House of Lords (band)

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House of Lords
Origin Los Angeles, California
Genres Hard rock, Glam Metal, AOR
Years active 1988–1993, 2000–present
Labels Frontiers, RCA, Cleopatra, Polygram, Simmons, Victory
Associated acts Giuffria, Quiet Riot, Whitesnake, Impellitteri, Angel, Manic Eden, Eyes, Great White, Rough Cutt, Shark Island, Thin Lizzy, Fifth Angel, Dokken
Members James Christian
Jimi Bell
Jeff Kent
B.J. Zampa
Chris McCarvill
Past members Gregg Giuffria
Ken Mary
Chuck Wright
Lanny Cordola
David Glen Eisley
Michael Guy
Tommy Aldridge
Dennis Chick
Sean McNabb
Matt McKenna

House of Lords is a rock band band from Los Angeles, California.

History[edit]

House of Lords was formed in 1987 by former Angel member and keyboardist Gregg Giuffria after his solo project Giuffria. After listening to demos - originally intended for Giuffria's third record - a record deal with Gene Simmons' company Simmons Record was agreed upon, on Simmon's condition that the band's name be changed (to House of Lords) and a new lead singer recruited.[1] James Christian thus replaced David Glen Eisley, after Christian was suggested by ex-Giuffria and Quiet Riot bassist Chuck Wright,[2] after having worked together in L.A. Rocks.

House of Lords' eponymous debut was released in 1988, featuring a heavier sound than Giuffria with a lower keyboard mix. The album received critical acclaim and the band toured with both Cheap Trick and the Scorpions in 1989.

The album featured one major hit, "I Wanna Be Loved" (Hot 100 No. 58). The Stan Bush penned "Love Don't Lie" was the second single but despite MTV airplay, failed to chart. After touring, original guitarist Lanny Cordola left in 1990, replaced by ex Shark Island's Michael Guy.

Their next effort was 1990s Sahara and featured a list of guest musicians. Other notable contributions to the album came from Doug Aldrich, Rick Nielsen, Chris Impellitteri, Mandy Meyer, David Glen Eisley, Robin Zander, Mike Tramp, Steve Plunkett and Ron Keel. Deliberately more guitar-orientated than the debut, the album hit No. 120 on the charts and in the wake of the successful single "Can't Find My Way Home" (a Blind Faith cover) was certified platinum in 1991. The single & video also did well on Album Rock radio peaking at No. 10. The second single "Remember My Name" was a bigger hit hitting No. 72 on the Hot 100 and a Top 5 regular on DIAL MTV. Soon after, bassist Chuck Wright and drummer Ken Mary left the band.

1992's release Demons Down, described by Christian as his favorite release, features Dennis Chick (guitars), ex Quiet Riot bassist Sean McNabb and veteran Tommy Aldridge as well as Christian and Giuffria. The album spawned two singles, the title track and the ballad "What's Forever For" . The band broke up in 1993 despite recording demos to shop for a new label. After the band broke up, guitarist Dennis Chick joined Freak of Nature, the band formed by Mike Tramp after the break-up of White Lion. Chick played on both of their studio albums, released in 1993 and 1994.[3]

After legal delays over the rights to the band name the group reformed in 2000, featuring an extended line up of Christian, Giuffria, Cordola, Guy, Mary, and Wright, although Guy soon departed.

Two years later The Power and the Myth was finished but it was 2004 before it was released by Frontiers Records. The album marked the return of Chuck Wright, Lanny Cordola and Ken Mary, but is the first not to feature Giuffria, who had left the project with keyboard work done by guests Derek Sherinian, Allan Okuye, Sven Martin and Ricky Phillips. House of Lords contacted Jeff Kent to take over the writing of lyrics and melodies due to the band's lowest scores since its inception. After Jeff Kent was finished, the band scored 96% on the 2006 CD World Upside Down with 10 of Kent's Lyrical and melodic compositions, and 97% of the 2008 CD Come to My Kingdom with 13 of Kent's Lyrical and melodic compositions.


After a further reunion in 2005 for the Firefest festival in the UK, House of Lords released a new album, World Upside Down, adding songwriter Jeff Kent/melody & lyric writer and keyboardist, guitarist Jimi Bell, bassist Chris McCarvill, and drummer B.J. Zampa. Kent also played all the keyboard parts on the 2005 Frontier Record release.

McCarvill performing with House Of Lords at Lorca Rock Festival in 2006
(Photo: Raúl Ranz)

A live album Live in the UK was released in January 2007.

In 2008, the band released their sixth studio album Come to My Kingdom. The album featured the same line-up as World Upside Down, and was produced by frontman James Christian and frequent collaborator Jeff Kent (who played bass prior to McCarvill's joining), who also co-wrote most all of the album's vocal melodies and lyrics. Bassist Chris McCarvill left the band just before the CTMK release due to prior touring commitments with Dokken. He was replaced by Matt McKenna who recorded bass for the band's next album Cartesian Dreams and performed on all the Come to My Kingdom tour dates. The group embarked on a world tour of 39 cities throughout Europe, Brazil, and the United States, commencing between March–July 2008, including main stage performances at Hard in Rio, Rocklahoma and the South Texas Rockfest festivals.

On September 18, 2009, the band's seventh studio album Cartesian Dreams was released. Although bass was recorded by Matt McKenna, Chris McCarvill has rejoined the band following the recording and played bass on the supporting tour for the album in September–November 2009. Jeff Kent has produced the album along with Christian, although this time around he didn't contribute any songwriting to the album.

On July 26, 2011, it was announced that the band will be releasing their eighth studio album Big Money on September 23, 2011, in Europe and September 27 in North America. The album was recorded with the same line-up as the 2008 album Come to My Kingdom, including returning bassist Chris McCarvill, and will be promoted with a European tour in October 2011, the band's first tour since 2009.

Band members[edit]

Current members
  • James Christian - lead vocals, guitar, keyboards (1988-1993, 2000-present)
  • Jimi Bell - guitar (2005-present)
  • Jeff Kent - keyboards, bass, backing vocals, songwriting (2005-present)
  • B.J. Zampa - drums, backing vocals (2005-present)
  • Chris McCarvill - bass, backing vocals (2005-2008, 2009-present)
Former members
  • Gregg Giuffria - keyboards, backing vocals (1987–1993, 2000–2004)
  • Ken Mary - drums, backing vocals (1987–1991, 2000–2005)
  • Chuck Wright - bass, backing vocals (1987–1991, 2000–2005)
  • BamBam, drums, backing vocals (1993–1994)
  • Lanny Cordola - guitar, backing vocals (1987–1990, 2000–2005)
  • Robert Marchello - guitar, backing vocals (2009–2010, 2009–2010)
  • David Glen Eisley - lead vocals (1987-1988)
  • Michael Guy - guitar, backing vocals (1990–1991, 2000)
  • Tommy Aldridge - drums, backing vocals (1991–1993)
  • Dennis Chick - guitar, backing vocals (1991–1993)
  • Sean McNabb - bass, backing vocals (1991–1993)
  • Matt McKenna - bass, backing vocals (2008–2009)

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Compilation albums[edit]

Live albums[edit]

Billboard chart[edit]

Title Chart Peak
Position
House of Lords U.S. Billboard 200 78[4]
Sahara U.S. Billboard 200 121[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gene Simmons Takes a Spin as a Record Mogul, L.A. Times, July 12, 1988.
  2. ^ "Chuck Wright Interview". Music Legends. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  3. ^ "Sea of Tranquility - Mike Tramp interview". 
  4. ^ a b House of Lords chart history, Billboard.com. Retrieved January 23, 2010.