Thin Lizzy


On Friday 21st November 1975 the absolute 'classic' Thin Lizzy line-up of Phil Lynott on vocals & bass guitar, Brian Downey on drums & percussion, Scott Gorham on lead guitar and Brian Robertson on lead guitar, recorded this superb concert at Derby College for a radio broadcast. The band had been on the road ever since releasing their 'Fighting' album in August 1975, and this recording captures their stunning live show in an intimate setting, giving the listener that front row sensation of a live band at the top of their game - just months before breaking into to the big time with their 1976 mega transatlantic smash album 'Jailbreak'.

The show, which was mixed live on the night, gives the set that raw and electric feel. The original recording from the 1/4" stereo master tape has been kept in amazing condition, transferred to CD, and now all fifteen tracks have been completely re-mastered under the band's supervision.

The resultant 'UK Tour 75' album - which has been fully authorised by the band - will be released as a deluxe CD, containing a 20-page booklet of previously unseen live photos and exclusive liner notes written by Brian Downey, on September 8th, distributed by RSK.

One of the many album highlights for Lizzy fans, is an early prototype version of the 'Cowboy Song', which later appears on the 'Jailbreak' album and that Phil titles live as 'Derby Blues'. The band also play a vibrant version of their early rock stomper 'Little Darling' which was originally recorded by an earlier line-up of the band, and a song they dropped from their live set soon after this tour. All-time classic 'The Rocker' is here, plus many other songs from the 'Nightlife' and 'Fighting' albums that have never previously been released as live versions. You even get to hear the band jamming on their sound-check, just before the crowd was allowed into the venue.

Thin Lizzy were originally formed in Dublin in 1969, featuring Phil Lynott on vocals and bass, Brian Downey on drums and Eric Bell on guitar. The band soon relocated to London and after signing to Decca Records, released three albums ­ 'Thin Lizzy' in 1971, 'Shades Of A Blue Orphanage' in 1972 and 'Vagabonds Of The Western World' in 1973, while their first hit single came early in 1973 with top ten smash 'Whiskey In The Jar'.

Late in 1973, guitarist Eric Bell was briefly replaced by Gary Moore, (who played on the 'Little Darling' single, released in 1974), and then permanently by Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson, whose double lead-guitar harmony (the twin guitar clash) brought a brand new dimension and excitement to the line up. Thin Lizzy then signed a new album deal and released their 'Nightlife' album in November 1974, followed by 'Fighting', in August 1975.

Brian Downey recalls in the liner notes that “In 1975, the band had decided on a different attitude, to change to a harder rock sound. The softer songs from the previous album 'Nightlife' were to be replaced by more stage-orientated songs, as we planned to put our rock'n'roll stamp on the next album 'Fighting'”. This album shows the band's determination to do just that.

Phil Lynott, with his powerhouse bass and unmistakable lead vocals that sound at home on both heavy rock songs like 'Suicide' and subtle love songs such as 'Still In Love With You', leads from the front. Brian Downey makes up the rhythm section partnership with a megaton drum sound and a breathless solo in 'Sha La La'. The two guitarists, Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson, trade guitar licks, riffs and blistering solos in every song, which adds the ultimate sparkle to this live set.

With success just around the corner and following tours in Britain and the States, the band are slick, raunchy and at the top of their game. Running at over 78 minutes, we get the full set and more from one of the greatest rock bands ever ­ Thin Lizzy.

The set list from 'UK TOUR 75' - comprises fifteen songs:

Fighting My Way Back
It's Only Money
Wild One
For Those Who Love To Live
All four opening tracks never previously released as live versions
Still In Love With You
Much longer version than the one on the Live And Dangerous album
Never previously released as a live version
Heaviest rocker on the album

The Rocker
Phil joins both tracks in a rock attack medley
Sha La La
Features a great drum solo from Brian Downey
Baby Drives Me Crazy

Not released until the 'Live And Dangerous' album in June '78-so again this is probably the earliest version yet to be released!
Me And The Boys
Didn't get released until April 1978 as a B-side on a UK 7"single/ 'Rosalie, Cowboy Song live medley', so probably the earliest version yet to be released!
Cowboy Song (Derby Blues)
An ultra rare prototype version as the track was not yet recorded and which Phil titles here live.
Little Darling
Previously recorded by the old line up in 1974 and one of the last times ever played by the classic line up!
Sound Check Jam
Unique for any sound check to be partially or wholly recorded for album release. This version is a 12 bar-blues riff which contains some nice lead solos from both Scott and Brian. The audio engineer managed to get the tape machine to record as the band jammed on stage just before the fans were allowed into the venue.


Rockin' ­ Roland Hyams on 020 8677 8466 / 8769 6713

June 26th 2008

Thin Lizzy

***'One Night Only' live album out on SPV via Koch***

John Sykes - Vocals, Guitar Scott Gorham - Guitar, Vocals Darren Wharton - Keyboards, Vocals Marco Mendoza - Bass, Vocals Tommy Aldridge - Drums

THIN LIZZY's new thirteen track CD "One Night Only", featuring live versions of classic tracks such as "The Boys Are Back In Town", "Jailbreak", "Cowboy Song", "Waiting For An Alibi", "Don't Believe A Word", "Cold Sweat", "Sun Goes Down", "Black Rose", "Are You Ready", "Bad Reputation", "Still In Love With You", and "Rosalie" is due for UK release on SPV via Koch on August 29th. "One Night Only", the first live album under the Thin Lizzy moniker in close to seventeen years, was recorded on the band's 1999 European tour. On "One Night Only",Thin Lizzy, currently setting up a full scale UK tour for November 2000, pay homage to their celebrated past with a new fire and prove their songs have stood the test of time in no uncertain terms.

Thin Lizzy were formed in 1969, when Eric Bell, formerly with The Dreams, joined forces with Philip Lynott and Brian Downey of Orphanage. The band took their name from Tin Lizzie, a robot maid in The Beano comic. Lizzy signed to Decca and released three albums but it is for the 1972 single 'Whiskey In The Jar' that this line up is best remembered. The reworking of a traditional Irish folk song was a departure from their usual style and the band later had to work hard to win back their rock audience. As a result of the incredible pressure the band were under, Eric Bell left Thin Lizzy in December 1973.

Gary Moore joined the band in January 1974 for the first of his three stints with Lizzy, but left only three months later. Lynott and Downey started a long search for a new guitarist and in the end they recruited two - Brian 'Robbo' Robertson from Scotland and American Scott Gorham - and the famous Thin Lizzy 'Twin Guitar' sound was born.

Robbo & Scott gelled immediately and their work gave the band's music a new depth and style. The fans loved the new line up and their gigs turned into real parties both on stage and in the crowd. This was to be the band's most prolific and successful line up, releasing such all time classic albums as 'Jailbreak' 'Johnny The Fox' and 'Live and Dangerous'.

Then, in early 1977, on the eve of a US tour promoting 'Johnny The Fox', Robbo's hand was slashed defending a friend from a bottle in a fight. Whilst he was out injured, Gary Moore returned for his second stint with Lizzy and the band went to America to support Queen and went down a storm, earning rave reviews, but on their return to England Gary Moore walked out once again to form Coliseum II.

The recovered Robertson rejoined Lizzy for 1977's 'Bad Reputation' and 1978's 'Live And Dangerous' album before departing to join Wild Horses. Gary Moore then returned as Robbo's replacement for his longest stretch with the group, recording 'Black Rose' in 1979, but during the band's 1979 US tour walked out of Lizzy for the final time in San Francisco.

The band then drafted in former Slik and the Rich Kids guitarist Midge Ure as an emergency replacement so that they could complete their tours of America & Japan. Whilst Midge would not have appeared to be a natural choice as guitar front man for a band like Lizzy, he fitted in right away, although he never quite got into the studded belts and leathers and regularly appeared on stage in makeup…set to find fame later in Ultravox, Ure now recalls his time with Lizzy as 'Every schoolboy's fantasy come true'.

Guitarist Snowy White was invited to join Lizzy in 1980 after Scott & Philip saw his live work with Pink Floyd. Keyboard player Darren Wharton joined at the same time. Snowy was perhaps the least flamboyant guitarist ever to play with Thin Lizzy and the two albums featuring his work - 'Renegade' and 'Chinatown' - were the band's least successful releases in commercial terms for some time, although from an artistic viewpoint they contain some outstanding tracks; 'Renegade' itself is a classic. Snowy wasn't a natural showman, however, never seemed comfortable with his role in Lizzy and by mutual consent left the band in 1982. Darren, meanwhile, had flourished with Lizzy and become a major contributor to the band's work.

Then Thin Lizzy decided to call it a day in 1983, to do one final farewell tour and album and recruited guitarist John Sykes from the Tygers of Pan Tang. Phil Lynott described John as 'As fast as Gary Moore, as crazy as Robbo and as blond as Snowy', and the band produced their best album for several years in 'Thunder & Lightning'. The 'farewell' tour lasted most of 1983 and included high profile headline shows at the Reading Festival in August and Nuremberg in September. Lizzy's 'Live/Life' double album, released late 1983, commemorated four sell-out nights at Hammersmith Odeon from the farewell tour, which included the amazing sight of four lead guitarists on stage for the finale - Scott, Robbo, John & Eric.

After Thin Lizzy broke up, Lynott formed a new band, Grand Slam, and toured tirelessly with them, but his health was obviously suffering from the stress his drug oriented lifestyle had created. He was visibly unwell and his breathing was laboured when he appeared in a TV interview to promote 'Out In The Fields', his 1985 hit single with Gary Moore. He collapsed on Christmas Day 1985 and died on 4 January 1986 of a heart attack and liver failure. He was 36 years old.

John Sykes went on to success with Whitesnake, recording the band's best selling albums "Slide It In" and "Whitesnake 87" before leaving to form his own band Blue Murder. Scott formed a new band, 21 Guns, and released successful albums in Japan and Europe, while Darren formed Dare, (whose name was suggested to him by Lemmy of Motorhead!)

Throughout the 1980's and 90's, interest in Thin Lizzy continued to grow, with younger fans being introduced to the group's music by older brothers & sisters. Tribute bands were springing up all over the world, bringing Lizzy's music to new audiences, while an annual 'Vibe for Philo' event was held in Dublin each January, marking Philip's death with concerts in his honour. Such was the intense passion for Thin Lizzy and their music that in 1994 Brian Downey, Scott Gorham, John Sykes, Darren Wharton and bassist Marco Mendoza formed a new lineup of the band and embarked on a sold out tour of Japan. The tenth anniversary of Philip's death in 1996 was marked by the biggest Thin Lizzy show since 1983; they sold out Dublin's The Point, with thousands of fans from England, Sweden, America and Australia locked outside, unable to get tickets. Streets were closed because of the crowds.

Since then, there have been further tours of America and Europe, playing to ecstatic audiences and to great acclaim. Scott Gorham explained to Classic Rock Magazine in March 2000; 'Doing this really isn't about money - it was the lure of playing those songs again. The only thing that really matters to us is playing those songs. Phil wrote some great shit, and the audience now is made up of a lot of younger people who have probably never seen the band before. We're just giving them that chance.'

Scott continues that 'Phil was a big part of our lives; he and I were best friends for ten years. Every time we go onstage it feels like he's there with me. We make sure he's mentioned every night without fail. When we first got back together it was like sticking a big toe into the water; our intention was to make sure that this show is as good as the old ones. But several "old Lizzy" fans have said this is even better than it was in the old days; that's nothing to do with Phil, I think what they mean is that the whole musicianship thing has improved. We're all better players now. With a lot of bands they get stuck in a certain routine, or they never take a break. If you've taken a while off you're more liable to take a few chances. Which is always a good thing.' On the absence of Downey and the addition of Tommy Aldridge, Gorham explains that 'There was nothing we could do about it. At the end of the last tour, Brian said he'd just had it with being on the road. He didn't want to play or sit on busses anymore. But he said he didn't want this to stop, so he suggested we just got another guy in, kept it going.'

On 'One Night Only' Thin Lizzy really do sound as good as ever; 'With or without Lynott, there's no doubting the fact that Thin Lizzy remain an invigorating, hugely entertaining live act. Hang me by my bollocks and paint me blue if it ain't the truth, Phil fans!' wrote Dave Ling in Classic Rock March 2000, reviewing a sold out 2000 capacity Cologne E-Werk gig in December 1999.

Back In Town - Roland Hyams on 020 8677 8466 or 020 8769 6713

30th October 2000

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