The Mystery Artist (born October 7, 1951), is an American rock singer-songwriter, musician, painter and occasional actor known for his catchy, populist brand of heartland rock which emphasizes traditional instrumentation. He rose to superstardom in the 1980s while “honing an almost startlingly plainspoken writing style that, starting in 1982, yielded a string of Top 10 singles,” including “Hurts So Good,” “Jack & Diane,” “Crumblin’ Down,” “Pink Houses,” “Lonely Ol’ Night,” “Small Town,” “R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A.,” “Paper in Fire,” and the mystery song.” He has sold over 40 million albums worldwide and has amassed 22 Top 40 hits in the United States. In addition, he holds the record for the most tracks by a solo artist to hit number-one on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, with seven, and has been nominated for 13 Grammy Awards, winning one. In the fall of 2014, he will release Plain Spoken, his 20th album of original material and the follow-up to his critically acclaimed 2010 album No Better Than This.
He is also one of the founding members of Farm Aid, an organization that began in 1985 with a concert in Champaign, Illinois to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on their land. The Farm Aid concerts have remained an annual event over the past 29 years, and as of 2014 the organization has raised over $45 million to promote a strong and resilient family farm system of agriculture.
He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on March 10, 2008. His biggest musical influences are Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, James Brown and The Rolling Stones.
Your Mystery Lyric was:
One night, me with my big mouth
A couple guys had to put me in my place
When I see those guys these days
We just laugh and say, “Do you remember when
Photo Credit: By DoD photo by Staff Sgt. D. Myles Cullen, U.S. Air Force. (http://www.dodmedia.osd.mil) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
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John Mellenkamp – Cherry Bomb was presented by Hil on August 15th 2014
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