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.
Springsteen and Mellencamp Honor Jerry Lee Lewis at Rock Hall
"One last one for the Killer," the Boss said.
Bruce Springsteen and John Mellencamp Induct Industry Legends
They welcomed Jimmy Iovine and Allen Grubman – then paid thunderous closing tribute to Jerry Lee Lewis.
Mellencamp and Springsteen to Take Part in Rock Hall Ceremony
Chairman John Sykes confirms several A-list inductors for this year's event.
John Mellencamp Paintings and Assemblages: Photo Gallery
Collection is now on view in New York City.
John Mellencamp Shares Unreleased 'Scarecrow' Track 'Smart Guys'
Track appears on upcoming extended version of 'Scarecrow.'
John Mellencamp Shares New 'Scarecrow'-Era Song 'Carolina Shag'
Rollicking track will appear on deluxe reissue, out next month.
John Mellencamp Announces 'Scarecrow Deluxe' Reissue
Listen to a previously unreleased demo of "Small Town" now.
Odd Couples: When Mick Ronson Helped John Mellencamp Score a Hit
Heartland rocker's most successful single came together with the assistance of Bowie's guitarist.
John Mellencamp's 'American Fool': Beyond 'Jack and Diane'
There's more to his only No. 1 album than its two massive singles.