Lone Star (band)

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Lone Star
Lone Star 1977.jpg
Image taken in 1977. From left to right: John Sloman, Tony Smith, Pete Hurley, Dixie Lee, Rick Worsnop, Paul "Tonka" Chapman.
Background information
Origin Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom
Genres Progressive rock, hard rock, symphonic rock
Years active1975–1978
Labels CBS, Windsong, Beat Goes On, Zoom Club
Associated actsIona, Quest, Budgie, Kimla Taz, Skid Row, UFO, Trapper, Uriah Heep, Pulsar, Ozzy Osbourne's Blizzard Of Ozz, Persian Risk, Gary Moore, John Sloman's Badlands, Wild Horses, Screen Idols, Lion, Waysted, Circus Circus, Paul Chapman's Ghost, The Red Hot Pokers, Van Morrison, Gator County, Waterloo Road, Kenny Driscoll Band, Hiding Place
Website Lone Star MySpace
Past members Members

Lone Star were a Welsh rock band formed in Cardiff, Wales in 1975. [1] They released two albums on CBS Records before splitting up in 1978.

Wales Country in northwest Europe, part of the United Kingdom

Wales is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and the island of Great Britain. It is bordered by England to the east, the Irish Sea to the north and west, and the Bristol Channel to the south. It had a population in 2011 of 3,063,456 and has a total area of 20,779 km2 (8,023 sq mi). Wales has over 1,680 miles (2,700 km) of coastline and is largely mountainous, with its higher peaks in the north and central areas, including Snowdon, its highest summit. The country lies within the north temperate zone and has a changeable, maritime climate.

Cardiff Capital and largest city of Wales

Cardiff is the capital of Wales, and its largest city. The eleventh-largest city in the United Kingdom, it is Wales's chief commercial centre, the base for most national cultural institutions and Welsh media, and the seat of the National Assembly for Wales. At the 2011 census, the unitary authority area population was estimated to be 346,090, and the wider urban area 479,000. Cardiff is a significant tourist centre and the most popular visitor destination in Wales with 21.3 million visitors in 2017. In 2011, Cardiff was ranked sixth in the world in National Geographic's alternative tourist destinations.

Sony Music American record label

Sony Music Entertainment (SME), known as Sony Music, is an American global music conglomerate owned by Sony and incorporated as a general partnership of Sony Music Holdings Inc. through Sony Entertainment Inc., a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, which in turn is a subsidiary of the Japanese Sony Corporation. It was originally founded in 1929 as American Record Corporation and renamed as Columbia Recording Corporation in 1938, following its acquisition by the Columbia Broadcasting System. In 1966, the company was reorganized to become CBS Records, and Sony Corporation bought the company in 1988, renaming it under its current name in 1991. In 2004, Sony and Bertelsmann established a 50-50 joint venture known as Sony BMG Music Entertainment, which transferred the businesses of Sony Music and Bertelsmann Music Group into one entity. However, in 2008, Sony acquired Bertelsmann's stake, and the company reverted to the SME name shortly after; the buyout allowed Sony to acquire all of BMG's labels, and led to the dissolution of BMG, which instead relaunched as BMG Rights Management.

Contents

History

An embryonic line-up consisted of former Iona members Kenny Driscoll and Tony Smith, former Quest bassist Ray Jones, and drummer Jim Mathews. The band took on the Lone Star moniker in early 1975 with the addition of a new rhythm section, Pete Hurley on bass and Dixie Lee on drums, and noted guitarist Paul "Tonka" Chapman (a cousin of famed Welsh rocker Dave Edmunds), whose credits included the bands Universe, Skid Row (where he had replaced Gary Moore), Kimla Taz, and most notably, UFO, in a short-lived 1974 dual guitar configuration alongside Michael Schenker. [1] [2] Canadian keyboardist Rick Worsnop completed the line-up. [1] They raised £300 and recorded a five-song demo tape (The Acorn Sessions) at a studio near Oxford, with four of the five songs appearing in re-recorded form on their first two albums. [3] The demo brought interest from manager Steve Wood, and after a bidding war, they signed a worldwide deal with CBS Records (which Driscoll would later describe as "the worst record deal ever"). [3]

Paul William "Tonka" Chapman is a Welsh rock guitarist best known for his work in bands such as UFO and Lone Star. Chapman is well known by his nickname "Tonka", allegedly acquired because of his indestructible qualities.

Dave Edmunds Welsh singer, guitarist and record producer

David William "Dave" Edmunds is a Welsh singer/songwriter, guitarist, actor and record producer. Although he is mainly associated with pub rock and new wave, having many hits in the 1970s and early 1980s, his natural leaning has always been towards 1950s style rock and roll.

Gary Moore Northern Ireland guitarist, songwriter and record producer

Robert William Gary Moore was a Northern Irish blues guitarist and singer-songwriter.

The band recorded a studio session for John Peel's BBC Radio 1 show in early 1976, [4] and recorded their self-titled debut album in August 1976 at Sweet Silence studios in Copenhagen, with Roy Thomas Baker producing. [1] [3] Driscoll had suffered a broken collarbone in a car crash (that left his girlfriend paralysed from the neck down) shortly before recording the album, and claimed to have recorded all the vocals for the album in three hours while drunk, and was disappointed with the results. [3] The album charted at No. 47 on the UK Albums Chart, [5] and was supported by a UK tour with label mate Ted Nugent. [1] A second Peel session was recorded in April 1976 and broadcast around the time of the first album's release that August. [6] The band's profile would get a further boost with a BBC Radio 1 In Concert broadcast, recorded at the Paris Theatre in London on 23 September 1976 while on tour as openers for Mott.

<i>Lone Star</i> (album) 1976 studio album by Lone Star

Lone Star is the eponymous debut studio album by Welsh hard rock band Lone Star. The album was released in August 1976. The album was produced by Roy Thomas Baker, who is best known for his work with Queen and The Cars. The album was later re-issue on CD in 1992 & 1996 by CBS Records/Sony. The album only spent 1 week in the UK Albums Charts reaching number 47. The album was produced at Sweet Silence Studios, Copenhagen, Denmark and mastered at Sterling Sound Studios, New York, United States.

Copenhagen Capital of Denmark

Copenhagen is the capital and most populous city of Denmark. As of July 2018, the city has a population of 777,218. It forms the core of the wider urban area of Copenhagen and the Copenhagen metropolitan area. Copenhagen is situated on the eastern coast of the island of Zealand; another small portion of the city is located on Amager, and is separated from Malmö, Sweden, by the strait of Øresund. The Øresund Bridge connects the two cities by rail and road.

Roy Thomas Baker British record producer

Roy Thomas Baker is an English record producer, songwriter, arranger, and Recording Academy governor, who has produced pop and rock songs since the 1970s.

After friction between Driscoll and other band members, he left in 1977, and was replaced by 20-year-old John Sloman (ex-Trapper), with Abe Hoch taking over as manager from Wood. [1] [3] The band's third BBC studio session, with Sloman now on vocals, was recorded in February 1977, and broadcast in July of that year on Alan Freeman's Saturday Show. This was an experimental quadrophonic broadcast trialling the BBC's Matrix H system. The band's second album, Firing on All Six , produced by Gary Lyons and released in August 1977, bettered its predecessor and reached No. 36 on the UK Albums Chart. [3] [5] That same month, the band undertook their most high-profile gig yet with an appearance at the Reading Festival on 26 August, [3] followed by a live broadcast on the BBC's Sight & Sound programme on 29 September, recorded at Queen Mary College in East London whilst sharing a bill with Canadian guitarist Pat Travers. Both the BBC In Concert and Sight & Sound broadcasts were released in 1994 as the BBC Radio One Live In Concert CD.

John Anthony David Sloman was born in Cardiff, South Wales, 26 April 1957 as the eldest of six children. He is best known as the lead vocalist for Welsh band Lone Star during 1977/'78 and classic rockers Uriah Heep from 1979 to 1981.

Alan Freeman British DJ

Alan Leslie Freeman, MBE, sometimes nicknamed "Fluff", was an Australian-born British disc jockey and radio personality in the United Kingdom for 40 years, best known for presenting Pick of the Pops from 1961 to 2000.

<i>Firing on All Six</i> 1977 studio album by Lone Star

Firing on All Six is the second studio album by Welsh hard rock band Lone Star. The album was released in August 1977. The album was produced by Gary Lyons, who was one of two engineers on their debut album Lone Star. The album entered the UK Albums Charts on 17 September 1977 reaching number 36. It stayed in the charts for 6 weeks. Between their debut album and Firing on All Six, the lead vocalist, Kenny Driscoll, had been replaced by John Sloman.

Break-up and further activities

Lone Star were on hiatus for a period when Chapman was called upon by UFO to fill in for the absent Michael Schenker for part of their US tour with Rush. Upon his return the band began to prepare and demo material for a proposed third album but already on shaky ground and beset by management problems and tensions caused by Smith and Lee's interest in Scientology, Lone Star splintered in late 1978, [1] [3] CBS having pulled the plug due in part to the rapidly changing musical climate, with the rise of punk rock leaving bands like Lone Star seeming old fashioned. [3] Chapman re-joined UFO for good and went on to make four studios album with the band before joining UFO bassist Pete Way in Waysted in the mid-1980s and settling in the US. [3] Chapman now works as a guitar teacher in South Florida, [3] where he is also a member of Gator Country, featuring members of the original Molly Hatchet.

Michael Schenker German musician

Michael Schenker is a German rock guitarist who has played in UFO and led the Michael Schenker Group. He was an early member of Scorpions the band co-founded by his elder brother Rudolf Schenker. In the mid-1970s Michael joined UFO, playing lead guitar. He left the band in 1978 to found the Michael Schenker Group. He has rejoined UFO three times, producing an album each time. Schenker continues to perform and record. He has been called "a legendary figure in the history of metal guitar."

Rush (band) Canadian rock band

Rush was a Canadian rock band consisting of Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson (guitars), and Neil Peart. Formed in 1968, the band went through several configurations until arriving at its longest and most popular line-up when Peart replaced original drummer John Rutsey in July 1974, two weeks before the group's first tour of the United States.

Scientology Group of religious beliefs and practices created by American science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard

Scientology is a body of religious beliefs and practices launched in May 1952 by American author L. Ron Hubbard (1911–86). Hubbard initially developed a program of ideas called Dianetics, which was distributed through the Dianetics Foundation. The foundation soon entered bankruptcy, and Hubbard lost the rights to his foundational publication Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health in 1952. He then recharacterized the subject as a religion and renamed it Scientology, retaining the terminology, doctrines, the E-meter, and the practice of auditing. Within a year, he regained the rights to Dianetics and retained both subjects under the umbrella of the Church of Scientology.

Drummer Dixie Lee toured with Wild Horses in late 1978, [1] before teaming up with John Sloman in the short-lived Pulsar. [3] Lee also cut some demos with an early incarnation of Blizzard Of Ozz, and briefly joined Welsh metal act Persian Risk in late 1983. [3] Sloman joined British rockers Uriah Heep for their controversial Conquest album in 1980, [1] before forming John Sloman's Badlands with guitarist John Sykes in 1982 and guesting with Gary Moore on the Rockin' Every Night - Live in Japan album. [3] Sloman embarked on a solo career in the mid-1980s and has since released several albums, including the Todd Rundgren produced-Disappearances Can Be Deceptive in 1989.

Wild Horses were a British rock band, active during the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Persian Risk are a heavy metal band from the new wave of British heavy metal era formed in 1979 and hailing from Cardiff, Wales. The brainchild of ex-Stoned Soul Party guitarist Phil Campbell, he recruited vocalist Jon Deverill, second guitarist Dave Bell, bass player Nick Hughes, and drummer Razz. The group was active until 1986. In 2012, the band was re-activated by vocalist Carl Sentance albeit without the involvement of any other past members.

Uriah Heep (band) English rock band

Uriah Heep are an English rock band formed in London in 1969. It has had the same lineup since 2013: lead and rhythm guitarist Mick Box, keyboardist Phil Lanzon, lead vocalist Bernie Shaw, drummer Russell Gilbrook and bassist Davey Rimmer. Of the current lineup, Box is the only remaining original member. Throughout many lineup changes, the band has included many notable musicians, such as vocalists David Byron, John Lawton, John Sloman, Peter Goalby and Steff Fontaine, bassists Gary Thain, Trevor Bolder, John Wetton, Bob Daisley and John Jowitt, drummers Nigel Olsson, Lee Kerslake and Chris Slade, and keyboardists Ken Hensley and John Sinclair.

After exiting Lone Star, Driscoll briefly fronted Hiding Place. They recorded one Peel session for BBC Radio 1 on 19 December 1977, which was broadcast on 5 January 1978 ; [7] This session appears to be their only recorded output. As well as Driscoll, Hiding Place included guitarist Tich Gwilym (ex-Kimla Taz), bassist Dave Dawson, drummer Rob Allen, and keyboardist Paul Abrahams. Driscoll, Gwilym and Allen, along with former Iona/Quest bassist Ray Jones, also featured in the oddly named Tom the Lord but the band disintegrated in its formative stages despite interest from Epic Records.

Driscoll and long time friend Steve Jones reformed Lone Star in 1979, recorded an album at Rockfield Studios and tried unsuccessfully to obtain a new recording contract. [3] They played some gigs in 1980, including shows at Bournemouth Winter Gardens, Keele University and Nottingham Boat Club. Steve Jones left the band sometime in 1980 and Gary Moore joined to complete some outstanding gigs and Lone Star disbanded. Driscoll briefly joined Gary Moore's band in 1980 and sang on the Live At The Marquee album. [3] He currently fronts the Kenny Driscoll Band, a Welsh pub/club band [3] Steve Jones joined the Kenny Driscoll Band some years later.

Following Lone Star's demise, Tony Smith teamed up in Screen Idols with former the Rats trio - drummer Mike "Woody" Woodmansey (David Bowie, U-Boat), bassist Geoff Appleby (Hunter-Ronson Band), and guitarist Keith "Ched" Cheeseman - and vocalist Michelle Nieddu. [3] The band's sole album, Premiere, came out in 1979. Following the departure of Nieddu and Cheeseman, Smith took over lead vocals on the band's third and final single, "Routine" b/w "Power Supply", issued in 1980, before Idols called it a day. The guitarist next turned up in Los Angeles, California, alongside fellow Brit Kal Swan (ex-Tytan) where the two formed Lyon, quickly renamed Lion, although Smith was not part of the band's recorded output. [3] Smith can now be found in the band the Daggers doing the live circuit around Wales. [3]

Pete Hurley was part of Welsh roots rockers, the Red Hot Pokers, [3] all through the 1990s and joined Sloman in a project called Beat Poets in 1999. Hurley released Dancin' Mood with the Pokers in 2001, the group also being credited with backing both rock'n'roll pioneer Jerry Lee Lewis his sister, Linda Gail Lewis, live and in the studio on different occasions. Recording the You Win Again album in 2000 with Linda and Northern Irish icon, Van Morrison, would lead to The Red Hot Pokers becoming Morrison's new live band, with Hurley also contributing bass to Morrison's 2002 album, Down the Road. Hurley is still an in-demand session player who works with a number of different acts.

Rick Worsnop returned to Canada in 1979 to pursue a career as a software developer. [3] He currently alternates solo keyboard recording with voice acting, and teaches systems analysis for a consulting company in Toronto.

A third Lone Star album, Riding High, was released by Paul Chapman, on the Zoom Club label in 2000. Produced without the participation of other band members, it consisted of demos recorded by Chapman plus previously unpublished Lone Star material.

Lone Star and Firing on All Six were re-issued as a 2-for-1 by BGO Records in 2004, [8] and again in 2011 by Rock Candy Records, as newly re-mastered single CDs, with previously unreleased BBC sessions and live cuts added as bonus tracks on each album.

Members

Timeline

Lone Star %28band%29

Discography

Albums

Studio albums

TitleAlbum detailsPeak UK
chart position
Notes
Lone Star 47 [9]
Firing on All Six
  • Released 1977
  • Epic Records
  • Catalogue No:S EPC 82213
36 [10]
Riding High - The Unreleased Third Album
  • Released 2000
  • Zoom Club
  • Catalogue No:ZRCD25
"—" denotes album that did not chart

Live albums

TitleAlbum detailsPeak UK
chart position
Notes
BBC Radio One Live in Concert
"—" denotes album that did not chart

Compilation albums

TitleAlbum detailsPeak UK
chart position
Notes
Lone Star/Firing on All Six
  • BGO Records
  • Released 31 May 2004
  • Catalogue No BGOCD618
"—" denotes album that did not chart

Extended plays

YearTitleDetails
1976"Hey Baby" / "Turn It Up"

Singles

YearTitleB SideDetailsAlbum
1976"She Said She Said""Illusions"
  • CBS Records
  • Released 5 Nov 1976
  • Catalogue No S CBS 4751
Lone Star
1977"Hypnotic Mover""All of Us to All of You"
  • CBS Records
  • Released 5 Aug 1977
  • Catalogue No S CBS 5520
Firing on All Six
"Seasons in Your Eyes""Lovely Lubina"
  • CBS Records
  • Released 7 Oct 1977
  • Catalogue No S CBS 5707

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References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Strong, Martin C. (2001) The Great Metal Discography, MOJO Books, ISBN   1-84195-185-4, p. 319
  2. Larkin, Colin (2006) The Encyclopedia of Popular Music, OUP USA, ISBN   978-0195313734, p. 307
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 Barton, Geoff (2016) "The strange story of Lone Star, the band that punk killed (or did it?)", Classic Rock , 13 May 2016 (Issue 224). Retrieved 24 November 2018
  4. "29/01/1976 - Lone Star", Keeping It Peel, BBC. Retrieved 24 November 2018
  5. 1 2 Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 327. ISBN   1-904994-10-5.
  6. "15/04/1976 - Lone Star", Keeping It Peel, BBC. Retrieved 24 November 2018
  7. "19/12/1977 - Hiding Place", Keeping It Peel, BBC. Retrieved 24 November 2018
  8. Allmusic.com - discography
  9. "Lone Star - Lone Star". Official Charts Company . Retrieved 25 January 2017.
  10. "Lone Star - Firing On All Six". Official Charts Company . Retrieved 25 January 2017.