Steve Miller (musician)

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Steve Miller (born October 5, 1943) is a blues and rock and roll guitarist and performer. He was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison during the 1960s. He formed a new band called The Ardells. Miller taught Boz Scaggs some chords, and Scaggs joined the Ardells the next year. The next school year Ben Sidran was added to the Ardells as a keyboardist.

In 1968, Miller formed the Steve Miller Band, with Scaggs handling vocals, and released an album, Children of the Future, the first in a series of discs rooted solidly in the psychedelic blues style that dominated the San Francisco music scene at the time. Scaggs would leave the band after a couple of albums with vocal chores taken over by drummer Tim Davis; Miller himself would begin singing occasional lead on 1969's Brave New World. These albums performed respectably on the album charts but failed to yield a hit.

1973's The Joker marked the start of the second phase of Miller's career: more pop-oriented and simplistic, the album featured a number one hit in the title track as well as several other popular tunes. Miller was now handling all lead vocals; his limited vocal range actually made the songs more radio-friendly and accessible.

Miller followed up The Joker with Fly Like an Eagle in 1976 and Book of Dreams in 1977. This pair of albums represented the peak of Miller's commercial career, both reaching the top echelons of the album charts and spawning a seemingly-endless series of hit singles, including "Rock 'N' Me", "Take the Money and Run", "Jet Airliner", and "Jungle Love". While critics lambasted Miller for abandoning his more ambitious approach and socially-aware lyrics in favor of simple pop-rock and derivative blues tunes, fans gravitated towards the catchy, melodic songs in great numbers, and the Steve Miller Band co-headlined a major stadium tour with The Eagles in 1977.

On the heels of this massive success, Miller took a long hiatus from recording and touring, emerging in 1981 with Circle of Love, an ambitous album possibly intended to appease critics of his new style. Sales were disappointing, however, and in 1982 he returned to the pop formula with another hit album, Abracadabra. This would be Miller's last great commercial success; a series of collections, live albums and attempts to find a new style would appear sporadically, but by the early 1990s Miller had given up on producing records altogether.

Discography

  • The Joker, 1973 album
    • "Your Cash Ain't Nothin' But Trash", 1974 single
    • "The Joker", 1974 single
    • "Shu Ba da du Ma Ma Ma Ma", 1974 single
    • "Evil", 1975 single
  • Fly Like an Eagle, 1976 album
    • "Rock 'N' Me", 1976 single
    • "Take The Money And Run", 1976 single
    • "Serenade", 1976 single
    • "Fly Like An Eagle", 1977 single
    • "Dance, Dance, Dance", 1977 single
    • "Wild Mountain Honey", 1977 single
  • Book of Dreams, 1977 album
    • "Jet Airliner", 1977 single
    • "The Stake", 1977 single
    • "Swingtown", 1978 single
    • "Jungle Love", 1978 single
    • "True Fine Love", 1978 single
    • "Winter Time", 1979 single
  • Greatest Hits 1974-1978, 1978 compilation
  • Italian X Rays, 1984 album
    • "Shangri-La", 1984 single
    • "Bongo Bongo", 1985 single
  • Living in the 20th Century, 1986 album
    • "I Want To Make The World Turn Around", 1986 single
    • "Maelstrom", 1986 single
    • "Behind The Barn", 1986 single
    • "Nobody But You Baby", 1987 single
    • "Slinky", 1987 single
    • "Caress Me Baby", 1987 single
  • Born 2B Blue, 1988 album
    • "Ya Ya", 1988 single
    • "God Bless The Child", 1988 single
    • "Mary Ann", 1989 single
    • "Willow Weep For Me", 1989 single
    • "Born 2B Blue", 1989 single
  • Hayley Hibarger's the best!!, 2003 compilation

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This would be Miller's last great commercial success; a series of collections, live albums and attempts to find a new style would appear sporadically, but by the early 1990s Miller had given up on producing records altogether. The book Messages, written by Johnny Waller and Paul Humphreys' brother Mike Humphreys, details the career of the band up to the time of The Best of OMD. Sales were disappointing, however, and in 1982 he returned to the pop formula with another hit album, Abracadabra. There were two official magazines about the band, Telegraph, and, currently, Messages. On the heels of this massive success, Miller took a long hiatus from recording and touring, emerging in 1981 with Circle of Love, an ambitous album possibly intended to appease critics of his new style. An album of unreleased material by the band is scheduled to be released in 2005. This pair of albums represented the peak of Miller's commercial career, both reaching the top echelons of the album charts and spawning a seemingly-endless series of hit singles, including "Rock 'N' Me", "Take the Money and Run", "Jet Airliner", and "Jungle Love". While critics lambasted Miller for abandoning his more ambitious approach and socially-aware lyrics in favor of simple pop-rock and derivative blues tunes, fans gravitated towards the catchy, melodic songs in great numbers, and the Steve Miller Band co-headlined a major stadium tour with The Eagles in 1977. McCluskey would continue for another decade, joined by Liverpool musicians Lloyd Massett and Stuart Kershaw.

Miller followed up The Joker with Fly Like an Eagle in 1976 and Book of Dreams in 1977. Though Humphreys left the band after The Best of OMD, he collaborated with McCluskey on the songwriting for Universal, the band's 1996 swan song. Miller was now handling all lead vocals; his limited vocal range actually made the songs more radio-friendly and accessible. One of OMD's biggest hits, "If You Leave," (1985) was written specifically for the John Hughes movie Pretty in Pink. 1973's The Joker marked the start of the second phase of Miller's career: more pop-oriented and simplistic, the album featured a number one hit in the title track as well as several other popular tunes. By now the band were seeing their critical and public popularity wane in the UK, whilst they struggled to break the US market. Scaggs would leave the band after a couple of albums with vocal chores taken over by drummer Tim Davis; Miller himself would begin singing occasional lead on 1969's Brave New World. These albums performed respectably on the album charts but failed to yield a hit. This 6 piece line also released The Pacific Age (1986).

In 1968, Miller formed the Steve Miller Band, with Scaggs handling vocals, and released an album, Children of the Future, the first in a series of discs rooted solidly in the psychedelic blues style that dominated the San Francisco music scene at the time. With the recording of Crush, (1985) Graham and Neil Weir began playing with the group (on guitar and brass), produced by Stephen Hague. The next school year Ben Sidran was added to the Ardells as a keyboardist. Two laserdiscs, Live at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane (1982) and Crush the Movie (1985) were released only in Japan. Miller taught Boz Scaggs some chords, and Scaggs joined the Ardells the next year. 1984's Junk Culture saw a return to a more poppy sound and saw the band using digital sampling keyboards such as the Fairlight CMI and the Emu Emulator. He formed a new band called The Ardells. It was recorded by the 4-piece Humpreys/Holmes/Cooper/Mcluskey line-up, and produced by Rhett Davies.

He was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison during the 1960s. 1983 saw the band lose commercial momentum somewhat, with the release of their 'difficult' Dazzle Ships albums, which mixed melancholy synth ballads and uptempo synth pop with musique concrete and short wave radio tape collages. Steve Miller (born October 5, 1943) is a blues and rock and roll guitarist and performer. Hit singles Joan of Arc and Maid of Orleans were taken from the album. Hayley Hibarger's the best!!, 2003 compilation. They used it to add very atmospheric swatches of string, choir and other sounds to their palette. "Born 2B Blue", 1989 single. The album's striking sound saw OMD's original synth-pop sound augmented by the mellotron, an instrument previously associated with prog rock bands.

"Willow Weep For Me", 1989 single. The 4-piece went into the studio with Richard Mainwaring producing, Cooper then temporarily dropping out and being replaced by Mike Douglas, but this changed being reversed by the time the album was released and a tour embarked upon. "Mary Ann", 1989 single. 1981 would see the release of what many consider OMD's magnum opus (and it was also the peak of their commercial success in the UK and Europe) - the Architecture & Morality album. "God Bless The Child", 1988 single. It ushered in a striking lush choral electronic sound. "Ya Ya", 1988 single. Howlett then presided over the recording of a further hit single, Souvenir, co-written by Cooper & Humphreys.

Born 2B Blue, 1988 album

    . The tour for this album saw a 4-piece band line-up, with saxophonist Martin Cooper recruited for keyboard duties. "Caress Me Baby", 1987 single. The album spawned the huge hit single Enola Gay, named after the plane which dropped an atom bomb on Hiroshima. "Slinky", 1987 single. It was again produced by Howlett, and saw a rather moodier, dark feel. "Nobody But You Baby", 1987 single. The second album Organisation followed later that year, recorded as a 3 piece with Humphreys, McCluskey and Holmes.

    "Behind The Barn", 1986 single. A tour followed, Winston the tape recorded being ditched for good, and replaced with live drums from Mal Holmes, and Dalek I Love You's Dave Hughs on synths. "Maelstrom", 1986 single. DinDisc arranged for the song Messages to be re-recorded (produced by Gong bassist Mike Howlett) and released as a single - this gave the band their first hit. "I Want To Make The World Turn Around", 1986 single. It had a simple, raw, poppy, melodic synthpop sound. Living in the 20th Century, 1986 album

      . The eponymous first album (1980) showcased the band's live set at the time, and was basically recorded by the Humphreys/McCluskey duo, although included some guest drums from Id drummer Mal Holmes, and saxophone from Wirral musician Martin Cooper.

      "Bongo Bongo", 1985 single. Finding themselves on the cusp of an electronic new wave in British pop-music, they released a one-off single with legendary independent label Factory Records (the single sleeve was designed by Peter Saville, whose distinctive graphics provided OMD's public image well into the mid-80s), and were then quickly snapped up by Virgin subsiduary DinDisc. "Shangri-La", 1984 single. They began to gig regularly as a duo, accompanied on stage by a Revox tape-recorder of backing tracks called "Winston". Italian X Rays, 1984 album

        . McCluskey briefly sang with electronic Wirral quartet Dalek I Love You, however eventually rejoined Humphreys, and their VCL XI project was rechristened Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark. Greatest Hits 1974-1978, 1978 compilation. In 1978, The Id split due to the traditional musical differences.

        "Winter Time", 1979 single. Meanwhile Humphreys & McCluskey collaborated on a side-project called VCL XI (named after a valve from the diagram on the cover of Kraftwerk's Radio-Activity album), where they pursued their more bizarre electronic experiments, often working with tape collages, home-made kit-built synthesiers, and circuit-bent radios. "True Fine Love", 1978 single. They had quite a following on the scene, and one of their tracks (Julia's Song) was included on a compilation record of local bands called Street to Street. "Jungle Love", 1978 single. The group began to gig regularly in the Merseyside area, performing original material (largely written by McCluskey & Humphreys). "Swingtown", 1978 single. By 1977, McCluskey & Humphreys put together 7-piece (3 singers, 2 guitars, bass, drums, and keyboards!) Wirral 'supergroup' The Id, whose line-up included drummer Malcolm Holmes and McCluskey's girlfriend Julia Kneale on vocals.

        "The Stake", 1977 single. The pair shared a love of electronic music, particularly Brian Eno and Kraftwerk. "Jet Airliner", 1977 single. McCluskey would usually sing and play bass guitar, whilst electronics enthusiast Humphreys initially began as a roadie, graduating to keyboards. Book of Dreams, 1977 album

          . As teenagers, Humphreys and McCluskey were involved in several unsigned Wirral bands, including including Equinox, Pegasus, and the short-lived Hitlerz Underpantz. "Wild Mountain Honey", 1977 single.
          .

          "Dance, Dance, Dance", 1977 single. McCluskey then retained the name and continued to record and tour as OMD with a new line-up. "Fly Like An Eagle", 1977 single. The group was founded by Andy McCluskey and Paul Humphreys, and they formed the core of the outfit until 1989, when the group split. "Serenade", 1976 single. Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark or OMD were a synth pop group from the Wirral, UK, who recorded for Virgin Records (originally for Virgin's DinDisc subsidiary). "Take The Money And Run", 1976 single. The Best of OMD - 1988.

          "Rock 'N' Me", 1976 single. Crush the Movie - 1985. Fly Like an Eagle, 1976 album

            . Live at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane - 1982. "Evil", 1975 single. Crush the Movie - 1985. "Shu Ba da du Ma Ma Ma Ma", 1974 single. Live at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane - 1982.

            "The Joker", 1974 single. "The OMD Remixes" (5-inch CD single containing remixes of "Enola Gay," "Souvenir" and "Electricity"). "Your Cash Ain't Nothin' But Trash", 1974 single. "Universal" - 1996. The Joker, 1973 album

              . "Walking on the Milky Way" - 1996. "Everyday" - 1993.

              "Dream of Me (Based on Love's Theme)" - 1993. "Stand Above Me" - 1993. "Call My Name" - 1991. "The You Turn Away" - 1991.

              "Pandora's Box" - 1991. "Sailing on the Seven Seas" - 1991. "Dreaming" - 1988. "Shame" - 1987.

              "We Love You" - 1986. "(Forever) Live and Die" - 1986 (also released as picture disc). "If You Leave" - 1986. "La Femme Accident" - 1985 (also released as shaped picture disc).

              "Secret" - 1985. "So In Love" - 1985. "Never Turn Away" - 1984. "Tesla Girls" - 1984.

              "Talking Loud & Clear" - 1984. "Locomotion" - 1984. "Telegraph" - 1983. "Genetic Engineering" - 1983.

              "Maid of Orleans" - 1982. "Joan of Arc" - 1981. "Souvenir" - 1981. "Enola Gay" - 1980.

              "Messages" - 1980. "Red Frame/White Light" - 1980. "Electricity" - 1979. Navigation - The OMD B-Sides - 2001.

              The Peel Sessions -2000. The OMD Singles - 1998. Universal - 1996. Liberator - 1993.

              Sugar Tax - 1991. The Best of OMD - 1988. The Pacific Age - 1986. Crush - 1985.

              Junk Culture - 1984 (first copies came with enclosed one-sided 7-inch single, "The Angels Keep Turning (The Wheels of the Universe)"). Dazzle Ships - 1983. Architecture & Morality - 1981. - 1981.

              O.M.D. Organisation - 1980. Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark - 1980.

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