Graham Parker

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About Graham Parker

Graham Parker is the hook-jammed link connecting British pub rock to its prickly punk successors. Born in East London in 1950, Parker quit school at 16, worked as a manual laborer, and eventually taught himself guitar. Backed by The Rumour, which included leading pub-rock guitarist Brinsley Schwarz, Parker released his promising Nick Lowe-produced debut, Howlin’ Wind, in 1976. He hit a peak in 1979 with the critically acclaimed Squeezing Out Sparks, a raw distillation of lyrically stylish rhythm ’n’ blues that reached the U.S. Top 40. Recognizing a stylistic connection, Bruce Springsteen guested on The Up Escalator the following year, when The Rumour were widely regarded as The E Street Band’s live equals. (The album, however, proved to be Parker’s last with The Rumour for decades.) During the ’80s, he pleased critics and fans alike with albums such as The Real Macaw (1983) and The Mona Lisa’s Sister (1988). Parker maintained his literary bona fides in the new millennium by publishing a novel and a collection of short stories, before reuniting with The Rumour for Three Chords Good (2012) and Mystery Glue (2015).

Hackney, East London, England
November 18, 1950

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