Suzi Quatro is an American musician, singer, songwriter, record producer, actress, poet, author and radio presenter. Having sold over 55 million records worldwide, she is a global rock legend.
Born in Detroit, Suzi grew up in a musical family, learning classical piano and percussion. From a very early age, she would play with her father’s jazz band, The Art Quatro Trio. And her first public performance was playing the bongos with the Trio at the age of eight.
When she was 14, Suzi and her sisters formed the all-girl rock band, The Pleasure Seekers, who went on to record three singles.
In 1971, Suzi moved to England to work with celebrated producer Mickie Most. She first came to the attention of the British public as a support act alongside Thin Lizzy on Slade’s first nationwide tour of the UK.
Then in 1972, she released her first single as a solo artist - "Rolling Stone", which was a number one hit in Portugal. And over the next few years she released a string of hits, including two “number ones” Can the Can, and Devil Gate Drive.
Although Suzi enjoyed massive record sales around the world, in her native USA she was perhaps best known for her role as the bass-playing Leather Tuscadero in the cult TV series Happy Days.
In the 1980s, Suzi developed her acting career further, featuring in episodes of Minder, and Dempsey and Makepeace. In 1986, she appeared as Annie Oakley in a West End stage production of Annie Get Your Gun. And in 1991, she co-wrote the music and lyrics, and performed the title role in the show Tallulah Who?, receiving wide critical acclaim.
In 1986 Suzi joined a group of celebrity musicians to record the BBC Children In Need single ‘Heroes’, and in 1987 she was part of the Ferry Aid charity single ‘Let It Be’. Her charity work also includes active participation in the ‘Rock Against Cancer’ campaign.
In 1988 she hosted her own chat show, Gas Street, which ran for a year on ITV. Then in 1989, she was one of the first rock and roll acts to visit Russia, where she performed in front of half a million people during a six-week tour.
1999 saw the start of Suzi’s radio career, as she began a series of weekly programmes and special documentaries on BBC Radio 2. In 2006, Suzi was nominated for Music Broadcaster of the Year at the Sony Music Awards, and she remains a firm favourite with radio audiences as she continues to host insightful and compelling shows. Suzi’s current radio series, and her most popular to date, is Quatrophonic.
Suzi is the recipient of the Woman of Valour Award from the organisation Musicians for Equal Opportunities for Women. In 2013, she was inducted into the Michigan Rock and Roll Legends Hall of Fame, and later that same year, her career record sales passed the 50 million mark.
In 2013, Suzi performed in America for the first time in over 30 years, at the Detroit Music Awards, where she received the Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award. She continues to perform live, playing at over 100 shows worldwide each year.
Our University has enjoyed links with Suzi for some time, and she has expressed an interest in collaborating with us on a number of projects, specifically our Popular Music undergraduate degree course, and our ongoing work in Music Therapy.
As an adopted East Anglian, and a globally-recognised, pioneering talent in a previously male-dominated arena, Suzi will be an inspirational role model to our students.
Find out more
Twitter - @Suzi_Quatro
Website - www.suziquatro.com
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Watch our 2016 graduation ceremonies