Jimi Jamison helped breathe new life into Survivor when he joined after their somewhat under-performing 1983 album Caught in the Game. With his help, the "Eye of the Tiger" chart-toppers made a strong comeback in 1984 with the Vital Signs record. Over the next couple of years, a resurgent Survivor placed five songs in the Top 40 – with four reaching the Top 10. The best of the best from this period find a home in our list of the Top 10 Jimi Jamison Survivor songs.
'Backstreet Love Affair'From: 'When Seconds Count' (1986)
Guitarist and songwriter Frankie Sullivan has a particular fondness for this track from Survivor's second album with Jamison, calling it "one of my favorites." As he explains, "at that time in my life, I was doing too much of that stuff. You know, you go through phases of life. At that time, I wasn’t a very good husband and I was trying to be a better father, but the bottom line is that I was not yet 30 years old and I had a few hits under my belt. In my time off, I’d fly to California and rent a car and run around and do things that I gave up 30 years ago, but that’s all now part of what you learn from."
'Desparate Dreams'From: 'Too Hot to Sleep' (1988)
Even though 1988's Too Hot to Sleep album didn't sell all that well, the atmospheric "Desparate Dreams" was a highlight that demonstrated Jamison's vocal talents at communicating the feelings and emotions of a situation – a key strength that he brought to Survivor during his time with the band.
'Man Against the World'From: 'When Seconds Count' (1986)
"Man Against the World" isn't as well-known as many other Jamison-sung Survivor ballads (stalling at No. 86 on the chart in 1986), but it's become a fan favorite over the years. The song originally appeared on the When Seconds Count album, but was also slated for inclusion on the Rocky IV soundtrack. When the album was later reissued, "Man Against the World" was on there.
'Broken Promises'From: 'Vital Signs' (1984)
"Broken Promises" often served as the second punch along with the Dave Bickler-era song "Feels Like Love" in the one-two opening combo of many Survivor shows back during their mid-'80s peak period, starting when Jamison took over vocals for the group.
'Is This Love'From: 'When Seconds Count' (1986)
Following the success of "Burning Heart" from the Rocky IV soundtrack, as well as a string of big ballads from their Vital Signs album, this first single from Survivor's sixth album immediately went Top 10. Sadly, it was the last time the band would reach the Top 40.
Two years after they had a massive hit with "Eye of the Tiger," the now-Jamison led Survivor tried their hand with another soundtrack song. "The Moment of Truth" from The Karate Kid managed to climb to only No. 63, but still helped usher in the Jamison era.
'I Can't Hold Back'From: 'Vital Signs' (1984)
Following "The Moment of Truth," Survivor returned with a new singer and a new album, Vital Signs. The first single from the LP zoomed all the way to No. 13, giving Survivor their biggest hit since "Eye of the Tiger," and kicking off Jamison's hit-making years with the band.
'High on You'From: 'Vital Signs' (1984)
After "I Can't Hold Back" returned Survivor to the Top 20, they continued their momentum with another love song from Vital Signs. This time, they made it to the Top 10 with "High on You," Jamison's first with the group. It was just the start: Three more huge hits would quickly follow over the next two years.
'The Search is Over'From: 'Vital Signs' (1984)
Survivor's climb with Jamison at the helm continued to escalate as yet another song from the hit Vital Signs album made its way into the Top 10. "The Search Is Over" made it all the way to No. 4, their biggest hit since "Eye of the Tiger" stayed at No. 1 for six weeks in 1982. But there was even a bigger hit on the way ...
'Burning Heart'From 'Rocky IV' Soundtrack (1985)
"The Moment of Truth" from The Karate Kid didn't burn up the charts the way "Eye of the Tiger" did, so for Survivor's next soundtrack song they returned to familiar territory: Sylvester Stallone's beloved boxer Rocky. "Burning Heart" was written for Rocky IV, and like "Eye of the Tiger" before hit became a huge hit. While it didn't reach No. 1, "Burning Heart" did make it to No. 2 for a couple weeks – Survivor's second-biggest hit and Jamison's all-time best showing with the band.