Stuart Leslie Goddard on November 3, 1954 in Marylebone, London, England
Despite beginning as a bona fide punk rock artist in London in 1977, Adam and the Ants quickly found a way to the forefront as a new wave pop band. With the band and as a solo artist, Ant himself quickly emerged as an icon and pin-up favorite on both sides of the Atlantic. His musical output, therefore, was not always consistent and also often did not get primary attention from fans or music journalists. Here's a look at Adam Ant's somewhat fleeting career as a major pop/rock artist during the first half of the '80s.
The young Goddard - shortly after dropping out of college to pursue music - was one of the future history-making rock stars to be present at the inaugural Sex Pistols show in London. Inspired by punk rock's energy and perseverance, Goddard survived a bout of mental illness and a suicide attempt to emerge in 1977 as frontman of Adam and the Ants. Initially, the band mirrored the first-wave British punk rock sound, but forced personnel changes (caused by Malcolm McLaren's essential poaching of the original Ants to form Bow Wow Wow) quickly ushered the group into commercially viable new wave status.
Pop Stardom & Recording Hiatus:
With the replacement Ants - including guitarist and songwriting partner Marco Pirroni - frontman Ant racked up seven Top 10 pop hits in the U.K., including two Number Ones in "Stand and Deliver" and "Prince Charming." However, during this period American success eluded the singer, although that changed rather instantly when Ant went solo. 1982's Friend or Foe reached the Top 10 in both countries, primarily on the strength of smash hit "Goody Two Shoes." Two more albums followed, but by 1985 Ant's brief reign as a major sex symbol and recording artist with clout appeared to be over.
Bounceback & Continuing Career:
One reason for Ant's initial musical fade was certainly his late-'80s foray into acting, but even after a successful return to the charts in 1990, a reclamation of true glory was not to be found. Nevertheless, Ant has remained a rock and roll survivor, recovering from intermittent, ongoing struggles with mental illness and truly picking up his recording and touring pace for the second decade of the 21st century. In fact, a brand new studio album - his first since 1995's Wonderful - is scheduled for release during the early months of 2013.