Chad Allan (musician)

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Chad Allan
Birth name Allan Peter Stanley Kowbel
Also known as Allan Kobel
Born (1943-03-29) March 29, 1943 (age 71)
Winnipeg, Canada
Origin Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Genres Rock, Soft Rock, Country Rock
Occupations Musician, songwriter
Instruments vocals, accordion, guitar, piano, keyboards, harmonica, drums, mandolin
Years active 1958–present
Labels Canadian-American, Quality, Scepter, Reprise Records, GRT, Seabreeze, Regenerator
Associated acts The Guess Who, Brave Belt

Is a Canadian musician that was the original lead singer, founding member, and front man for The Guess Who.

Career[edit]

Allan's first band, "Allan and the Silvertones", was formed while attending Miles MacDonell Collegiate in 1958. Then Allan brought in notable Winnipeg musicians: Bob Ashley, Jim Kale, Randy Bachman and Garry Peterson to the band. Soon as they joined the band became "Chad Allan and the Reflections". Allan's name "Chad Allan" was originally his stage name, named after one of his favorite singer Chad Mitchell from the Chad Mitchell Trio. They released their debut single, "Tribute to Buddy Holly", on the Canadian-American label in 1962. In 1963, the band changed there name to "Chad Allan and the Expressions" after they signed a contract with Quality Records and releasing several singles that were minor hits in Canada.

The "Guess Who"[edit]

In January of 1965, Quality released their single, a cover of the Johnny Kidd song "Shakin' All Over". As a promo stunt, Quality released promo copies of the single credited to "Guess Who?". This became the band's new name, although throughout 1965 they were being credited as "Chad Allan & the Expressions (Guess Who?)".

In December of 1965 Bob Ashley left the band and Burton Cummings of The Deverons replaced him. Shortly before Cummings' arrival, the band dropped the name "Chad Allan & the Expressions" sub-moniker & began including harder R&B material into their set. Allan started having vocal challenges in early 1966 that made it difficult for him to sing. After recording The Guess Who's third album, It's Time, Allan left the band.

After the Guess Who[edit]

Allan initially went back to college for a brief period of time, but continued performing. In 1967 he was chosen to host CBC-TV's weekly music program Let's Go. Coincidentally, the house band chosen for the show was The Guess Who. The show lasted two seasons before being cancelled. Allan, still under contract to Quality Records (signed in 1963), released a number of singles. He also recorded two albums for the Canadian Talent Library, his first solo album Looking Through Crystal Glass and an album called The Metro-Gnomes along with two newcomer Winnipeg female singers Karen Marklinger and Corrine Cyca. Both albums were released in 1969.

In the early 1970's Allan legally changed his name to "Chad Allan". In 1971 Allan along with Randy Bachman formed Brave Belt. The band released two albums for Reprise Records. By 1972 the band started to play more of a progressively heavier rock sound. After the release of the two "Brave Belt" albums Allan left the band. Then Brave Belt morphed into Bachman–Turner Overdrive with adding C. F. "Fred" Turner where they continued on successfully. In 1973 Allan released his second solo album called, Sequel, released by GRT Records of Canada. Allan was also chosen to play the lead character in a musical adaptation of the ancient poem Beowulf, which was released on album in 1974.

Allan has since pursued many musical endeavors including writing gospel music, hosting a children's TV show in Winnipeg, and forming his own record label called Seabreeze Records from which he released several singles and an album that didn't fare well. For a number of years, starting in 1982, he started teaching songwriting at Kwantlen University College in Surrey, British Columbia.

In 1992 he released his third solo album, Zoot Suit, which was inspired by the Christians.

In January 2007 Regenerator Records (www.regeneratorrecords.com) issued a CD consisting of four rare studio tracks and a live concert recording circa 1962 entitled Chad Allan and the Reflections — Early Roots. A limited edition double vinyl LP set of the collection (minus the 4 studio cuts) was released in Spring 2008. Regenerator has remastered Allan's Sequel and Zoot Suit albums and they are available for download on iTunes.

Allan moved to Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1977. He still performs standards, ballads, and rock and roll classics.

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Year Album
1969 Looking Through Crystal Glass
1969 The Metro-Gnomes
1973 Sequel
1974 Beowulf
1992 Zoot Suit
2007 Chad Allan and the Reflections — Early Roots

Singles[edit]

Year Single Chart positions Album
CAN AC CAN CAN Country
1967 "Salt in My Wounds"  —  — Looking Through Crystal Glass
1968 "Ramona's Hourglass"  —  —
1969 "Looking Through Crystal Glass"  —  —
1971 "West Coast Girl" 14  —  —
1981 "Balled of a Middle-Aged Rocker"  —  —
1973 "Spending My Time" 27 79  — Sequel
1974 "Dunrobin's Gone"  —  — 71
1968 "Greeting Card/Elevator"  —  — singles only
1982 "Don't Muscle Me, Baby"  —  —

References[edit]

Preceded by
n/a
Lead singer in The Guess Who Succeeded by
Burton Cummings