Andy Powell - guitar, vocals; Martin Turner - bass, vocals; Steve Upton - drums; Laurie Wisefield - guitar, vocals
Wishbone Ash began as a blues-based guitar band and eventually became a progressive rock force with a dual guitar format. They formed in the late 1960s, with guitarist Andy Powell, bassist Martin Turner, second guitarist Ted Turner and drummer Steve Upton. They were quickly scooped up by rock manager Miles Copeland, years before he would spearhead the careers of Sting, his brother Stuart Copeland and Andy Summers. Copeland got them an opening slot with Deep Purple, and one day when guitarist Andy Powell was jamming with Purple's Ritchie Blackmore at a sound check, they were offered a record deal with Decca Records in the U.K.
The group released four studio albums in four years, growing in popularity with each record. They were faves of the British press, and in many ways offered as a sort of U.K .counterpart to what The Allman Brothers Band were doing with dual guitars in the United States. After the release of Wishbone Four in 1974 Ted Turner left the band and was replaced by Laurie Wisefield, who remained with Wishbone Ash through the late 1980s. Bassist and founder Martin Turner would also leave for a time and was replaced by former King Crimson and future Asia bassist John Wetton.
This show featured the Powell/Martin Turner/Wisefield/Upton lineup, and was performed in a year where they released two different studio albums on two different labels (MCA and Atlantic). Although the band thought a move to Atlantic would help them dominate the charts in the U.S., after one disappointing album the band returned to their deal with MCA.
Hard core fans of the band will love this performance, and those unfamiliar with Wishbone Ash will be able to listen and see why the group has always had so much potential. For one reason or another (most likely the fact that they didn't write too many commercially viable pop songs), Wishbone Ash has essentially remained a cult favorite, never really achieving widespread commercial success.
Aired on both the King Biscuit Flower Hour and the British Biscuit in early 1977, this set was compiled from a few nights of recording during the band's UK tour in late 1976. Unfortunately, this show represents one of those instances where only the reels for the radio broadcasts were retained. These indicate that the set was comprised almost entirely of the band's performance from Edinburgh on the 18th, but that "Lorelei" was recorded the following night at the Apollo in Glasgow.
The original lineup did reunite for one LP and tour in 1992, and today Powell lives in Connecticut and Turner remains in the U.K. There have been two different versions of Wishbone Ash touring since the mid-1990s, with both musicians fighting over the right to the name.