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Songwriters Hall of Fame
-- inducted 1984
the course of a career that kicked in with the adolescent rush of
"Cherry Cherry" in 1966 and crescendoed thirty years later
with the 3-CD retrospective "In
My Lifetime," Neil Diamond has never failed to delight
and surprise his fans with fresh approaches to the music that moves him the most deeply.
The happy saga of Neil Diamond, one of the most
creatively bold and prolific singer-songwriters to emerge in the
rock era, is one American tale well worth repeating. At age 16, he
received a guitar as a birthday present, and soon he focused on lessons
and, later, songwriting. He later attended NYU as a pre-med student on a
fencing scholarship, but songwriting remained his first love. He left
college six months before graduating to accept a songwriting position
with a publishing company for $50 a week, and has never regretted the
decision. Diamond eventually leased an office on Broadway for $35 a
month where he could devote all his time to writing. After several lean
years, he was approached by producers Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich.
This meeting led to his eventual signing with Bang Records.
his first Bang session in 1966, Neil recorded what would become his
first three hit singles: "Solitary Man," "Cherry,
Cherry," and "I Got The Feeling (Oh No, No)." He also
scored his first #1 record as a writer with the Monkees' "I'm A
Believer." Diamond's Bang Records catalog included the albums
"The Feel of Neil Diamond" (his 1966 debut), "Just For
You" (1967), "Neil Diamond's Greatest Hits" (1968) and
1969 brought him his biggest record of the early
years, "Sweet Caroline," from the album "Brother Love's
Traveling Salvation Show/Sweet Caroline," an album that combined
gospel themes with pop formats. The following year, he released the
You Touching Me," which included the hit single "Holly
Holy," and "Tap
Root Manuscript" (1970), which experimented with
African-inspired arrangements. Other albums from this period include
Gloves" and "Spit"
(1971) and "Moods"
(1972), with hits like the #1 "Cracklin' Rosie," "Song
Sung Blue" (also #1), and "I Am...I Said." "Hot
August Night," a double-album recorded live at the Greek
Theater in 1972 is another immortal Diamond album of the period.
reputation as a charismatic performer grew steadily in the 70s. In 1972,
the Schubert Organization presented him in concert for a record-setting
20 performances of a one-man show at the Winter Garden Theater, making
Neil the first rock-era superstar to headline on Broadway. At the height
of his touring popularity, Diamond announced a sabbatical from the stage
to devote more time to his family, but in 1976, he resumed performing
with record-breaking tours of Australia and New Zealand.
In 1973, Neil Diamond signed with Columbia,
with which he has enjoyed his greatest successes. His first release for
the label, "Jonathan
Livingston Seagull," became his #2 all-time best-seller and
earned him Grammy and Golden Globe awards. In 1974 he released "Serenade,"
which yielded the hit, "Longfellow Serenade." In 1976 he
recorded the platinum "Beautiful
Noise" with producer Robbie Robertson.
The late 70s found Neil Diamond on both the
radio and TV airwaves. In 1976, he returned to the Greek Theater for
eight SRO shows, resulting in his first TV special and his second live
LP, 1977's platinum "Love
At The Greek." On the singles charts, his 1978 duet ballad with
Barbra Streisand, "You Don't Bring Me Flowers," reached #1.
Glad You're Here With Me Tonight" (1977), "You
Don't Bring Me Flowers" (1978), and "September
Morn" (1980) continued his streak of RIAA-certified platinum albums.
In 1980, Neil Diamond not only starred in the
remake of the movie classic "The Jazz Singer," but he composed
and performed the film's multi-platinum soundtrack album, which included
hits "Love On The Rocks," "America," and "Hello
Again." The title track to his 1982 album "Heartlight"
was another monster hit, and in 1986 he followed his smash 1972 live
double album "Hot
August Night" with "Hot
August Night II."
The 90's have served to further Diamond's standing as
one of his generation's premier performers. A Christmas album spawned
"Neil Diamond's Christmas Special," which premiered on HBO in
1992 and aired on ABC-TV the following year. A second holiday set,
Christmas Album Vol II," was issued in 1994 and duplicated the success of the first volume.
In 1993, meanwhile, Neil returned to his roots with
the album "Up
On The Roof - Songs From The Brill Building." Featuring 16 of
Diamond's favorite pop songs from the '50s and '60s, the disc showcased
classics by such top songwriting teams as Goffin & King, Mann &
Weill, Leiber & Stoller, Barry & Greenwich, and Bacharach &
David all of whom were closely identified with the Brill Building,
the renowned songwriters and publishers headquarters located on Broadway in Midtown Manhattan.
In 1994, Neil Diamond released "Live
In America," which documented his record-breaking two-year
"Love In The Round" world tour, in which he performed on a
360-degree stage built in the middle of every arena he played. "The
Tennessee Moon" project, which Diamond recorded in Nashville
with the help of such stellar country artists as Waylon Jennings and
Mavericks' Raul Malo, followed in 1996, and included a companion TV special and home video.
Also in 1996 came the extraordinary 70-song "In
My Lifetime" boxed-set containing 37 hit singles, 16 previously
unissued early demos, alternative versions of well known classics, the
newly written and recorded title track, and a full-color 72-page booklet
with extensive liner notes including an interview with Diamond, scores
of rare photos, a complete discography, and song-by-song annotations by
Diamond. It was a fitting package for the enduring artist who has sold
115 million records and set box office records at major venues all over the world.
Neil Diamond won a Grammy in 1973 as composer
of the Best Original Score Written For A Motion Picture ("Jonathan
Livingston Seagull") and achieved one of his biggest successes
with the soundtrack to the movie "The Jazz Singer," in which
he starred opposite Sir Laurence Olivier. In 1998 Neil Diamond, the
interpretive vocalist, returned to the movies as the inspiration for
Movie Album As Time Goes By," a two-disc collection of 20
classic songs from the treasure trove of motion picture music. True to
the spirit and magic of Hollywood at its best, "The
Movie Album As Time Goes By" was recorded live on 20th
Century Fox's Newman Scoring Stage and conducted by the legendary film
composer/conductor Elmer Bernstein. The album received a Grammy
nomination for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Performance.
Unchallenged as one of the rock era's greatest live
solo performers, Diamond's last world tour began in October, 1998 and
continued through 1999, performing 117 SRO shows in the U.S., Canada,
Europe and Australia/New Zealand. Part of his spectacular New Year's Eve
concert appearance in Denver was broadcast worldwide during ABC-TV's
Millennium coverage. Amusement Business named Diamond the top solo
concert artist of the 90's. On June 15, 2000, the Songwriters' Hall of
Fame awarded Diamond the coveted "Sammy Cahn Lifetime Achievement
Award," making him one of a select few composers to be honored
twice by the organization. Recently, Diamond appeared in a cameo role in
the motion picture "Saving Silverman" (released February 2001).
Chord Opera" (release date July 24, 2001) is one of Diamond's
most personal records, a song collection which meditates on love and
loss while celebrating life's joy and glories through music.
Interestingly, considering Diamond's formidable reputation as the
quintessential singer-songwriter, "Three
Chord Opera" marks the first time since 1974's "Serenade"
in which all the words and music were written by Neil. Produced by Peter
Asher and Alan Lindgren, the record is a revealing look at the inner
life of Neil Diamond, an artist who continues to communicate the essential, universal experience.
Essential Neil Diamond," a comprehensive 2-CD collection
representing Diamond's entire career to date, was released on December
4, 2001. This collection brings together releases on Bang Records (where
his recording career began in 1966), Uni (1969-'72), Capitol ("The
Jazz Singer" original motion picture soundtrack of 1980) and
Columbia Records (home to Diamond since 1973).
Hit songs include --
- Cracklin' Rose
- Gitchy Goomy
- God Only Knows
- I've Been This Way Before
- If You Know What I Mean
- Longfellow Serenade
- Song Sung Blue
- Yesterday's Songs
- You Don't Bring Me Flowers
- Be Mine Tonight
- I Am... I Said
- Love On The Rocks
- Play Me
- September Morn
- You've Got Your Troubles
- Captain Sunshine
- Diamond Girls
- Hello Again
- Say Maybe
- Sweet Caroline
- Holly Holy
Neil Diamond may be available for your next special event!
Genre: Rock 1
.Adult Contemporary. / AdultContemporary
.Classic Rock. / ClassicRock
.Contemporary Pop/Rock. / ContemporaryPopRock
.Pop/Rock. / PopRock
.Soft Rock. / SoftRock
.Pop. / xPop
.Pianist. / xPianist
x60s, x70s, x80s, x90s, x00s, x10s, x20s
Born: ..in New York / born nNewYork
Born: ..in New York City / born
Born: ..in Brooklyn / born BrooklynNY
Born: Jan 24, 1941
Based: ..in US
Musical Artists, xJewish