Robin Trower Biography

9 March 1945, Catford, London, England. Guitarist Trower spent his early career in the Paramounts, a popular Southend, Essex-based R&B/beat group who completed five singles between 1963 and 1965. Having briefly worked with a trio dubbed the Jam, he joined several colleagues from his earlier act in Procol Harum. Trower remained in this much-praised unit until 1971, when his desire to pursue a tougher musical style proved incompatible with their well-established grandiose inflections. He initially formed the short-lived Jude with Frankie Miller (vocals), Jim Dewar (bass, vocals) and Clive Bunker (drums, ex-Jethro Tull), but having retained Dewar (formerly with Lulu and Stone The Crows), founded the Robin Trower Band with drummer Reg Isidore. Twice Removed From Yesterday and Bridge Of Sighs explored a melodic, guitar-based path, redolent of the late-period Jimi Hendrix, whom Robin was often criticized for merely aping. His lyrical technique, offset by Dewar’s gritty delivery, nonetheless proved highly popular and the trio achieved considerable success in the USA.

Although ex-Sly And The Family Stone drummer Bill Lordan replaced Isidore in 1974, For Earth Below and Long Misty Days maintained the same musical balance. However, Trower’s desire for a purer version of R&B resulted in his inviting black producer Don Davis to collaborate on In City Dreams and Caravan To Midnight. The new style alienated the guitarist’s rock audience, while the rock-based Victims Of The Fury was bedevilled by weaker material. In 1981, he and Lordan formed BLT with bass player Jack Bruce, but within two years Trower had reconvened the Robin Trower Band with Dewar, David Bronze (bass), Alan Clarke and Bob Clouter (both drums). Back It Up failed to repeat former glories and the artist was then dropped by long-time label, Chrysalis Records. The well-received Passion, released independently, engendered a new contract with Atlantic Records, for whom a new line-up of Trower, Bronze, Davey Pattison (vocals) and Pete Thompson (drums) completed 1988’s Take What You Need.

During the 90s and into the new millennium, Trower became heavily involved in record production, while continuing to tour and record the occasional studio album, including Someday Blues (1997) and Living Out Of Time (2004).

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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