A request for some Ian Rilen leads to this post
this 2003 Live acoustic performance,
this guy does fantastic gutsy blues.
If you saw rockwiz last week one of
the guest artists was Steve Lucas who was
in legendary Sydney band X with Ian.
For those who are unfamiliar with Ian as I was
here's some history.
Ian Rilen's first substantial band was Band of Light,
a heavy blues outfit fronted by ex-La De Da Phil Key
in the early '70s. After leaving, Rilen fell in with ,
ex-Buffalo bassist Peter Wells who switched to slide
as they surrounded themselves with players in the
formidable hard rock beast that would become Rose
Tattoo. With a menacing image and sound just as
imposing, the Tatts were taken in under the Alberts
wing (the production house run by ex-Easybeats
Harry Vanda and George Young that spawned AC/DC).
The Rilen-Penned single "Bad Boy For Love"
cracked it for mainstream success -
just as its author moved on.
His next band was X. Perpetual outlaws afflicted
by a reputation for hard drugs and violent crowds,
the band existed outside the industry.
No band played harder, faster or with more spirit.
Twenty-five years later they still exist, on paper
at least, testimony to the musical bonds between
the only two constants, Rilen and singer-guitarist
Steve Lucas. Sandwiched between X break-ups
and reformations are a variety of other Rilen bands.
For a while, he even played sideman to former
Cold Chisel guitarist Ian Moss (a hugely commercial
form of employment that Rilen managed to,
uh, sidestep, as we'll hear later). Sardine v found him
moving on to rhythm guitar, his then-wife Stephanie
on keyboards. Skindiver found him playing the animated
front man. Hell to Pay coupled Rilen with the venerable
Spencer P. Jones (The Johnnys, Beasts of Bourbon) and
rollicking bar band rock. It involved his now former
girlfriend (and longtime X drummer) Cathy Green.
So does Rilen's next vehicle, the Love Addicts,
which finds him back on guitar and grinding out
gutbucket, down-and-dirty blues-rock.
Rilen's solo albums included Love is Murder (2001)
and Passion, Boots and Bruises (2004).
A final album was completed shortly before his death
from bladder cancer at the age of 59 on 30 October 2006.