On this episode of Rock Pop and Roll, we focus on the peculiar history of Rod Stewart.

Some Good and a Little Bit of the Bad: Rod Stewart In the 1980’s.

Rod Stewart is nearing 60 years in the music business, right up there with the Rolling Stones and The Who.  He's in the Rock and Roll Hall of fame, inducted in 1994. He released 32 solo albums, not counting live and greatest hits compilations.

During the 1960s, Rod Stewart was a part of the Jeff Beck Group. In 1969, he joined The Faces.  If you don’t know The Faces, you need to.  Black Crowes fans out there?  They were essentially a 90s version of the Faces. A party on stage, a swaggering rock band that was loose, riffing like the Stones, and probably underrated in their place in the rock timeline.  Stewart joined them as his solo career was getting going, creating an odd dynamic.

Stewart scored his first solo success with the album Every Picture Tells A Story, which featured the hit single "Maggie May" in 1971. That same year, the Faces had their biggest US hit with the song "Stay With Me.”

Stewart had dual recording contracts with different labels, as both a solo artist and as a member of the Faces. In 1975 Ronnie Wood began working with the Rolling Stones, and the band broke up. And that’s where Rod’s career both took off and fell apart, depending on what you like.

Somewhere along the line, he morphed into something different than before. What the hell happened? Stewart moved to a more new wave direction in 1980 by releasing the album Foolish Behaviour. The album produced one hit single, "Passion", which reached No. 5 on the US Hot 100 Billboard Charts. The hits kept coming – although pretty disposable if we look back at them today.  A time capsule of the era more than great tunes.

They all had the signature Rod Stewart rasp.  That was the key - highly recognizable and gives even the smoothest song a bit of grit.  That’s his gold.

It is the curious case of Rod The Mod. 

LINKS:

Hear Spotify playlist: Rod Stewart in the 80's with bonus cuts

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