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Music funk and R&B Average White Band pictures (pic) and photo gallery, albums covers pictures.
The Average White Band (also AWB) is a Scottish funk and R&B band who had a series of soul and disco hits between 1974 and 1980. They continue to perform as of 2006.
AWB was formed in 1971 by Alan Gorrie and Malcolm "Molly" Duncan, with Onnie McIntyre, Hamish Stuart, Roger Ball and Robbie McIntosh joining them in the original line-up. Duncan and Ball, affectionately known as the Dundee Horns, studied at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art (now part of the University of Dundee), and were previously members of Mogul Thrash.
The band's breakthrough was a support slot at Eric Clapton's comeback concert in 1973. MCA Records released their debut album, Show Your Hand, which sold poorly. Bruce McCaskill who was Clapton's tour manager liked the band's music and agreed to manage them. He borrowed money to take them to the U.S. and to promote them. McCaskill had many contacts from his days with Clapton and managed to get Atlantic Records to sign them. The band relocated to New York, signed to Atlantic and released the follow-up, AWB, better known as "The White Album". This album was the first of many with renowned producer Arif Mardin, and reached #1 in the U.S. Hot 100 chart.
However, tragedy struck on 23 September 1974, when McIntosh died of a heroin overdose. (Gorrie also overdosed but Cher kept him conscious until medical help arrived.) McIntosh was replaced by Steve Ferrone (of Bloodstone, and, like McIntosh, previously with Brian Auger's Oblivion Express), becoming the band's only black member.
In 1975, the single "Pick Up The Pieces" from the album AWB also hit #1 in the U.S. chart. The track is probably their best known today. The band follow up with LPs Cut the Cake (1975) and Soul Searching (1976), both big sellers and yielding further Top 40 singles. Their next LP, Benny & Us, was a collaboration with soul legend Ben E. King.
After several more albums, AWB's audience and sales dwindled. Although a dalliance with disco yielded the 1980 hit Let's Go Round Again, covered in the late 1990s by Louise, the group disbanded by 1982. Ferrone worked with Duran Duran whilst Hamish Stuart joined Paul McCartney's touring group. In 1985 Gorrie released a solo album, Sleepless Nights. Gorrie, Ball and McIntyre reunited in 1989 to record Aftershock, but Ball left the band shortly after its release. Eliot Lewis co-wrote with Gorrie on this album and joined the band replacing lead singer Hamish Stuart.
Average White Band has continued recording (Soul Tattoo 1997, Face to Face, 1999) and touring since. When Eliot Lewis left AWB in September 2002 to pursue other musical opportunities, he was replaced by Klyde Jones (see AWB). Their most recent album release in April 2003 was entitled Living in Colour.
The AWB line-up then included Alan Gorrie (bass, lead vocals), Klyde Jones (guitar, keyboard, lead vocals), Onnie McIntyre (guitar, vocals), Fred Vigdor (sax, keyboard, vocals) and Brian Dunne (drums). Gorrie and McIntyre are the only remaining original members of the band.
2006 saw yet another successful tour for the band but with New Jersey native, Rocky Bryant, replacing Brian Dunne as drummer.
Also in 2006, Hamish Stuart toured with Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band as bassist.