Alastair Ian “Al” Stewart (born 5 September 1945) is a Glasgow-born singer-songwriter and folk-rock musician who rose to prominence as part of the British folk revival in the 1960s and 1970s. He developed a unique style of combining folk-rock songs with delicately woven tales of characters and events from history.
Stewart is best known for his 1976 hit single “Year of the Cat”, the title song from the platinum album of the same name. Though Year of the Cat and its 1978 platinum follow-up Time Passages brought Stewart his biggest worldwide commercial successes, earlier albums such as Past, Present and Future from 1973 are often seen as better examples of his intimate brand of historical folk-rock – a style to which he has returned in recent albums.
Stewart has released sixteen studio and three live albums since his debut album Bedsitter Images in 1967, and continues to tour extensively in the US, Canada, Europe, and the UK. His latest release is Uncorked, which was released on his independent label, Wallaby Trails Recordings. – Wikipedia
Gloria María Milagrosa Fajardo García de Estefan (born September 1, 1957), known professionally as Gloria Estefan, is a Cuban American singer, songwriter, actress, and entrepreneur. She started off her career as the leading vocalist in the group called “Miami Latin Boys” which was eventually known as Miami Sound Machine. Her breakthrough success with Conga in 1985 made her known worldwide. It won the grand prix in the 15th annual Tokyo Music Festival in Japan. This is also her signature song. In the summer of 1988 she and the band got their first number one for the song Anything For You. She has a Contralto vocal range. She garnered honorific nicknames such as “The Queen of Latin Pop”.
In March 1990, she had a severe accident in her tour bus. She made her comeback in March 1991 with a new world tour and album called Into The Light. Estefan became a worldwide inspiration after that. Her 1993 Spanish-language album Mi Tierra won the first of her three Grammy Awards for Best Tropical Latin Album. It was the first number-one album on the Billboard Top Latin Albums chart, established when it was released. It was also the first Diamond album in Spain. Many of her songs like Rhythm Is Gonna Get You, 1-2-3, Get On Your Feet, Here We Are, Coming Out of the Dark, Bad Boy, Oye!, Party Time and a remake of Vicki Sue Robinson’s Turn the Beat Around became international hits, with chart-topping scores. – Wikipedia
William Everett “Billy” Preston (September 2, 1946 – June 6, 2006) was an American musician whose work included R&B, rock, soul, funk and gospel. A virtuoso keyboardist, particularly on Hammond organ, Preston was recognized as a top session musician in the 1960s, during which he backed artists such as Little Richard, Sam Cooke, Ray Charles and the Beatles. He then went on to achieve fame as a solo artist, with hit pop singles including “That’s the Way God Planned It”, “Outa-Space”, “Will It Go Round in Circles”, “Space Race”, and “Nothing from Nothing”. In addition, Preston co-wrote “You Are So Beautiful”, which became a number 5 hit for Joe Cocker. Preston continued to record and perform with other artists, notably George Harrison after the Beatles’ break-up, and Eric Clapton, and he played keyboards for the Rolling Stones on many of the group’s albums and tours during the 1970s.
Alongside Tony Sheridan, Preston was the only other musician to be credited on a Beatles recording: the artists on the number-one hit “Get Back” are given as “The Beatles with Billy Preston”. Since Sheridan was labeled alongside “The Beat Brothers”, Preston is, strictly speaking, the only artist to be labeled explicitly with “The Beatles”. Stephen Stills asked Preston if he could use his phrase “if you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with” and created the hit song. – Wikipedia
Archie Lee Bell (born September 1, 1944, Henderson, Texas, United States) is an African-American solo singer and former lead singer of Archie Bell & the Drells. He became known around the world for the hit that he had with the Drells, “Tighten Up”. Since the breakup of the Drells in 1980, Archie Bell has pursued a solo career. Bell later released one solo album (I Never Had It So Good – 1981) on Beckett Records and continued to perform with The Drells off and on for the next twenty years. During the 1990s the lineup also included Steve “Stevie G.” Guettler (guitar, vocals), Jeff “JT” Strickler (bass guitar, vocals), Steve Farrell (guitar, vocals), Mike Wilson (keyboards, vocals) and Wes Armstrong (drums, vocals) of the Atlanta-based group The Rockerz.
In more recent times, Bell has been diversifying his repertoire to include blues, and has recorded a blues album. He also has recorded some country music, having professed a love for that genre. Country producer and former member of Bob Wills’ Texas Playboys, Tommy Allsup, recruited Bell to sing “Warm Red Wine”, which appeared on an album with songs from Glen Campbell, Tanya Tucker and Roy Clark. – Wikipedia
Tori Amos (born Myra Ellen Amos; born 1963) is an American singer-songwriter, pianist and composer. She is a classically trained musician and has a mezzo-soprano vocal range. She has received eight Grammy nominations.
Having already begun composing instrumental pieces on piano, Amos won a full scholarship to the Peabody Institute at Johns Hopkins University, the youngest person ever to have been admitted, at age five. She was expelled at age eleven for, in her own words, insisting on playing by ear and because of her interest in popular rock music. Amos originally served as the lead singer of short-lived 1980s pop group Y Kant Tori Read before achieving her breakthrough as a solo artist at the forefront of a number of female singer-songwriters in the early 1990s. She has since become one of the world’s most prominent female singer-songwriters whose songs have discussed a broad range of topics including sexuality, feminism, politics and religion. She was also noteworthy early in her solo career as one of the few alternative rock performers to use a piano as her primary instrument. Some of her charting singles include “Crucify”, “Silent All These Years”, “God”, “Cornflake Girl”, “Caught a Lite Sneeze”, “Professional Widow”, “Spark”, “1000 Oceans”, “Flavor”, and “A Sorta Fairytale”, her most commercially successful single in the U.S. to date. Amos has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide. She has been nominated for and won several awards in different genres, ranging from MTV VMAs to classical music with an Echo award in 2012. – Wikipeda
The Righteous Brothers were the musical duo of Bobby Hatfield and Bill Medley. They recorded from 1963 through 1975 and continued to perform until Hatfield’s death in 2003. Their emotive vocal stylings were sometimes dubbed “blue-eyed soul”.
Hatfield and Medley both possessed exceptional vocal talent, with range, control and tone that helped them create a strong and distinctive duet sound and also to perform as soloists. Medley sang the low parts with his deep, soulful baritone, with Hatfield taking the higher register vocals with his soaring countertenor.
They adopted their name in 1962 while performing together in the Los Angeles area as part of a five-member group called The Paramours, which featured John Wimber (a founder of the Vineyard Movement) on keyboards and artist and sculptor Nick Turturro on saxophone. At the end of one performance, a U.S. Marine in the audience shouted, “That was righteous, brothers!”, prompting the pair to adopt the name as they embarked on their duo career. – Wikipedia
Whitney Elizabeth Houston (August 9, 1963 – February 11, 2012) was an American singer, actress, producer, and model. In 2009, Guinness World Records cited her as the most awarded female act of all time. Houston is one of pop music’s best-selling music artists of all-time, with an estimated 170–200 million records sold worldwide. She released six studio albums, one holiday album and three movie soundtrack albums, all of which have diamond, multi-platinum, platinum or gold certification. Houston’s crossover appeal on the popular music charts, as well as her prominence on MTV, starting with her video for “How Will I Know”, influenced several African American women artists who follow in her footsteps.
Houston is the only artist to chart seven consecutive No. 1 Billboard Hot 100 hits. She is the second artist behind Elton John and the only woman to have two number-one Billboard 200 Album awards (formerly “Top Pop Albums”) on the Billboard magazine year-end charts. Houston’s 1985 debut album Whitney Houston became the best-selling debut album by a woman in history. Rolling Stone named it the best album of 1986, and ranked it at number 254 on the magazine’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. Her second studio album Whitney (1987) became the first album by a woman to debut at number one on the Billboard 200 albums chart.
On February 11, 2012, Houston was found dead in her guest room at the Beverly Hilton, in Beverly Hills, California. The official coroner’s report showed that she had accidentally drowned in the bathtub, with heart disease and cocaine use listed as contributing factors. News of her death coincided with the 2012 Grammy Awards and featured prominently in American and international media. – Wikipedia
The Platters were one of the most successful vocal groups of the early rock and roll era. Their distinctive sound was a bridge between the pre-rock Tin Pan Alley tradition and the burgeoning new genre. The act went through several personnel changes, with the most successful incarnation comprising lead tenor Tony Williams, David Lynch, Paul Robi, Herb Reed, and Zola Taylor. The group had 40 charting singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart between 1955 and 1967, including four no. 1 hits. – Wikipedia
The Chiffons were one of the top girl groups of the early 1960s. With their trademark tight harmonies, high-stepping confidence and the hit machine of Goffin and King writing songs such as “One Fine Day”, the Chiffons made music that helped define the girl-group sound of the era.
The group was originally a trio of schoolmates: Judy Craig, Patricia Bennett, and Barbara Lee; at James Monroe High School in The Bronx in 1960. In 1962, at the suggestion of songwriter Ronald Mack, the group added Sylvia Peterson, who had sung with Little Jimmy & the Tops at age 14, sharing lead vocals with Jimmy on “Say You Love Me,” the B-side of the Tops’ 1959 local hit “Puppy Love.”
The group was named the Chiffons when recording and releasing their first single, “He’s So Fine,” written by Ronald Mack, produced by the Tokens of “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” fame, and released on the Laurie Records label. “He’s So Fine” hit No. 1 in the United States, selling over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc; (This sales figure would have qualified the record for platinum status under the current [as of 2011] RIAA certification standards, effective since 1975, that lowered the “gold” certification threshold to 500,000 copies and set the “platinum” threshold at 1 million.)
In 1970, George Harrison released the song “My Sweet Lord,” whose musical similarities to “He’s So Fine” prompted the estate of Ronnie Mack to file a copyright infringement claim. The Chiffons went on to record “My Sweet Lord” in 1975. A judge later found that Harrison had unintentionally plagiarized the earlier song.
Sylvia returned to the Chiffons during the ’80s. On May 15, 1992, Barbara Lee died from a heart attack, and Craig returned to the group. Peterson retired shortly thereafter and was replaced by Connie Harvey. Harvey has since left to pursue a solo career and Bennett has retired from the group.
As of 2009, Judy Craig was performing as the Chiffons with her daughter and her niece, appearing at select shows throughout the U.S. and internationally. – Wikipedia
The Raspberries were an American power pop/pop rock band formed in 1970 from Cleveland, Ohio. They had a run of success in the early 1970s music scene with their pop sound, which Allmusic later described as featuring “exquisitely crafted melodies and achingly gorgeous harmonies.” The members were known for their clean-cut public image, with short-hair and matching suits, which brought them teenybopper attention as well as scorn from some mainstream media outlets as “uncool”. The group drew influence from the British Invasion era—especially The Beatles, The Who, The Hollies, and Small Faces—and its mod sensibility. In both the U.S. and the UK, the Raspberries helped pioneer the power pop music style that took off after the group disbanded. They also have a following among professional musicians such as Jack Bruce, Ringo Starr, and Courtney Love.
Eric Howard Carmen (born August 11, 1949) is an American singer, songwriter, guitarist and keyboardist. He scored numerous hit songs across the 1970s and 1980s, first as a member of the Raspberries (who had a million-selling single with “Go All The Way”), and then with his solo career, including hits such as “All By Myself”, “Never Gonna Fall in Love Again”, “She Did It”, “Hungry Eyes”, and “Make Me Lose Control”. – Wikipedia
Dead or Alive were a British new wave band from Liverpool, England. The group found success in the 1980s and had seven Top 40 UK singles and three Top 30 UK albums. They were the first group to have a number one single under the production team of Stock Aitken Waterman. Dead or Alive, which has variously included Pete Burns (vocalist), Wayne Hussey (guitarist), Mike Percy (bassist), Steve Coy (drummer), Timothy Lever (various instruments), have released seven studio albums and five compilation albums, and became popular in Japan.
Two of the group’s singles reached the U.S. Top 20 on the Billboard Hot 100; “You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)” No. 11 in 1985, and “Brand New Lover” No. 15 in 1986. “You Spin Me Round” charted in 1985 in the UK, then again in 2003 and 2006 following Burns’ appearance on the television reality show Celebrity Big Brother. The latter also became the first of two singles to top the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart. – Wikipedia
Salt-N-Pepa is an American hip hop trio from Queens, New York. The group, consisting of Cheryl James (“Salt”), Sandra Denton (“Pepa”) and originally Latoya Hanson, who was replaced by Deidra Roper (“DJ Spinderella”), was formed in 1985 and was one of the first all-female rap groups. Through their career, Salt-N-Pepa have won five awards: Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group (1995), MTV Video Music Award for Best Electronic Dance Music Video (1994), MTV Video Music Award for Best Choreography (1994), MTV Video Music Award for Best R&B Video (1994) and BET Hip Hop Awards I Am Hip-Hop Icon Award (2010). – Wikipedia
Metallica is an American heavy metal band formed in Los Angeles, California. Metallica was formed in 1981 when vocalist/guitarist James Hetfield responded to an advertisement posted by drummer Lars Ulrich in a local newspaper. The band’s current line-up comprises founding members Hetfield and Ulrich, longtime lead guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo. Lead guitarist Dave Mustaine and bassists Ron McGovney, Cliff Burton and Jason Newsted are former members of the band. Metallica collaborated over a long period with producer Bob Rock, who produced all of the band’s albums from 1990 to 2003 and served as a temporary bassist between the departure of Newsted and the hiring of Trujillo. – Wikipedia
The Grateful Dead were an American rock band formed in 1965 in Palo Alto, California. Ranging from quintet to septet, the band was known for its unique and eclectic style, which fused elements of country, folk, bluegrass, blues, reggae, rock, improvisational jazz, psychedelia, space rock, for live performances of lengthy instrumental jams, and for their devoted fan base, known as “Deadheads”. “Their music,” writes Lenny Kaye, “touches on ground that most other groups don’t even know exists.” These various influences were distilled into a diverse and psychedelic whole that made the Grateful Dead “the pioneering Godfathers of the jam band world”. The band was ranked 57th in the issue The Greatest Artists of all Time by Rolling Stone magazine. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994 and their Barton Hall Concert at Cornell University (May 8, 1977) was added to the Library of Congress’s National Recording Registry. The Grateful Dead have sold more than 35 million albums worldwide. – Wikipedia
Paul Albert Anka, OC (born July 30, 1941) is a Canadian singer (from Syrian and Lebanese parents), songwriter, and actor. Anka became famous in the late 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s with hit songs like “Diana”, “Lonely Boy”, “Put Your Head on My Shoulder”, and “(You’re) Having My Baby”. He wrote such well-known music as the theme for The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and one of Tom Jones’s biggest hits, “She’s a Lady”, as well as the English lyrics for Frank Sinatra’s signature song, “My Way”, which has been covered by many including Elvis Presley. He was inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame in 2005.
In 1983, he co-wrote the song “I Never Heard” with Michael Jackson. It was retitled and released in 2009 under the name “This Is It”. An additional song that Jackson co-wrote with Anka from this 1983 session, “Love Never Felt So Good”, was since discovered and was released on Jackson’s posthumous album Xscape in 2014. The song was also released by Johnny Mathis in 1984.
Anka became a naturalized US citizen in 1990. – Wikipedia