I have to say that one of my most favorite singers of all time is the soulful and rocking Johnny Rivers. (born John Henry Ramistella, 7 November 1942, in New York) What a unique musician! Johnny has one of the most signature voices in music history. All it takes is two words of lyric for the listener to know it's Johnny. Standing on the Mountain looking down at the city...
Johnny rocks that guitar out on Secret Agent Man which we still jump around the room playing air guitar when we hear it! Seventh Son... same thing. Can't keep my feet from tapping or fingers from snapping. Don't think there has ever been anyone who injected such personality into the music. Not to mention he was a hot looking guy in the 60's. He looked like a city guy with a very country rockabilly style. The closest we come to him now is another of my much loved singer/guitar guys Chris Isaak.
When Johnny covered a song no one minded. (Unlike Pat Boone) He made the song as good if not better than the original. What other singer could cover a Chuck Berry tune? Johnny could.
Johnny Rivers had seventeen songs on the charts from 1964 to 1977. He was versatile enough to do folk songs, blues, covers of old-time rock-and-roll songs, and some original material, all of them in his own very unique style. He is also songwriter, guitarist, performer and producer.
Personally my favorites of JR's records are Mountain of Love and Memphis. Johnny Rivers was really ahead of his time in starting Rivers Music and his own label Soul City Records in 1966.