The Firm (rock band)

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The Firm
The Firm.jpg
L-R: Jimmy Page, Chris Slade, Paul Rodgers, and Tony Franklin, 1984.
Background information
Origin England
Genres Hard rock, blues rock
Years active 1984–1986
Labels Atlantic
Associated acts Led Zeppelin, Free, Bad Company, AC/DC, Manfred Mann's Earth Band
Past members Paul Rodgers
Jimmy Page
Tony Franklin
Chris Slade

The Firm were a British rock supergroup formed in 1984, featuring singer Paul Rodgers[1] (Free and Bad Company), guitarist Jimmy Page (The Yardbirds and Led Zeppelin[2]), drummer Chris Slade[3](Manfred Mann's Earth Band, Uriah Heep and AC/DC) and bass player Tony Franklin.

"Jimmy was at a bit of a loose end," recalled Rodgers of the band's formation. "He'd come round and check out my home studio and we ended up writing songs, but without any definite plans. Jimmy was very keen to get on the road, so we put a band together… The first thing I knew was that he had to be writing songs again. I'd already seen one of my friends going down that road in Koss, and it wasn't going to happen again."[4]

Page and Rodgers refused to play material by their former bands and instead opted for a selection of Firm songs plus tracks from their solo albums; however, at least one performance of "Midnight Moonlight" featured sections of White Summer and Kashmir, originally recorded by Page's former bands The Yardbirds and Led Zeppelin, respectively. The new songs were heavily infused with a soulful and commercially accessible sound, courtesy of Franklin's fretless bass guitar underpinning an understated song structure. Despite refusing to play old material, the last track from The Firm, "Midnight Moonlight", was originally an unreleased Led Zeppelin song entitled "Swan Song". This caused critics to believe that Page had begun to run out of ideas.[5]

In subsequent interviews, Page indicated that the band was never meant to last more than two albums. After the band split, Page and Rodgers returned to solo work while Chris Slade joined AC/DC and Franklin teamed up with guitarist John Sykes in Blue Murder.

Band members[edit]

  • Paul Rodgers – lead vocals, rhythm guitar, acoustic guitar, piano
  • Jimmy Page – lead & rhythm guitars, acoustic guitar, violin bow, backing vocals
  • Tony Franklin – fretless bass, keyboards, synthesizer, backing vocals
  • Chris Slade – drums, percussion, backing vocals

Films, DVDs[edit]

  • The Firm Live at Hammersmith 1984 (1984) (limited release video)
  • Five from the Firm (1986)

Official tours[edit]

  • Europe (29 November 1984 – 9 December 1984)
  • USA (1985)

The band played only two UK concerts on this tour: one at Middlesbrough Town Hall, and one at the London Hammersmith Odeon. In addition to Firm songs, the band played solo material by Rodgers and Page. This included Paul Rodgers singing "Live in Peace" from his earlier solo album.

  • United States (14 March 1986 – 28 May 1986)

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Singles[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bio - Paul Rodgers Official Site". Paulrodgers.com. Retrieved 2014-07-15. 
  2. ^ "Jimmy Page | Bio, Pictures, Videos". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2014-07-15. 
  3. ^ https://www.allmusic.com/artist/the-firm-mn0000760417
  4. ^ Ling, Dave (March 2000). "My classic career". Classic Rock #12. p. 90. 
  5. ^ Brian Downing. "The Firm - The Firm | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-07-15. 
  6. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 200. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.