John Mellencamp booking

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John Mellencamp, previously known by the stage names Johnny Cougar, John Cougar and John
Cougar Mellencamp, (born October 7, 1951) is an American rock singer-songwriter, musician, painter
and occasional actor known for his catchy, populist brand of heartland rock that eschews synthesizers
and other artificial sounds in favor of organic instrumentation. Mellencamp is also one of the founding
members of Farm Aid, an organization that began in 1985 with a concert in Champaign, Illinois to raise
awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on their land. The
Farm Aid concerts have remained an annual event over the past 25 years.
After about 18 months of traveling back and forth from Indiana to New York City in 1974 and 1975,
Mellencamp finally found someone receptive to his music and image in Tony DeFries of MainMan
Management. DeFries insisted that Mellencamp’s first album, 1976’s “Chestnut Street Incident,” a
collection of covers and a handful of original songs, be released under the stage name Johnny
Cougar, suggesting that the bumpy German name “Mellencamp” was too hard to market. The album
was a complete failure, selling only 12,000 copies. Mellencamp’s next album, 1979′s “John Cougar,”
featured “I Need a Lover” which became a #28 single in late 1979. In 1980, Mellencamp returned with
the Steve Cropper-produced “Nothin’ Matters and What If It Did,” which yielded two Top 40 singles
“This Time” at #27 and “Ain’t Even Done With the Night” at #17.
In 1982, Mellencamp released his breakthrough album, “American Fool,” which contained the singles,
“Hurts So Good,” an up tempo rock tune that spent four weeks at #2 and 16 weeks in the Top 10, and
“Jack & Diane,” which was a #1 hit for four weeks. A third single, “Hand to Hold On To,” made it to
#19. “Hurts So Good” went on to win the Grammy Award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance at the
25th Grammys. With some commercial success under his belt, Mellencamp had enough clout to force
the record company to add his real surname to his stage moniker. The first album he recorded as John
Cougar Mellencamp was 1983′s “Uh-Huh,” a Top 10 album that spawned the Top 10 singles “Pink
Houses,” “Crumblin’ Down” as well as the #14 hit “Authority Song.”
In 1985, Mellencamp released “Scarecrow,” which peaked at #2 and spawned five Top 40 singles,
“Lonely Ol’ Night” and “Small Town” at #6, “R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A. (A Salute to ’60s Rock)” at #2, “Rain
on the Scarecrow” at #21 and “Rumbleseat” at #28. Mellencamp’s next LP, 1987′s “The Lonesome
Jubilee,” included the singles “Paper in Fire,” which peaked at #9, “Cherry Bomb” at #8 and “Check It
Out” at #14 along with the popular album tracks, “Hard Times for an Honest Man” and “The Real Life,”
both of which garnered significant radio airplay even though they didn’t achieve any chart position.
In 1989, Mellencamp released the album, “Big Daddy,” with the key tracks “Jackie Brown,” “Big Daddy
of Them All” and “Void in My Heart” accompanying the Top 15 single “Pop Singer.” The album was the
last to feature the “Cougar” moniker. Mellencamp’s 1991 album, “Whenever We Wanted,” was the first
with a cover billed to John Mellencamp as the “Cougar” was now gone forever. “Whenever We
Wanted” yielded the Top 40 hits “Get a Leg Up” and “Again Tonight,” but “Last Chance,” “Love and
Happiness” and “Now More Than Ever” all garnered significant airplay on rock radio. Mellencamp’s
1994 album, “Dance Naked” included a cover of Van Morrison’s “Wild Night” as a duet with Meshell
Ndegeocello which reached #3.
In September 1996, the experimental album, “Mr. Happy Go Lucky,” which was produced by Junior
Vasquez, was released. “Mr. Happy Go Lucky” spawned the #14 single “Key West Intermezzo (I Saw
You First)” (Mellencamp’s last Top 40 hit), and “Just Another Day,” which peaked at #46. Issued a day
before his 47th birthday in 1998, his self-titled debut for Columbia Records included the singles, “Your
Life is Now” and “I’m Not Running Anymore,” along with standout album tracks such as “Eden Is
Burning,” “Miss Missy,” “It All Comes True” and “Chance Meeting At The Tarantula.” The early 21st century found Mellencamp teaming up with artists such as Chuck D and India.Arie to
deliver his second Columbia album, 2001’s “Cuttin’ Heads” and the single “Peaceful World.” “Cuttin’
Heads” also included a duet with Trisha Yearwood on a love song called “Deep Blue Heart.” In 2003,
he released, “Trouble No More,” a quickly-recorded collection of folk and blues covers originally done
by artists such as Robert Johnson, Son House, Lucinda Williams and Hoagie Carmichael. “Trouble No
More” spent several weeks at #1 on Billboard’s Blues Album charts. In 2007 Mellencamp released,
“Freedom’s Road,” his first album of original material in over five years. “Our Country,” the first single
from the album, was nominated for a 2008 Grammy Award in the category Best Solo Rock Vocal
Performance. Mellencamp wrote and produced all ten songs on “Freedom’s Road,” and the record
peaked at #5. In addition to “Our Country,” “Freedom’s Road” included “Jim Crow,” a duet with Joan
Baez, “Rural Route” and “Someday,” which was the album’s second single.
Mellencamp’s 18th album of original material, titled “Life, Death, Love and Freedom.” was released in
2008, and was produced by acclaimed roots producer T. Bone Burnett. It became the ninth Top 10
album of Mellencamp’s career when it debuted at #7 on the Billboard 200. In 2009 Mellencamp
recorded a new album, titled “No Better Than This,” that was again produced by T-Bone Burnett. The
album was recorded in mono and tracks for the album were recorded at historic locations, such as the
First African Baptist Church in Savannah, Georgia as well as at the Sun Studio in Memphis and the
Sheraton Gunter Hotel in San Antonio, where blues pioneer Robert Johnson recorded “Sweet Home
Chicago” and “Crossroad Blues.” It peaked at #10 on the Billboard 200, becoming the 10th Top 10
album of his career. “No Better Than This” is the first mono-only release to make the Top 10 since
James Brown’s “Pure Dynamite! Live At The Royal,” which peaked at #10 in April 1964.
Mellencamp has sold over 40 million albums worldwide and has amassed 22 Top 40 hits in the United
States. In addition, he holds the record for the most tracks by a solo artist to hit #1 on the Billboard Hot
Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, with seven, and has been nominated for 13 Grammy Awards, winning
one. Mellencamp was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on in 2008 by Billy Joel.

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