From the mid-'80s to the mid-'90s, Canadian singer/songwriter and guitarist Bryan Adams was one of the most successful recording artists in popular music worldwide. Usually dressed in blue jeans, sneakers, and white T-shirts, the energetic performer stalked stages around the globe, electric guitar in hand, singing his own up-tempo pop/rock songs and ballads before audiences numbering in the tens of thousands. He released a series of multi-platinum albums containing chart-topping singles featured in popular motion pictures.
His raspy voice, simple compositions, and straightforward musical approach earned him early critical approbation as a likable if unoriginal rock & roll journeyman, but as he began to become massively popular, reviewers increasingly pointed out the clichés in his lyrics and the derivative nature of his music, especially as he softened his style in the early '90s for his hit movie theme songs. By the end of the '90s, his record sales had fallen precipitously and he had become largely identified with his movie work, though he continued to tour extensively, playing his many hits.