October 21, 2020

1984-01-15 – The Indianapolis Star

1984 01 15 The_Indianapolis_Star_Sun__Jan_15__1984_

"IGE

THE INDIANAPOLIS STAR

' Ronnie Lane, friends LP reissued '

By PATRICK T. MORRISON

When Ronnie Lane limped on the
stage of London‘s Royal Albert Hall
September 20 and fought his way
through a couple of encore songs.
the former bass player for Faces
won a small victory.

Lane has been suffering from
multiple sclerosns lMSl. a degenerat-
ing nerve disease. for six years. His
appearance was an encouraging im-
provement in his condition.

The concert was an all-star bene-
fit to raise money for a British MS
organization with which Lane was
assomated. The lineup of British rock
greats included Jimmy Page. Jeff
Beck. Eric Clapton. Charlie Watts
and Bill Wyman.

ACCORDING TO Rolling Stone
magazine. “the biggest cheer from
the capacny crowd of 6.000 didn't go
to an} of those '605 superstars.
Instead it went to a slight. scrubby
fellow iLane) who wore a bright

smile on his worn ellin face . . .'
The article also acknowledged

Lane‘s courage. . . The appearance

RECORDS

of Ronnie Lane for the encore. sing‘
ing a new song called Bomber's

Moon with all his desperate might.
was a poignant reminder of the real
reason for this celebrity gathering."

Lane's legendary friends then
toured four United States cities rais-
ing money for MS with once-in-a-
lifetime concerts featuring Clapton.
Beck. Page and Joe Cocker. Lane
also closed those shows with an
encore song.

With the attention being paid
Lane. Atlantic Records has re-re-
leased a collaborative effort between

the former Faces player and Pete
Townshend. recorded about the time

Lane learned he had MS.

TITLED ROUGH MIX iAtco.
90097-l-Y). it‘s a curious blend of
country and folk influenced ballads
with a couple of more up-tempo

rockers thrown in.
A slew of top British musicians

appear on the album. including Clap-

ton (playing dobro). Watts. and pia-
nist Ian Stewart. Who bassist John
Entwistle lends vocal support and
brass to the last and most country of
the album‘s songs. Till the Rivers All
Run Dry. ‘
Lane and Townshend. who re
corded the album in London‘s Olym-
pic Studios during late 1976 and early

1977. also play a variety of string
instruments. including acoustic and
electric guitars, mandolins. banjos

and bass guitars.

THE RESULT is an album domi-
nated by acoustic strings and other
lolk instruments (an accordion is
even used) with electric sounds kept

to a minimum.
Lane and Townshend divided the

authorship of the ll songs about
evenly. with live by Townshend four
by Lane. one joint effort. and one

song written by neither man.
The better cuts appear on Side

one. which opens with a Town-
shend acoustic rocker about a less
than virtuous girl friend. My Baby
Gives It Away. The Lane songs on
side one are a folk sounding No-

where To Run and Annie. 3 country
sounding number that includes the
accordion.

THAT SIDE closes With a ‘505
sounding rocker written by Lane.
Calmelody. The honky-tonk piano
and hot saxophone on this out make
it reminiscent of Bobby and Shirley
Womack‘s It's All Over Now. a song

Faces performed.

Side two. while not as strong.
includes the country Rivers and a
Lane composition. April Fool. high-
lighted by acoustic picking and slide
neck guitar also reminiscent of prior
Faces‘ work.

The most glaring weakness on
the album. however. is vocals. Nei-
ther Townshend or Lane is particu-
larly noted for their great voxces. so
the outstanding instrumental work is
some time pulled down by some
oll'key or strained singing.

While not outstanding. Rough
Mix is an interesting album. particu-
larly for those interested in earlier
work by Townshend or Lane.

Morrison is a Star staff reporter.