This recording was meant to be a demo but soon had interest from Chrysalis and Virgin Records in London. It's the most rock/punk recording Lionel has made. It was recorded in England at DB Studio with Andrew Bulter as engineer. The group is Max Roach on electric guitar and backing vocals, John Wygens on electric guitar, Kostka Garcia on drums and Lionel on bass and lead vocals. LIONEL LODGE PRESS QUOTES This genial maverick is a passionate singer who wears his heart on his sleeve and this is what fuels his music's brazen beauty. Uplifting and touching ... there is much to enjoy here ... streets ahead of most of the competition. Lionel Lodge deserves a place in your heart check him out definitely one towatch. Michael Flynn, audiostreet.co.UK 'Great music and beautiful songs.' Raymond Swennen ATL Radio, FM 105.9, Belgium 'Lionel paints pictures with words and music so vivid you can touch the canvas. With his brown velvet voice he sings with passion and sincerity.' Flicky Harrison Swindon Evening Press, England 'Lionel Lodge and Brother Bro are indeed related not only by blood but also by their musical understanding. Lionel, on vocals and acoustic, tells stories of days of Buicks, liquor stores and loving women. Honest and open songwriting, with it's intensity of depth mirrored by Brother Bro kicking in on the electric guitar'. OnLineTV.com (MusicTV.com) 'A truly international experience, strongly recommended.' V. Pawlowsky, Arts Diary, Kyiv Post, Ukraine. 'During the two hours of the most positive vibrations, identified as parade of masterful expression by super professionals, a musical performance took place of the highest artistic level.' Oleksandr Yevtushenko Ukraiinske Slovo (Ukrainian weekly magazine) Ukrainian Word No. 49 Dec. 6-12 2001 'Lionel Lodge is a universal song writing genius!!' X-Act Music Magazine, Austria 'Excellent music.' Kurier, Austria Lionel was born in the early sixties in the Highlands of Scotland eventhough his family was living in the London England at the time. His father, Tom Lodge was soon to become one of the top DJs on the first pirate radio station, Radio Caroline, which introduced Lionel at a very early age to the exploding sixties British music scene. 'My dad was interviewing the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, we always had the newest releases playing on the home stereo, dad would go off to gigs and come home with these great new band's latest recordings.' When Lionel was four he re-wrote the words to the Stones' song Get Off My Cloud, turned it into a anthem to call his mother to get him out of bed. 'Lionel was such a terror when he was young that we had to tell him he couldn't get out of bed until me or his father came to get him, left on his own he would destroy the house in minuets. At first he would wake up before us and start shouting from his room that he was awake, we had to tell him not to shout in the morning, that's when he re-wrote that song and started singing.' At five years old his parents moved Lionel and his two older brothers to Canada. 'Dad was working for Radio Caroline and in '67 the British government passed the Marine Broadcasting Act, which stated that anyone working with or for pirate radio stations would be arrested if they entered England. Dad tried to work for the BBC then but it was too regimented for him, so off to Canada we went.' 'In Canada we were very strange compared to the rest of the children at school, we had long hair and wore hippy-like clothes, plus we had English accents. I hated it for the first five years, didn't like Canada at all, got into a lot of fights. We moved around a fair bit and so we were always the new kids with funny accents.' Lionel's first instrument was the piano. ' I had a piano teacher for a short while who taught me the basics to boogie-woogie piano. But he disappeared one day never to return. It was around this time I started getting seriously interested in girls and the girls thought that the piano was a sissy instrument, so I changed to the saxaphone, far more sexy, but singing was my main passion, all I really wanted to do from as far back as I can remember.' After years of learning Glen Miller's Greatest Hits in the school orchestra, Lionel and his brother Brodie put together their first band. 'I was living in a house with a London Ontario, weekend, nazi punk band, they weren't nazis and they certainly weren't street punks, most of them lived at home with mom and had good jobs and expensive cars but they were singing about tearing down the establishment, their serious fakeness would make me and Brodie laugh. We thought that if they can call themselves anarcist punks, then for all it means then we could be... fish rockers! So it was and so we were. Actually the fish rock wave of London Ontario started with a poster. Brodie made it out of an old excilopedia on fashion, it was a colarge of all these pictures of different fashions and hair styles and across this he painted in a kinda cartoon writing 'Fish Rock!!'. It was put it up in a party, on a night when the nazi punk band was going to play for all their friends. Well, the poster was pulled down a bunch of times that night, it kept upsetting these renegade, ruthless adversaries to the statis quo and the establishment. We laughed. 'I guess they thought we were laughing at them, we were. So it was that Fish Rock was born. The next day, after we cleared the house by playing Bethoven's 9th very loud, we went down in the cellar and pick up their instruments and started playing. Someone had to play Fish Rock and we guessed we were the most likely candidits. We wrote songs like 'Follow Fish', 'Living In A Fish Farm' and 'Ban Can Tuna'. It was a lot of fun but soon became a parody of it's original intentions and then it was over.' After that Brodie and Lionel had a few different bands until the final Corndog line-up with which they were signed to BMG Records Canada. The Corndogs released two recordings before BMG and two with BMG. They toured Canada from end to end many times with steady success. 'But there were some problems on the business side of things, problems with the record company and their perception of who we were. I was not so satisfied and wanted to get out of the deal and try to move to another company. I was loving the traveling and wanted to go farther afield, across the oceans I guess I was bored with being in Canada at that time.' The travel bug had bit and Lionel took exit to England. It was 1992, he originally thought he'd only stay that side of the atlantic for a few months but, Lionel stayed longer, over a decade, longer and started traveling around Europe, meeting local players to record four of his now seven solo CD s. 'It was time for a change, personally and musically. After recording 'She's No Game´ I was feeling the need to shake this life of mine up a bit. I was becoming too comfortable, too mellow. Time to take a jump into the unknown.' First stop in England he put together a loud electric band that was said to be a mixture of The Pixies and Stax Volt. With this four piece band his third CD, 'Sister', was recorded. 'It was a band based on fun, we played for fun, I was writing for fun, nothing was taken seriously. The effect was very uplifting. We played all over England, pubs, clubs, a few small festivals, whatever came our way. We were loud but not proud.' 'And then came the offers. We were talking to Chrysalis and Virgin, there were some pretty big amounts of money being discussed, they wanted to pick up 'Sister' and release it as is. I didn't really believe it, I didn't feel it was for real and I wasn't at ease with who was offering the deal. We were doing showcases in London and workig the situation when the band started to fall apart.' Instead of accepting offers from Chrysalis or Virgin Lionel continued traveling on his own, going around England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland, meeting and working with local players. By the end of this period he recorded his fourth CD, Naked, with a six piece, mainly acoustic band. 'The band on 'Naked' is a mixture of Irish, Scottish and English players, I'm very proud of that CD. It worked so easily. We recorded it in one day, started at 9:00am and finished the mixing in time to make it to the pub before closing time.' But the need for more traveling and musical exploring was still calling, so he went to France then Spain, Greece and through a strange twist of events, after a couple years, ended up in Vienna. 'I've met a lot of great players here, people like Rens Newland, Hans Theessink, Othmar Binder, Gajus Stappen, Peter Müller, Oliver Gattringer, Willie Lange, and the members of my new group, Valentin Oman, George Beck, Thomas Eder, Bernhard Osanna and Peter Schönbauer. 'Playing with these people has been a joy and an honour. Also the mixing of cultures has been both interesting and inspiring. I only planned on staying in Vienna for a couple months, but I met so many fine players here that leaving became a hard thought to entertain.' In 1999 Lionel signed an single deal with Turnaround Records and started working with Rens Newland in his studio in Vienna. Together they recorded the maxi-single 'You're All I Want´, which was finished in May but released in October. By the middle of 1999 Lionel was mainly perfroming live in Vienna Rens, both on acoustic guitars. But when the opportuinties arose they extended the live line up with some of the musicians they're working in the studio with. By the time the first recording was released, the maxi-single 'You're All I Want´, Lionel and Rens had transfered the understanding they'd developed in the studio out to the live stages. They're managed to fuse Lionel's Americana/Folk/Rock writings with Rens' Jazz Funk sensibilities to an effect that was both international and down-home, sophisticated but still easily accessable. In November 1999 Lionel and Brodie met in England to do a series of shows, just the two of them on guitars. 'Our Grandmother had died earlier that year and this was to mark her first birthday since her death. She was very popular in the area and so it was a bit of a community event. We played in the local pub, set up in the corner. It worked with a haunting effect.' They started with the local pub and ended up in London. They realised that they still had the open natural way between them, their way of rolling through the songs together. 'People seemed to really react to the two of us playing together, we played a lot of the places I used to play with the group on 'Naked'. It was a lot of fun and the music was flowing.' In early 2000 they returned for another three weeks of playing in clubs and theaters around England and they recorded a whole slew of songs, some of which ended up on Lionel's next CD. In September 2000, Lionel released his fifth CD, 'Somewhere In Vienna And Doing Fine´ while he was continuing with numerous live shows in Europe and North America. This CD covers the three different musical settings Lionel was working with at the time. Mainly the two different duos, Lionel and Rens Newland (for most of European performances) and Lionel and Brother Bro (for British and American performances) but the CD also includes a couple tracks with the group Lionel had at the time in Vienna with Rens, Willi Langer and Oliver Gattringer. But before that something else, a whole new musical direction, was bubbling up from under. During the summer of 2000, while playing at the Pepsi Donau Insel Fest in Budapest, Hungary, Lionel met Myroslav Levytsky, a Ukrainian composer and leader of the group Braty Bluzu. They talked and exchanged contact info with the thought being of Lionel, sometime, traveling to Ukraine to perform. A few months later the invitation came. On January 8th 2001 Lionel traveled to Kalush, Ukraine with Rens Newland as his stage partner. They performed in the city's concert hall as part of the city's Christmas festival. 'It really took my heart, being there, we drove through the mountains, though the small villages and found this indoor festival overflowing with their cultural dances and songs. It was an experience I will never forget and it was the start of many more shows and concerts in the Ukraine.' In June of 2001 Rens arranged a concert at the Linz City Music Festival for Lionel and Rens to perform with Braty Bluzu, all together, mixing their styles, their approaches and their songs together to give a very unique soundscape of cultural diversity. Since this date they have continued to perform what they call the 'Music Without Boarders' project a few times a year. Twice they added a Swiss Chamber Orchestra to the line up and it is planned to take this full show out on the road in Europe. In Febuary and March of 2001 Lionel recorded his 6th CD, 'Beautiful World', in Canada with his Brother Bro. They set up and recorded in an old church in the middle of tobacco country, South Western Ontario. Just the two of them and a pile of original songs. It's spooky kinda country rock with a bluesy edge to it. Just one acoustic guitar and one electric guitar and their voices. They recorded it then flew over to England to tour the British clubs and theaters for most of April. Between October 2000 and May 2002 Lionel was also recording another new CD with Rens Newland. It started out to be a duo album but soon was redirected towards a more band/produced CD. Released by Jive Music in November 2002, 'Sailing To The Sirens' shines with eleven of Lionel's new original songs. Produced by Lionel and Rens it has a very different sound to it then the CD with Brother Bro and to really show the difference in musical approaches between the two CDs Lionel recorded the song 'Beautiful World' for both releases. There's an old saying, 'A rolling stone collects on moss´, well you won't find any moss on Lionel. Late in 2002 Lionel started to do what he called Sessions at a little cafe/bar in Vienna. The core of this new group was Valentin Oman on piano, Bernhard Osanna on contra bass and Peter Müller on drums. Lionel invited other players to come and sit in with them, players Lionel had worked with in the past and others he had only heard about. They held the Sessions every Tuesday evening for a few weeks. They didn't perform as such, more like they just jammed, messing their way through Lionel's original songs, and some pieces that they made up on the spot. It was a very relaxed settng and so the music came out that way too. But the Sessions had to come to a pause due to Christmas and Lionel had plans to head back to Canada for the season and record a new CD with Brother Bro and his son Durrie. So off he went, back to the cold country side where his family live, with a stack of new originals he had written while in Spain during the previous autumn. This time they set up to record in a building on Brodie's property. A small, old wooden barn that they called The Shed. They recorded 15 songs, some Lionel's, some Brodie's, Lionel on acoustic guitar, Brodie on electric guitar and 17 year old Durrie on drums. In January 2003 Lionel returned to Vienna from Canada with all the recordings ready to be mixed only to head off again with Rens to perform in Ukraine, again in the Kiev City Music Hall and again with the string orchestra and Braty Bluzu. While they were there they also did an hour performance for the Ukrainian MTV which is called M1. In February 2003 Lionel started up the Sessions again and plans on continuing the weekly sessions until the early summer when the festival season starts. The core of the band has expanded to Valentin Oman, George Beck, Thomas Eder, with Bernhard Osanna and Peter Schönbauer trading off on the contra bass. With this group Lionel is also doing the occasional concerts in the Vienna area. To be continued...