Rock On Album is by David Essex, the English musician, singer, songwriter and actor.
Rock On, David’s debut album was recorded at Advision Studios, 23 Gosfield Street, London, England. Released in 1973 by Columbia Records, now part of Sony, it contains a mixture of self-penned tracks and covers.
Production for the album was by Jeff Wayne, the legendary producer behind the conceptual album, Jeff Wayne’s Musical Version of The War of the Worlds.
First published as a novel by H.G.Wells in the late 1890s, the adaptation also features David Essex as a voice actor for the Artilleryman.
Rock On features backing vocals by Julie Covington, best known for ” Don’t Cry for Me Argentina “, which features in the musical Evita. David Essex played the part of Che, in the West End production. With success for the show, he went on to release ” Oh What a Circus “, a song from the musical in 1978.
The lead single, ” Rock On “, written by David and produced by Jeff Wayne, was released in August 1973.
The song featured on the soundtrack to That’ll Be the Day, a film starring David that was released the same year. The single entered the UK Singles Chart on the 18th of August 1973 and reached a peak of number three in September that year. It spent eleven weeks on the chart in the United Kingdom.
In the United States, ” Rock On ” reached a peak of number five on the 9th of March 1974 and spent twenty-five weeks on the Billboard Hot 100. The Recording Industry Association of America ( RIAA ) awarded the single a Gold disc on the 26th of March 1974.
The Rock On album was a commercial success for David. In the United Kingdom, it entered the UK Albums Chart on the 24th of November 1973 and reached number seven. It stayed for four weeks in the Top Ten and twenty-two weeks on the chart there.
In the United States, the album peaked at number thirty-two on the 16th of March 1974, spending twenty-one weeks on the Billboard 200.
About David Essex
David Albert Cook was born on the 23rd of July 1947 in Plaistow, east London, England. His father was a London docker and mother of Gypsy descent.
The times were tough with David’s childhood years spent playing amongst the bomb damage from the second world war.
David had aspirations to be a professional footballer and joined the West Ham United Junior team. His first jobs were in local markets and on the fairground, where he’d operate the bumper cars.
The turning point for David came when he heard music in a Soho club called The Flamingo after he and a friend had saved and travelled to London.
Although David loved the music, it was the drums that fascinated him the most. Inspired by what he had heard in the club, David went out and bought a drum kit for himself. After joining bands, he hooked up with the Everons.
While performing with the group, he was spotted by a showbusiness writer, Derek Bowman. Under his guidance, his name was changed from David Cook to David Essex, after the English county he was living in at the time. David left the Everons and pursued a solo career, recording a ballad which failed to chart.
He was sent to study dance and voice training at the Royal Academy of Arts by his now manager Derek Bowman. David continued to release records, none of which had success.
The singer’s big break came in 1971 when he auditioned for the part of Christ in the London version of Godspell. Chosen out of 2000 people that tried for the role, it was the break he needed.
He went on to star in the 1973 film, That’ll Be the Day and in 1974 the film Stardust, where he played Jim Maclaine. Since the early 1970s, David has appeared in many film, TV and stage shows.
To date, David Essex Album releases are twenty-nine studio albums, nine Compilations and fourteen Soundtracks or cast recordings. He has also released sixty-five singles.
Rock On Track Listing:
2. Turn Me Loose
3. On and On
5. Rock On
6. Ocean Girl
7. Bring in the Sun
8. For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her
9. We All Insane
10. Tell Him No
11. Sept. 15th