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Faces

Shows: 473
Earliest: Nov 10, 1969
Latest: Feb 18, 2020

[WikiPedia] Faces are an English rock band formed in 1969 by members of Small Faces after lead singer and guitarist Steve Marriott left to form Humble Pie. The remaining Small Faces—Ian McLagan (keyboards), Ronnie Lane (electric bass, vocals), and Kenney Jones (drums and percussion)—were joined by guitarist Ronnie Wood and singer Rod Stewart, both from the Jeff Beck Group, and the new line-up was renamed Faces. The band had a unique arrangement, as Rod Stewart had signed a separate solo recording contract with the Mercury label shortly before joining the group, which was signed to Warner Bros. Band members often contributed to Stewart's solo albums as contract players, and Faces live shows of the period would feature as much of Stewart's solo material as that of the band, which later fuelled tensions amongst them when they began to effectively be viewed as Stewart's 'backing band'. The group lacked a single main songwriter as from the beginning each member would work in tandem to offer songs for each of their albums (Stewart and Wood most often wrote together as a duo, as did Lane and Wood, while Lane would usually contribute at least one solo composition per album). While Stewart was the primary lead singer, both Lane and Wood would also sing lead vocals on several tracks (Lane usually sang lead on his own solo compositions). Their first two albums, First Step (1970) and Long Player (1971), lacked a hit single, but their third album, 1971's A Nod Is As Good As a Wink... to a Blind Horse, bolstered by the success of Stewart's solo work, became a worldwide hit, peaking at number 2 on the UK Albums Chart and number 6 on the U.S. Billboard 200 album chart and spawning the band's first hit single, "Stay with Me". Tensions in the band came to a head during the recording of their fourth (and final) studio album, 1973's Ooh La La. Ronnie Lane, who was a founder member of Small Faces, left over his diminished role in the band in 1973, and was replaced by Tetsu Yamauchi on bass. The band continued to tour throughout 1974 and 1975, releasing a live album, Coast to Coast: Overture and Beginners, in 1974 that was jointly credited to Rod Stewart/Faces. Ronnie Wood also began to drift from the group over this period, releasing two solo albums of his own, and appearing as a guest musician on two Rolling Stones albums and joining them on tour in 1975. He was briefly augmented by Jesse Ed Davis on guitars before the band broke up at the end of 1975. A greatest hits collection, Snakes and Ladders / The Best of Faces, appeared in 1976, and additional retrospective albums would appear over the subsequent decades. Stewart would continue his successful solo career, while Ronnie Wood would formally join the Rolling Stones as a permanent member in 1976. Kenney Jones joined the Who as a replacement for the deceased Keith Moon in 1978. Ian McLagan would go on to work as a session and touring musician with a number of acts (including his own bands) throughout the 1970s until his death in 2014, while Ronnie Lane's activities in the music business (which included 1977's critically lauded Rough Mix collaboration with Pete Townshend) were severely curtailed by 1980 due to the onset of multiple sclerosis which forced his eventual retirement by the early 1990s. The original Small Faces would have a reunion during the mid to late 1970s with Marriott, Jones, and McLagan joined by Rick Wills on bass guitar, as Lane withdrew early due to his illness. A number of partial reunions of the Faces were rumoured throughout the 2000s, with various one-off performances involving surviving members occurring. In 2010–11 a brief reunion tour occurred with Mick Hucknall and Glen Matlock on vocals and bass respectively. In 2021, Jones, Stewart, and Wood reunited to record a new album.Faces and Small Faces were jointly inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2012. Stewart was scheduled to perform with the rest of the band, but was unable to do so at the last minute due to illness; he was replaced by Hucknall.
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