Huey Lewis and the News

  • Rock band formed in 1979 from San Francisco California. Members were Huey Lewis (frontman, vocals, harmonica), Sean Hopper (keyboards), Bill Gibson (drums), Johnny Colla (guitars, saxophone), and Mario Cipollina (bass guitar).
  • In 1972, Lewis and Hopper were members of a San Francisco country rock band called Clover. The band recorded several albums in the 70s. Their main competition in the bay area was a band called Soundhole, who had a jazz-funk sound. In 1978, both bands merged into Huey Lewis & the American Express. In 1979, using a band name of just American Express, they  released a single called Exodisco, with a B-side called Kick Back. The single did not chart.
  • They signed with a new record label, who changed the band name to Huey Lewis and the News to avoid copyright infringement issues with AMEX. In 1980, their debut album was released – the self titled Huey Lewis and the News. There were 2 singles, which no one bought, and the album was largely ignored.
  • Lewis and the band released Picture This in 1982. It had some success, due to the single Do You Believe in Love, which peaked at #7 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Two other singles – Hope You Love Me Like You Say You Do and Workin’ For a Livin sold enough to scratch onto the singles charts.
  • The breakthrough album was in 1983. Called Sports, it slowly worked its way up the charts, eventually hitting #1 on the Billboard 200 Album chart. Eventually, it sold over 10 million copies in the U.S., due to the strength of 4 top ten singles – Heart and Soul, I Want a New DrugThe Heart of Rock & Roll, and If This Is It. These songs enjoyed huge amounts of airplay on MTV, just as MTV was becoming a cultural phenomena. The video for The Heart of Rock & Roll won a Grammy award for Best Music Video.
  • In 1985, the band participated in the charity single We Are The World, along with many other musical stars of the time. This single sold in excess of 20 million copies – it is in the top 10 of all time singles sold.
  • Also that year, the single The Power of Love from the soundtrack for the film Back to the Future was released. The single hit #1, and Lewis had a cameo role in the film.
  • Now on a roll, their next album, Fore!, was released in 1986. It sold over 2 million copies and peaked at #1. Five singles hit the top 10, with Stuck With You, Hip to be Square, and Jacob’s Ladder reaching the top of the chart.
  • Huey Lewis and the News released 5 additional albums between 1988 and 2010. Small World in 1988 managed to sell over 1 million copies, while the other albums have had modest sales.
  • The band toured regularly, and they continue to tour today.
  • The soul and doo-wop sound of Huey Lewis was a mainstay of 80s music. MTV put them on the map, so let’s watch their Grammy award winning video, The Heart of Rock & Roll, which was a mainstay on MTV. Great song, super catchy, love the clips of Rock & Roll legends throughout the video, and lots of 80s feathered hair looks here.

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