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Joe Cocker
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Joe Cocker Biography

Joe Cocker - one of the truly great rock voices of all time - was born in Sheffield, England on May 20, 1944, the youngest son of a civil servant. In 1961 Joe by day, worked as an apprentice gas fitter and by night, in dark suit and bow tie, became Vance Arnold singing with The Avengers in rough Sheffield pubs. The set included songs by mentor Ray Charles "What'd I Say" and "Georgia On My Mind." Vance Arnold and the Avengers biggest moment came in 1963 when they supported The Rolling Stones at Sheffield City Hall, and brought the house down. America loved Joe Cocker from his first television appearance on the Ed Sullivan show in 1969. The Press seized upon him. Life Magazine called Joe "The voice of all those blind criers and crazy beggars and maimed men who summon up a strength we'll never know to bawl out their souls in the streets."

In 1970, Joe sold $3 million worth of records in America alone. His first three albums went platinum and Playboy voted him number one vocalist in their annual jazz and rock poll. As the 80's dawned Joe was invited by The Crusaders to join them on a song they had written exclusively for him - "I'm So Glad I'm Standing Here Today." The lyrics said it all and Joe received a standing ovation when he sang the song at the Grammy Awards in February of 1982. His duet with Jennifer Warnes on "Up Where We Belong", the theme from "An Officer And A Gentleman," brought an appearance at the Oscars ceremony in February 1983 and a hit worldwide, including Joe's first American number one.

Joe has toured extensively and to great acclaim, not the least in Europe where he enjoys a massive following. There have been awards and accolades galore. Among many prestigious shows, he has played for British royalty at a "Princes Trust Gala," "Nelson Mandela's Birthday Concert," the "Konzert for Berlin" that celebrated the breaching of the Wall and, in his adopted homeland of America, the inauguration ceremony for President George Bush. Joe Cocker is a survivor, a star and a rock legend. He has had hit records in the 1960's, 70s, 80, and 90s. Success has brought with it a grueling schedule of recording and touring but, after more than twenty-five years on the road he has no plans to take it easy. The future? "As long as being on stage is fun," says Joe, "as long as I enjoy that part and still get a buzz out of performing. Then I'll keep going out there."


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