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Henry Gross

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Biography

Best-known for the soft rock hit "Shannon," singer/songwriter Henry Gross (born April 1, 1951) grew up in a musical family — his mother briefly performed with New York's Metropolitan Opera Chorus, and Gross himself was playing in the city's clubs by the time he was 14. In 1969, Gross became a founding member of the doo wop revival group Sha Na Na, performing with them at the Fillmore and Woodstock. However, Gross left the group the following year and landed a contract with ABC Dunhill Records in 1971; while his first solo outing didn't receive much attention, Gross persevered and was ultimately signed to A&M Records by producers Cashman & West. 1973's Henry Gross, his first album for A&M, sold well regionally and set the stage for the following year's Plug Me into Something, which took his popularity to another level. Gross then moved to Cashman & West's own label Lifesong for his next effort, Release, which featured the gold single "Shannon," a song inspired by the death of Carl Wilson's Irish Setter. Despite the popularity of Release and its singles, Gross' follow-up, Show Me to the Stage, didn't produce any hits. After switching to CBS, he issued Love Is the Stuff and released What's in a Name on Capitol in 1981; he also recorded another album for the label that was never released. For several years, Gross returned to the stage, performing in a touring production of Pump Boys and Dinettes before moving to Nashville in 1986. Gross then signed a publishing deal with Pic a Lic Music, releasing I Keep on Rocking and She's My Baby in Japan and Europe. By the '90s, Gross had his own label, Zelda Records, where he released albums like 1993's Nothing but Dreams. He also had a thriving career as a songwriter, penning the Blackhawk hit "Big Guitar" with the band's Henry Paul, as well as writing songs for Ronnie Milsap, Sonny Burgess, Cindy Lauper, Judy Collins, and Mary Travers.

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Born:

1950 in Brooklyn, NY

Genre
Years Active:

'60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Influencers

Contemporaries