Among pop music’s most successful journeymen, Paul Carrack has found success with a variety of bands over his four decade career as a songwriter, keyboardist and vocalist. As a teen in Sheffield, England Carrack made his recording debut with a jazz-rock band and when that group disbanded he and bassists Tex Comer formed Ace. Carrack wrote and sang the band’s only hit How Long which reached the top five in the US.
Ace lasted only three years and Carrack moved on, next appearing in Roxy Music where he contributed to two albums while also recording his first solo album in 1980. By 1981 Carrack was recruited by Squeeze to replace Jools Holland and during his brief stay in the band, they released their best album in East Side Story including one of their most lasting songs Tempted with Carrack on lead vocals.
Carrack was soon out of Squeeze and joined up with Nick Lowe to form the band Noise to Go which backed both Lowe and Carrack.
Paul Carrack continued his success as a journeyman by joining Roger Waters’ after his band with Nick Lowe dissolved. Carrack played on the Radio K.A.O.S. album and toured with Waters, often opening the shows with material from his own catalog.
Perhaps his most successful stop came in the mid 80s when Mike Rutherford from Genesis recruited Carrack to join his new Mike + The Mechanics project. 1989’s The Living Years was a number one hit for the band with Carrack on vocals.
A vocalist that Phil Collins described as an “incredible voice” that “could sing the telephone directory”, Carrack has had no problems finding gigs over the many decades. He has worked with an elite list of musicians over the years while continuing his solo career. Carrack has toured with Eric Clapton, Nick Lowe, Roger Waters and even when his projects don’t reach their conclusion, usually something good comes from it. When he and Timothy B. Schmit and Don Felder aborted a recording project for an Eagles reunion, the one song from Carrack taken to the Eagles became the most played song in 1995 according to ASCAP.