Rick Astley

Astley at [[Glastonbury Festival 2023]] Richard Paul Astley (born 6 February 1966) is an English singer. He gained fame through his association with the production trio Stock Aitken Waterman, releasing the 1987 album ''Whenever You Need Somebody'', which sold 15 million copies worldwide. His debut single "Never Gonna Give You Up" was a No. 1 hit in 25 countries, winning the 1988 Brit Award for Best British Single. His 1988 single "Together Forever" became his second song to top the US ''Billboard'' Hot 100 and was one of his eight songs to reach the Top 10 on the UK Singles Chart. The title track, "Whenever You Need Somebody", was also a No. 1 hit.

In 1988, Astley followed up his debut album with ''Hold Me in Your Arms'' which achieved Platinum and Gold certifications internationally. The lead single "She Wants to Dance with Me" became a worldwide Top 10 hit. In 1991, he left Stock Aitken Waterman moving his musical direction towards soul, which he explored on his other albums. His 1991 single "Cry for Help" was Astley's last single to reach the Top 10 in either the US or UK. In 1993, he retired from music to focus on spending time with his partner and daughter. He returned to the music industry in 2000 and released ''50'' to celebrate his 50th birthday in 2016, with the album debuting in the UK at No. 1. His most recent studio album ''Are We There Yet?'' was released in 2023.

By the time of his brief retirement, Astley had sold approximately 40 million records worldwide. He became an internet phenomenon in 2007 when the music video for "Never Gonna Give You Up" became integral to the Rickrolling meme, and his performance career was revitalised by the meme's popularity. A year after the Rickrolling meme began, he was voted "Best Act Ever" by Internet users at the MTV Europe Music Awards 2008. His song "Never Gonna Give You Up" reached 1 billion views on YouTube in July 2021 (the fourth 1980s song to reach this milestone). He has worked as a radio DJ and a podcaster. Provided by Wikipedia
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