biography - creedence

1959-1967 -- Blue Velvets/Golliwogs

The history of Creedence Clearwater Revival began in 1959 in El Cerrito, California when 14 year old John Fogerty together with two senior high school friends, Stu Cook and Doug Clifford started a band. They called themselves 'The Blue Velvets', John played guitarr, Stu at the piano and Doug on drums.

In november 1959 John's 4 year older brother Tom joined the group as a singer and guitarrist, and they changed the name to Tommy Fogerty & The Blue Velvets.

Soon they were a popular band in El Cerrito, and made three singles for a local recordlabel. Single #2 'Have You Ever Been Lonely'/'Bonita' was a local success. The unique sound of the group developed through listening to bluesartists like Howlin' Wolf and Muddy Waters, but also early rockmusic from Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Chuck Berry and Carl Perkins. John was also inspired by Duane Eddy and Ray Charles.

At the age of 16-17, John could play several of instruments as guitarr, piano, saxophone, harmonica and drums. Even Tom learned to play different instruments, but his main instrument was guitarr.

In 1964, the band did an audition at the local Fantasy Records as an instrumantial band. The
Weiss-brothers at the recordcompany signed a contract with them, but encouraged them to play music with brittish influence - so called 'beatmusic'.

The Blue Velvets/Golliwogs

The Weiss-brothers and Fantasy Records released the first single with the group as 'The Golliwogs', just to be as brittish as possible. John and the others in the band disalike that, but accepted it.

At the first releases Tom was the dominate in the band, but at the end of 1965 and beginning of 1966 John decided to take over. In 1967 he controlled the group.

Between november 1964 and november 1967 The Golliwogs released Beatles-influenced singles:
- 'Don't Tell Me No Lies'
- 'Where You Been'
- 'You Can't Be True'
- 'Brown Eyed Girl'
- 'Fight Fire'
- 'Walking On The Water'
Only one album was released as The Golliwogs - a Collectionalbum with all A- and B-sides, and came a decade later (1975).

In 1967, they released 'Porterville', who touched the audience, but they didn't make any chart. Althought they had developed their original sound.

At the same time Fantasy was bought by one the employees - Saul Zaentz. He looked at the company's catalogue and was impressed by The Golliwogs. It resulted in a discussion that led them to be fully professional in december 1967. The condition was a new name. The name became to be Creedence Clearwater Revival for several reasons:

Creedence from a common friend at Fantasy Record - Credence Nuball
Clearwater from a popular beerlabel
Revival it became a 'New Start' when Saul Zaentz let them be professional.


1967-1972 -- Creedence Clearwater Revival

After the change of name to Creedence Clearwater Revival, the band spent weeks to practice their new tuffer sound. A sound who followed the time when lots of bands and artists played a more complex and progressive rock and hardrock. In June 1968, CCR released their first album - 'Creedence Clearwater Revival' and a single - 'Suzie Q (part 1 & 2)'.

Even if there were some critics from several experts and magzines (like Rolling Stone Magazine), they got a goldrecord at the end of the year. Today, the album are one of the most promising album in rock of all time. the single placed best at #11 on US Billboard chart.

Thanks to the success, CCR got the opportunity to perform at different festivals, as The Fillmore West festival in 1968.

Single #2 - 'I Put A Spell On You' - written by Screamin' Jay Hawkins, went up at the chart for a short time. At the beginning of 1969, the second album 'Bayou Country' was released with the single 'Proud Mary'/'Born On The Bayou'. The album was introduced with a mix of creol southern style, R&B and rockabilly.

The single 'Proud Mary' about the Mississippi riverboat became CCR:s international break with a #2 at the Billboardchart and #8 at the english chart. This song made John Fogerty famous as a songwriter.

After the 'Proud Mary'-success, there were three singles released in a short time, all goldrecords:

- 'Bad Moon Rising'/'Lodi'
- 'Green River'/'Commotion'
- 'Down On The Corner'/'Fortunate Son'


At fall 1969 they released their third album - 'Green River' and short after came album #4 - 'Willy And The Poor Boys'. The same year Rolling Stone Magazine named them as 'The Best American Band' and Billboard 'Top Single Artists of 1969'. In August, they performed on the 2nd highest bill at the Woodstock rock festival.

1970 began with a new goldrecord single - 'Travelin' Band'/'Who'll Stop The Rain' and in april they released one gold 45 again - 'Up Around The Bend'. At spring they made their first European Tour. When arrived home, CCR released album #5 - 'Cosmos Factory'. The album was a big success, and placed at #1 in several countries, including USA, UK and Finland. Album #6 - 'Pendulum' closed 1970 as a bestseller, but a critical failure.

In the beginning of 1971 there was more difficult to find material. Even if they got a goldrecord with 'Have You Ever Seen The Rain'/'Hey Tonight', romours said there was some changes in the group. In February, Tom Fogerty announced that he was leaving CCR for a solo career. The remaining members continued to work as a trio, and in July they released 'Sweet Hitch-Hiker'. At the same time they began their last major tour in USA, Europe, Australia and Japan.

On their seventh and last studio album, "Mardi Gras", Stu Cook and Doug Clifford wrote half of the album's songs.

In October 1972 Creedence Clearwater Revival was official disbanded.

Here are all the singles and album who placed on US Billboaed:

Billboards Singelchart - Top 40:
Suzie Q (part 1) September 1968 #11
Proud Mary February 1969 #2
Bad Moon Rising May 1969 #2
Green River/Commotion August 1969 #2/#30
Down On The Corner/Fortunate Son November 1969 #3/#14
Travelin' Band/Who'll Stop The Rain February 1970 #2
Up Around The Bend May 1970 #4
Lookin' Out My Back Door August 1970 #2
Have You Ever Seen The Rain February 1971 #8
Sweet Hitch Hiker July 1971 #6
Someday Never Comes May 1972 #25
Billboards Albumchart - Top 10:
Bayou Country May 1969 #8
Green River September 1969 #1
Willy And The Poor Boys December 1969 #3
Cosmo's Factory August 1970 #1
Pendulum January 1971 #7



Stu Cook and Doug Clifford

After the CCR-disband, Stu Cook and Doug Clifford performed together in Don Harrison Band, Southern Pacific and Sir Douglas Quintet. In 1995 they started with three other musicians Creedence Clearwater Revisited and tour the world with songs of CCR.

In 1998 they released their first album - 'Recollection', recorded live in 1997.

Tom Fogerty

After the break-up from CCR, Tom Fogerty participated in an informal band together with Jerry Garcia - guitar and Merle Saunders - keyboard before releasing four moderately successfull albums. His third album- 'National Zephyr' is regarded as his best album. Released in 1974, the album features the last time when all the former CCR members play together in the studio.

In 1979 and 1983 they also did two performances together, at Tom's wedding and their high school reunion. A decade later - 1993, CCR was inducteed in 'ROCK AND ROLL HALL OF FAME'. John didn't play with his former bandmember in the festivies.

Tom Fogerty suffered from TB and after a bloodtransfusion it says that he got hivcondemmed blood. Tom past away September 6 1990 in Scottsdale, Arizona. 2 months later he should have been 49 years of age.