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John Mellencamp

John Mellencamp

John Mellencamp’s recording career began as Johnny Cougar in the mid-’70s, but it wasn’t until his fifth album — 1982’s No. 1 ‘American Fool’ — that he became a household name (and one that still was making records under his stage moniker). By 1983’s ‘Uh-Huh,’ the Indiana-born singer-songwriter had enough muscle to get his real name on his records, though it wouldn’t be until 1991’s ‘Whenever We Wanted’ that the “Cougar” would be permanently dropped. The change in names coincided with an artistic growth that culminated in 1985’s ‘Scarecrow’ and 1987’s ‘The Lonesome Jubilee,’ two of the decade’s strongest albums of heartland rock. In addition to releasing a series of albums over the years, Mellencamp directed and starred in the 1992 movie ‘Falling From Grace’ and cowrote the musical ‘Ghost Brothers of Darkland County’ with Stephen King in 2012.

Adam Bettcher, Getty Images
Adam Bettcher, Getty Images

John Mellencamp Wants a ‘Long and Lingering Death’

Many people hope for a quick and painless death. Not John Mellencamp.

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Rick Diamond, Getty Images
Rick Diamond, Getty Images

Watch John Mellencamp Join Keith Urban for a CMA Awards Performance of ‘Pink Houses’

It turns out that name-checking John Mellencamp in a hit song can come in pretty handy, even if you use his old stage alias. Just ask Keith Urban.

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Larry Busacca, Getty Images
Larry Busacca, Getty Images

John Mellencamp and Keith Urban to Duet at CMA Awards

John Mellencamp clearly doesn't mind being name-checked in Keith Urban's latest country hit.

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Mercury
Mercury

30 Years Ago: John Cougar Mellencamp Digs Up Some Americana Roots on ‘Scarecrow’

In more ways than one, Scarecrow was John Mellencamp's second act.

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Mercury
Mercury

28 Years Ago: John Cougar Mellencamp Digs Deeper Into Roots Music on ‘The Lonesome Jubilee’

On Aug. 24, 1987, John Mellencamp released one of his best albums, The Lonesome Jubilee.

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John Mellencamp Keith Urban
Brad Barket / Mike Windle, Getty Images

Country Star Keith Urban Releases New Single, ‘John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16’

Keith Urban name-checks John Mellencamp's former stage name in his new single.

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Mercury Records
Mercury Records

The Story of John Mellencamp’s Reflective ‘Big Daddy’

John Mellencamp released 'Big Daddy' on May 9, 1989.

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John Mellencamp
Adam Bettcher, Getty Images

John Mellencamp’s Sons Plead Guilty in Beat-down Case

John Mellencamp's sons have pleaded guilty to misdemeanor battery charges from a 2013 fight.

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Adam Bettcher, Getty Images
Adam Bettcher, Getty Images

John Mellencamp Blasts Indiana’s Religious Freedom Law

Mellencamp wrote an op-ed for the Indianapolis Star that criticized the controversial new legislation.

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YouTube
YouTube

Is This What Happened to Characters From John Mellencamp, Bon Jovi and Steve Miller’s Hits?

Classic rock fans of all ages have grown up with John Mellencamp's "Jack & Diane," Tommy and Gina from Bon Jovi's "Livin' on a Prayer" and Billy Joe and Bobby Sue from the Steve Miller Band's "Take the Money and Run."

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