Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
John Fogerty (born May 28, 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 Gaelic personal name Fógartach, from fógartha, meaning 'banished, outlawed' (Hanks & Hodges, A Dictionary of Surnames [Oxford UP, 1988], p. 187).
Creedence Clearwater Revival
John and his brother, Tom Fogerty, formed the band in the late 1950s as Tommy Fogerty and the Blue Velvets. Between 1969 and 1972, Creedence Clearwater Revival released nine Top Ten singles, including "Fortunate Son", "Proud Mary," and "Bad Moon Rising".
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. Creedence Clearwater Revival's former management filed 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 the group, thus claiming his revenge against his bandmates for having sided with Fantasy Records in his disputes with the company. He retired until returning with 1997's Blue Moon Swamp .
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 MoveOn.org 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.
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