Rick Astley gets a bad rap. He's been the subject and punchline of a "Rickrolling" trend which started in 2007 as an online bait and switch technique that invites people to click on a link only to find themselves watching the video to Astley's hit "Never Gonna Give You Up." But as disrespectful as that sounds, with all fairness the trick revived Astley's career and made younger generations aware of his music. Not that those of us who grew up with Astley's music in the 1980s and '90s needed reminding of who is he. He was 21 when "Never Gonna Give You Up" was released and looks absolutely baby faced in his music videos and live performances. Yet the voice coming out of this handsome ginger was anything but child's play--it was (and still is) soulful, deep, and unique. He sold millions of records during the earlier part of his career, and you never, ever heard of Rick Astley doing anything in public that would jeopardize his career or reputation. He remained humbled by his success, married young, and is still married today to a film producer and former RCA promoter. A few years after their daughter was born, Astley retired from the music industry at only 27 years old to focus on his family (but resumed performing and recording music after the Rickrolling trend took off.) Here's an interview of Astley on The Alan Titchmarsh Show in 2012 talking about why he decided to return to the spotlight:
Today is also Astley's 49th birthday which is another reason I'm devoting today's Two Forgotten Friday Favorites to him--even though he really doesn't look much older than he did in the late '80s. Now, I'm not going to post "Never Gonna Give You Up" as much as I like the song. This recurring series is about forgotten hits, so here's "It Would Take a Strong Strong Man" and "She Wants to Dance With Me"--the latter composed by Astley himself. Happy Birthday, Rick!
Hi, I'm Pam - thanks for visiting Go Retro! If you've ever been called an old soul like I have, or you were lucky enough to actually live during the mid-20th century in America, then you're in the right place!
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