The Flying Burrito Brothers
||This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page.
|The Flying Burrito Brothers|
|Labels||A&M, Columbia, Curb|
|Associated acts||The International Submarine Band
The Desert Rose Band
|Past members||Chris Hillman
Sneaky Pete Kleinow
Floyd "Gib" Guilbeau
Joel Scott Hill
Warren "Bugs" Pemberton
The Flying Burrito Brothers were an early country rock band, best known for its influential debut album, The Gilded Palace of Sin (1969). Although the group is most often mentioned in connection with country rock legends Gram Parsons and Chris Hillman, the group underwent many personnel changes.
Original line-up and members until 1972 
The Flying Burrito Brothers were founded in 1968 on the West Coast of the United States by former Byrds members Gram Parsons and Chris Hillman, as well as pianist and bassist Chris Ethridge and pedal steel guitarist Sneaky Pete Kleinow. The group recorded their debut album The Gilded Palace of Sin without a regular drummer, although 'Fast' Eddie Hoh and Jon Corneal were both occasional full-time members during the early days of the band and both are featured on this album. The album contains originals by Parsons and Hillman, and two covers by soul music writers Dan Penn and Chips Moman. After firing Corneal the band needed a permanent drummer for touring purposes; they hired another ex-Byrd, Michael Clarke, who had recently been working with the Dillard and Clark Expedition.
Although critically well received, The Gilded Palace of Sin did not sell well. Ethridge departed in mid-1969, and Hillman moved to bass as the band hired singer and guitarist Bernie Leadon. The band performed at the Altamont Free Concert in December 1969, and, as documented in the film Gimme Shelter, the band was on stage when fights broke out in the audience.
Owing to disagreements between Parsons and Hillman, the band's next album, Burrito Deluxe, included few collaborations between the pair. Parsons left the group after its release in May 1970. A version of the group without Parsons appeared in June-July 1970 on the Festival Express tour of Canada, documented in the film of the same name. Gram was later replaced by Rick Roberts, with the new line-up releasing the self-titled album, The Flying Burrito Bros, in 1971. Kleinow then left to become a session musician, and Leadon departed to create the Eagles. Al Perkins and Kenny Wertz replaced them, and Roger Bush and Byron Berline participated as guests in live performances, with the band releasing a live album, Last of the Red Hot Burritos, in 1972.
The original band dissolved after the last founding member, Chris Hillman, took Perkins with him to join Manassas. Berline, Bush and Wertz continued with their own band, Country Gazette. Roberts assembled a makeshift Flying Burrito Bros group to fulfill contractual commitments for some 1973 European live shows, then initiated a solo career before forming Firefall with Michael Clarke.
Later configurations 
As Gram Parsons' influence and fame grew, so did interest in the Flying Burrito Brothers. This new-found popularity led to the release of Close Up the Honky Tonks in 1974, a double-LP compilation of album tracks, B-sides, and out-takes, followed by the re-creation of the band by Kleinow and Ethridge in 1975. Floyd "Gib" Gilbeau, Joel Scott Hill, and Gene Parsons (no relation to Gram) also joined the group, and the band released Flying Again that year. Ethridge was then replaced by Skip Battin for 1976's Airborne, followed by an album of previously unreleased early material, Sleepless Nights. For the next few decades, the group continued to release albums and tour. It had a country hit with a cover-version of Merle Haggard's "White Line Fever" in 1980, and at that time became the Burrito Brothers.
Headed by songwriter and guitarist John Beland and Gib Guilbeau, and normally featuring Sneaky Pete, the Burrito Brothers scored well on the country charts in the early 1980s, marking the first significant commercial chart success the band ever had. In 1981 they received the Billboard Magazine award for "Best New Crossover Group" from pop to country. The Burrito Brothers continued to work with the top session players in Nashville and Los Angeles, logging up an impressive list of hit singles for Curb Records. In the 80's they toured Europe and were featured at the Albi Nashville Festival in Albi, France, and performed with Emmylou Harris, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Tammy Wynette at London's Wembley Stadium. Also in the early 1980s, the Burrito Brothers were responsible for a campaign that finally saw their idol, Lefty Frizzell, inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Through numerous incarnations, nearly all with Beland at the helm, the band released albums and toured throughout the 1980s and 1990s. The latter day Flying Burrito Brothers CDs, produced by Beland, featured an impressive line-up of guests, including the likes of Merle Haggard, Buck Owens, Waylon Jennings, Alison Krauss, Ricky Skaggs, and Charlie Louvin. The band's final two CDs, California Jukebox in 1997 and Sons Of The Golden West in 1999, received solid critical reviews. However, Beland decided to finish with the band in 2000, and embarked upon a successful career as a record producer. Sneaky created a Burritos spin-off with his new band Burrito Deluxe, which featured Carlton Moody on lead vocals and Garth Hudson from The Band on keyboards. Burrito Deluxe gained no chart success, relying solely on live appearances in Europe. Pete left the band due to illness in 2005, leaving no direct lineage to any of the actual Flying Burrito Brothers members, past or present.
Legacy of band 
Parsons died on September 19, 1973. Clarke died in 1993, Battin died in 2003, Kleinow died in 2007, and Ethridge died in 2012.
Hillman remained a successful singer-songwriter, having been part of the Souther-Hillman-Furay Band and McGuinn-Clark-Hillman, then going on to form the Desert Rose Band (1986–93) with Herb Pedersen. He continued to sing with Pedersen as Chris and Herb, releasing The Other Side in 2005.
Guilbeau retired following heart surgery and moved to Palmdale, California, from where he continued to appear occasionally at local functions in and around the Los Angeles area. Beland continued to produce acts in the USA and abroad, achieving hit records in both Australia and Norway, where he also performed as a solo act. Beland moved to Brenham, Texas and has written hits for performers such as The Whites with "Forever You", Mark Farner with "Isn't It Amazing?", and the Bellamy Brothers with "Cowboy Beat", "Hard Way To Make An Easy Living", and "Bound To Explode". His songs have been covered by many acts from Ricky Nelson to Garth Brooks.
A Mexican restaurant in Gainesville, Florida, was named after the band.
A chain of Mexican restaurants in New Zealand was named after the band.
Studio albums 
- The Gilded Palace of Sin (1969)
- Burrito Deluxe (1970)
- The Flying Burrito Bros (1971)
- Flying Again (1975)
- Airborne (1976)
- Hearts on the Line (1981)
- Sunset Sundown (1982)
- Eye of a Hurricane (1994)
- California Jukebox (1997)
- Honky Tonkin' aka Sons of the Golden West (1999)
Live albums 
- Last of the Red Hot Burritos (1972)
- Sin City (1976)
- Flying Burrito Brothers '76 (1976)
- From Another Time (1976)
- Close Encounters to the West Coast (1978)
- Live from Tokyo (1979)
- Hollywood Nights 1979-82 (1983)
- Cabin Fever (1985)
- Live from Europe (1986)
- Gram Parsons Archives Vol.1: Live at the Avalon Ballroom 1969 (2007)
- Authorized Bootleg: Fillmore East, NY, NY Late Show 11/07/70 (2011)
Compilation albums 
- Close Up the Honky Tonks (1974)
- Sleepless Nights (1976)
- Farther Along: The Best of the Flying Burrito Brothers (A&M) (1988)
- Best of the Flying Burrito Brothers (Relix Records) (1995)
- Out of the Blue (1996)
- The Gilded Palace of Sin & Burrito Deluxe (A&M) (1997)
- Hot Burritos! The Flying Burrito Brothers Anthology 1969–1972 (2000)
- Sin City: The Very Best of the Flying Burrito Brothers (2002)
|1980||"White Line Fever"||95||single only|
|1981||"She's a Friend of a Friend"||67||Hearts on the Line|
|"Does She Wish She Was Single Again"||20|
|"She Belongs to Everyone but Me"||16|
|1982||"If Something Should Come Between Us (Let It Be Love)"||27||Sunset Sundown|
|"Closer to You"||40|
|"I'm Drinkin' Canada Dry"||39|
|"Blue and Broken Hearted Me"||48||singles only|
|1984||"Almost Saturday Night"||49|
|"My Kind of Lady"||53|