McGuinness Flint

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McGuinness Flint
GenresFolk rock, blues rock, country rock
Years active1970–1975
LabelsCapitol, DJM, Bronze
Associated actsManfred Mann, Gallagher and Lyle, The Blues Band, Stonebridge McGuinness, Lyle McGuinness Band
Past membersTom McGuinness
Hughie Flint
Dennis Coulson
Benny Gallagher
Graham Lyle
Dixie Dean
Lou Stonebridge
Jim Evans

McGuinness Flint was a rock band formed in 1970 by Tom McGuinness, former bassist and guitarist with Manfred Mann, and Hughie Flint, former drummer with John Mayall; plus vocalist and keyboard player Dennis Coulson, and multi-instrumentalists and singer-songwriters Benny Gallagher and Graham Lyle.[1]


Their first single "When I'm Dead and Gone" reached No.2 on the UK Singles Chart at the end of 1970 and No.47 on the Billboard pop chart and No.35 on the Cashbox pop chart in the U.S., No. 5 in Ireland and No. 31 in Canada.[2][3]) The debut album McGuinness Flint also made the Top 10 of the UK Albums Chart.[4] In 1999, it received another outing, in the soundtrack of the film, East is East.

A follow-up single, "Malt and Barley Blues", was a UK No.5 hit in 1971,[4] but the group floundered under the pressures of instant success, being required to record a second album and reproduce their recorded sound adequately on stage, which resulted in disappointing concerts, then a series of illnesses among the band members cancelled most of the concerts on their first tour. According to McGuinness, at this time the band consisted of two groups of close-knit friends, the first being Flint, McGuinness, and Coulson, and the other being Gallagher and Lyle. Though these two units generally got along well, a key disagreement between them was that the first group felt the band should focus on touring and performing, while the Gallagher/Lyle camp felt they should focus on songwriting and recording.[5]

The second album Happy Birthday Ruthy Baby failed to chart, as did the title track when released as a single, but contained some Gallagher and Lyle songs, notably "Sparrow", which attracted cover versions.[1]

Gallagher and Lyle left towards the end of 1971 to record as a duo, and would enjoy major success in 1976 with their hit-laden fifth album Breakaway.[1] McGuinness Flint would continue to play some of their compositions in live performances.[5] After several temporary members came and went, including comedian Neil Innes on piano, the group then recruited bassist Dixie Dean on a permanent basis, and recorded Lo and Behold, an album of Bob Dylan songs (which had not yet been officially recorded and released by the writer himself). This album was credited to Coulson, Dean, McGuinness, Flint, and issued in 1972.[1] A single "Let The People Go" was banned by the BBC as it related to the Ulster crisis, a fate which also befell a contemporary single by Wings, "Give Ireland Back to the Irish".

Coulson left to record a solo album for Elektra Records (which Gallagher and Lyle contribed to), and was replaced by Lou Stonebridge on keyboards and Jim Evans on guitar.[1] This new line-up recorded two further albums. Neither of these recordings sold well and the group broke up in 1975.[1] A splinter group, Stonebridge McGuinness, had a minor hit in 1979 with "Oo-Eeh Baby" (No. 54 in the UK[6]) and released the album Corporate Madness on RCA Records the following year.[1] This group proved short-lived, however, and afterwards McGuinness and Flint both joined The Blues Band, which featured former Manfred Mann vocalist and harmonica player, Paul Jones.[1] Stonebridge had a stint in early 80s classic soul revival outfit The Dance Band, who recorded for the PRT-distributed Double D label.

McGuinness briefly reunited with Graham Lyle in 1983 to form the Lyle McGuinness Band, a short-lived folk rock ensemble that recorded a single, "Elise", and an album, Acting on Impulse, for the independent Cool King label; in Germany, this set was granted a major label release on Polydor. Lyle's songwriting career exploded soon afterwards with the worldwide success of his composition "What's Love Got to Do with It?" for Tina Turner, ensuring that the Lyle McGuinness Band would not continue. Diamond Recordings reissued the album on CD in 1997 as Elise, Elise, with the addition of the non-album single plus a previously unreleased song.

McGuinness continues to record and perform as a member of both The Blues Band and The Manfreds, the latter outfit being an amalgamation of 1960s Manfred Mann members that has operated since 1992.

Dennis Coulson died on 15 January 2006.[7]



1970 – McGuinness Flint[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Christgau's Record GuideB[8]
AllMusic3 1/2*
Track listing

All songs written by Benny Gallagher and Graham Lyle unless otherwise noted.

Side one
  1. "Lazy Afternoon" — (Dennis Coulson, Hughie Flint, Tom McGuinness) — 3:53
  2. "Bodang Buck" — 3:06
  3. "Mister Mister" — 2:04
  4. "Heritage" — 2:17
  5. "I'm Letting You Know" – (Dennis Coulson, Tom McGuinness) — 3:26
  6. "Let It Ride" — 3:5
Side two
  1. "Dream Darling Dream" — 1:44
  2. "When I'm Dead And Gone" — 3:35
  3. "Brother Psyche" — 5:00
  4. "Who You Got To Love" — 2:38
  5. "International" — 3:19
  • Graham Lyle — guitar, mandolin, bass, vocals
  • Benny Gallagher — guitar, bass, keyboards, vocals
  • Tom McGuinness — guitar, bass
  • Dennis Coulson — keyboards, vocals
  • Hughie Flint — drums, percussion
  • Paul Rutherford — brass arrangements
  • Brian Rogers — arrangements on "International"

1971 – Happy Birthday, Ruthy Baby[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic4 1/2*
Tracklist (original 1971 release)

All tracks composed by Benny Gallagher/Graham Lyle (except where indicated).

  1. Happy Birthday, Ruthy Baby 3:20
  2. Conversation 3:06
  3. When I'm Alone With You 2:40 (Tom McGuinness, Hughie Flint)
  4. Fixer 3:32
  5. Faith And Gravy 2:43
  6. Klondike 2:07
  7. Reader To Writer 2:37
  8. Changes 2:41
  9. Friends Of Mine 2:50
  10. Piper Of Dreams 2:50
  11. Jimmy's Song 4:23
  12. Sparrow 2:57

Tracklist (remastered release - 2 bonus tracks)

All tracks composed by Benny Gallagher/Graham Lyle (except where indicated).

  1. Happy Birthday, Ruthy Baby 03:22
  2. Conversation 03:07
  3. When I'm Alone With You 02:39 (Tom McGuinness, Hughie Flint)
  4. Fixer 03:55
  5. Faith And Gravy 02:46
  6. Klondike 02:09
  7. Reader To Writer 02:39
  8. Changes 02:44
  9. Friends Of Mine 02:52
  10. Piper Of Dreams 03:43
  11. Jimmy's Song 03:33
  12. Sparrow 02:59
  13. Wham Bam (bonus track) 02:45
  14. Back On The Road Again (bonus track) 02:58

Tracklist (2008 Digital remastered release by EMI - 4 bonus tracks)

All tracks composed by Benny Gallagher/Graham Lyle (except where indicated).

  1. Malt And Barley Blues (bonus track)* 02:15
  2. Rock On (bonus track)* 02:53
  3. Happy Birthday, Ruthy Baby 03:22
  4. Conversation 03:07
  5. When I'm Alone With You 02:39 (Tom McGuinness, Hughie Flint)
  6. Fixer 03:55
  7. Faith And Gravy 02:46
  8. Klondike 02:09
  9. Reader To Writer 02:39
  10. Changes 02:44
  11. Friends Of Mine 02:52
  12. Piper Of Dreams 03:43
  13. Jimmy's Song 03:33
  14. Sparrow 02:59
  15. Wham Bam (bonus track) 02:45
  16. Back On The Road Again (bonus track) 02:58
  • previous single release 1971

1972 – Lo and Behold (credited to Coulson, Dean, McGuinness, Flint)[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic4 1/2*

A album of unreleased Bob Dylan songs.

1973 – Rainbow[edit]

1974 – C'est La Vie[edit]

2009 – McGuinness Flint In Session At The BBC[edit]


  • 1970 – "When I'm Dead and Gone"
  • 1971 – "Happy Birthday Ruthy Baby"
  • 1971 – "Malt and Barley Blues"
  • 1971 – "Friends of Mine"
  • 1972 – "Let the People Go"
  • 1973 – "Ride On My Rainbow"
  • 1974 – "C'est La Vie"

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "Biography by Bruce Eder". Retrieved 19 February 2009.
  2. ^ [1][dead link]
  3. ^ McGuiness Flint USA chart history Archived 25 November 2015 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 5 May 2013.
  4. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 339. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  5. ^ a b Holloway, Danny (28 August 1971). "An Old Mann Remembers...". Sounds. Spotlight Publications. p. 11.
  6. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 534. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  7. ^ Chronicle, Evening (23 January 2006). "Friends shocked by rock star's sad end". nechronicle.
  8. ^ Christgau, Robert (1981). "Consumer Guide '70s: M". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. Ticknor & Fields. ISBN 089919026X. Retrieved 7 March 2019 – via