BGO Records has released remastered versions of the two James Gang studio albums which featured Tommy Bolin on guitar and as primary songwriter. Both albums are on one CD for a favorable price. Many of Tommy’s fans feel that these albums presented some of Tommy’s hottest playing on record, and “that” tone that’s still his signature. Reports on the job Andrew Thompson did on the remastering have been universally positive, so if you love those albums and already have them on CD you may consider this a sonic upgrade.
A new Hard Rock Hotel & Casino opened in Sioux City on August 1, 2014. Coinciding with Tommy’s birthday and the annual Tommy Bolin Music Festival, it made for an exciting weekend. The hotel features a hall with displays of memorabilia from many top artists, including Sioux City’s own Tommy Bolin. Tommy’s red suit with the eye epaulets and snakeskin boots are featured along with memorabilia from artists such as Prince, Mick Jagger, James Brown, Lynyrd Skynyrd and many more.
NEW ZEPHYR 3CD BOX SET INCLUDES UNRELEASED LIVE RECORDINGS
Producer Greg Hampton and Zephyr co-founder and bassist David Givens have completed a deluxe edition numbered box set that includes the first album (bathtub) remastered and two CDs of never before released live material ranging from 1969-1973. David Givens is particularly excited by the first album remaster, he thinks it finally sounds the way they wanted. Disc 3 was recorded live at Tulagi in Boulder on June 19, 1973, two months before Tommy joined the James Gang.
In news that will fire up old school collectors, Phillip Polimeni has released material from the legendary Glen Holly Studio sessions. Tommy was playing really strong during 1973-75 and Glen Holly material is always highly sought out. This first in the Jams Series is a collaborative effort led by Phillip Polimeni, Johnnie Bolin and Tommy Nikosey.
Whirlwind, produced and compiled by Greg Hampton and Johnnie Bolin, is a spectacular collection of rare and unreleased recordings by legendary guitarist Tommy Bolin! The 2-CD digipak set features material from Bolin’s jazz-rock band Energy, an epic 26 minute version of Marching Powder (here called Marching Bag) from the album Teaser, as well as songs Tommy was preparing for his third solo album before his untimely death in 1976! A special limited (1,000 only) deluxe box edition is also available, which includes the 2-CD digipak PLUS 3 postcards, a Tommy Bolin signature guitar pick, collectible patch and souvenir pin.
Trace Keane has set up a page for collecting donations to the annual Tommy Bolin Fan Jam. The Thursday and Friday night jams preceding the Bolin Fest are a great experience that many have enjoyed, and Trace has been their main organizer. 100% of the proceeds will be used exclusively for expenses and assure that we have a venue in 2014, as the Rodeway Inn sadly will likely not be hosting again. Trace will be posting donation totals as well as any and all expenses so you know exactly how your donation will be used. Thanks to all who can and choose to donate to this great gathering! Contribute at the link below:
Johnnie Bolin has played drums for the Tommy Bolin Band, DVC, Dare Force and Richard T. Bear as well as his current position for over 25 years with the legendary Black Oak Arkansas. Johnnie is currently bringing his experience and great stories to his blog, which is available on Modern Drummer magazine’s website. Friends and fans can access it for free by using the link below. Learn more about Johnnie’s approach to drumming and surviving on the road and in the studio, upcoming Tommy Bolin products and events
Issue #6 of Sweden’s Retrofuture magazine has just been published. Trace Keane wishes to thank Michael Eriksson of Sweden for the great cover featuring Deep Purple Mk 4 with a particularly cool Tommy Bolin pose. Johnnie Bolin also appears on the cover and in pages featuring photos from the “Gypsy Soul: Remembering Sioux City’s Tommy Bolin” exhibit at the Sioux City Public Museum. The interviews with Johnnie Bolin and David Coverdale are in English, the rest of the publication is in Swedish. It will also feature a complete index of all the publications from the Deep Purple Magazine days (1978-1982) until today. For more information check out Mike’s blog Trinkelbonker below.Thanks to Trace Keane for helping make another magazine featuring Tommy Bolin happen.
Editors Jesse Russell and Ronald Cohn have released a 160 page book which pulls together and organizes information found on Wikipedia relating to Tommy Bolin. The value of this book was discussed recently on the Bolin Board, since the material was available online. Trace Keane has a copy and reports that it does a good job of organizing material spread out over number of separate Wikipedia entries, some of which took a lot of drilling to find. It also traces interesting information on some of the people who played with Tommy. There are some black and white photos, but the value is with the content. In spite of the cover featuring a hand holding a camera of a style not seen until 25 years after Tommy’s passing the book is recommended to people collecting biographical data on Tommy.
Belgian author Eric Smets has published a new 218-page book entitled, Tommy Bolin: Voodoo Child. The book is currently French, but resources are being sought for aid in translating to and English language version. The book follows an historical timeline from Tommy’s youth in Sioux City to his last night, but mainly concentrates on the the music Tommy made. The author analyzes 42 tracks, including expanded information about the other musicians on the sessions. The tracks examined come not only from Tommy’s studio albums with Zephyr, James Gang, Deep Purple and solo, but also Tommy Bolin Archives CDs and Greg Hampton’s recent releases.
Sal Serio conducted a live interview with Zephyr co-founder and bassist David Givens on WORT-FM radio on August 31, 2012. Givens is a fantastic source of historical information and his interview segments were excellent, prompted by well-researched questions from Sal.
We are providing the show edited down to one hour and 43 minutes at the link below.
Young Guitar magazine (Japan) has published a 154-page Super Deluxe Edition of The Guitar Man devoted entirely to Tommy Bolin. The back cover features Dean Guitars’ Teaser and new Tomikazi guitars. Content includes many photos that were a surprise to even Johnnie Bolin, as well as extensive information on Tommy’s history, recordings and equipment. Paper and print quality are excellent. The text is primarily in Japanese with some English, but any Tommy Bolin fan will still want this excellent publication. The magazine is available on Amazon Japan. For shipments to to countries outside of Japan try visiting CDJapan for ordering pages in English with price in dollars.
Thanks to Trace and to the Japanese fans who helped make this issue happen!
DEAN RELEASES TOMIKAZI GUITAR
Dean Guitars has released its Tomikazi Tommy Bolin tribute guitar. The Tomikazi is based on Tommy’s Ibanez Destroyer guitar. Designed by artist Nick Simmons, it features custom graphics inspired by the Private Eyes album. Specs include: Mahogany top and body, 24.75" scale, 1-11/16" nut, set mahogany “C” neck, rosewood fingerboard, pearl “Tomikazi” inlays, Grover tuners, chrome hardware, Tune-O-Matic bridge and USA DMT “Time Capsule” pickups.
Hush Magazine (Spain) is featuring Tommy Bolin in issues 37 and 38, the back covers shown at right. Issue 37 has an interview with producer Greg Hampton. Issue 38 has four pages with comments from keyboardist Tommy Stephenson (Energy), Zephyr guitarist Jock Bartley and Prairie Prince (The Tubes, “Wild Dogs” and “Savannah Woman” on the Teaser album). Those wishing to purchase copies can email Carlos by clicking here. They accept PayPal. Thanks to Trace Keane for helping make these happen, and to Hush Magazine.
CLICK THE PHOTOS TO ENLARGE »
TOMMY BOLIN TEASER DELUXE RELEASED
Greg Hampton (producer of the Tommy Bolin Whips and Roses CDs) is currently finishing up production on Teaser Deluxe, a CD which will contain alternate versions of all the tracks that appeared on the original Teaser album plus bonus tracks. All the material is being remixed from original multi-track tapes, and most of the material hasn’t been heard by the public before in any form. The package includes a 24-page booklet with rare photos. It will be available worldwide in stores and online.
HEAR HIGH QUALITY SAMPLE CLIPS BELOW
DEEP PURPLE PHOENIX RISING DVD
Subtitled The Untold Story of the 1975/76 MKIV World Tour, this DVD presents the period of Deep Purple’s history which lead to the lineup that featured Tommy Bolin and through the final shows with Tommy. In-depth interviews with John Lord and Glenn Hughes are augmented by video footage including Deep Purple Rises Over Japan footage superior in quality to any previous official releases, black and white footage from Jakarta, color video footage of “Stormbringer” with original live sound and more. Read a review on Darker Than Blue by clicking here.
Rockstar Magazine (Russia) has published a Tommy Bolin special edition, Issue #4, 2011. Article subjects include:
• James Gang
• Billy Cobham
• Alphonse Mouzon
• Deep Purple Mk 4
• Tommy Bolin Band
Thanks to Andrey Ignatchenko and the staff of Rockstar Magazine, and to Trace Keane for helping make another magazine special edition on Tommy Bolin come together. Thanks to Damian Phelan for helping them with photos.
Deep Purple’s Come Taste The Band has been released as a 35th Anniversary Edition 2-CD set. Of special note is that the original multi-track tapes recently surfaced after years of being presumed lost, providing a high-quality starting point. Disc 1 will have remastered versions of the original mixes plus a rare single edit of “You Keep on Moving.” Disc 2 will have the album tracks re-mixed by Kevin Shirley (Aerosmith, Journey, Led Zeppelin DVD) and will feature two unissued instrumental tracks, “Always the Same in LA” and “Bolin/Paice Jam.” Remastering was done at Abbey Road with Glenn Hughes personally in charge of the project.
Producer Bill Schenk has released a Tommy Bolin tribute CD presenting new arrangements and performances of 17 songs written by Tommy Bolin prior to his passing in 1976. Performers include Eric Martin (Mr. Big), Doogie White (Rainbow), Jeff Pilson (Dokken), Derek St. Holmes (Ted Nugent), Randy Jackson (Zebra), Robin McAuley, Johnnie Bolin, John Bartle, Steve Murray and more. Tommy’s original demos that were the inspiration for the project were originally released by the Tommy Bolin Archives on CDs such as Naked Volumes I and II.
Jeff Cook is known to fans of Tommy Bolin as the vocalist for American Standard and Energy. He is also co-author (Savannah Woman) or author (Dreamer) of many of Tommy’s most beloved songs. Jeff recently released a CD with the Rhythm & Groove Club entitled Groove Approved. Fellow band members include such heavyweights as Allen Toussaint and Tinsley Ellis. The music was recorded at the famous Sea Saint Studios, and is a robust blend of rocking New Orleans Soul, blues and jazzy funk. After Tommy’s passing Jeff worked at Arista, Elektra, Capricorn and New West Records, it’s great to hear him back behind the mic!
Greg Prato has released Touched by Magic: The Tommy Bolin Story, a new book about Tommy Bolin featuring close to 50 interviews with people that knew and played with Tommy during his youth, meteoric career and up to his passing at age 25 in 1976.
The new book also features many rare photos that will surprise even veteran Tommy fans, and Greg will be posting unused photos on his MySpace page.
Touched by Magic is currently available online through www.Lulu.com. Learn more and read a sample chapter on our own special web page by clicking below:
Martin Popoff, author of many great books about major rock acts has just released Gettin’ Tighter: Deep Purple ’68-’76. The book is 250 pages long, and has a number photos by Richard Galbraith (including the fantastic cover shot of Tommy) which have not been presented to the public until now.
The book also includes pictures of ads, tour book pages and album covers from around the world. The format is one chapter per each album from Shades of Deep Purple through Come Taste the Band and Made in Europe, with every song examined and lots of looks at the tours as well. The text includes observations by the author as well as numerous quotes from band members and people who were associated with the band.
Popoff will be signing copies of the book, which may be ordered through his site at www.martinpopoff.com. Fans of Tommy Bolin have waited a long time to see him appear in a book, so the arrival of Gettin’ Tighter: Deep Purple ’68-’76 is much appreciated by fans who have acquired it.
Hush Magazine (Spain) celebrated their 15th Anniversary with a Special Tommy Bolin Issue (Issue 34). Included are new interviews with Kenny Passarelli, Bobby Berge, Johnnie Bolin, David Givens, Otis Taylor, Stan Sheldon, Jim Dandy, Billy Cobham, Jim Fox, Russell Bizzett and more, along with many rare photos of Tommy and memorabilia. Hush Magazine is printed entirely in Spanish.
Trace Keane has provided many of the interviews translated into English and we have posted them on this site. Please take this opportunity to read them, as so often happens new historical facts pop up that add to our understanding of Tommy’s history.
The issue was available for sale online but is currently sold out. They intend to print more in the future and we will post a notice if that comes to pass.
DEAN RELEASES TEASER GUITAR
Dean Guitars has released its USA Tommy Bolin Tribute Teaser guitar. The Teaser is crafted based on measurements taken from Tommy’s own 1974 Strat, and the feel of neck and playability are unreal. Dean CEO Elliott Rubinson and artist Nick Simmons, designer of the guitar, are building it as a labor of love for Tommy. Read more about the Teaser at Nick’s blog and by visiting our own Teaser Guitar section.
Hartman Electronics has released the new Tommy Bolin Signature Fuzz. The pedal was designed to capture the tone of Tommy’s long-discontinued Sam Ash fuzz box. It was developed with the assistance of Johnnie Bolin, and the circuitry is based on an original Sam Ash unit. The unit was refined against original, isolated guitar tracks from Bolin master reels. The unit is 100% hand wired, bench-tested and auditioned prior to shipping, and has truy-bypass switching. Learn more by clicking here.
The Tommy Bolin Archives is pleased to announce that many of our titles are now available online from both Friday Music and iTunes. Keep checking back with those sources, as they will be adding more of our titles.
Friday Music, in conjunction with the Tommy Bolin Archives, presentsTommy Bolin – The Ultimate: Redux, a 3-CD set of material drawn from earlier, and in some cases out-of-print TBA releases, hand-picked by Michael Drumm and Johnnie Bolin. The audio was re-mastered by Joe Reagoso at Friday Music. The 3-CD set is presented in a fold-in digipak with original packaging design by John Herdt and Joe Reagoso. The liner notes were written by Steve Vai (wow!). Also included is a booklet with liner notes by Michael Drumm and Joe Reagoso.
Russell Bizzett has released a great new CD entitled Tommy Bolin Tribute. Many of Tommy’s fans know Russell from his drum work on the Tommy Bolin & Friends: Live at Ebbets Field 1974 CD. Featured are many Tommy fan favorites including Stratus, Dreamer, Quadrant 4, You Know You Know, Red Baron, San Francisco River and People People. The performances on Tommy Bolin Tribute are exceptional and the CD is especially recommended to fans of Tommy’s music. Find out more information on Russell’s web site at www.russellbizzett.com as well as on his MySpace page.