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Steve Forbert

Anointed "the new Dylan" upon his recording debut, folk-rock singer/songwriter Steve Forbert was born in Meridian, MS, in 1954. After learning guitar at age 11, he spent his high school years playing in a variety of local bands before quitting his job as a truck driver and moving to New York City at the age of 21. There, he performed for spare change in Grand Central Station before working his way up to the Manhattan club circuit. After signing to Nemperor, Forbert debuted in 1978 with Alive on Arrival, which earned critical acclaim for its taut, poetic lyrics. The follow-up, 1979's Jackrabbit Slim, was his most successful outing, reaching the Top 20 on the strength of the hit single "Romeo's Tune" (allegedly inspired by the late Supreme Florence Ballard). However, both 1980's Little Stevie Orbit and a self-titled 1982 effort fared poorly, and Forbert was dropped by his label. He spent much of the decade in Nashville, where he continued honing his songwriting skills and performed regularly throughout the South. In 1988, he signed to Geffen, where the E Street Band's Garry Tallent produced his comeback album, Streets of This Town. Pete Anderson took over the production reins for 1992's The American in Me, but Forbert's continued lack of chart success prompted the label to cut him loose. A deal with the Warner Bros.-affiliated Giant label resulted in two more studio albums, 1995's Mission of the Crossroad Palms and 1996's Rocking Horse Head, but in 1998 Forbert moved into independent territory for his next album, the rollicking live set Here's Your Pizza. Forbert signed with Koch Records for his next studio disc, 2000's Evergreen Boy, where he also released Any Old Time (a tribute to country music legend Jimmie Rodgers) in 2002 and Just Like There's Nothin' to It (a collection of new songs) in 2004. During this period, Forbert also released two compilations of rare and unreleased material, Young, Guitar Days and More Young, Guitar Days, as well as several live recordings. On Stage at World Cafe Live appeared in 2007 from Decca Vision as well as a new studio set, Strange Names and New Sensations, from 429 Records that same year. The Place and the Time arrived in 2009. The Chris Goldsmith-produced Over with You, a sparse song cycle that shows Forbert's fine songwriting skills, appeared in 2012. 2015 saw the release of Compromised, a thoughtful and easygoing set that included contributions from Joey Spampinato of NRBQ, songwriter and trumpeter Kami Lyle, and veteran producer John Simon. ~ Jason Ankeny
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Strange Names & New Sensations

1. Middle Age

2. Strange Names (North New Jerseys Got Em')

3. Simply Spalding Gray

4. Man, I Miss That Girl

5. You're Meant For Me

6. I Will Sing Your Praise

7. Something Special

8. My Seaside Brown Eyed Girl

9. The Baghdad Dream

10. Thirty More Years

11. Around The Bend

12. Romeo's Tune

x

Track List: Just Like There's Nothin' To It

1. What It Is Is A Dream

2. Wild As The Wind

3. The Change Song

4. The World Is Full Of People

5. Autumn This Year

6. I Just Work Here

7. There's Everybody Else (And Then There's You)

8. Oh, Yesterday

9. I Married A Girl

10. The Pretend Song

11. I'm In Love

12. About A Dream

x

Track List: The Best Of Steve Forbert, What Kinda Guy?

1. What Kinda Guy?

2. Romeo's Tune

3. Ya Ya (Next To Me)

4. Cellophane City

5. Song For Katrina

6. The Sweet Love That You Give (Sure Goes A Long Long Way)

7. I'm In Love With You

8. Complications (Live)

9. You Cannot Win If You Do Not Play

10. Thinkin'

11. Goin' Down To Laurel

12. January 23-30, 1978

13. Get Well Soon

14. Schoolgirl (Live)

15. Samson And Delilah's Beauty Shop

16. The Oil Song

17. Listen To Me

18. Steve Forbert 's Midsummer Night's Toast

19. It Isn't Gonna Be That Way

x

Track List: Jackrabbit Slim

1. Romeo's Tune

2. The Sweet Love That You Give

3. I'm In Love With You

4. Say Goodbye To Little Joe

5. Wait

6. Make It All So Real

7. Baby

8. Complications

9. Sadly Sorta Like A Soap Opera

10. January 23-30, 1978

x

Track List: Compromised

1. Compromised

2. A Big Comeuppance

3. When I Get To California

4. Drink Red Wine

5. Welcome The Rolling Stones

6. Rollin' Home To Someone You Love

7. Send In The Clowns

8. I Don't Know If You Know It

9. Devil (Here She Comes Now)

10. Time Seemed So Free

11. Whatever, Man

12. You'd See The Things That I See

13. Devil (Here She Comes Now) (Americana Version)

14. When I Get To California (Americana Version)

15. Whatever, Man (Americana Version)

16. Rain And Sleet And Snow

17. Katherine

x

Track List: Over With You

1. All I Asked Of You

2. All I Need To Do

3. In Love With You

4. That'll Be Alright

5. Baby, I Know

6. Over With You

7. Don't Look Down, Pollyanna

8. Can't We Get Together?

9. Metal Marie

10. Sugarcane Plum Fairy

x

Track List: The Place And The Time

1. Blackbird Tune

2. Sing It Again, My Friend

3. Stolen Identity

4. Write Me A Raincheck

5. Who'll Watch The Sunset

6. Simply Must Move On

7. The Beast Of Ballyhoo (Rock Show)

8. Building Me A Fire

9. Labor Day '08

10. The Coo Coo Bird

11. Hang On Again Til The Sun Shines (Nyc)

12. Blue Clear Sky

Comments

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Alive on Arrival is one of my all time favorites! All time! the lyrics are poetic and remind me of my wheelhouse days back in 1978. Brings me chills.
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PLEASE add Alive on Arrival! Reminds me of my college days.
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sweet tune...recen t l y rediscovered this fine artist....19 7 9 , Karen-do you remember ?
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forgot to thank you Royce Brannan for introducing me to S.F. we shoulda
seen him at the Buckhead Roxy in 1983
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wish this great southern talent would soon arrive alive in Athens,Ga
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Catch him at city winery in NYC when he plays. He packs them in.
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you cannot win if you do not play !!
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decham2
Great to find little Steve again. He is a treasure
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I saw him last night in Portland, ME, with a 'crowd' of maybe 40. Great show, but wish he could draw more. I last saw him, also in Portland, in 1979 when he was bursting on the scene, the 'next Dylan'. Still very much worth catching live, if you can.
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I discovered Steve Forbert at LSU and finally recently reunited with his music by chance. I love it and what great memories it brings! Would love to see him in concert! Let me know when the next concert will be!
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Don't miss him if you are lucky enough to see him.
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`$`eem`2`Rem e m b e r ` M e e t i n g ` L ` i ` L ; ` $ ` t e v e ` F o r b e t ` i n ` A ` M i c k y ` D ` z z ` O u t ` N e a r ` L a u r e l , M D . ` R o u n d ` 7 6 - 7 7 ` ` J ` u ` $ ` t ; Prior`2`The` R e l e a $ ` e ` o f ` H i $ ` D E B U T ` A l l ` L I V E ` O n ` A r r i v a l ` `We`Chit`Cha t t e d ` O v e r ` F R I E ` z z `
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Great , talented songwriter, musician, ad photographer . Have seen Steve too many times to count over the years. First time saw him in My Fathers Place, Roslyn, NY in the early eighties. Every show, new cd, song are insightful, and enjoyable.! Kudos to you Steve!! Keep the songs coming!!Cynd y Long Island, N.Y.
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Well wishes from Meridian,MS! ! ! Y'all enjoy:)
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Great song!
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ryn.mulhern
new to Pandora - thrilled I could access Steve Forbert. Love the voice, love the music, especially love the wonderful command of words. Always charmed, amused or left pondering by Steve's lyrics. thanks to my friend, Frank, for introducing me to Steve Forbert back in the late 80's. Don't remember the year, but one particularly incredible show was in Cathedral Square, Milwaukee with a full band for Bastille Days. People were rushing the stage area asking Who IS this guy? He's Great!
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magnussonl
Saw him for the 2nd time saturday night in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. He is awesome and multi-talent e d . A great lyricist..
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Missed a show of his in 77 and I've always regretted it - finally got to see him last night, he's still got it. He did a new extended talk prelude in to my favorite song of is, It Isn't Gonna Be That Way, so that it kinda snuck up on me - I actually was crying (but smiling) all the way through it. Then he followed it up with Going Down To Laurel, another favorite. His newer stuff was just as good - and he reworked the Oil song to cover Deepwater Horizon, sad, but very, very touching. Great!
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markeyswing
I saw Steve Forbert live way back around 1980, at the County College of Morris in NJ, I really enjoy his music, I'm so surprised he was never able to make it big, maybe that's what I like most about him.
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mgrnovi
I've seen Steve many times over the years. Steve signed my copy of Jackrabbit Slim, "Best of Luck and All...", from "Goin' Down to Laurel". Quite a few albums missing from the discography. Where's "Mission of the Crossroad Palms", "Alive on Arrival", "Streets of This Town", all incredible albums? It's funny someone mentioned Pandora as possible Steve's "Break". I've been waiting for 30+ years for him to break out. But if he got huge, I wouldn't be able to sit in the front row anymore.
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krissycandel a r i o
Love little stevie! First saw him in Bellingham, WA with Karla Bonoff, near 1979 and knew instantly he was the star!
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lsjosepher7
the best shows
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suburbanfolk i e
Absolutely one of the best - as a writer, recording artists, and performer. A GREAT artist.
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aahh
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david.grant1
robjer3..tha n k s for heads up on Steve Forbert..he is great
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Been to 4 shows, he is the best, autographed all my vinyl, 7 LPs. Wish more people would hear him, maybe Pandora will be his new break. Spread the Steve, people. All my friends have a copy of his music.
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mrdirenzo
Just saw Steve after many years in my KofC hall no less. He really made the audience feel as if they were a part of the show, and we were. He had 12 harmonicas, and used them all it seemed.He rocked and gave us an unforgetable show.
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vanillatwo
I think I still have the jackrabbit slim album in my closet! nice to hear him popping up on Pandora!
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Haven't been able to find any steve forbert music in stores here. Have loved him since way back.
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Liked Steve since the late '70s. Big City Cat, man, that was ME back then!
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jack280
Steve Forbert has been my favorite "live" performer for many years. My brothers and I never miss him at "The Boulton Center" on Long Island. Steve interacts with the audience very. Bottom line: don't miss Steve Forbert live.
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cubsneverdea d
Kor, look up Steve Forbert and listen to "Romeo".. love this song... MOM
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blindalfredr e e d
If you like Stevie, check out Josh Ritter's 'Historical Conquests.' I saw him the other night and he reminds me of young Forbert in voice, appearance, and approach. And that's a good thing. I somehow get emotional whenever I hear Romeo's Tune....
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weldingdon1
Romeo's Tune was OUR song in '79. We loved it then and it brings back memories now after 27 yrs of marriage...e v e n so, we hadn't heard any of his other songs. Pandora has opened up a whole new world!
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Love, love, love him!!! Very talented, been listening to him since 1979!
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I just watched a show on PBS on this guy and I thought he was fabulous to listen to, reminding me of both Dylan and Prine. First time I've listened to him. Looking forward to hearing more.

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