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Articles Home » 1976 Articles » Lone Star - 1976 Lone Star
 
Lone Star - 1976 Lone Star



ARTIST: Lone Star
ALBUM: Lone Star
LABEL: CBS
SERIAL: PC 34475
YEAR: 1976
CD REISSUE: 2004, BGO (UK), BGOCD-618 (2 on 1 with 'Firing On All Six') * 2011, Rock Candy Records (UK), CANDY116

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Kenny Driscoll - vocals * Paul Chapman - lead guitar * Tony Smith - lead guitar, backing vocals * Rick Worsnop - keyboards, backing vocals * Peter Hurley - bass * Dixie Lee - drums, backing vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 She Said, She Said * 02 Lonely Soldier * 03 Flying In The Reel * 04 Spaceships * 05 A New Day * 06 A Million Stars * 07 Illusions


Background
Here it is kiddies, one of the best British (Wales to be exact) hard rock bands to land on my turntable back in days of old. Lone Star had it all; talent, songs, charisma, you name it, yet they couldn't keep a sold line-up together which probably had something to do with their untimely demise, but damn if they didn't create some kick ass hard rock! Yes, Lone Star included six-string slinger Paul Chapman who ultimately ended up in UFO for a second time while drummer Dixie Lee went on to Wild Horses but this was all after the second album 'Firing On All Six' and while that was an excellent record it's Lone Star's debut that gets my vote ever so slightly as their best.


The Songs
Produced by Roy Thomas Baker fresh from his marathon work with Queen's 'A Night at The Opera', Lone Star's sound was more Led Zeppelin and Bad Company, pre- NWOBHM blue jean heavy rock with a progressive rock twist. Vocalist Kenny Driscoll obviously worshipped at the platform shoes of Robert Plant but there's nothing wrong with that is there? Chapman's guitar work is definitely the star here with dazzling and inventive playing throughout although the standout track has to be Lone Star's unusual and innovative cover of The Beatles 'She Said She Said' which opens the album. It bares very little resemblance to the Lennon-McCartney original, verging heavy hard rock and progressive styles with aplomb. Lone Star move further into the Led Zeppelin shadow with 'Lonely Soldier and 'Spaceships' but offer up a more commercial sound with the Queen influenced 'A Million Stars', closing the album with the haunting and yet again Zep styled 'Illusions'.


In Summary
Lone Star wore their influences on their sleeves and still pulled off a sound of their own. Touring the UK with both Mott and later Ted Nugent, Lone Star's live show was supposedly an impressive affair, so much so that they moved to full blown headliner with Pat Travers as support for their second and final official album featuring future Uriah Heep and Badlands front man John Sloman. A third LP 'Riding High' was recorded but never released until quite recently along with a BBC live disc. I haven't heard either one to be honest, but if they are anything like the first two albums, sign me up!


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Comments
#1 | Nick C on November 24 2007 15:23:50
The BBC live disc is excellent and covers both line ups of the band with Kenny Driscoll doing the 1st session, and the later session featuring John Sloman. The song She Said is on the disc twice both vocalists doing their bit.
Riding High leaves a little to be desired sound quality wise (it is demo's essentially) but the songs again are top notch. Apparently the CD was made from the only surviving tape courtesy of Paul Chapman (if I remember rightly...I'm at work so can't check the booklet blurb ) so there won't be a better version surfacing. Worth seeking out but sometimes they can fetch high(ish) prices.....you can be lucky though!
#2 | gdazegod on November 09 2011 12:46:32
Reissue details now updated for this review.
#3 | super80boy on January 03 2016 17:24:21
What a kicking debut full of ambitious 70's hard rock greatness. From the press kit that came with my vinyl copy, the band started rehearsing during the summer of 1975 as only a five piece. They embarked on an exhaustive search for a keyboard player, who they finally found in Rick Worsnop. The full band created a host of demos, met with CBS and were promptly signed to a 'longterm worldwide' deal in January of 1976. With the exception of Paul Chapman, they were pegged as 'virtual unknowns'. The debut LP received positive press from note-worthy UK DJ's John Peel and Alan Freeman.
 
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