What Creedence Clearwater Revival means according to Fogerty

From 1959 to 1959, John Fogerty, Tom Fogerty, Stu Cook, and Doug Clifford were in a band called The Blue Velvets, which later changed to The Golliwogs. However, it wasn’t until 1968 that they changed their name to Creedence Clearwater Revival that things truly got going. The band made a significant contribution to music throughout their brief existence, releasing just seven studio albums. They remain among the greatest bands of all time in terms of influence.

Younger generations are still discovering them, and it is believed that they have sold over 45 million records in the US alone. However, what does the term Creedence Clearwater Revival mean? John Fogerty, the band’s lead composer, guitarist, and vocalist, responded to that query.

What Creedence Clearwater Revival means according to John Fogerty

John Fogerty came up with the winning concept for the band’s new moniker on Christmas Eve after several months of brainstorming. In 2023, he shared a video on his social media accounts recalling the tale.

James Fogerty said, “We go back to the Christmas eve of 1967 and we were desperately trying to find a new name for our band. We had been named The Golliwogs by the record company. But now the record label had a new owner and the first thing that we wanted to get straight was (that) we wanted to have a new name. For a couple of months we have been scratching our heads and really nothing has resonated.”

“On Christmas eve 1967 I was watching television and on comes this beautiful commercial. It was a beer commercial and it was showing scenes of an idyllic green forest with a babbling brook, wonderful green trees and plants. Water just dripping down everywhere and it was so lush and wonderful, I loved it. Right after that commercial there was another commercial in black and white. It was an anti pollution commercial and it showed things like Styrofoam cups and cigarette butts. Stuff like that in the water.”

He continued, “It talked about how our rivers were being polluted. At the end of that black and white commercial it said: ‘If you wanna change this write to clean water Washington. After seeing the beautiful lush forest I thought about it a minute and I like the idea of clean water. But in my mind it turned over and decided that ‘Clearwater’ was a better word. Now, once I said that, I said: ‘Man, this might be onto something’.”

“And literally within 10, 15 seconds I said to myself, well Creedence was a name that had come up and down a couple of times in the last two months. (Then I thought): ‘Wow, Clearwater Creedence”. Of course I swapped that over ‘Creedence Clearwater” and I got really excited. (I thought) ‘I love that idea but it’s not complete’. We’re trying to have a revitalization, a renewal, a revival! Creedence Clearwater Revival and that was about 56 years ago and people are still saying that.”




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