Born on the island of St. Kitts
, English singer/songwriter
Joan Armatrading was one of the first Black
women to make commercial inroads into her chosen genre. Mixing her version of folk music with chunks of soul
, she has managed to have a long, consistent career.
Armatrading emigrated to England in 1958, where she met lyricist Pam Nestor working in a touring production of Hair. The two began won material that would be featured on Armatrading's 1972 debut, Whatever's for Us. The two ended their partnership afterwards but Armatrading resurfaced in 1975 with Back to the Night.
Featuring former members of Fairport Convention, Joan Armatrading catapulted the singer into the U.K. Top 20 and produced her only Top Ten single, "Love and Affection."
Armatrading's subsequent albums sold reasonably well in the U.K., but only respectably in the U.S., where it took her until 1980 to have a real hit with Me Myself I.
The Key also did quite well, but Armatrading has remained largely a cult artist with a small but devoted following in America.
Armatrading has been successful enough to record regularly up through the mid-'90s and continues to tour.
1972 - Whatever's For Us
1975 - Back To The Night
1976 - Joan Armatrading
1977 - Show Some Emotion
1978 - To The Limit
1979 - How Cruel (EP)
1979 - Steppin' Out (Live)
1980 - Me, Myself, I
1981 - Walk Under Ladders
1983 - The Key
1983 - Track Record (Compilation)
1985 - Secret Secrets
1986 - Sleight Of Hand
1986 - Classics Vol. 21 (Compilation)
1987 - Greatest Hits (Compilation)
1988 - Shouting Stage
1990 - Hearts And Flowers
1992 - Square The Circle
1995 - What's Inside
1996 - Love And Affection (Remastered Compilation)
1996 - The Very Best Of Joan Armatrading (Compilation)
1997 - Master Series (Compilation)
2000 - Millennium Edition (Compilation)
2000 - 20th Century Masters (Compilation)