quinta-feira, 4 de junho de 2015
Robert Palmer - English singer-songwriter and musician
Robert Allen Palmer (19 January 1949 – 26 September 2003) was an English singer-songwriter and musician. He was known for his distinctive soulful voice, eclectic mix of musical styles on his albums, combining soul, jazz, rock, pop, reggae and blues and sartorial acumen. He found success both in his solo career and with Power Station, and had Top 10 songs in both the UK and the US. His iconic music videos directed by British fashion photographer Terence Donovan for the hits "Addicted to Love" and "Simply Irresistible" featured identically dressed dancing women with pale faces, dark eye makeup and bright red lipstick, which resembled the women in the art of Patrick Nagel, an artist popular in the 1980s. Palmer's involvement in the music industry commenced in the 1960s, covered four decades and included a spell with Vinegar Joe.
In 1970, Palmer joined the 12-piece jazz-rock fusion band Dada, which featured singer Elkie Brooks. The band lasted a year, after which Brooks and Palmer formed the critically acclaimed but commercially unsuccessful rhythm and blues group, Vinegar Joe; Palmer sang and played rhythm guitar. Signed to the Island Records label, they released three albums: Vinegar Joe (1972), Rock 'n' Roll Gypsies (1972) and Six Star General (1973), before disbanding in March 1974.
Island Records signed Palmer to a solo deal in 1974. His first solo album Sneakin' Sally Through the Alley recorded in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1974, was heavily influenced by the music of Little Feat and the funk fusion of The Meters who acted as backing band along with producer/guitarist Lowell George of Little Feat. Although unsuccessful in the UK, both the album and single reached the Top 100 in the US. Notably, "Sailin' Shoes" (the album's first track), Palmer's own "Hey Julia" and the Allen Toussaint–penned title track carry virtually the same rhythm, and were packaged on the album as a "trilogy" without a pause between them. After relocating with his wife to New York City, Palmer released Pressure Drop, named for the cover version of the reggae hit by Toots & the Maytals, in November 1975 (featuring Motown bassist James Jamerson). An album infused with his interests in reggae and rock music, it was noted for its cover art of a nude woman on the threshold of a balcony, rather than any commercially successful songs. He toured with Little Feat to promote the album...
Duran Duran went on hiatus, and their guitarist, Andy Taylor, and bassist, John Taylor, joined former Chic drummer, Tony Thompson, and Palmer to form Power Station. Their eponymous album, recorded mainly at the New York recording studio for which the band was named, with overdubs and mixing at Compass Point Studios in Nassau, Bahamas, reached the Top 20 in the UK and the Top 10 in the US. It spawned two hit singles with "Some Like It Hot" (US #6) and a cover of the T. Rex song "Get It On (Bang a Gong)", which peaked one position higher than the original at US No. 9. Palmer performed live with the band only once that year, on Saturday Night Live. The band toured, and played Live Aid, with singer Michael Des Barres after Palmer bowed out at the last moment to go back into the recording studio to further his solo career.
Palmer recorded the album Riptide at Compass Point Studios in 1985, recruiting Thompson and Andy Taylor to play on some tracks plus Power Station record producer Bernard Edwards, who worked with Thompson in Chic, to helm the production. Riptide featured the US No. 1 and UK No. 5 single "Addicted to Love". The single was accompanied by a memorable and much-imitated music video, directed by Terence Donovan, in which Palmer is surrounded by a bevy of near-identically clad, heavily made-up (and appropriately pouty) female "musicians," either mimicking or mocking the painting style of Patrick Nagel. In September 1986, Palmer performed "Addicted to Love" at the 1986 MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles. In 1987, he won the Grammy Award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance for "Addicted to Love". At the 1987 Brit Awards, Palmer received his first nomination for Best British Male. Another single from Riptide, his cover of Cherrelle's "I Didn't Mean to Turn You On", also performed well (US#2, UK#9). Another song, "Trick Bag," was written by one of his major influences, New Orleans jazz artist Earl King.
Palmer died in a Paris hotel room from a heart attack on 26 September 2003 at the age of 54. He had been in the French capital after recording a television appearance in London for Yorkshire TV, a retrospective titled "My Kinda People". He was survived by his parents, his son Jim and daughter Jane, and by his girlfriend Mary Ambrose. Among those who paid tribute were Duran Duran, stating; "He was a very dear friend and a great artist. This is a tragic loss to the British music industry