Mel Collins

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Mel Collins
MEL COLLINS (Acabashi).jpg
Mel Collins playing with Kokomo.
Live at Barnes, London on 17 May 2008
Background information
Birth name Melvyn Desmond Collins
Born (1947-09-05) 5 September 1947 (age 67)
Origin Isle of Man
Genres Progressive rock, jazz fusion
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Saxophone, flute, keyboards, vocals
Associated acts King Crimson, Camel, Alan Parsons Project, Climax Blues Band, Tony O'Malley, Kokomo

Melvyn Desmond "Mel" Collins (born 5 September 1947, Isle of Man) is a British saxophonist, flautist and session musician.

He has worked in a wide variety of contexts ranging from R&B and blues rock to jazz, but is perhaps best known for his work in progressive rock, as with King Crimson, Camel and the Alan Parsons Project.


Collins has worked with a large number of notable recording artists,[1] including 10cc, Alexis Korner, Clannad, Eric Clapton, Bad Company, Dire Straits, Bryan Ferry, Roger Chapman, Marianne Faithfull, The Rolling Stones, Roger Waters[2] Gerry Rafferty, Tears For Fears, Go West and Joan Armatrading.

He was a member of progressive rock bands King Crimson, Camel, Caravan and The Alan Parsons Project. For King Crimson he was Ian McDonald's replacement, playing the same instruments as McDonald on the Lizard, Islands and Earthbound albums,[clarification needed] and was a session musician on the In the Wake of Poseidon and Red albums. He played on the Crimson Jazz Trio's second album, The King Crimson Songbook, Volume Two, released in 2009.

Collins played the saxophone solo on The Rolling Stones 1978 single, "Miss You",[3] and played with Dire Straits on their live album, Alchemy. He was one of the members of Kokomo with Tony O'Malley, Neil Hubbard, Paddy McHugh, Frank Collins, Dyan Birch, and Alan Spenner, and is a frequent performer with Tony O'Malley.

In 1985 Collins was part of the Willie and the Poor Boys video, in 1986 a musician on the animated film When the Wind Blows, and in 2006 a band member on Die Harald Schmidt Show.[4]

On 13 April 1997 Collins was interviewed by Chris Groom at the Half Moon in Putney. He talked about his life, and times in music.[5]

From 2002–07 Collins has been a member of the King Crimson "revival" group 21st century Schizoid Band, with other former Crimson members.

In May 2008 Kokomo was reformed temporarily. With Collins were Tony O'Malley, Neil Hubbard, Mark Smith, Adam Phillips, Andy Hamilton, Paddy McHugh, Dyan Birch, Frank Collins, Bernie Holland, and Glen Le Fleur.

Collins played woodwinds on the 2011 King Crimson ProjeKct 7, A Scarcity of Miracles, appearing on a King Crimson related album for the first time since 1974. In September 2013, Robert Fripp confirmed that Mel Collins would be a member of King Crimson again, the band being referred to as King Crimson VIII.

Collins was also a member of Pete Haycock's reformation of the Climax Blues Band in 2013, prior to Haycock's death in October 2013.

Selected discography[edit]

Bands by years[edit]


  1. ^ Collins: Retrieved 15 Jan 2011
  2. ^ Collins with the Rolling Stones Retrieved 15 Jan 2011
  3. ^ "Miss You" – Rolling Stones Retrieved 29 August 2008
  4. ^ Collins: IMDb Retrieved 15 Jan 2011
  5. ^ Collins interview on ETWiki Retrieved 15 Jan 2011

External links[edit]