Thursday, March 07, 2013

Ten Years After's Alvin Lee Has Died

Alvin Lee, guitarist and lead singer with Ten Years After, died Wednesday (March 6) of complications following what was called “routine surgery”. He was 68. Formed in Nottingham, England in 1962 as the Jaybirds, The group eventually moved to London and changed its name to Ten Years After in 1966— ten years after the rise of Elvis Presley. An appearance at the Windsor Jazz Festival led to a contract with Deram Records. Primarily an album group (they scored eight top 40 albums in the UK), TYA had a top ten hit single in Britain with “Love Like A Man” in 1970. Their only top 40 single in the US (of four charted records) was “I’d Love To Change The World” (#40-1971). The group, however, toured the US 28 times in seven years, largely on the success of their appearance at the Woodstock Festival in 1969 and the subsequent film. Alvin left Ten Years After in 1973, though he returned at various times over the years. He played on sessions for many seminal rock acts who had influenced him, such as Jerry Lee Lewis and Bo Diddley. He also performed in his own Alvin Lee & Company band.