October 15, 2008 |
JOHN MELLENCAMP captured something about himself three decades ago when he penned the words, "I need a lover that won't drive me crazy." Someone who knows the meaning of "hey hit the highway." These days, he could say the same for most of America's politicians. Sure, Mellencamp is from the red state of Indiana, and he wrote all of those patriotic-sounding tunes like "R.O.C.K. in the USA" and "Small Town." But when it comes to matters of the country, Mellencamp is far from nationalistic.
August 2, 2008 |
John Mellencamp is ready for your bad news. At the Greek Theatre on Thursday, stories of hard times fueled his songs, just as they always have, with Mellencamp's raspy drawl calling on the rest of us to join his bittersweet jubilee. His 90-minute set began with "Pink Houses," his rousing hit tune from 1983, when he was already singing of strained optimism in the face of lowered expectations in Norman Rockwell's version of the USA.
April 24, 2008 |
IF there's any doubt about the influence Hollywood plays in this year's presidential election, consider this: Within minutes of taking the stage in Indiana on Tuesday night, Sen. Barack Obama had an important announcement -- singer John Mellencamp and his wife, model Elaine Irwin, had come up to join them. "I want to thank John Mellencamp and his wonderful wife, Elaine, for taking time to be here today, driving up from Bloomington," Obama told the crowd in Evansville, Ind.
March 11, 2008 |
Philly soul producer Kenny Gamble, inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with partner Leon Huff, invited the audience to answer back his wish for "peace." "Thank you so much, because that's exactly what our music represented," Gamble told people gathered at New York's Waldorf-Astoria for the annual ceremony. Madonna, pop music's quick-change artist, was among the other inductees with heartland hit-maker John Mellencamp, songwriter Leonard Cohen, British rockers the Dave Clark Five and surf instrumentalists the Ventures.
March 8, 2008 |
If Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff hadn't reached out their hands to introduce themselves in a Philadelphia elevator 45 years ago, the music world might have been denied one of its richest partnerships. The production and songwriting team was the architect of the "sound of Philadelphia" and a rich vein of pop-soul hits in the 1970s. The two men are being inducted Monday into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, part of a class with Madonna, John Mellencamp, Leonard Cohen, the Ventures, the Dave Clark Five and Little Walter.
October 3, 2007 |
John Mellencamp, the heartland rocker who has not been shy about lacing his music with politics and social commentary, posted a new music video on the Internet on Tuesday for a song called "Jena." The lyrics, which include the chorus "Oh oh oh Jena . . . take your nooses down," are a barbed reference to the ongoing controversy in Jena, La., where six black youths were charged as adults in the alleged assault last year on a fellow student who is white.
February 10, 2007 |
John Mellencamp "Freedom's Road" (Universal Republic) * * * Lest Mellencamp's pickup truck pitchman role with "Our Country," a centerpiece of this album, makes you expect a collection of Red State anthems, fear not. Suffice it to say that noted lefty Joan Baez would not likely guest on such a set, as she does here on the racism lament "Jim Crow."