Phil Lanzon

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Phil Lanzon
Phil Lanzon of Uriah Heep.jpg
Lanzon performing in Narva (Estonia) on the "Narva Bike" show. 17 July 2010
Background information
Born (1950-03-23) 23 March 1950 (age 65)
Genres Progressive rock, hard rock, heavy metal
Occupation(s) Musician, composer
Instruments Keyboards, Vocals
Years active 1966–present
Labels RCA, Legacy Records, Regeneration Ltd, Sanctuary
Associated acts Uriah Heep, The Loose Ends, The Cats Pyamas, Romance
Website Phil Lanzon Website

Phil Lanzon[1] (born 23 March 1950) is the keyboardist for British progressive rock group Uriah Heep[2] since 1986.

Lanzon has worked both as a session musician and sideman with Grand Prix, Grant & Forsyth, John Lawton (former Uriah Heep-member), Mick Ronson, Chris Spedding, and Sweet, among others.[3]

At the age of eight Lanzon learned to play the piano. In 1966, he played in his first band called The Loose Ends. Covers of soul songs were played. With this band Lanzon tours through Europe. Thereafter he played with The Cats Pyjamas from 1968 until 1969. With this one a few singles were recorded. One of them was "Baby I Love You" by The Ronettes. Lanzon married, started a family, and began to study harmony, counterpoint and composition at the Guildhall school of Music and Drama. In 1977 he joined a new band: Romance with Neil Carter, later with UFO and Gary Moore. The band just exist a short time, but had recorded a demo of four good songs; one was a Lanzon: "Show Me the Way to England".[citation needed]

In 1978 Lanzon auditioned for a band called Raw Deal that needed a singer. Lanzon actually auditioned them one by one until Bernie came in with his high range and that suited the band perfectly. This incarnation became Paris. He can be heard on the June 1980 recorded Hot Chocolate hit "No Doubt". At the end of 1979 Paris became Grand Prix, and Lanzon played keyboards on three albums. In early 1980 Lanzon played keyboards on the Cris-Spedding album I'm Not Like Everybody Else. The third record Samurai is released in 1983 by Chrysalis Records. The Grand Prix sound can be described as melodic hard rock with some clear Styx and Journey influences. In 1984 Lanzon replaced Vic Emerson of Sad Café for a British tour.

Lanzon appears on both Steve Glen singles "That's Alright by Me"/"Just the Way We Are"/"Down Among the Dead Men"/'I'm Alright Jack". In March 1985 Lanzon joined the band Operator. His fellow band members were: Robin McAuley (vocals), Chris Glen (bass, before with SAHB and MSG), Mick O'Donoghue (guitar) and Phil Taylor (drums; ex - Motorhead). How promising this line up may have looked, it dissolved in May 1985. In November 1985 he played keyboards on Phil Taylor's Naughty Ol' Santas Christmas Classics. O'Donoghue, Glen and Taylor started GMT the same month, and recorded War Games with guitarist Marcus Schleicher, which was released on CD in 1991.[citation needed]

In July 1985 Lanzon played keyboards and drums on Big Bang, an album by German band Tarraco, who recorded their album in Hamburg as in London. It's experimental disco with a lot of drum work by bandleader Dicky Tarrach (Rattles). Lanzon composed one song and did his part on another one. In August 1985 Lanzon left Tarraco. In September 1985 Lanzon joined The Sweet. The Sweet recorded their live album Live at the Marquee. In July 1986 Lanzon broke up with The Sweet.

Lanzon joins Uriah Heep, replacing John Sinclair, and goes on a US tour. At that point Steff Fontaine was singer for a few months. In February 1987 Lanzon was asked by Andy Scott to play on the debut single of pub-rock band Paddy Goes to Holyhead. Lanzon had his hands free at the time, so he went into the London Bridge Studio. Here the recording of the single "The Green Green Grass of Home"/"(Telling Me) All Those Lies". The single was not that successful. In December 1987, Lanzon again went into the studio to record the maxi - CD with the cover song "Delilah". "Live in Moscow" was recorded and released in 1988. In 1991 the heavily criticized Different World was released. In 1994 a techno/dance version of Gypsy goes around. On this maxi-CD four different versions of the song are recorded.

In 1995 the long-awaited Sea of Light is released. At 8 of the 12 songs Lanzon did his job on the composition part, with "Mistress of all time". In September 1998 Sonic Origami, the latest album by Uriah Heep, was released on the (UK) Eagle Records label, including Lanzon's "Between Two Worlds". During a Scandinavian tour in February 1999, Lanzon began to write short stories. Over the new decade he would go on to perfect one of those stories which is at the moment being read by a top Hollywood producer. Heep recorded Acoustically Driven in 2001. Lanzon scored the arrangements for the string quartet. This was followed by touring and festivals which included the release of various Heep DVDs.[citation needed]

The long-awaited release of "Wake the Sleeper", 2008, and consequently "Into the Wild", 2011, saw Lanzon's songwriting establishing itself again. Some say that "Between Two Worlds", "Golden Palace" and "Trail of Diamonds" were heading more towards the 'prog' side of Heep. Lanzon thinks that the next album may enter those bright waters a little more deeply along with the straight-ahead rock songs.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Lanzon lives in East Kent with his partner, Patina. He has three children from his one and only marriage; nine grandchildren and one great-grandchild - all wonderful and living in Hampshire.

Discography[edit]

With Steve Glen[edit]

  • Look Left Look Right

No Doubt About It Easy Does It

With GMT[edit]

  • War Games

With Grand Prix[edit]

  • Grand Prix
  • There For None To See
  • Samurai

With Grant & Forsyth[edit]

  • Let's Dance

With John Lawton & Steve Dunning[edit]

  • Steppin' It Up (2002)

With Lionheart[edit]

  • Unearthed - Raiders of the Lost Archives

With Mick Ronson[edit]

  • Memorial Show

With Chris Spedding[edit]

  • I'm Not Like Everybody Else

With Sweet[edit]

  • Hannover Sessions
  • Live At The Marquee (live, 1989)
  • Chronology

With Paddy Goes to Holyhead[edit]

  • Green Green Grass of Home (7 inch)

With Tarracco[edit]

  • Big Bang

With Uriah Heep[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Profile, phillanzonwordsandmusic.com; accessed 23 March 2015.
  2. ^ Brinn, David (16 October 2003). "Seventies rockers keep on rocking". The Jerusalem Post. p. 24. Retrieved 18 December 2010. 
  3. ^ Hill, Gary. "Phil Lanzon biodata". Allmusic.com. Retrieved 18 December 2010. 

External links[edit]