Richard Lewis Springthorpe was born in Australia but spent most of his teenage years in England when his dad’s job moved them there. He played in a few bands before returning to Australia and playing in a few bands there as Rick Springfield. In 1969 he was in the band Zoot and wrote at least one of their singles. The band had four top forty singles in Australia before splitting up in 1971.
Rick recorded his first solo album and had an international hit single with Speak To The Sky that reached #14 on the US Hot 100 in 1971. He recorded his first solo album in England and then moved to the US. Two more singles from the album failed to do very well except in Australia.
Rick’s second album was on Columbia Records, but neither of the singles from Comic Book Heroes did well.
ABC produced The Brady Kids in 1972 that was spun off from The Brady Bunch. It was a Saturday morning cartoon show that ended a year later but spun off a second cartoon show: Mission: Magic! Rick was the star of that show and performed original songs at the end of each episode. An album created from the show’s songs came out in 1974.
Rick recorded another album in 1976 that contained a single that reached #41 on the Hot 100 and two more that failed to chart.
Beginning in 1977, Rick focused on an acting career. His first role was on an episode of the Six Million Dollar Man. Additional guest appearances followed on other television shows. He also starred in the movie that morphed into the Forever Knight television show (although a different actor replaced him in the series).
RCA Records became his record label and in 1980 Rick recorded his fourth album, Working Class Dog. Rick and his agent did not expect the album to do well, so Rick auditioned and won the part of Dr. Noah Drake on the soap opera General Hospital. The record company released the first single from the album (Jessie’s Girl) in March 1981. When the single began racing up the charts, Rick began touring to promote it in between appearances on the show. The single topped the Hot 100 in August and also helped boost the television show’s ratings. Rick even won a Grammy award for Best Rock Vocal Performance, Male. Two more hit singles also came off the album that year.
Rick recorded his fifth album Success Hasn’t Spoiled Me Yet. The release of the single Don’t Talk to Strangers brought him back to #2 on the Hot 100 in early 1982. His next single failed to chart, although two more singles from the album did get onto the chart. What Kind of Fool Am I was the next single from the album. It peaked at #21 in 1982 and the video for the single got a lot of airplay on that new Music Television channel that started the month he had the number one record in the nation (MTV, which used to play music videos all day). The song shared nothing but a name with the single by Sammy Davis Jr. that reached #17 in 1962.
RCA released one last single (I Get Excited) from the album. The single only get up to #32 on the Hot 100 but Rick earned a Grammy Award nomination for Best Rock Vocal Performance, Male. He lost out to John Cougar Mellencamp’s Hurt So Good.
Rick’s singing career may have faltered, but it wasn’t over. Two more top ten singles and another eight top forty singles followed by 2005. Rick recorded at least twenty more albums, including the release of Orchestrating My Life in 2019.
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