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Famous Like Me > Singer > F > John Fogerty

Profile of John Fogerty on Famous Like Me

Name: John Fogerty  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 28th May 1945
Place of Birth: Berkeley, California, USA
Profession: Singer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia

John Fogerty (born 28 May 1945 in Berkeley, California) is an American singer and songwriter, best known for his time with the southern rock band Creedence Clearwater Revival. Fogerty's family name is Irish, an Anglicized form of the Irish personal name Fógartach, from fógartha, meaning 'banished, outlawed' (Hanks & Hodges, A Dictionary of Surnames [Oxford UP, 1988], p. 187).

For a Californian, Fogerty sounded very Southern.

Creedence Clearwater Revival

John Fogerty singing in foreground on Creedence Clearwater Revival Chronicle cover.

John and his brother, Tom Fogerty, formed the band in El Cerrito, California in the late 1950s as Tommy Fogerty and the Blue Velvets. The name was changed to The Golliwogs in the mid 1960s, but the band remained unpopular.

By 1968, things were starting to pick up. The band released its first album, the self-titled Creedence Clearwater Revival, and also had their first hit single, "Suzie Q." Other hit singles of Creedence Clearwater Revival were "Fortunate Son," "Up Around The Bend," "Green River," "Down On The Corner," "Travelin' Band," "Lookin' Out My Back Door," "Bad Moon Rising," and "Who'll Stop The Rain."

Tensions flared in 1971, causing John's brother, Tom, to leave the band. John tried to hold the band together by letting the other bandmembers have equal songwriting and singing time on the 1972 album Mardi Gras; however, this turned out to be their last album. Fogerty bought himself out of his contract and officially left the band. However, his influence was not forgotten with his departure. His guitar playing with CCR would later lead Rolling Stone to name him the 40th greatest guitarist of all time.

Solo recording career

John Fogerty began a solo career, originally under the name the Blue Ridge Rangers for his 1973 debut, on which he played all of the instruments and covered others' hits, such as "Jambalaya" (which was a Top 40 hit). John Fogerty was released in 1975 (see 1975 in music). Sales were slim and legal problems delayed a follow-up, though it yielded two minor hit singles, "Rockin' All Over The World", later covered much more successfully by Status Quo, and "Almost Saturday Night", later a minor UK hit for Dave Edmunds. Creedence Clearwater Revival's former management filed a suit against Fogerty, claiming that his new, solo compositions sounded too much like his former work as songwriter for Creedence.

Fogerty's solo career emerged in full force with 1985's Centerfield, which went to the top of the charts and included a Top Ten hit in "The Old Man Down The Road" and a title track frequently played on classic rock radio and at baseball games to this day. But that album was not without its legal snags either; two songs on the album, "Zanz Can't Dance" and "Mr. Greed", were believed to be attacks on Fogerty's former boss at Fantasy Records, Saul Zaentz. When Zaentz responded with a lawsuit, Fogerty issued a revised version of "Zanz Can't Dance" (changing the lead character's name to Vanz). Another lawsuit claimed that "The Old Man Down The Road" shared the same chorus as "Run Through The Jungle" (a song from Fogerty's days with Creedence). Fogerty ultimately won his case when he proved that the two songs were whole, separate and distinct compositions. Bringing his guitar to the witness stand, he played excerpts from both songs, demonstrating that many songwriters (himself included) have distinctive styles that can make different compositions sound similar to less discerning ears.

The follow-up was Eye of the Zombie in 1986, which was less successful. In 1993, his group Creedence Clearwater Revival was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but Fogerty refused to perform with his former bandmates, thus claiming his revenge against them for having sided with Fantasy Records in his disputes with the company. He retired until returning with 1997's Blue Moon Swamp.

John Fogerty on Premonition cover

He had a very successful tour in 1998 in the United States and Europe. He released a live album from that tour titled Premonition.

In 2004 John Fogerty released Deja Vu (All Over Again). Rolling Stone wrote: "The title track is Fogerty's indictment of the Iraq war as another Vietnam, a senseless squandering of American lives and power." On the album, Fogerty succinctly squeezed ten songs into only 34 minutes.

In October 2004 John Fogerty appeared on the "Vote for Change" tour, playing a series of concerts in American swing states. These concerts were organized by with the general goal of mobilizing people to vote for John Kerry and against George W. Bush in that year's Presidential campaign. Fogerty's numbers were played with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band.

In September 2005 Fogerty returned to Fantasy Records, now a division of Concord Records. The first planned album is The Long Road Home, a compilation CD combining his Creedence hits with solo material with a November 1, 2005 release date. A new studio album is planned for 2006 release.

See Also

  • Rolling Stone's List of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article John Fogerty