Many consider John Mellencamp to be an American hero.
John Mellencamp began his career at the end of the 70s (from 1976 it is his first album, which was a commercial failure); his popularity was increasing taking advantage of the pull of Bruce Springsteen’s music, to which he had many elements in common; however, as his career progressed, his music became more personal, developing a particular mix between folk-rock and hard rock.
When the album “American Fool” (1982) came out, which triumphed thanks to the number one hits “Jack & Diane” and “Hurts so good”, two of its star songs, Mellencamp had completely developed his own and particular version of the music of Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty, and Bob Seger, modern American roots music. This success is joined by the acclaimed “Uh-Uh” (1983), his first album under the name John Cougar Mellencamp with the success “Pink Houses and “Crumblin’ Down” (which entered the top 10 of the American charts
But, while the sales success had arrived, the critics did not begin to take him seriously until his next album, “Scarecrow” (1985), an album in which he delved into social themes and displayed a greater variety of styles, resulting in into a critical success and peaking at number two on the charts, with the hits “Lonely Ol’ Night”, “Small Town”, and “R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A.” After that album, he became more involved in social activities, organizing help for farmers with Willie Nelson and Neil Young. He was also known for his anti-business stance, refusing endorsement offers from tobacco and beer brands.
His next album was “The Lonesome Jubilee” (1987). In it, a greater and more pronounced influence of Appalachian folk and country was noted, and the theme revolved around the forgotten North Central America; reached number six on the charts, and included the hits “Paper in Fire,” “Cherry Bomb” and “Check it Out.” “Big Daddy” (1989), which continued to explore American roots music, garnered critical acclaim It did not achieve the same success as the previous ones. Two years later he returned with “Whenever We Wanted”, which, despite being another moderate success, is still remembered among his fans as one of his staples. “Human Wheels” (1993) continued in the wake of moderate success. , and praise from his fans.
In 1994, his duet with Me’Shell Ndegeocello on Van Morrison’s “Wild Night” provided him with another massive sales success. The respective album “Dance Naked” became their biggest hit since “Big Daddy”; At that time he suffers a heart attack that forces him to cancel the tour of the album, not reappearing until 1996 with “Mr. Happy Go – Lucky” ; an album long-awaited by fans and with good critical reception. Following this album, Mellencamp left Mercury for the Columbia label. A year later he would publish a collection of unpublished material, under the name of “Rough Harvest”.
We dive into 15 Wise Quotes From John Mellencamp: