Who Is Rod Stewart?
Known for his signature raspy voice, British singer-songwriter Rod Stewart performed in several U.K. bands in the 1960s. Embarking on a solo career, "Maggie May" became his first hit single in 1971. Moving to the United States in 1975, Stewart's hit songs included "Tonight's the Night" (1976) and "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?" (1978). He experienced a career lull during the 1980s and only had a few hits in the 1990s, but came back strong singing the classics in the 2000s, winning a Grammy Award for best traditional pop vocal album in 2004.
Early Life and Career
Roderick David Stewart was born on January 10, 1945, in London, England. Born into a working-class family, Stewart excelled at soccer. He worked a series of odd jobs, including working as a grave digger, before his singing career took off.
During the 1960s, Stewart was a part of several different bands. In 1966, he joined the blues-influenced Jeff Beck Group and experienced his first taste of success. The group toured the United Kingdom and the United States and released two hit albums. In 1969, he joined what became known as the Faces. Ron Wood was one of his bandmates and became a member of the Rolling Stones. Stewart also performed as a solo artist and scored his first big solo success with the album Every Picture Tells A Story, which featured the hit single "Maggie May" in 1971. That same year, the Faces had a hit with the song "Stay With Me."
Stewart moved to the United States in 1975. The next year, he reached the top of the U.S. charts with "Tonight's the Night" from A Night on the Town. Stewart continued to have a slicker, more pop sound as the decade progressed. He also developed a reputation for his partying lifestyle and for dating numerous actresses and models. With 1978's Blondes Have More Fun, he had another smash hit single with "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?"
The 1980s proved to be more challenging for Stewart. While 1981's Tonight I'm Yours went platinum, the albums that followed did not fare as well. He ended the decade on a positive note, however. His remake of the Tom Waits song "Downtown Train" in 1989 received a lot of radio play. A few years later, he released Unplugged and Seated (1993), which was recorded at MTV Unplugged concert and featured the hit "Have I Told You Lately."
With his distinctive throaty, almost scratchy-sounding voice, Stewart decided to take on some of the classic songs and make them his own with It Had to be You: The Great American Songbook (2002). He recorded four volumes of the Great American Songbook series, and won his first Grammy Award (best traditional pop vocal album) for Stardust: The Great American Songbook, Volume III in 2004.
Later Years and Children
At the age of 60, Stewart became a father for the seventh time. His son, Alastair Wallace Stewart, was born on November 27, 2005. This was his first child with then-fiancée Penny Lancaster. The couple married in 2007 and welcomed a second son, Aiden, in 2011. He also has a daughter, Kimberly, and a son, Sean, from his first wife Alana Stewart and a daughter named Ruby with former girlfriend Kelly Emberg. He also has two children from his marriage to model Rachel Hunter — Renee and Liam. Stewart publicly acknowledged his oldest daughter, Sarah Streeter, in 2013. Streeter was born when Stewart was only 18 years old, and he and the girl's mother had decided to put their baby up for adoption. Stewart and Streeter first met in 2008.
In 2006, Stewart returned to rock music with Still The Same: Great Rock Classics of Our Time. The album reached the top of the pop charts in October of that year. Stewart put down the microphone and picked up a pen to write his 2012 memoir Rod: The Autobiography. The following year, he made an impressive return to songwriting with his album Time. Stewart co-wrote of many of the record's songs as well as serving as a co-producer on the project.
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