldn't be complete without one really ludicrous, entirely implausible action series. Here it is!"
Objections to The Human Target seemed geared mostly toward the program itself, rather than Springfield's acting ability. In fact, Springfield has also found occasion to appear in made-for-television movies--a venue in which he has garnered a modicum of respect. For example, in 1990 he had a hefty part in the USA network's Dead Reckoning, which focused on a love triangle. David Hiltbrand commented in People that "all hands turn in good performances--particularly Springfield as the snake in the saw grass." Of particular interest has been Springfield's choice of characters; he's played good guys, bad guys, and even the in-between, as in Lifetime's Silent Motive, which cast him, in the words of New York' s John Leonard, as "a hairy nut."
As for Springfield's music career, he has never indicated that his recording hiatus is permanent. Given his versatile talent, Springfield is bound to please his fans wherever and whenever he pops up; for them, the adoration is truly an "Affair of the Heart." -

by Elizabeth Wenning and Lorna Mabunda

(http://www.musicianguide.com/biographies/1608001324/Rick-Springfield.html)

 
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