Once upon a time the history of Air Supply began when a young Englishman, Graham Russell, met a young Australian, Russell Hitchcock, while they were cast members of the cast of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Australian production of the stage musical "Jesus Christ Superstar", in April or May of 1975. They soon learned that they had a similar, growing appreciation and love for all things involving music, prompting Graham to show the songs he had written to Russell; and quickly a desire to follow their hopes and dreams involving that world of music developed. The guys could be found singing and playing at local pubs for next to nothing as far as pay goes, but for a lot as far as experience is concerned. Graham and Russell found that the crowds were amazingly receptive to their sound and to their style of soft rock ballads.
Then, in 1976, the stage production came to it's end; and taking on a name that came to Graham in a dream, "Air Supply", they were already in the midst of releasing a single. At this time, Chrissie Hammond was a part of the group. The single, "Love and Other Bruises" met with modest success and interest in Australia. Now, totally dedicated to the serious task of making music, the guys recorded an album in 1977 which they named "Love and Other Bruises". Incidentally, that just happened to reached #2 on the Australian charts. The next song, "Empty Pages" went to #18. By this time Hammond had left and been replaced by Jeremy Paul. Air Supply was delighted to learn of a invitation to tour Australia, Canada and the U.S. opening for well-known singer Rod Stewart. Later on, however, Jeremy Paul left the band for his own career (which he still has today).
Their album "The Whole Thing Started" was released later on in 1977, with the song "Do What You Do" reaching #16 on the Australian charts. Air Supply certainly wowed the music industry. Up until now there had been no promotions or professional training, but they met with successes at every turn. The additional notice by the public that the duo got while opening for Rod Stewart gave Air Supply their wider, international attention. So, after that tour ended and Air Supply returned to Australia, Graham and Russell's thoughts were to get back to the US.A. pronto!
Introduced in 1979, "Life Support" (which had been recorded in 1978), became their fourth released album. This one contained Air Supply's first huge hit, "Lost In Love," which ended up a #1 one song on the Australian Charts. It was then re-recorded for release in the United States and turned out to be the beginning of a long string of worldwide hits, composed by Graham Russell.
By the time 1980 arrived, Air Supply had finally landed on the U.S. public. With some help from promoter/manager Clive Davis, an album entitled "Lost In Love" was released containing three songs that would hit the top five on U.S. charts. "Lost In Love" hit the # 3 spot (5/1980), "Every Woman In The World" landed at # 5 (12/1980) and "All Out Of Love" scooted up to # 2 (9/1981). They were the first of eight Top #5 chart hits for Air Supply. America clambered for the "Australian Boys", as their album achieved Multi-Platinum status.
"Most Successful Pop Group" and "Best Pop Group of 1981" are what critics labeled Air Supply. The band also received awards for "Most Played Song," and they won several outstanding achievement awards. Finally in the American "Top 40", many radio stations throughout the US, joined in. The fans grew in number and fervor while Graham continued to compose, leaving more hits on the scene.
Huge success arrived as "The One That You Love", a 1981 album, jumped to #2, on the US album charts. These singles: "The One That You Love" - #1 (8/1981), "Here I Am" - #5 (11/1981) and "Sweet Dreams" - # 5 (3/1982), were enjoyed by millions, causing this to be Air Supply's 6th album go Multi-Platinum. A cherished BMI Award was presented to Air Supply in honor of "The One That You Love".
In 1982, "Now and Forever" was released, but lingered at # 25 on the album charts (8/1982), but the first single from the album, "Even the Nights Are Better," soared its way up to #5 (9/1982). Next came, "Young Love" at # 38 (10/1982) and "Two Less Lonely People In The World" #38 (1/1983). None-the-less, "Now and Forever" claimed yet another Multi-Platinum award.
Due to constant demand in stores, the 1983 album "Greatest Hits" peaked at #7 (8/1983), and the song "Making Love Out Of Nothing At All" lingered on at #2, for 2 weeks (10/1983).
Another album, also named "Air Supply," found its way to # 26 on the album charts, and the single "Just As I Am" grabbed # 19 (7/1985). "Just As I Am" earned the sought after # 1 video award for 1985 from VH1.
A popular album was, "Power Of Love" (8/1985), with its title song being made into a video for TV.
And in 1986, "Hearts in Motion" arrived in stores. The singles "Lonely Is The Night" (9/1986) and "One More Chance" (11/1986) became known as personal favorites of Air Supply fans everywhere.
In 1987, Graham and Russell developed and performed a much-longed-for seasonal release, called "The Christmas Album". To this day radio stations give air time to the most popular and beautiful songs from that album, "Love Is All" and "Eyes Of A Child" (both written by Graham), during the Christmas season.
During a period between 1987 and 1990, Russell ventured out on his own, recorded a solo album, "Russell Hitchcock"; and he released his one and only single, "Swear To Your Heart". Graham went to a favorite secluded spot to write and compose. He was also developing some ideas he had in the back of his mind since childhood. The beginnings of his future, two-CD "Heart of the Rose" album probably were nourished then and there.
Luckily for fans, Graham and Russell got back together in 1991, generating "The Earth Is . . " album, with its cult-like following, and the single "Without You". They soon turned their sites outside of the States, which involved a world wide tour. The popularity of Air Supply grew by leaps and bounds overseas as time went by. Since then, Air Supply has been held in high regard by both the international fans and the media alike.
"Vanishing Race" was a unique 1993 album with personal meaning for the guys because of a book about the plight of Native American's Graham received as a gift. The song, "Goodbye" claimed #48 on the U.S. charts (7/1993). Air Supply's work on this album won them more successes. "Its Never Too Late" and "Goodbye" produced Gold and Platinum results.
Another album with personal meaning for the guys, entitled "News From Nowhere", debuted in 1995. The song "Someone" was found at #50, on the US charts, and again Air Supply was touring extensively overseas. Due to the increased fan base, the success of Air Supply shot up steadily. International air play and media continued to support Air Supply as did the fans, new and old, in many countries worldwide. The band enjoyed an Asian tour that whirled them through Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Philippines. Also in 1995, a 16 piece string section accompanied Air Supply for the making of their "Greatest Hits Live" album, a CD and video (also later made into DVD) of a live concert in Taipei, Taiwan.
"The Book Of Love", produced entirely by Graham Russell and released in November of 1997, was the first to be recorded at his own studio in Utah, where he also has his and his wife's wildlife rehabilitation area. "The Book Of Love" includes the musical number, "Once" Air Supply's only instrumental, composed by Jed Moss (Air Supply pianist) with some touches by Graham.
A comprehensive album, "The Definitive Collection" was released August of 1999 with all the hits, and it includes the original version of "Lost in Love" plus other favorite songs. There are notes and quotes from Graham and Russell about every song. It's definitely a keeper.
Along came the much longed for DVD, "The Definitive Collection". It basically includes it's CD namesake's songs, as well as photos, interviews and trivia.
Along the way quite a few foreign albums were released. These were all popular overseas for their music and lovely cover art. They are sought after by U.S. Air Supply fans on E-bay today.
Somewhere in there "Forever Love" (2003), a two album set with a song booklet, was released overseas, but again sought out by fans on both sides of the globe through E-bay, if not found in stores. "Forever Love" includes dozens of the favorite songs from over the years, including "Once" and a few from Russell's "Solo" album.
In 2001 "Yours Truly" arrived in stores, where fans gathered those albums up to add to their collections.
Other albums that came about were "The One That You Love" re-released (also 2001), "Ultimate Air Supply" (2003) found in every Walmart, K-Mart and music store around as well as on TV, "The Ultimate Collection Millennium (2003), and the newest, "Across the Concrete Sky," which can be purchased at the Official Air Supply web site on-line, along with it's companion book of reasoning, thoughts and poems, written by Graham (2003).
Air Supply continues to be a steadfast favorite of FM radio stations, being played many times daily all over the world, much to the delight of fans traveling to and from work (and most likely while at work); and Graham Russell and Russell Hitchcock continue to tour internationally as well
Another recent accomplishment was at The Lunas del Auditorio Awards where Air Supply won in the category "Pop in Foreign Language" in September 2004. It was quite an exciting event and again, Air Supply is very popular there.
Only a year after their successful "For Lover's Only" tour, Air Supply has the distinction of celebrating its 30th Anniversary this year with big shows at the Casino Rama in Canada, this August, where footage was shot towards the making of a new DVD. This news is undoubtedly already causing fans everywhere to be just itching to get their hands on the finished product. However, they will have to wait patiently until possibly June or July of 2005 for "It Was 30 Years Ago Today". There is a CD and also the DVD set which will include interviews and a booklet as well as the great musical selections, of course. There will be an Asian version as well with karaoke.
Some people might question, "How long will Air Supply continue to record and tour?" Other bands and musicians have called it quits, but Air Supply goes on into the 2000's with more fresh ideas, energy, talent, and dedication than ever before. New fans are drawn in on a daily basis. An Official AirHead's Club has fans from nearly 40 countries. Fan-based web sites and message boards are popping up all over the www, complimenting the informative Official Air Supply web site at www.airsupplymusic.com, managed beautifully by Graham's wife, Jodi.
The band today is solid - with members Jed Moss (keyboards), Jonni Lightfoot (bass guitar), and Mike Zerbe (drums) - each well-known, extremely talented musicians in their own right. Together with the original duo, Graham and Russell, they make Air Supply one of the finer groups recording and entertaining today. And entertain they do! If you haven't seen a live show yet, better make your plans now.
For example, Air Supply did a "first" - a show in Cuba, July 7, 2005. This show was to a crowd of 174,000 people. They got rave reviews. In fact at least one article in the media compared them to the Beatles for Cubans. That seems like a fair assessment!
In May 2006, the band performs in various locations in India for the first time much to their delight.
2007 brings the new "The Singer and the Song" CD and DVD and tours that include South Africa, Italy, Ireland, England and Japan. And it brings Graham's solo CD, "The Future". Learn more on the official Air Supply web site.
Currently the band has been touring in South Africa, Japan, China, Germany, Italy, England and Ireland much to the delight of fans in those countries. Way to go, guys! Soon they will start the New Year off with a tour of Brazil as well.
As Russell once commented (and Graham nodded in agreement), if it comes to the point where it isn't fun anymore, they'd just "pack it in." Luckily for their many fans, it still must be a whole lot of fun for the guys. Fans KNOW beyond any doubt - it's amazingly fun for them to listen to, to see, to breath Air Supply! Nothing else can compare . . . nothing else ever will.