By Phill Marder
This is the 14th set of 10 selections in The Goldmine Hall of Fame.
Great Blogs Of Fire will be announcing 10 inductees approximately every two weeks until all 700-plus inductees are announced. Bios of all selections and criteria for induction can be found on our website by clicking the Goldmine Hall of Fame tab. A running list of all announced inductees will be listed, also.
131. NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK – For many, Rock & Roll did not begin with Elvis Presley or The Beatles. For many of those born in the mid-1970s and 1980s, Rock & Roll started with New Kids On The Block.
Yes, they were a manufactured group. But they also were extremely talented and their popularity cannot be denied, though they did get off to a sluggish beginning almost being dropped by their label, Columbia Records, when their debut album, “New Kids On The Block,” failed to make a mark. Their second album, 1988’s “Hangin’ Tough,” featured more mature material than the majority of the debut, however, and constant touring plus the advantage of MTV video exposure broke the band nationwide.
“Hangin’ Tough” produced five top 10 singles in the U.S., four in Great Britain and Ireland, three in Australia and two in Canada. Suddenly, New Kids On The Block was a worldwide sensation. Striking while the iron was hot, Columbia released the Kids’ remake of the Delfonics’ 1970 hit, “Didn’t I (Blow Your Mind)” from the group’s debut album, and that disc also became a best seller. After a top 10 Christmas LP in 1989, the group opened the ‘90s with another #1 LP, “Step By Step,” the title song hitting #1 in the States and Canada.
The group faded as quickly as it had soared, though. At least it seemed that way when their 1994 release, “Face The Music,” barely scraped into the top 40 and no more top 10 singles were achieved in the U.S., though several were attained elsewhere. Eventually, the group disbanded. But in a remarkable tribute to their enduring popularity, a comeback album in 2008, “The Block,” reached #2 in the U.S. and topped the Canada charts.
The inductees are Jonathan & Jordan Knight, Joey McIntyre, Donnie Wahlberg and Danny Wood.
132. HUEY LEWIS & THE NEWS – One of the most popular bands of the early 1980s, Huey Lewis & the News pitched 12 top 10 singles and two #1 albums between 1982 and 1988.
Their sound was straight ahead Rock with a dash of Soul and Doo-Wop mixed in, polished to a fine sheen from years of experience backing some of the industry greats. Lewis had spent time with Thin Lizzy and other band members had backed Elvis Costello and Van Morrison on occasion. Bassist Mario Cipollina is the younger brother of John, lead guitarist for Quicksilver Messenger Service. So when Lewis put the group together, first as Huey Lewis & the American Express, then as Huey Lewis & the News, he had a band formidable on stage that soon proved just as adept in the studio.
Their first LP, “Huey Lewis & the News,” tanked, though a live version of “Trouble In Paradise” later emerged to become a favorite, closing the mammoth “We Are The World” album. But their second album, 1982’s “Picture This,” became a hit (#13) propelled by the #7 single “Do You Believe In Love?” and another band favorite, “Workin’ For A Livin’.” That set the stage for back-to-back #1 albums, 1983’s “Sports” and 1986’s “Fore!” “Sports” unleashed four top 10 singles, but the band’s first #1, “The Power Of Love,” came from the 1985 soundtrack to the hit movie “Back To The Future,” making The News worldwide stars.
“Fore!” included five top 10 hits, including two more that reached #1, “Stuck With You” and Bruce Hornsby’s “Jacob’s Ladder.” 1988’s “Small World” just missed the top 10 though the single “Perfect World” climbed to #3 and subsequent singles and LPs, though charting, showed a significant decline in the band’s sales, though it continues to be a popular live attraction.
From 1980 to 1994, the six-man band remained unchanged, recording the first seven studio LPs. Those members receiving “Miners” are Huey Lewis (vocals & harmonica), Chris Hayes (guitar), Johnny Colla (guitar & sax), Mario Cipollina (bass), Bill Gibson (drums) and Sean Hopper (keyboards).
133. GLEN CAMPBELL – As 2012 came to a close, Campbell, suffering from alzheimers, was winding down his farewell tour, capping a spectacular career that began as a session guitarist in the early days of Rock & Roll. When he did begin his solo career, he first met minimal success until 1967 when he recorded John Hartford’s “Gentle On My Mind,” which earned Campbell Grammys for Best Country & Western solo performance by a male and Best Country Recording. But Campbell also won another two Grammys the same year for “By The Time I Get To Phoenix,” which carried off the Best Vocal Performance by a male and Best Contemporary Male Solo Vocal Performance, leaving no doubt he had arrived.
The next year, Campbell’s “By The Time I Get To Phoenix” album was given the Grammy for Album of the Year. The above two singles plus the #3 “Wichita Lineman” have all been awarded Grammy Hall of Fame status as well. “Pheonix” and “Wichita,” both written by Jimmy Webb, were joined by “Galveston,” which Campbell took to #4. Between 1967 and 1969, Campbell ran off a remarkable string of seven straight #1 Country chart LPs. Ten of his singles topped the Canadian singles chart, six straight at one point.
Campbell also was busy revisiting early Rock chestnuts, doing covers of Jack Scott’s “Burning Bridges,” Roy Orbison’s “Only The Lonely” and “Dream Baby,” Dorsey Burnette’s “Hey Little One,” The Everly Brothers’ “Let It Be Me” and “All I Have To Do Is Dream” and Roger Miller’s “Little Green Apples” with Bobbie Gentry, and Conway Twitty’s “It’s Only Make Believe” and made them hits all over again.
But his biggest successes didn’t come until the mid to late ‘70s when he hit No. 1 with “Rhinestone Cowboy” and “Southern Nights.” All the while, his prolific output remained sprinkled with Rock classics.
Campbell also was a constant chart presence in the United Kingdom with eight top 40 singles, “Honey Come Back” and “It’s Only Make Believe” each peaking at No. 4 and six top 40 albums, “20 Golden Greats” topping the UK chart in 1971.
134. TINA TURNER (with Ike Turner) – Starting out as a singer for future husband Ike’s band, Tina Turner soon became the group’s focal point. And while she enjoyed mild success as the better half of Ike & Tina Turner, she developed into a megastar on her own.
Even in the early days, though, Tina was the star. When she was on stage, it virtually was impossible to focus on anyone else. And, of course, her remarkable voice carried the band’s recordings, a few of which became hits. Ike did write “A Fool In Love,” which became the pair’s first hit, reaching #27 in 1960. Four more top 10 singles registered on the R&B charts, but 1961’s “It’s Gonna Work Out Fine” was the lone crossover smash, reaching #14 on the Hot 100. It took 10 years for the duo to connect again, this time with a remake of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Proud Mary,” which reached #4 in 1971. During that dry spell, Ike & Tina recorded one of Rock’s monumental flops, Phil Spector’s “River Deep, Mountain High.” Spector thought it would be his masterpiece – and maybe it was – but record buyers in the States were largely indifferent and the disc barely made the Hot 100. The disappointment was eased somewhat when it reached #3 in the U.K.
“Nutbush City Limits,” written by Tina, hit the top 10 in several countries and made it to #22 in the States in 1973, but the couple split around 1976 and little happened for either until Tina’s earth-shaking comeback with the 1984 LP “Private Dancer,” which reached #3 in the U.S. and did even better throughout Europe. All it took was a hit single, and a remake of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” filled the bill, opening the door for Tina’s biggest smash, “What’s Love Got To Do With It,” which became her first U.S. #1 and also hit #1 in Canada and Austria.
When she starred in 1985’s “Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome” and her single from that film, “We Don’t Need Another Hero (Thunderdome)” topped worldwide charts, Turner’s status as one of music’s brightest lights was well established.
For his role in getting Tina’s career off the ground, Ike Turner also receives a “Miner.”
135. BARRY WHITE – One of pop music’s most distinctive voices belonged to Barry White, whose deep vocals permeated discos and radio waves from 1970 to 2000.
Working as a songwriter and producer, White was reluctant to step out as a performer, but some of his demos were so well received he was talked into it, and he wound up having quite a career. Starting in 1973, his first four albums topped the Rhythm & Blues charts after his first big hit single, “I’m Gonna Love You Just A Little More Baby” was #1 R&B and #3 on the Hot 100. The initial LP, “I’ve Got So Much To Give,” contained the hit and just four other songs, the average length of the five being around seven minutes each.
Each of the following three albums repeated that format, songs sometimes stretching over 10 minutes. White’s third long-player, “Can’t Get Enough,” hit #1 on the Billboard album chart and the single, “Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love, Babe,” also proved a chart-topper while its successor, “You’re The First, The Last, My Everything,” taken from the same LP, stalled at #2 in the U.S., but hit #1 in the United Kingdom and went top 10 in most other countries.
White’s success continued through the disco era as he turned out two more albums that topped the R&B chart in 1977 and 1978. When disco ran its course, White’s albums still continued to chart regularly in the U.S. In 1994, he roared back with the #1 R&B hit, “Practice What You Preach,” which helped carry the album, “The Icon Is Love,” to #1 R&B and #20 on the overall chart as well as returning White to best-seller status in other parts of the world.
White is an inductee in the Dance Music Hall of Fame and his unique voice was heard on many commercials until he passed away in 2003 at the age of 58.
136. METALLICA – You couldn’t get much farther away from Barry White than our next selection, the heavy metal giant Metallica.
In 1983, the band’s first release, “Kill ‘Em All,” did ok in the States, reaching #120 on the LP chart, but didn’t chart at all in the U.K. and scored just moderate success in most other countries save Finland, where it reached #12. The next issue, “Ride The Lightning,” fared a little better, breaking into the Fin top 10, climbing to #100 in the States and charting in Britain as well. By 1986’s “Master Of Puppets” it was clear the band was making progress, improving their chart highs in almost every country, #29 in the U.S.
When 1988’s “And Justice For All…” made the top 10 in seven countries – #6 in the U.S. – and even spawned a top 40 single, “One,” it became obvious Metallica was bringing heavy metal to the masses. Obvious indeed. Their next five studio efforts – stretching from 1998 to 2009 – hit #1 in the States and almost every other country that kept track of such matters. In 1996, the foursome even notched a top 10 single in the States, with “Until It Sleeps.”
At last count, Metallica ranks in the top 40 of all artists as far as album sales worldwide. They rank 18th on the list of best selling artists by the RIAA (Recording Industry Of America) with reported sales of 60 million.
The inductees are James Hetfield (vocals & guitar), Lars Ulrich (drums), Kirk Hammett (guitar & vocals), Cliff Burton, James Newsted & Robert Trujillo (bass & vocals).
137. DURAN DURAN –There never again will be the hysteria that greeted Elvis or the Beatles, but now and then someone comes along reminding us of that fervor. Usually, it’s just a bunch of hype, but occasionally the talent is there to back it up. For instance, Duran Duran, which, using the fledging video age to their advantage, gave us 13 top 20 singles and eight top 20 LPs between 1982 and 2004 to earn the nickname “the Fab 5.”
Of course, those numbers apply to U.S. charts only. In their United Kingdom homeland, they did even better, charting 13 top 20 LPs, including “All You Need Is Now,” just released in December. On the UK singles chart, the group placed a whopping 22 into the Top 20. “Is There Something I Should Know?” topped the charts in the UK and New Zealand, “Union Of The Snake” reached No. 1 in Finland, “The Reflex” got to the top in five countries, the UK, US, Ireland, The Netherlands and New Zealand, “Wild Boys” finished atop the German and Italian charts, “A View To A Kill” reached No. 1 in Italy and the US, and “Notorious” and “I Don’t Want Your Love” also topped the Italian chart. The number of singles that stopped at No. 2 also was substantial.
Their 1981 eponymous debut shot to the No. 2 position in New Zealand and No. 3 in the UK, while its successor, the 1982 “Rio” album, was No. 1 in Australia and Canada and No. 2 in the UK. In 1983, “Seven & The Ragged Tiger” hit No. 1 in the UK, the Netherlands and New Zealand and No. 2 in Australia. Twice, the band just missed the top spot on the Italian charts, 1986’s “Notorious” and 2004’s “Astronaut” stopping in the runner-up spot.
Duran Duran continues to be a top attraction today. The inductees are Simon LeBon (vocals), Nick Rhodes (keyboards), John Taylor (bass), Roger Taylor (drums), Andy Taylor (guitar) & Warren Cuccurullo (guitar).
138. CAT STEVENS (with Alun Davies) – The Seventies became synonymous with singer-songwriters, and a major voice in making that so was Steven Demetre Georgiou, who became a superstar known as Cat Stevens, then walked away from stardom as Yusuf Islam.
Between 1970 and 1978, Stevens was as hot as any entertainer could be, releasing eight albums, six of which reached the top 10, peaking with the #1 “Catch Bull At Four” in 1972. Also released was a live album that peaked at #33 and a Greatest Hits collection that climbed to #6. His four major releases, “Teaser & The Firecat,” “Catch Bull At Four,” “Foreigner” and “Buddha & The Chocolate Box” also all hit the top five in the United Kingdom, Canada and Norway, making Stevens a global phenom.
While “Wild World,” pulled from his U.S. #8 LP, “Teaser & The Firecat,” was the single that broke Stevens, it was two subsequent singles found on the “Teaser & The Firecat” LP, “Moonshadow” and “Peace Train,” that today are most associated with Stevens.
Much of Stevens’ work dealt with life topics, but it still was somewhat of a shock when suddenly he put an end to his recording career to envelop himself in the Islamic faith. He actually had posted three top 10 singles in Britain before contracting tuberculosis in 1969. The resulting hospital stay gave Stevens plenty of time to reflect on life and compose songs, many of which would appear later. In the ‘90s, Stevens returned as Yusuf, recording a steady stream of albums, but his first release of commercial recordings did not come until 2006.
Davies, who played acoustic guitar, was with Stevens on almost every album and personal appearance, the two often sitting side by side on stage. Taken by surprise when Stevens retired, Davies, nonetheless, was again right by his side when Stevens opted to resume his career in 2005 after a 26-year hiatus.
139. TONY BENNETT – Yet another of the great vocalists who were major stars before the beginning of the Rock Era (1955), but perhaps the only one still remaining atop the music world some 60 years later.
“Because Of You,” “Cold, Cold Heart,” “Rags To Riches” and “Stranger In Paradise” were just four of Bennett’s gems leading into the beginning of Rock & Roll, the first three reaching #1, while “Stranger In Paradise” made it to #2 in 1953, but when the musical it was pulled from – “Kismet” – reached overseas in 1955, “Stranger” became his lone British chart topper. Even though he was not a Rock & Roller, Bennett continued to be a steady presence on the U.S. best-seller charts, many of his singles reaching top 40 status with 1957’s “In The Middle Of An Island” climbing to #9.
In 1962, Bennett released what was to become his signature recording, “I Left My Heart In San Francisco.” Surprisingly, it reached just #19 and was eclipsed by two Bennett hits the next year, “I Wanna Be Around,” which made it to #14 and “The Good Life,” which got to #18. He never had another major hit, but the album charts painted a much different picture.
The LPs “I Left My Heart In San Francisco” and “I Wanna Be Around” each reached #5 in the U.S., “San Fran” also becoming Bennett’s first LP to chart in Britain. From that point, Bennett’s long players became steady sellers, if not major hits. Suddenly in 2001, Bennett took front and center again with an LP pairing him with the top stars of the day. Since then, he has released several best sellers, including 2006’s “Duets: An American Classic,” which hit #3 in the U.S. and became Bennett’s first recording to sweep Europe. “Duets II” in 2011 did even better, topping the American charts. At this writing, Bennett is 86 and showing no sign of letting up, with a new “Viva Duets!” LP released and a steady stream of personal appearances. He has won almost every award possible and now adds the Goldmine Hall of Fame to his list of accomplishments.
140. VAN MORRISON – Beginning his career as lead voice of the Irish group Them, Morrison got off to a somewhat slow start as part of the British Invasion. His solo career didn’t exactly soar immediately, either.
Morrison split from Them in 1965 and cut his first hit, “Brown Eyed Girl,” the following year. It was a No. 10 hit in the States, but bombed in Britain. The ensuing album, “Blowin’ Your Mind,” was the opposite, a stiff in the U.S. and a hit in the U.K.
But Morrison never has been a singles seller, the hits being few and far between. The albums have been a different story, though. Starting with 1970’s breakthrough, “Moondance,” Morrison has had 33 top 40 albums in the United Kingdom, his appeal strengthening as the years have passed as he didn’t get his first top 10 LP there until 1990 and his total now stands at 12. In the States, source of tremendous critical acclaim, Morrison has had 17 top 40 long players, but just one top 10, 2008’s “Keep It Simple.”
In addition to “Brown Eyed Girl,” Morrison, a Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee, has penned many other classics, including “Gloria,” a garage-band classic turned into a top 10 hit by the Shadows of Knight, “Domino,” “Into The Mystic,” “Have I Told You Lately,” “Wild Night” and many others.
Morrison has been one of the Rock Era’s most distinctive vocalists.