Biography All Music Guide
All Music Guide:
Vocalist Jimi Jamison was long associated with a number of bands, best known among them Survivor and Cobra. The Mississippi native started out during the '70s with Target. Jamison and the group put out a pair of albums for A&M and opened for Black Sabbath, Boston, and Kiss. He followed up with a stint in Cobra early the following the decade, putting together one recording for Epic Records. By 1984, the singer became a member of Survivor after auditioning in Chicago. The band already had chalked up a hit, "Eye of the Tiger," before he came on board. Jamison's tenure took the band through five Top Ten hits, appearances on numerous film soundtracks, and a handful of recordings that achieved gold and platinum status. His first appearance was on the Vital Signs album, and he took the band into the Top 20 with the singles "Can't Hold Back," "Search Is Over," and "High on You." "Burning Heart," the theme for the next Rocky sequel in 1985, hit pop's number two spot. Another Top Ten slot followed with "Is This Love," but Survivor soon broke up and Jamison was on his own in 1987.
He soon established his own band, and released several solo albums. The first was When Love Comes Down in 1991; it was followed in 1999 by Empires. Fans of the television program Baywatch will recognize his voice from a song he penned for the show's theme, "I'm Always Here." Jamison's track record also included appearances on a number of television programs and half a dozen music videos. In addition to his solo recordings and his work with the bands above, he also contributed backup vocals to such artists as the Jeff Healey Band, Krokus, and ZZ Top. He was a founding member of the organization Voices of Classic Rock, and Jamison's charity efforts included work on behalf of Tony La Russa's ARF (Animal Rescue Foundation), the Make-A-Wish Foundation, the Special Olympics, and St. Jude's Children's Hospital.
In 2000, Jamison again teamed with other members of Survivor for a reunion. A tour with the bands Styx and REO Speedwagon followed. The reunion also took the band to Germany for a monthlong series of concerts. His own backing band during the years away from Survivor included Lance Binder, Pete Mendillo, Klay Shroedel, Paul Brown, Hal Butler, Jeff Adams, and Chris Adamson. Jamison released a solo album, Crossroads Moment, in 2008. Two years later, he teamed up with Jim Peterik -- the songwriter behind many Survivor smashes -- for the album Extra Moments. Jimi Jamison died suddenly in August 2014 from a heart attack.