Alvin's Solo Music
Reissues--From Billboard Magazine:
Apparently departed from
Ten Years After, the group's lead singer / guitarist
Lee comes up with a live set featuring some of the
good old rock and roll he's always loved so much, with
a fine sprinkling of soul and some originals thrown
Lee seems far more at home
with this material than he did during his last few
the group going easier on the "mile a minute"
guitar solos he became known for (there are still some
here) and concentrating more on his singing, which is
excellent. Something here for all the Ten Years After
fans and some new things for those that never got
involved with the band.
Sax and flute in the band
are put to good use, as are the backup vocalists. Lots
of AM potential here, and Lee's strong FM following
should also be happy.
A bit less frenetic than
the Lee efforts with Ten Years After and a bit
mellower than his live solo set of several months ago.
Less emphasis on the mile a minute guitar style he
trademarked near the end of the '60s and more emphasis
on tasteful, apparently more carefully chosen licks.
Several instrumentals highlighted by Lee's guitar and
the organ work of Ronnie Leahy are standouts, as are
the cuts where Lee uses his basically good voice to
handle slower material. A couple of good acoustic cuts
here as well.
Musicians include Boz of
Bad Company, Mel Collins on Sax and production comes
from Lee. Mix of rock, country and basic blues offers
Lee's most versatile showing to date.
Date Reviewed 5/6/78
One of the fastest and
accomplished of rock guitarsts, Lee returns with a new
band that captures the progressive vision that Ten
Years After did in the late 60s. Lee's rifling guitar
is the albums centerpiece with its energized, stinging
riffs standing out over the rhythm section.
The music is a fusion of
solid rock and blues that reflects the cream of 60s
and 70s blues rock influences, and also reinforces
Lee's prominence among virtuoso rock guitarists.
Comprising Ten Years Later
is Tom Compton on drums, Mick Hawksworth on bass,
Bernie Clarke and Mick Weaver on keyboards.
Date Reviewed 5/5/79
Second RSO LP for Lee, the
heart of Ten Years After, returns here with drummer
Tom Compton and bassist Mick
Hawksworth. Supplying his
own dynamic guitar and vocals Lee does what he does
best--plays and sings moving blues rock. Interestingly,
side one was recorded without overdubs live on stage,
while side two is in the studio.
The classic "Going
Home" is on the first side with the overall
package a blues rock tour de force.
Date Reviewed 11/22/80
This LP of smooth rockers
fares best when Lee is at the helm; writing, singing
and dominating the lead spots. Backed by bassist Micky
Feat and drummer Tom Compton, and sharing guitar and
vocal chores with Steve Gould, Lee all too often fades
into the background and fails to insert his unique
presence and style into the music. Best cuts: "Ridin
Truckin," Sooner Or Later."
Date Reviewed 10/17/81
Less than 10 years after
Ten Years After, Alvin Lee is still proving he knows
how to rock and roll. Guitar playing, on which Lee
receives an assist from Steve Gould, is outstanding.
The energy level remains high from first cut to last.
A strong effort. Best cuts: All.
Reviews: Alvin's Solo Years
On the Road to Freedom:
a breath of fresh air back in 1973 and continues
to remain so to this day. Light and fresh but
should have been a double album as it was an
inspired period of time for everyone involved.
Mylon was trying to get the drug monkey off of his
back and Alvin was trying to shake off every other
his back as it related to Ten Years After, his personal problem with stardom
/ fame and playing I’m Going Home any longer on
the music there’s not one weak or bad song on
the album, it flows, it sways and it rocks to the
best thing is that you either love it or hate it
as no one is indifferent. Considering it was
Alvin’s very first solo attempt and it was a
whole new direction from what we all were
expecting, be sure it was made from the heart of
every member involved and destened to be a true
classic, as it turned out to be.
Track: So Sad (single version) the long version is
already on the album, it serves no purpose to offer
this dried up bone as if it’s a new gift.
second solo effort and only Alvin could make the
magic happen on this recording. It was one Hell of
a spectacular event, not only because of the
gathering of the all star supporting players, but
because for the first time Alvin became just one
of the boys in the band. With nothing to prove he
was playing for the love of playing and that’s
what becomes apparent to the listener, it was a
triumph of discipline over stardom.
two record set and it also
has stood the test of time as with OTRTF.
Alvin to sing Don’t Be Cruel and really do it
justice is a prime example of
his true talent. He plays his Gibson like a
stradivarius and the notes and phrasing flow like
silk and honey all over this recording, nothing
hectic or over done, it’s all in good taste
without the usual Alvin Lee haste.
Alvin learned to control his guitar and caress the
numbers being played instead of his usual flying
fingers assult that he has been known for over the
years, that is what has propelled him into a
higher artistic status. As the Billboard review
has stated, his voice became just as important an
instrument as the notes he was playing.
Tracks: Sombody Callin’ Me and Put It In A Box.
Now here is something different and interesting
and worthy of being included on this cd release.
me this album is a total enigma. To start with I
expected the music contained within the cover to
be a bombastic heavy metal explosion as the title
implies, PUMP IRON an electric Gibson extravaganza,
but what is presented is nothing of the sort. The
cover should have been of sunflowers, love beads,
a feather bed and a baggie of grannola with the words
"too much time and space
it took little or no time for this recording to
hit the bargain basement discount bin, never
before or since have I seen an Alvin Lee album for
ninty nine cents as was the case with this one. I
got the impression that I wasn’t the only one
dissatisfied with this solo project because it
didn’t sell very well for whatever reason.
all that being said I really love the damn thing,
because after the high expectations I had I also
learned to accept and appreciate it for what it
was, a continuation of the In Flight
recording series with many of the same
musicians. This could’ve been the third record
in the In Flight set because that’s exactly
where it belongs.
tracks: Track 12, called Madness is a total throw
away unless you're angry and even if you're not you
will be, one minute fifty seconds of chaos.
13 is the exact opposite and well worth the price
of this cd alone,
and here is how it came to be in Alvin’s
recently did a bonus track called “Midnight
Special” for the “Pump Iron” CD. I actually
recorded the track in 1997, it was a big jam at
Hookend with Mick Ralphs, Boz Burrell and Tim
Hinkley. I came across the multi track seven years
later and put a vocal on it which sounded great.
In the summer of 1988, I dug it out again, decided
that the guitar solos were a bit weak and put new
guitar solos on. So that track took 21 years to
record! I did it with Stuart Epps as the engineer
and it sounds great-like it was all done at the
One More Chance:
are four records associated with the In Flight
period, In Flight two record set, Pump Iron and
One More Chance. One More Chance is a wonderful
bootleg cd and while we don’t normally recommend
bootlegs to fans this one is special case.
are the facts: It was Recorded Live in Europe in
1975, and made by Oh Boy Records (the same bootleg
company that released Ten Years After Live at the
Texas International Pop Festival) and the song
list: Let the Sun Burn Down (it should be Let the
Sea Burn Down) You Told Me, How Many Times,Going
Through the Door, I’ve Got Eyes for you Baby,
Ride My Train, Julian Rice, One More Chance, Rock
and Roll and Johnny B. Goode.
funny part is the insert photo is of Alvin, Mick
and Tom from Ten Years Later (wrong band guys) it
is from the In Flight sessons and the quality is
excellent when compared to any other bootleg recording. It seems that
this material came from
the sound mixing board. All I can say is it’s worth
searching out if you loved In Flight and Pump Iron
this will make your set complete.
was as close to a Ten Years After Album—without
Ten Years After that Alvin Lee would ever get. It
is a fantastic recording from start to finish,
high energy, passion and just plain Kick-Ass Rock
and Roll. This was the album that Pump Iron should
have been, but better late than never. Every record collection should contain this recording, it’s
an eleven on a scale of
ten. Hats off to Tom Compton and Mick
Hawksworth for giving Alvin a much needed boost
and support to get him started playing Rock and Roll
again, or at least playing it as it was intended
to be played. Before this album was released I was
afraid Mr.Lee was going to come out with Alvin
plays Karen Carpenter greatest hits compilation,
or another version of Diamonds and Rust from the
Joan Baez collectors series.
Tom and Mick you just didn’t get enough
credit for your contribution but it is very apparent
to any Alvin Lee fan just what you two did for him.
Let It Rock
tracks are Little Boy, Let It Rock and Through
With Your Lovin’
Tracks: Snake Jam and Break Jam: Nothing to write
home about but interesting just the same, well
worth a listen they’ll grow on you, Break Jam
will have you tapping your feet very enjoyable.
This was Alvin’s first solo effort for Chrysalis
and his fifth overall. Remastered by Jon Astley.
Just enjoyable fluff, like going to Mc Donalds it
fills you up but nothing really substancial here.
could’ve been another Rocket Fuel but it fell
way short. There is nothing wrong with side one it
is perfect 110%, Ain’t Nothin’ Shakin’ is a
real non-stop rocking workout,
Hey Joe is almost better than what Jimi
himself did with it as Alvin sets that song on
overdrive, and Going Home you just can’t miss
and it comes off with flying colors again.
two: My opinion, is either make one good Live
Album or one good studio album but never mix the
The songs are good, the lyrics are good, the
music is good, so what the Hell’s wrong? The
sound is muffled, dirty, mucky, it’s like
listening to a $10,000 stereo system
through a pair of $20.00 K-Mart speakers,
if it wasn’t for this Ride On would’ve been
rated over the top, another eleven like Rocket Fuel but overall it gets a
totally disagree with the Billboard assesment of
this album (opinions vary). To me it is one of
Alvin’s proudest moments because as with In
Flight he has no trouble being just one of the boys in
the band. Imagine someone put this record on for
you and you didn’t have a clue it was Alvin Lee
it would strike you as being an outstanding achievement on any level. I can judge a record or
cd by how fast or how slow it takes to end, if I
get the impression that it flies by then it was interesting and
enjoyable, but if I can’t wait for it to finish
it has little to offer.
flows, one song leads into another seemlessly and
it ends too soon. The perfect Alvin Lee vehicle - an
eleven rating once again.
track: Real Life Blues nice song but
doesn’t belong on this collection, it
seems that it came about nine years later than
this 1980 release, the guitar work has all the
ear-marks of the About Time release or later
give it an overall grade of eight all the way through,
except for the nonsense robot cover and the RX5
title, X file, X factor, Triumph RX7—XR7 or Max
Factor who cares the cover damn well sucks. Alvin
only wrote three songs on this outing and in
Alvin’s own words: “ I was actually not
writing much at the time, I was letting these
other guys come up with the ideas.
“Can’t stop" was an idea that just came
to me one night, it was one of those songs that
just appears in your head. It’s funny, we had
practically finished the album and I came in the
next morning and told them I’d written this song.
Everybody was saying “Well, it’s a bit late
now! Well, I said, This is my studio, we are doing
Track: Shuffle It –a very nice lively track
indeed a good instrumental and a great addition to
this recording. In my collection I moved the bonus
track into the first song position rather than the
last, great music to open up the album with and
great segway into "Hang On". The song runs 6:05 and
is a real treat.
Conclusion: Burn the bloody cover, make up your
own and enjoy the music presented inside. Play it
for your friends and don’t tell them who it is
and see what they think. It is one good
piece of music that has long since been
overlooked and basicly forgotten. Dig it out of
the Dust-Bin and give it a little spin just for
fun because it is just good.
everything about this CD is Alvin Lee and it is a
very good representation of his talent in many
areas, the down side is it has all been heard
before. Jenny Jenny, Real Life Blues and It
Don’t Come Easy are the stand out songs and the
hard to forget A Little Bit of Love.
have to be in the mood to listen to this all the
way through and if the song Use That Power was
meant to be the next version of I’d Love to Change the
World - it didn't come close.
loved it when it was first released but it got old
it a ten for effort, a five for sound and a two
for rehashed overkill.
Live In Vienna
is always good live and on stage, he is a great
talent, performer and entertainer, Live In Vienna
is a Tribute to him and Ten Years Later. All I can
say is if he wanted to keep performing Ten Years
After songs he should have stayed with Ten Years
After in the first place, just check the song
would rather listen to Live at the Fillmore East
or Ten Years After Recorded Live from 1973.
Steve Gould, Alan Young and Steve Grant are all
very capable players I’d rather have Ric, Leo
this is a good if not great recording it does
capture a moment in time while there was still
some excitement and energy left.
Hembrow (as always) was the tour manager:
Good-Bye John Hembrow (Retired)
Photo courtesy of Sandye
to our sources John Hembrow has been the one
person who has been with Ten Years After, Ten
Years Later, The Alvin Lee Band and Ten Years
After back again. John started working for Ten
Years After in May of 1968 when the band was ready
to embark on their very first American
John has the ability to “read minds” and do
everything that needs to be done and keep things
running smoothly he will be missed. It is a well
known fact that Alvin defended Andy Jaworski and
John when Chrysalis wanted to discharge both of
them and thus became the reason for Alvin himself
leaving the record label.
the years John called Alvin “Guv’nor’ so
this kind of respect has kept him in good standing.
John Hembrow and Lloyd Murray
John, good luck and thanks for everything you’ve
done over the years to support Ten Years After and
Brigitte and Dave
had the record and loved it but trying to find the
cd in the 1990’s was difficult to say the least,
I finally had to order it as an import from
Germany at the total cost of $35.00 it was well
worth the money and effort. If I had to hand
someone one of my favorite Alvin Lee CD’s it
would be Detroit Diesel, Rocket Fuel or Free Fall. This
is one recording that I never got tired of and I
really can’t put my finger on exactly why but it does work.
is only one gripe that I do have about this
release and no it’s not the sound this time, it
is the song Let’s Go. It’s listed as a Lee /
Gould composition but damn if it doesn’t sound
like a cross between The Bay City Rollers
Saturday Night (1976) and the Beastie Boys,
(You’ve Gotta Fight)
for your right (to Party) 1987.
Let’s go to my house, have a party at my
house……..a perfect album up to that point, I
have no love loss for this song but your opinion
may be different.
I Hear You Rockin’:
Long Legs (who cares) we heard enough about your
baby in I’m Going Home!
Play It Like It Used To Be…Madonna don’t do
nothin’ for me crap song,
All Day—Listen to Boogie On instead!
Baby’s Come Back To Me (who cares) Alvin get
over it—women may come women may go remember!
Me Your Love, Take It Easy, Ain’t Nobody’s
Business and the old cover of I Hear You Knockin’
sounds like a 45 record played at 33 …none of
these are really bad just lack-luster
that leaves a Beatles tune (I Want You), Keep On
Rockin’ (by King / Batholomew) The Bluest Blues
(best on this recording) and I Don’t Give A
Damn---there’s the entire album. Alvin does a
great job on I Want You, it was a good song to
begin with and with the old Alvin touch he has
made it his own and more enjoyable than the
Beatles version ever was. This is in part due to
the fact that Alvin had the good sense to give the
song a proper ending that it was lacking before.
||2003 Alvin Lee in
in Alvin Lee’s Tennessee”
Scotty Moore - DJ Fontana - Pete Pritchard -
Willie Rainsford and Tim Hinkley
too much Alvin to suit my personal taste.
the basic problem with this recording. It’s all
Alvin Lee, it would have been a much better effort
if Alvin had taken to laying low and took a more
comfortable back seat to become just one of the
boys in the band. It worked for him back in 1974
on his “In
Flight” album, and it would’ve served him just
as well here. By placing Scotty Moore and D.J.
Fontana in the spotlight it may have provided some
real balance and enjoyable nostalgia for the fans
and band alike.
this being said, I get the distinct impression
that Elvis’s boys would rather play a submissive
role and let the King be King. Although in this
case a collective effort would’ve been much more
enjoyable for this listener. This cd by no means
lacks any talent, in fact there is an over
talent provided on here. All that is really
missing is the fundamental ingredient called
democracy, that one aspect could’ve
produced a much more positive outcome.
are two other inherent flaws is this release. The
first is it’s way under produced, it’s sound
is lacklustre, flat, bland and that diminishes the
overall effect that the recording process
The second flaw is in the choice of
material, this means lyrics and the music used.
For me personally I would’ve preferred the band
of this calibre to do some better guitar picking,
playing and jams. Elvis, Chuck Berry or Buddy
would’ve worked perfectly in this situation.
is my assessment of the songs, they include the
reason for my overall disappointment:
1. Let’s Boogie 3:33 A
very nice little bouncy tune, but would’ve been
much better as an 8:00 instrumental. The start of the song fades in as
though it’s already in progress, which it
most certainly is, and that’s annoying. Not a
bad song really, it just sounds run of the mill.
Rock and Roll Girls 3:38 Yea,
Yea, Yea, another Chuck Berry and Jerry Lee Lewis
“Riff-Off” the old block. Nice little bouncy
song again, but should’ve been called “Every
Imaginable Rock ‘n’ Roll cliché that you’ve
ever heard, in just under three minutes and forty
Take My Time 4:45 If
this band were to go on the road, they could get a
at the local Days Inn. Three fifteen minute breaks,
free coffee and buffet included. It picks up where
that other lame song “Long Legs” leaves off.
I’m Gonna Make It 6:10
can tell you that this song is about four minutes
too long. Grace Slick has a great line for a
performance like this “shave and go home”
meaning just going through all the motions with no
soul or passion behind the action is worthless.
Take the lead guitar out of the mix, crank
up the keyboards and it would’ve been better by
a long shot. This
song has been bothering me for a long time,
because I’ve heard it before but I just could
never place where it was from—then I remembered—Hank
Williams Jr. that’s right folks. It’s a Hank
William’s Jr. song called
“If It Will It Will
and If It Won’t It Won’t” from his “Pure
Hank” album released in 1991. Just as George
Harrison stole “He’s So Fine” from “The
Chiffons” that was written by Ronald Mack, Alvin
lifted this song from Hank Williams Jr. as well.
I’m far from impressed.
Something’s Gonna Get You 4:47
now that I’m through track four lets see where
has this song been before. It isn’t new, it’s
another has been-retread, oh yea-the About Time
album “All Shook Up” and Zoom and….you get
Did You Do It 5:00
This is another song that should’ve been
a 10:00 instrumental.
No Where Fast 4:40
Should’ve been called “Going Nowhere At All”. Lame
rhyming, uninspired little riff from the “About
Time” album again, another retread from the past.
Unadulterated fluff, remove Alvin’s vocals and
guitar and it would be closer to a perfect number.
Do You Do It 5:00
we have the first taste of the cd and the band
getting ready for the final dirt nap.
song is really called “Baby Won’t you Let Me
Rock ‘n’ Roll you” from the “Space In Time
Album” released in 1971. Re-hashed-Re-Tread-
Alvin throws in some old “Slow Down”
some Chuck Berry fills, and some Jerry Lee
Lewis chomp chomp - look for the kitchen
sink while you’re in here.
song is three minutes too long.
Let’s Get It On 5:25
this a song title from Edgar Winter’s White
Trash, featuring Jerry La Croix from 1971? The
purpose of this song is two fold. First it’s a
stepping stone to get to "I’m Going Home" and
second it’s so bad it’s suppose to make you
forget all about your disgust that "I’m Going Home" is even on this recording.
Tell Me Why 5:52
fluff to set up for the finish. Every time I hear
crows in the corn field across the street going
caw, caw, caw or a baby with a cry of wah, wha,
wha, this song comes to mind, with Alvin whining
out why, why, why and it reminds me just how much
I despise this recording.
I’m Going Home 6:13
you believe this song showed up yet again? So what
is there to say?
Conclusion: Scotty has seen better days and
we’ll remember him for his contribution to Rock
‘n’ Roll and the memory of Elvis Presley.
Thank You for everything Mr. Moore! D.J.
Fontana, nice job, thanks to you also for your
contribution to the history of Rock ‘n’ Roll.
Elvis thanks you and 50,000 fans can’t be wrong,
and they weren’t! As
for Alvin Lee, there is no doubt his heart was in
it, but it didn’t come through on this CD.
If you listenend to the first song you’ll know the
rest of it. It is just the same over and over
again. Some people put on their dancing shoes, to
us it is better than Sominex. YAWN.
SAGUITAR - CD
Review coming next...
ALVIN LEE TEN YEARS
LEE TEN YEARS LATER ist die dritte Band, die beim
3. ROCKPALAST FESTIVAL in der Essener Grugahalle
live auftreten wird. Der Engländer ALVIN LEE zählt
seit über 10 Jahren zu den besten und populärsten
Rockgitarristen. Er gründete 1966 die Gruppe TEN
YEARS AFTER, die mit intensiven Tourneen innerhalb
der nächsten Jahre zu den bekanntesten und
bestverdienenden Gruppen überhaupt wurde. Ab 1973
trat ALVIN LEE vor allem als Solist auf, veröffentlichte
Platten und spielte Konzerte mit wechselnden
Begleitmusikern. Anfang 1978 gründete er wieder
eine feste Band, TEN YEARS LATER, mit der er auch
beim FESTIVAL auftreten wird. - ( Offizieller-Text)
Avin Lee? Da denkt man unwillkürlich an die
Gitarre mit dem Peace Symbol, Woodstock und "Goin´
"Woodstock Atmosphäre wollte vor dem Konzert
jedoch nicht so recht aufkommen. Alvin Lee war
sehr skeptisch "Weißt Du ich bin schon oft
genug betrogen worden." Er reiste mit zwei
Managern an und es gab jede Menge Beschwerden. Die
Gitarre machte zudem Brumm Probleme auf der Anlage
und die Tonabnehmer mußten heimlich abgeschirmt
werden, da das bloße Anrühren dieses Woodstock
Wahrzeichens ein Sakrileg war. Nach dem Konzert
war Alvin jedoch zufrieden: "Das war die
beste TV Show, in der ich aufgetreten bin."
- aus 10 Jahre Rockpalast
Im August 1965 gründete der am 19.12.44 in
Nottingham geborene Alvin Lee die Gruppe Ten Years
After. Der Name bezog sich auf sein erstes
Zusammentreffen mit Leo Lyons, zehn Jahre nach
Geburt des Rock `N Roll. Ihre ersten Erfolge
hatten sie in England, der weltweite Durchbruch
kam mit ihrem phantastischen Auftritt in
Woodstock, Goin´ Home wurde zu ihrem
Markenzeichen. Die Studio Lp´s hatten nur
verhaltenen Erfolg, die Stärke lag in den Live
Auftritten. Dort konnte Alvin Lee seine
Fingerfertigkeit demonstrieren und die Mischung
aus Boogie, Rock `N Roll und Blues mit seinen
Hochgeschwindigkeits Läufen bereichern. Die Live
LP "Recorded Live" von 1973 ist ein
Beweis dafür. Der Abschluß für Ten Years After
sollte am 22.3.74 das Konzert im Londoner Rainbow
Theatre sein. Nach 10 Jahren Zusammenarbeit und
unzähligen Touren löste die Band sich auf. Lee
gründete die Alvin Lee and Company. 1975 tourten
Ten Years After noch einmal in den USA. Im Jahr
1978 stellte Lee seine neue Band "Ten Years
Later" vor, ein Trio das etwas rockiger war
und ein gelungenes Konzert im Rockpalast gab. 1980
wurde die Band wieder aufgelöst, zeitweise gab es
wieder die Company und 1988 sogar eine Reunion von
Ten Years After die auf 4 Festivals in Deutschland
spielten. Noch Heute tourt Alvin Lee in
verschiedenen Formationen und spielt auch öfters
bei Jazz Festivals.
Ten Years Later - backstage
Alvin Lee - guit/voc
Tom Compton - drums
Mick Hawksworth - bass
01 Gonna Turn You
02 Help Me
03 Ain't Nothing Shakin'
06 I'm Going Home
07 Choo Choo
08 Rip It
09 Sweet Little Sixteen
10 Roll Over