It’s Roy Wood’s birthday and to celebrate here’s a little curio from 1983 of probably the greatest pub rock band in the world, The Rockers.
The Rockers consisted of Roy Wood, Phil Lynott, Bev Bevan and er, Chas Hodges from Cockney knees-up duo Chas ‘n’ Dave. They released one single “We Are the Boys (Who Make All the Noise)” this time with Status Quo’s John Coghlan on drums. Here, that number tops and tails a fine medley of Rock ‘n’ Roll standards as performed on O.T.T. - the late-night version of kid’s Saturday morning classic Tiswas, both of which were hosted by Chris (Who Wants to be a Millionaire?) Tarrant.
Hot damn this is good! Thin Lizzy on fire at the Sydney Harbour in 1978.
2 Bad Reputation
3 Cowboy Song
4 The Boys Are Back In Town
5 Waiting For An Alibi
6 Are You Ready
7 Me And The Boys Were Wondering How You And The Girls Are Getting Home Tonight
8 Baby Drives Me Crazy
Gary Moore joined Thin Lizzy on this tour and Mark Nauseef is subbing for Brian Downey on drums.
If you ever needed another reason to love dear Phil Lynott then just watch this short clip from Jim’ll Fix It - Jimmy Savile’s classic dreams-come-true TV series - from 1982, in which 70-year-old grandmother, May Booker wrote to Sir Jim asking if he could fix it for her to play keyboards with her favorite band - Thin Lizzy. And you can guess what happened next.
May is rather good, and she has a fun time with Phil - who is such a delightful charmer.
Twenty-six years ago today, Ireland’s greatest rock star Phil Lynott died. The singer passed away from heart failure and pneumonia after an ‘11 day fight for his life’, at the Salisbury Hospital in Wiltshire, England.
It was a sad day. But this year it can be commemorated with the incredible news that a “treasure trove” of 700 songs, stashed away by Lynott, will be released in June year. The Belfast Telegraph reports:
Shortly before he passed away in 1986, Mr Lynott gave 150 tapes to a third party for safekeeping. The cache of up to 700 songs has finally been released to record company Universal Music.
“This is an absolutely stunning find,” Steve Hammonds, project manager behind the new Thin Lizzy box set, told the Irish Independent.
“In every group there’s a member who lovingly collects their recordings and in Thin Lizzy that was Phil Lynott, because Lizzy was his baby and his band.”
It will be the second boxed set in recent times to feature archive work by the band, following last year’s ‘Live At The BBC’ release.
But the newly unearthed recordings stretch from Thin Lizzy’s years with Decca Records, beginning in 1971, to their ‘Renegade’ album in 1981.
“There are out-takes, unheard versions of Thin Lizzy hits and, most exciting of all, material which was recorded but never released at the time,” said Mr Hammonds.
“Phil Lynott was such a prolific songwriter. He recorded 12 Thin Lizzy albums, two solo albums, along with his Grand Slam post-Lizzy project, and now we find he had even more songs in his drawer.”
However, Thin Lizzy members Scott Gorham and Brian Downey will have the “final say” over which songs are released.
“The members of Thin Lizzy are fully involved with this project. We have been sending them tapes of what we’ve found and respecting their wishes as regards the material being issued and the art work,” added Mr Hammonds.
Label bosses have declined to give more details on why the material is only surfacing now, 30 years after Thin Lizzy split.
“Phil Lynott passed the material on to a third party for safekeeping. They held on to it for decades because they were waiting for the right people to come along.
“They really didn’t trust anyone enough to release it properly. The catalyst was a boxed set of Thin Lizzy BBC sessions we issued earlier this year, which made them believe we were the right people. No money has changed hands, this person is a Thin Lizzy fan.”
In memory of the great man, here’s Phil Lynott and his band Thin Lizzy Behind the Music
Phil Lynott statue on Dublin’s Grafton St (toy monkey not included)
You’ll have seen the other Thin Lizzy posts that we’ve put up on DM by now, right? Big up to Paul and Marc for the Phil Lynott-loving that has been going on here - Lizzy are an under-appreciated band, who to my knowledge never really broke through in America. Of all the rock act Ireland has ever produced though, Thin Lizzy are by far the best, and most of that legacy rests with the cool, charismatic and incredibly talented Phil Lynott himself.
The Phil Lynott Story goes further than other Thin Lizzy-based docs to explore Lynott’s background, from his teenage mother’s escape from the work houses of wartime Northern England to Phil’s growing up as a black man in the vastly white1960s Dublin, and from his fledgling career as a psychedelic folk-rocker to his post-Lizzy years and his decent into heavy drug use and eventual, untimely death. It’s a fascinating story, packed to the gills with drama, drugs, scandal and lots of great music. It would make an amazing biopic, but who would play Phil?
This BBC-produced documentary is essential listening for anyone with a vague interest in rock’n'roll - you don’t need to be a fan to find this fascinating. But if you are a fan and don’t know the full story, be prepared to be amazed at some of the anecdotes and the background information supplied by Lynott’s incredible mother Philomena. Here’s a little bonus too - a video for the Lynott solo single “Old Town” (co-produced with Midge Ure and one of the greatest synth-pop tracks of all time IMO) with Phil strolling around early 80s Dublin and fooling around on his native Grafton St and Ha’Penny Bridge:
Phil Lynott was Thin Lizzy. The talented, beautiful, iconic Irishman was the band’s heart and soul, and its demise in 1984, presaged Lynott’s early death on January 4th 1986 - fifteen years to the day Thin Lizzy started recording their first album.
Bad Reputation is an honest and affectionate documentary that tells the story Ireland’s greatest band. Starting with guitarist, Scott Gorham and drummer, Brian Downie remixing the classic Jailbreak album, the film quickly revisits the band’s early incarnation as The Black Eagles, Orphanage, and then Thin Lizzy, named after a character from the comic the Beano.
Produced and directed by Linda Brusasco, the film includes very rare footage of a young Phil at the start of his career, and includes revealing interviews with him through the highs and lows, together with interviews from nearly all of the key players, Brian Downie, Scott Gorham, Eric Bell, Brian Robertson, Midge Ure, Bob Geldof, and legendary record producer, Tony Visconti.
The reformed version of Thin Lizzy are currently touring, check here for details.
Phil Lynott was always something special - a hugely loved and respected musician, an iconic figure who was “the original Dublin rock’n’roller and arguably a bigger natural star than any of those that followed in his footsteps.”
Phil Lynott - Bass, Lead Vocals
Brian Downey - Drums
Scott Gorham - Guitar
Snowy White - Guitar
Darren Wharton - Keyboards
01. “Are You Ready?”
03. “Waiting For an Alibi”
05. “Trouble Boys”
06. “Don’t Believe a Word”
07. “Memory Pain”
08. “Got To Give It Up”
11. “Cowboy Song”
12. “The Boys Are Back In Town”
14. “Black Rose”
15. “Sugar Blues”
16. “Baby Drive Me Crazy”
18. “Disaster” (“Angel OF Death”)
While we pride ourselves on being an anarchic collective here at Dangerous Minds, we do have a few unwritten rules. One is no mashups unless they are exceptional. Well, I may be wrong (I occasionally am) but this tight little video/audio marriage of Thin Lizzy and The Pixies really works for me. And I’ll post anything that reminds the world of just how ultra-cool Phil Lynott is…even in mashup mode.