Brian Auger

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Brian Auger
Brian Auger and the Trinity 1970.JPG
Brian Auger and the Trinity 1970
Background information
Birth name Brian Albert Gordon Auger
Born (1939-07-18) 18 July 1939 (age 77)
Hammersmith, London, England
Genres Jazz fusion
Instruments Keyboards
Years active 1960s–present
Associated acts Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger and the Trinity, CAB, The Steampacket
Website brianauger.com

Brian Albert Gordon Auger[1] (born 18 July 1939 in Hammersmith London)[2] is an English jazz and rock keyboardist, who has specialised in playing the Hammond organ.

A jazz pianist, bandleader, session musician and Hammond B3 player, Auger has played or toured with artists such as Rod Stewart, Tony Williams, Jimi Hendrix,[3] John McLaughlin, Sonny Boy Williamson, Led Zeppelin, Eric Burdon and others. He has incorporated jazz, early British pop, R&B, soul music and rock, and he has been nominated for a Grammy.

Biography[edit]

In 1965 Auger formed the group The Steampacket, along with Long John Baldry, Julie Driscoll, Vic Briggs and Rod Stewart. Due to contractual problems there were no official recordings made by the band; nevertheless, nine tracks were laid down for promotional use in late 1965 and enclosed on a cd by Repertoire Records (1990) (Licensed from Charly Records) as well as 12 live tracks from "Live at the Birmingham Town Hall, February 2, 1964.[4] Soon thereafter the band broke up and shortly after Stewart left in 1966. In 1965, Auger played on For Your Love by The Yardbirds.

With Driscoll and the band, Trinity, he went on to record several hit singles, notably a cover version of David Ackles' "Road to Cairo" and Bob Dylan's "This Wheel's on Fire", which was featured on Dylan Covered. In 1969 Auger, Driscoll and Trinity appeared performing in the United States on the nationally telecast NBC television network special 33⅓ Revolutions Per Monkee.

In 1970 he formed Brian Auger's Oblivion Express, shortly after abandoning the abortive "Wassenaar Arrangement" jazz-fusion commune in a small suburb of The Hague. Oblivion Express served to cultivate several musicians, including future The Average White Band drummers Robbie McIntosh and Steve Ferrone, as well as guitarist Jim Mullen. Likewise, in 1971 he produced and appeared on Mogul Thrash's only album, Mogul Thrash. Two members of that band, Roger Ball and Malcolm Duncan, would go on to form the Average White Band.

Brian Auger toured with Kim Simmonds, Gregg Errico, and Tim Bogert in the mid '80s, in a band they called Maestro. No album resulted from this collaboration/tour.

In 1986, he played keyboards for the Italian singer Mango on the album Odissea.

In 1989, Auger was musical director for the thirteen-part film retrospective series Villa Fantastica, made for German TV. A live recording of the series, Super Jam (1990), features Auger on piano, Pete York on drums, Dick Morrissey on tenor saxophone, Roy Williams on trombone, Harvey Weston on bass guitar, and singers Zoot Money and Maria Muldaur.

Auger toured with blues rocker Eric Burdon in the early 1990s, and recorded the live album Access All Areas with him in 1993. After several projects, including albums with family members, he reformed Oblivion Express in the late 1990s, with a line-up that eventually featured both his son and daughter.

Oblivion Express was revived in 2005 with recording and subsequent touring. The group featured Brian Auger, his son Karma Auger on drums, his daughter Savannah Auger on vocals, and Derek Frank on bass.

In 2012, Auger released one of the few solo albums of his career, Language of the Heart, produced by Tea. It features Jeff "Skunk" Baxter and Julian Coryell on guitars.

Auger is currently[when?] recording with Latin Rock legends El Chicano and is featured on B3 Organ in several tracks from El Chicano's most recent studio album released in April 2014.

In 2014 Brian Auger and Oblivion Express played at the KJAZZ festival in Los Angeles and toured in Japan and Europe with the following line-up: son Karma Auger on drums, daughter Ali Auger on vocals, Alex Ligertwood on vocals, Yarone Levy on guitar, Les King on bass and Travis Carlton on bass.[5]

Discography[edit]

  • 1965 – The Steampacket Featuring Long John Baldry, Rod Stewart, Brian Auger & Julie Driscoll (9 rehearsal/demo tracks) [released 1990] -note: also includes 12 live tracks from the legendary "First R&B Festival 1964" featuring the Spencer Davis R&B Quartet (with Steve Winwood), the Liverpool Roadrunners, Long John Baldry & the Hoochie Coochie Men (with Rod Stewart), and Sonny Boy Williamson & the Yardbirds (with Keith Relf, Eric Clapton).
  • 1965 – Attention! Brian Auger! (Special Guests: Rod Stewart, Julie Driscoll, Long John Baldry) [released 1972]
  • 1967 – Open (first Trinity album)
  • 1968 – Definitely What!
  • 1968 – Don't Send Me No Flowers – Sonny Boy Williamson (with The Trinity, Jimmy Page, Joe, Harriot, Alan Skidmore) [recorded January 1965]
  • 1969 – Streetnoise (2LP)
  • 1969 – Jools & Brian (with The Trinity, Julie Driscoll) [compilation of early UK singles; recorded 1965-1967]
  • 1970 – Befour (last Trinity album)
  • 1971 – Brian Auger's Oblivion Express (first Oblivion Express album)
  • 1971 – A Better Land (Oblivion Express)
  • 1972 – Second Wind (Oblivion Express)
  • 1973 – Closer To It! (Oblivion Express)
  • 1974 – Straight Ahead (Oblivion Express)
  • 1974 – Live Oblivion, Volume 1 (Oblivion Express)
  • 1975 – Reinforcements (Oblivion Express)
  • 1976 – Live Oblivion, Volume 2 (Oblivion Express)
  • 1977 – The Best Of Brian Auger (Oblivion Express)
  • 1977 – Happiness Heartaches (Oblivion Express)
  • 1978 – Encore – Brian Auger & Julie Tippetts (their reunion album) [6]
  • 1978 – The Joy Of FlyingTony Williams (with Ronnie Montrose)
  • 1981 – Search Party (solo album)
  • 1982 – Here And Now (solo album)
  • 1987 – Keys To The Heart (Oblivion Express)
  • 1990 – Super Jam (with Zoot Money, Maria Muldaur)
  • 1993 – Live In Tokyo (June 1978 ... 'Live Under The Sky' Jazz Festival)Tony Williams (with Ronnie Montrose, Billy Cobham)
  • 1993 – Access All Areas: Live – Eric Burdon/Brian Auger Band -2CD
  • 1996 – The Best Of Brian Auger's Oblivion Express -2CD
  • 1998 – Blue Groove – Karma Auger
  • 1999 – Voices Of Other Times (Oblivion Express)
  • 1999 – The Mod Years (1965-1969 ... complete singles, B-sides and rare tracks) (compilation: with Steampacket, The Trinity, Julie Driscoll)
  • 2002 – Soft & Furry – Ali Auger
  • 2003 – Auger Rhythms: Brian Auger's Musical History -2CD (compilation: with The Trinity, Julie Driscoll, Oblivion Express)
  • 2004 – Get Auger-Nized! The Anthology -2CD (compilation: with The Trinity, Julie Driscoll, Oblivion Express)
  • 2005 – This Wheel's On Fire: The Best Of Brian Auger (compilation: with The Trinity, Julie Driscoll, Oblivion Express)
  • 2005 – Looking In The Eye Of The World (Oblivion Express)
  • 2005 – Live At The Baked Potato (Oblivion Express)
  • 2007 – Tiger: Brian Auger Featuring Trinity, Julie Driscoll & The Steampacket -2CD (Atom Records) (compilation of early UK material; also includes all 8 of the Sonny Boy Williamson tracks)
  • 2012 – Language Of The Heart (solo album)
  • 2013 – Mod Party (Brian Auger Trinity Featuring Savannah Grace)
  • 2013 – Train Keeps A RollingJeff Golub
  • 2015 – Live Los Angeles (Oblivion Express) -2CD (Freestyle Records)
  • 2015 – Back To The Beginning: The Brian Auger Anthology -2CD (Freestyle Records) (compilation: with The Trinity, Julie Driscoll, Oblivion Express)

Filmography[edit]

  • 1969 – 33⅓ Revolutions Per Monkee (The Trinity)
  • 2005 – Brian Auger: Insights Of The Keyboard Master (Learn The Styles Of Jazz-Rock's Greatest Keyboard Genius) -DVD [7]
  • 2005 – Live At The Baked Potato (Oblivion Express) -DVD

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Encyclopedia of Pop, Rock and Soul by Irwin Stambler
  • Jazz-Rock Fusion: The People, the Music by Julie Coryell & Laura Friedman
  • The Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll by Jon Pareles & Patricia Romanowski Bashe
  • Encyclopedia of Rock by Phil Hardy & Dave Laing
  • Urban Spacemen and Wayfaring Strangers: Overlooked Innovators and Eccentric Visionaries of 60s Rock by Richie Unterberger
  • Jimi Hendrix: The Man, the Magic, the Truth by Sharon Lawrence
  • Soul Picnic: The Music and Passion of Laura Nyro by Michele Kort
  • The Guinness Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin
  • The Encyclopedia of Jazz in the Seventies by Leonard Feather & Ira Gitler
  • The New Musical Express Book of Rock, 1975, Star Books

External links[edit]

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