Rod Stewart

ASCAP Founders Award

Rod Stewart

Unparalleled Singer and Songwriter
Whose Timeless Songs Turn the Personal into the Universal

ASCAP Honors Rod Stewart
Your Musical Legacy Is In Our Hearts and In Our Souls

Rarely has a singer had as full and unique a talent as Rod Stewart — a writer who offered profound lyricism and fabulous self-deprecating humor, teller of tall tales and honest heartbreaker, he had an unmatched eye for the tiny details around which lives turn, shatter, and reform — and a voice to make those details indelible. His solo albums were defined by two special qualities: warmth, which was redemptive, and modesty, which was liberating. If ever any rocker chose the role of everyman and lived up to it, it was Rod Stewart.
– from The Rolling Stone Illustrated History of Rock & Roll (1980)

Tonight's ASCAP Founders Award recipient, Rod Stewart, is one of the most popular and enduring recording and concert stars of the past four decades. His success has been marked by his instantly recognizable voice, his warm and engaging personality, his skill as an interpretive singer and an ability to write original songs that touch millions of listeners worldwide. His career has found him working in disparate styles and genres — folk, blues, rock, soul, disco, pop and vintage standards — and with his innate musicality, he has made each style his own.

The London-born Stewart grew up listening to his family's Al Jolson records before discovering rock & roll and R&B on his own. He originally had his heart set on becoming a professional soccer player but his interest in music won out. He knocked around the London music scene and worked, with limited success, with such future music eminences as Ray Davies, Long John Baldry, Mick Fleetwood and John McVie. Stewart's leap into public recognition came in 1968 when he became lead vocalist for the Jeff Beck Group, the band Beck started after leaving the Yardbirds.

After two albums, Stewart and fellow Beck Group alumnus Ron Wood joined the Small Faces in 1969 and shortened the band name to Faces, beginning a new legendary chapter in Rock history. With the four Faces albums, Stewart began to come into his own as a writer and singer with keepers like "Bad 'n' Ruin," "Cindy Incidentally," and the best-selling single, "Stay with Me." During that same period, Stewart embarked on the great series of solo albums for the Mercury label that established him as an international superstar. 40 plus years after they were recorded, Stewart-written tracks like "Gasoline Alley," "Every Picture Tells a Story," "Mandolin Wind," "You Wear It Well" and the beloved landmark smash,"Maggie May," all remain magical, folk rock at its best.

The mid-70s saw Rod move to the U.S. and the Warner Bros. label, and a more Pop musical orientation. The hits continued with regularity, among them Stewart's own "Tonight's the Night," "You're In My Heart (The Final Acclaim)," "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy?," "Young Turks," "Forever Young," "Baby Jane" and "Infatuation."

In recent years, Rod has worked closely with recording industry giant Clive Davis on a series of five albums interpreting the Great American Songbook, all of which have found an eager audience, as well as tributes to Rock and Soul classics. Rod Stewart has always been one of music's foremost interpretive artists. Still, many longtime fans would be delighted by new Rod Stewart songs whenever he is ready to deliver them.