So many variables determine what makes an artist or band “essential” — longevity, impact, influence, history. On-air and online, we celebrate the musicians who have shaped our cultural soundtrack for the past fifty years. Let’s love these FUV Essential artists while they’re here, and honor those who have departed too soon.
In the vast annals of this country's great builders of songs, John Prine was an indisputable master. An American songwriter of understated genius, his astute grasp of character and story defined his half-century of recordings. Prine, who passed away on April 7, 2020 due to complications from Covid-19 has always been an FUV Essentials artist and we will miss him terribly.
John Prine (photo courtesy of the artist)
Peter Gabriel, who turned 70 on February 13, 2020, is not only one of the most innovative and influential rock artists of his generation, but a visionary human rights activist and a cultural ambassador for world music.
Peter Gabriel (photo courtesy of the artist)
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Pretenders' landmark debut album and Chrissie Hynde and Martin Chambers will be together again, touring with the 2020 lineup of the band with Journey this spring and summer throughout North America. We're celebrating the band (and Hynde as a solo artist) as an FUV Essentials again.
The Pretenders (photo by Joel Ryan/AP)