Greg Lake

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For other people named Greg Lake, see Greg Lake (disambiguation).
Greg Lake
Lake in concert, December 2005
Background information
Birth name Gregory Stuart Lake
Born (1947-11-10) 10 November 1947 (age 68)
Poole, Dorset, England
Genres Progressive rock, Classic rock
Occupation(s) Musician, singer-songwriter, producer
Instruments Vocals, bass guitar, guitar
Years active 1966–present
Labels Manticore, Chrysalis
Associated acts The Gods, King Crimson, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Gary Moore, Asia, Emerson, Lake & Powell, Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band
Notable instruments
Custom Alembic models
Custom Wal bass models
Fender Jazz Bass
Gibson Ripper
Sadowsky Custom Made Gold bass

Gregory Stuart "Greg" Lake (born 10 November 1947)[1] is an English singer, musician, songwriter and producer. He was a singer and bassist for King Crimson before becoming the bassist, guitarist, singer and lyricist for Emerson, Lake & Palmer. He also recorded as a solo artist, most notably scoring a major hit single in 1975 with "I Believe in Father Christmas".


Greg Lake, a school friend of Robert Fripp, was a founding member of King Crimson. Lake was primarily a guitarist, but agreed to switch to bass at Fripp's request.[2] Lake had some involvement in writing the lyrics for King Crimson's debut album, In the Court of the Crimson King, although Peter Sinfield was the primary lyricist. Lake also ended up producing the album after their contracted producer, Tony Clarke, walked away from the project.

In The Court of the Crimson King, released in 1969, made King Crimson far more successful than any of Fripp and Lake's earlier projects (such as the Shy Limbs or Giles, Giles and Fripp). Lake's vocals, which ranged from serene and soothing to acerbic and distorted, were a striking element of the album. However, Lake stayed with King Crimson for only about a year, leaving soon after their debut album to start the rock trio Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Despite this, at Fripp's request, Lake sang on King Crimson's second album, In the Wake of Poseidon.

Greg Lake, with Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Toronto, Canada 3 February 1978

King Crimson played a couple of venues with The Nice, during which Lake struck up a friendship with The Nice's precocious keyboardist Keith Emerson. Lake and Emerson eventually teamed up and brought in the drummer from The Crazy World of Arthur Brown and Atomic Rooster, Carl Palmer—forming the progressive rock 'supergroup' Emerson Lake & Palmer (ELP). Lake contributed acoustic guitar, electric guitar, bass, lyrics, vocals and production work to the band.

In 1975, Lake achieved solo chart success when his single, "I Believe in Father Christmas", reached number two on the UK singles chart. It has become a Yuletide perennial.[3]

Lake subsequently joined Asia for a time, and then co-formed Emerson, Lake & Powell.

In 2005, Lake toured Germany and the United Kingdom with his "Greg Lake Band" which included David Arch, Florian Opahle, Trevor Barry on bass, and Brett Morgan.[4]

Lake performed "Karn Evil 9" with the Trans-Siberian Orchestra at several shows.[5] At the album Night Castle (2009) he was a special guest and played guitar on "Nutrocker", a special version of the music number Nut Rocker.

In 2010, he toured with Keith Emerson, from which came the live album Live from Manticore Hall. In 2012 Greg Lake toured England, The United States and Italy with the critically acclaimed "Songs Of A Lifetime" show on which he entertained small audience with a lifetime career including some covers by beloved Beatles, Elvis and more.

In late june 2013 Lake was invited to star at Genoa's Poetry Festival where he performed a reading of "Pirates", a drama piece in music he wrote with Peter Sinfield. Then performed some of his classic songs. On January 9, 2016 he was awarded by the very first Honorary Degree in Music and lyrics composition by Conservatorio Nicolini in Piacenza, Italy. This was the first time ever a Conservatorio gave a Honoris Causa award.



Live Albums
  • The Greg Lake Retrospective: From The Beginning (1997)
  • From The Underground: The Official Bootleg (1998)
  • From The Underground 2 : Deeper Into The Mine : An Official Greg Lake Bootleg (2003)
  • I Believe in Father Christmas (1975)
  • C'est La Vie (1977)
  • Watching Over You (1977)
  • Love You Too Much (1981)
  • Let Me Love You Once (1981)
  • It Hurts / Retribution Drive (1982)
  • Famous Last Words (1983)
  • Greg Lake: Live In Concert (2006)
  • Welcome Backstage (2006)

with The Shame singles[edit]

  • Don't Go Away Little Girl/Dreams Don't Bother Me (1967)

with Shy Limbs singles[edit]

  • Reputation / Love (1968)side B only

with King Crimson[edit]

with Emerson, Lake and Palmer[edit]

Studio albums
Year Title Billboard album 200[6] UK Top 100[7] RIAA[8] BPI[9]
1970 Emerson, Lake & Palmer 18 4 Gold Silver
1971 Tarkus 9 1 Gold Platinum
1972 Trilogy 5 2 Gold Platinum
1973 Brain Salad Surgery 11 2 Gold Gold
1977 Works, Vol. 1 12 9 Gold Gold
1977 Works, Vol. 2 37 20 Gold -
1978 Love Beach 55 48 Gold Silver
1992 Black Moon 78 - - -
1994 In the Hot Seat - - - -
Live albums
Year Title Billboard album 200[6] UK Top 100[7] RIAA[8] BPI[9]
1971 Pictures at an Exhibition 10 3 Gold Silver
1974 Welcome Back My Friends to the Show That Never Ends... Ladies and Gentlemen, Emerson, Lake & Palmer 4 5 Gold -
1979 In Concert 73 - - -
1993 Live at the Royal Albert Hall - - - -
Works Live - - - -
1997 Live at the Isle of Wight Festival 1970 - - - -
Live in Poland - - - -
King Biscuit Flower Hour Presents: Greatest Hits Live - - - -
1998 Then & Now - - - -
2001 The Original Bootleg Series from the Manticore Vaults: Volume One - - - -
The Original Bootleg Series from the Manticore Vaults: Volume Two - - - -
2002 The Original Bootleg Series from the Manticore Vaults: Volume Three - - - -
2006 The Original Bootleg Series from the Manticore Vaults: Volume Four - - - -
2010 High Voltage - - - -
A Time And A Place - - - -
2011 Live at Nassau Coliseum '78 - - - -
Live at the Mar Y Sol Festival '72 - - - -
2012 Live in California 1974 - - - -
2013 Live in Montreal 1977 - - - -

with Asia[edit]

  • Enso Kai (2001), Recorded live at the Budokan in Tokyo, Japan, on 6 December 1983.

with Emerson, Lake and Powell[edit]

  • Emerson, Lake & Powell (1986)
  • The Sprocket Sessions (2003(An Official Bootleg), 2010(Reissue))
  • Live in Concert (2003(An Official Bootleg), 2010(Reissue))
  • Live in Concert & More... (2012), 2CDs Contains 2 previously released official bootlegs, Live in Concert and The Sprocket Sessions


  1. ^ Clarke, Donald (ed.) Penguin Encyclopedia of Popular Music 2nd ed. 1998 Penguin Books, London
  2. ^
  3. ^ Mulholland, Garry (19 December 2014). "The Making Of… Greg Lake’s I Believe In Father Christmas". Uncut. Retrieved 17 August 2015. 
  4. ^ "Greg Lake Band and Tour Info". The Official Greg Lake website. Retrieved 17 August 2015. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b allmusic ((( Emerson, Lake & Palmer > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums )))
  7. ^ a b search results
  8. ^ a b "Gold & Platinum – August 14, 2008". RIAA. Retrieved 2011-07-15. 
  9. ^ a b "The Bpi". The Bpi. Retrieved 2011-07-15. 
  • Forrester, George, Martyn Hanson and Frank Askew. Emerson, Lake & Palmer, The Show That Never Ends, A Musical Biography. (2001) Helter Skelter Publishing ISBN 1-900924-17-X.

External links[edit]