Thin Lizzy are an Irish hard rock band, starting life in Dublin in 1969. The band were led through their recording career by bassist, singer and songwriter Phil Lynott, and are best known for singles Whiskey in the Jar, Jailbreak and The Boys Are Back in Town.
Thin Lizzy started out in Dublin in 1969. Their first album, Thin Lizzy, was released in 1971 on Deca Records. Their success was not immediate, but they began to get a strong underground following from Ireland and toured Europe in 1972. They were chosen as the support act for Slade that year, and released a unique rock version of the traditional Irish folk song Whiskey in the Jar to coincide with the tour. The song stayed number one in Ireland for 17 weeks and reached number six in England, however the band were keen to shake off the ‘folksy’ label they felt they might become defined by.
Their third album, Vagabonds of the Western World, was released in 1973, which failed to set the charts alight. After a line-up change and a couple more albums, they signed with Phonogram. Their breakthrough came in 1976 with album Jailbreak and the ubiquitous single The Boys Are Back In Town. Both of these were international hits with the single reaching number eight in the UK chart and reaching the top 20 in the US. Their next album, Johnny The Fox, went gold and they had a sell-out British tour on the success of these two albums.
They were on course for an American tour until Brian Robertson was injured and they were forced to cancel. They drafted in a replacement, Gary Moore, and went to the US as the support act for Queen. Once the tour had come to a close, Robertson announced he would not be returning to the band (eventually returning, then leaving again to form Wild Horses) and the three remaining members, Phil Lynott, Brian Downey and Scott Gorham went on to record album Bad Reputation, which went to number four in the UK chart – cementing the band’s place as one of the most successful rock bands of the time.
They continued to write, record and tour with various lineup changes until 1983 when their farewell concert took place at the Monsters of Rock festival in Nuremburg, Germany. Phil Lynott sadly passed away in 1985 at the age of 36 after a kidney and liver infection, caused by drug and alcohol dependency, led to heart failure and pneumonia.
They announced they would be reforming and touring in May 2010 with the lineup consisting of Scott Gorham, original drummer Brian Downey, Darren Wharton, Vivian Campbell, Marco Mendoza and Ricky Warwick.
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