Rise And Fall: Dave Bickler’s Troubled Survivor Career

Have you ever felt that misfortune seems to follow you no matter what you do? It’s like you’re cursed or something. Well, don’t worry, because you’re not alone. Some people just seem to be doomed to have bad luck in their lives. One such person is Dave Bickler, the former lead singer of Survivor. His career was filled with ups and downs, but it seemed like misfortune was always around the corner.

Survivor’s most significant break came with the song ‘Eye of the Tiger,’ which became an instant hit and was later immortalized in the ‘Rocky III’ movie. However, Bickler’s career with Survivor was plagued with mischances, including multiple breakups and a health issue that forced him to leave the band.

After ‘Eye of the Tiger,’ Survivor went on to release other hits. However, the band’s success was short-lived, and internal issues started to surface. In 1983, Bickler had to leave the band due to a polyp on his vocal cords, which required surgery. His departure was a significant blow to Survivor, and his replacement, Jimi Jamison, faced the difficult task of filling his shoes. In an interview with Kickin’ it Old School, Jamison admitted that he had doubts initially; however, he later realized he could contribute to the band by improving their live performances.

Jamison revealed his feelings about replacing Dave Bickler by stating:

“I did have doubts about joining at first, but it just took a little getting used to. The band had a great name but no recognizable face, except for Dave’s beret and his great vocals. We did so many videos; I think I helped in that area and, coming from a wild band [Cobra], helped create an exciting live show and added a little Memphis soul to the band and their music.”

Although Bickler later rejoined the band in 1993, the reunion was short-lived. The unfortunate events continued to haunt him, and he was fired from the band in 2000 after they had to struggle with lawsuits and trademark ownership struggles with Jamison.

In 2013, Survivor decided to make their fans’ wishes come true and brought their two lead singers together. This time the bad luck was on Jamison’s side. He suddenly passed away due to a hemorrhagic brain stroke. While the fans were expecting Survivor to continue their career with the original singer Bickler, they once again blindsided the fans with another split.

The last breakup between Bickler and Survivor was the most painful one. In 2014, the band fired Bickler and replaced him with their former keyboardist, Cameron Barton. Bickler was devastated by the news and felt that the band had blindsided him. Dave explained how his bandmates mistreated him in an interview with TeamRock. He said that Frankie Sullivan wanted to make the breakup look like it was Dave’s decision.

Bickler addressed his final dismissal from Survivor:

“I got the feeling they didn’t want me but that they didn’t want to say it – they wanted me to say it. They wanted me to withdraw, as Frankie put it. So I said no. Then I turned the conversation over to management.

They told me it wasn’t something they wanted to do, but they didn’t want to actually say that I was fired. Frankie basically wanted to make it my idea, and it never was. That’s how it ended up. It was very disingenuous – I think it was an attempt to make it look better for the fans.”

Dave Bickler’s career with Survivor was a rollercoaster ride filled with highs and lows. Despite the unfair treatment he faced throughout his career, Dave continues to be remembered for contributing to one of the biggest hits of the 80s. While the misfortunes may have affected his career, Bickler’s talent and resilience continue to inspire many in the industry. His story serves as a reminder that sometimes life can be challenging, but it’s important to keep pushing through.