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View Full Version : Damn.....RIP Alvin Lee of 10 years after



docbennett
03-06-2013, 12:27 PM
Just found out he died. One of my Woodstock heroes.

"He's going home!":(

docbennett
03-06-2013, 12:45 PM
reading further...."died of complications following a routine surgical procedure".

And they wonder why I don't go to physicians!

Sucks....another "rock heroes" from my generation to die, that I really cared about. He was 68, so that makes him 11+ years older than me. Nonetheless, quite disconcerting.

docbennett
03-07-2013, 06:55 AM
Wow...no posts yet.....is there another thread on this somewhere else on the forum? Or do the demographics on this forum skip the Woodstock Generation???
He performed one of the greatest live songs EVER. He was one of the greatest guitarists, EVER. Anyone else here ever heard of "10 Years After"???

Albrecht Smuten
03-07-2013, 07:18 AM
Here, my friend: http://prsguitars.com/forum/showthread.php?3698-RIP-Alvin-Lee&highlight=alvin

not many posts there either...

docbennett
03-07-2013, 07:23 AM
Thanks Al....Thanks to you, I found that thread, and posted on it. so sad. this guy really appears to have been unappreciated by the later generation of guitar players....the "under 40 crowd" doesn't seem so famliar with the work of "10 years after".

Albrecht Smuten
03-07-2013, 07:33 AM
Thanks Al....Thanks to you, I found that thread, and posted on it. so sad. this guy really appears to have been unappreciated by the later generation of guitar players....the "under 40 crowd" doesn't seem so famliar with the work of "10 years after".

No problem. Well, our average age is 40. Sad to say, I have no idea who Alvin Lee was :(

docbennett
03-07-2013, 07:40 AM
No problem. Well, our average age is 40. Sad to say, I have no idea who Alvin Lee was :(

Find a copy of "Cricklewood Green" and play it...or just go to youtube and check out any of the following to get a taste....


1) "I'd Love to change the world"

2) "50,000 miles beneath my brain

3) "I'm going home"...preferably the live "Woodstock '69" version.

You will find out in a hurry. One of the best guitarists of the "post-British Invasion" and a guitar god in the late '60's into the early '70's. Once his band broke up, he rarely got air time. but, if you can find a copy on-line of "Riffin'" with him and anther player...you will see what I am talking about.

LSchefman
03-08-2013, 01:38 AM
Super player. Ten Years After was a decent band that had a few good songs.

But as you probably realize, popular music is about good songwriting, good arrangement, and good vocals. You need more than a good guitar player, even a great one. So Ten Years After didn't garner a big following. And think of their contemporaries: Beatles, Zep, Cream, Hendrix, Stones...and on a slightly lesser scale in terms of popularity came bands like Allman Brothers, The Dead, Procul Harum, Traffic, Faces, Jeff Beck, and others who had tons more hits, better songwriting, and much better vocals. Tough competition for the record buying public. And on their heels came Bowie, the glam bands, the metal bands, the progressive bands like Yes...I mean, these guys didn't sell a lot of records by comparison.

So...there's a reason why folks in the next generation never heard of them.

It's odd that Alvin is remembered for one performance out of however many he did. It's the old Clyde McCoy thing. In his day, his trumpet playing was popular enough that a guitar pedal, the Vox Clyde McCoy Wah Wah pedal, was named for him.

Now that's the only thing he's remembered for! A Wah Wah pedal, and not for his stellar trumpet playing.

That doesn't take a thing away from Alvin Lee, who was a superb blues/rock player for his time. It's just an explanation. Fame is fleeting.

Then again, does our generation remember Mary Ford, the pop singer who was Les Paul's wife and duet partner? We remember Les for his guitars. We forgot about Cab Calloway who was an absolute genius bandleader, singer and performer. It's all a shame.

docbennett
03-08-2013, 06:40 AM
Super player. Ten Years After was a decent band that had a few good songs.

But as you probably realize, popular music is about good songwriting, good arrangement, and good vocals. You need more than a good guitar player, even a great one. So Ten Years After didn't garner a big following. And think of their contemporaries: Beatles, Zep, Cream, Hendrix, Stones...and on a slightly lesser scale in terms of popularity came bands like Allman Brothers, The Dead, Procul Harum, Traffic, Faces, Jeff Beck, and others who had tons more hits, better songwriting, and much better vocals. Tough competition for the record buying public. And on their heels came Bowie, the glam bands, the metal bands, the progressive bands like Yes...I mean, these guys didn't sell a lot of records by comparison.

So...there's a reason why folks in the next generation never heard of them.

It's odd that Alvin is remembered for one performance out of however many he did. It's the old Clyde McCoy thing. In his day, his trumpet playing was popular enough that a guitar pedal, the Vox Clyde McCoy Wah Wah pedal, was named for him.

Now that's the only thing he's remembered for! A Wah Wah pedal, and not for his stellar trumpet playing.

That doesn't take a thing away from Alvin Lee, who was a superb blues/rock player for his time. It's just an explanation. Fame is fleeting.

Then again, does our generation remember Mary Ford, the pop singer who was Les Paul's wife and duet partner? We remember Les for his guitars. We forgot about Cab Calloway who was an absolute genius bandleader, singer and performer. It's all a shame.

It's funny how time changes everything.

The current generation is most familiar with Mary Ford, due to the fact that her 1961 SG/LP Custom guitar sold for $90,000 on "Pawn Stars" and was later purchased on eBay for $110,000 by our own Gary N. on the VR forum.
The current generation is familiar with Cab Calloway....not from his hey-dey, but from his appearance in "The Blues Brothers".

I was very much involved in the rock evolution that spanned the very late '60's into the early 80's...that is where the bulk of my knowledge and "musical IQ" derives from. I recall that 10 Years After was a VERY popular group into the early '70's. however, when the band broke up, and Lee tried to form "10 years later" it got little air-play and virtually no support from the label...so, he faded into relative obscurity.

His performance at Woodstock was a classic...IMO, Santana and 10 Years After owe a GREAT deal of their success to the publicity they received from the Woodstock gig. In any event, "Cricklewood Green" is one of my favorite albums ever. You could spend a lifetime trying to copy and mimic Lee's chops.

Quoted from Les' post above:
But as you probably realize, popular music is about good songwriting, good arrangement, and good vocals. You need more than a good guitar player, even a great one.

OK...but if that's a fact...how do you explain the success of Vai, Satriani and Malmsteen?? :-)

LSchefman
03-08-2013, 10:13 AM
[/B][/COLOR][/I]OK...but if that's a fact...how do you explain the success of Vai, Satriani and Malmsteen?? :-)

Unfortunately, they sell relatively few records.

Vai has released 8 albums. One went gold (500,000 records) 23 years ago.

Satriani's last gold record was 1993.

Malmsteen has never had a record that sold well in the US.

Has their work gotten any worse? No. It's probably gotten even better. So why no airplay?

It's rare for instrumentals to be hits. How often do you hear their stuff on the radio, even on classic rock or oldies stations? Not very often. It's not on many playlists. And that's how the majority of folks discover music.

We know their work. Will my kids hear or remember it if their stuff doesn't get airplay? I doubt it.


The current generation is most familiar with Mary Ford, due to the fact that her 1961 SG/LP Custom guitar sold for $90,000 on "Pawn Stars" and was later purchased on eBay for $110,000 by our own Gary N. on the VR forum.

First, I guarantee you that this is not widely known by any generation, let alone the current one. Only guitar collectors know about that stuff. It's not on most peoples' radar.

Second, I question the sanity of anyone who'd pay $110,000 for a 1961 SG, I don't care who owned it, slept with it, set it on fire, or posed with it. Honestly. Gary N, my hat is off to you for doing the wackiest of things with your money.

But that's just me. You know. The Anticollector. My number is 666. Etc. Tim says I am too snarky about other peoples' priorities. So there's that.

BTW I have a 1965 SG. It ain't all that. But my father bought it new for maybe $200. Maybe if it was $110,000 it'd sound more awesomer. Anyone who wants to buy it for that, please PM me.

docbennett
03-08-2013, 11:35 AM
Actually, a 1961 SG/LP Custom...polaris white, 3 PAF's, input jack repair and refret...would be worth about $16,000 in today's market. I guess the Mary Ford Factor was a major source of value...also, it came with loads of rare ephemera from Les Paul and lots of interesting letters, documentation, etc. Unfortunately for Gary, he tried to sell it...starting price $250,000 and lowered dramatically to around what he paid. Last I saw, he still owned it. It's a specialty market, and will sit until the right collector decides they want it.
Like the Olympic White '68 Strat owned by Jimi that sold for almost a million bucks. Or "Blackie" or "Brownie"...wouldn't have been worth the "close to million bucks" they commanded, if they hadn't been owned by the guy reading the Beano comic while in John Mayall's Blues breakers.

When Paul Allen decides he wants to spend a 1/2 million for a guitar...he can just go ahead and do it. We can't.

In collecting, the "intangible factor" dominates. Supply and demand are a function of that neurotic desire to "own something famous".

Mikegarveyblues
03-08-2013, 01:12 PM
RIP Alvin

Always loved this song:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhBQe1RriLk

LSchefman
03-08-2013, 04:16 PM
Supply and demand are a function of that neurotic desire to "own something famous".

Yup.

There's a guy in England who collects stuff that Napoleon used to own. Which...ok...where ya gonna wear a tricorne?

JDBRADSHAW
03-13-2013, 09:10 PM
Always liked Alvin's guitar playing......