Chris Farlowe always seemed destined for great things as a singer -- and based on the company he kept on-stage and the people he worked with in the mid-'60s, he did succeed, at least on that level. His first band was his own John Henry Skiffle Group, where he played guitar as well as sang, but he gave up playing to concentrate on his voice, as he made the switch to rock & roll. Chris Farlowe & the Thunderbirds built their reputation as a live act in England and Germany, and slowly switched from rock & roll to R&B during the early years of the '60s. In 1966, with his EMI contract up, Farlowe was snatched up by Andrew Oldham, who knew a thing or two about white Britons who could sing R&B, having signed the Rolling Stones three years earlier, and put him under contract to his new Immediate Records label. Immediate's history with unestablished artists is mostly a story of talent cultivated for future success, but with Farlowe it was different -- he actually became a star on the label, through the label. His luck began to change early on, as he saw a Top 20 chart placement with his cover of the Jagger/Richards song "Think". That summer, he had the biggest hit of his career with his rendition of the Stones' "Out of Time," in a moody and dramatic version orchestrated by Arthur Greenslade, which reached number one on the British charts. Farlowe had enough credibility as a soul singer by then to be asked to appear on the Ready, Steady, Go broadcast of September 16, 1966, a special program featuring visiting American soul legend Otis Redding -- he'd covered Redding's "Mr. Pitiful" on an Immediate EP, and now Farlowe was on stage with Otis (and Eric Burdon), and got featured in two numbers. During the 70's he played in original Colosseum on three albums, and Atomic Rooster (post-Carl Palmer). Farlowe was rescued from oblivion by his better-known contemporary (and fellow Immediate Records alumnus) Jimmy Page, appearing on the latter's Outrider album. Farlowe followed this up with new albums and touring and although he never saw another hit single, his reputation as a live performer was enough to sustain a career. His recent albums, including The Voice, have gotten respectable reviews, and his Immediate Records legacy was finally getting treated properly in the 21st century, as well. Along with Manfred Mann's Mike d'Abo and Paul Jones, Farlowe remains one of those voices from 1960s England that -- with good reason -- hasn't faded and simply won't disappear.