Basically, there is Ten Years After (TYA) 2017 double. On one track, drummer Ric Lee and organist Chick Churchill drive with guitarist/singer Marcus Bonfanti and bassist Colin Hodgkinson under the name Ten Years After. Although their concerts have something of a tribute band due to the two rather inconspicuous original members, Bonfantis' performance is pure passion, and ex-Alexis-Korner-/Whitesnake bassist Hodgkinson is still one of the outstanding instrumentalists in the area of tension between blues, jazz and rock. And even a Leo Lyons cannot and does not complain about such colleagues. "They're doing well already, with Colin and Marcus at the top of their game."
Lyons, who had founded the group with Alvin Lee, left TYA together with guitarist/singer Joe Gooch in January 2014 to dedicate himself completely to the Hundred Seventy Split, which had previously been a side project. "If TYA had been a bit shorter, Joe and I wouldn't have had to quit, but the decision was made because TYA wanted to continue to tour strongly. And so we decided to play most of the TYA classics live as part of our history, but on the other hand to be an active recording band."
The early bird
"Alvin and I started in late 1959 with a quintet called The Atomites," Lyons recalls. "The sound that we later played with Ten Years After did not develop until 1962 at the Hamburg Star Club. We were a trio at the time. Next to us played Pete Evans, the drummer of the dissolved Atomites. We called ourselves The Jaybirds, and Alvin also took over the lead vocals. In 1966, three drummers later, Ric Lee sat on the drum stool. And a little later, Chick Churchill joined the Jaybirds. In 1967 I read an advertisement in a magazine for a book entitled 'Suez ten years after'. It was about the invasion of the Suez Canal in 1957. I thought that would be a cool name for our band who were now a quartet. At that time I was also the manager of the band, because nobody else wanted to do that. When we got a record deal, Chris Wright, who later became famous with Chrysalis Records, took the job."