They first achieved success with a 1980 self-released single pairing two of their now-classic songs, "Wild Summer Nights" and Tender Years" which sold over 10,000 copies and enjoyed terrific radio play up and down the Atlantic seaboard. They finally achieved international success when producer Kenny Vance, offered them the score to a movie soundtrack he was producing based on a best-selling novel about a fictional legendary bar band, "Eddie & The Cruisers." Thanks to frequent airings of the film on HBO and the purchase of the soundtrack album by their established fanbase as well as hundreds of thousands of new converts, "Eddie & The Cruisers - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack" reached the top 10 on the Billboard 200 chart and produced a number 7 hit single ("On the Dark Side") on the Billboard Hot 100. "On the Dark Side" also held number-one on the Billboard Rock Tracks chart for five weeks. The album was eventually certified triple Platinum by the RIAA.
The group's 1985 follow-up album was highlighted by the title track ” Tough All Over “ which became their second number-one single on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. The song "C.I.T.Y" from that album also reached the Billboard Top 20 while "Voice of America's Sons" was the featured theme song on the motion picture soundtrack of the movie Cobra, starring Sylvester Stallone and Cafferty's solo track "Hearts on Fire" was featured in another Stallone film, Rocky IV.
The band's next album, the self-produced "Roadhouse," sold well to their fan base but did not reach the sales heights of "Tough All Over." In 1989, they followed it with the score to an "Eddie" sequel, "Eddie & The Cruisers II: Eddie Lives!" which became their last major label release of new material.
Several personnel changes occurred over the next few years with Kenny Jo Silva departing in 1992 and Pat Lupo in 1994 to be replaced, respectively, by Jackie Santos, formerly of Tavares, and Dean Cassell. Bobby Cotoia had been forced to retire from the road during the 1990s due to an illness but remained an active member of the group in the studio. His on-stage replacement was Steve Burke who remains in the lineup.
John Cafferty & The Beaver Brown Band remains a top concert attraction touring nationally on an annual basis and they have placed new songs into the soundtracks of several major motion pictures including “Jersey Girl” and the smash hit "There's Something About Mary."