Aynsley Dunbar

Not to be confused with Sly Dunbar.
Aynsley Dunbar
Background information
Birth name Aynsley Thomas Dunbar
Born (1946-01-10) 10 January 1946
Liverpool, England
Genres Hard rock, blues rock, progressive rock, glam rock, jazz, blues, jazz fusion, heavy metal
Occupation(s) Musician, songwriter
Instruments Drums, percussion
Years active 1961–present
Associated acts The Jeff Beck Group, David Bowie, Frank Zappa, UFO, Whitesnake, Journey, Jefferson Starship, Lou Reed, John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers, Sammy Hagar, Michael Schenker, Jake E. Lee, The Mojos, Flo & Eddie, Tomorrow (band)

Aynsley Thomas Dunbar (born 10 January 1946) is an English drummer. He has worked with some of the top names in rock, including Nils Lofgren, Eric Burdon, John Mayall, Frank Zappa, Ian Hunter, Lou Reed, Jefferson Starship, Jeff Beck, David Bowie, Whitesnake, Sammy Hagar, Michael Schenker, UFO, Flo & Eddie and Journey.[1]


Aynsley Thomas Dunbar was born in Liverpool, England. He started his professional career in Derry Wilkie and the Pressmen in 1963. In December 1964 he joined Merseybeat group the Mojos, who were renamed Stu James & the Mojos, with original members vocalist Stu James and guitarist Nick Crouch and bass player Lewis Collins (later an actor in the Professionals). This line-up continued till 1966. Dunbar then auditioned for the Jimi Hendrix Experience and Hendrix had difficulty deciding between Dunbar and Mitch Mitchell – the latter won Hendrix's coin flip. Dunbar then joined John Mayall's Bluesbreakers replacing Hughie Flint in the summer of 1966. He stayed with Mayall until the spring of 1967 (playing on the A Hard Road album), being replaced by Mick Fleetwood.

After a short stint in the Jeff Beck Group Dunbar founded 'the Aynsley Dunbar Retaliation', so named to chide Mayall who fired him. They issued four albums during their existence. Dunbar co-wrote the song "Warning" (later recorded by Black Sabbath on their first album). The Dunbar single version was recorded in 1967 for the Blue Horizon label,[2] prior to his band's first album release The Aynsley Dunbar Retaliation (circa 1969[3]).

Subsequently, Dunbar founded a short-lived progressive rock band called Blue Whale, which debuted with a tour of Scandinavia in January 1970. Following the recent collapse of the original lineup of King Crimson, Dunbar unsuccessfully tried to recruit Robert Fripp as Blue Whale's guitarist. Fripp, in turn, unsuccessfully tried to recruit Dunbar as King Crimson's new drummer. Blue Whale recorded one album, which featured Paul Williams (vocals), Ivan Zagni (guitar), Roger Sutton (guitar), Tommy Eyre (from Retaliation, keys) and Peter Friedberg (bass).[4]

Dunbar was later the drummer for Frank Zappa's Mothers of Invention, featuring on albums such as Waka/Jawaka, and The Grand Wazoo, as well as the film 200 Motels. In 1974 he played on the soundtrack of Dirty Duck, an adult animated film directed by Charles Swenson. In the mid-1970s Dunbar played drums for former Grin leader, Nils Lofgren, before joining Journey for their first four albums. He joined Jefferson Starship for three albums. On 28 December 1978, he played at Winterland in San Francisco with the Tubes. Dunbar joined Whitesnake in 1985 and drummed on their 1987 album, Whitesnake. He also spent some time working with Eric Burdon, Michael Schenker and the Animals.

More recently, in 2005, he drummed on Jake E. Lee's solo Retraced album.

He has been the drummer for the World Classic Rockers since 2003.

In 2008 Dunbar recorded an album of material for Direct Music with Mickey Thomas of Starship, and musicians such as Jake E. Lee, former guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne. The complete recordings of Dunbar's drumming with Frank Zappa at Carnegie Hall in October 1971 were released exactly 40 years after the event in a four-CD set.

In 2009 the blues album The Bluesmasters featuring Mickey Thomas was released, featuring Dunbar on drums along with Tim Tucker on guitar and Danny Miranda on bass as well as guest stars such as Magic Slim on guitar and vocals.


The Aynsley Dunbar Retaliation

Aynsley Dunbar

With Blue Whale

1. Willing to Fight – 6:48
2. Willie the Pimp – 14:55
3. It's Your Turn – 9:57
4. Days – 5:35
5. Going Home – 8:56

Aynsley Dunbar – Drums
Tommy Eyre – Organ, Piano
Ivan Zagni, Roger Sutton – Lead Guitars
Paul Williams – Vocals
Peter Friedberg – Bass
Charles Greetham – Saxophone
Edward Reay-Smith – Trombone
Colin Caldwell – Producer

Produced By: Aynsley Dunbar & Colin Caldwell
Engineer: Colin Caldwell
Recorded March & April 1970 Marquee Studios London

With John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers

With Frank Zappa and the Mothers

With David Bowie

With Lou Reed

With Herbie Mann

With Michael Schenker

With Mick Ronson

With Nils Lofgren

With Ian Hunter

With Paul Kantner

With Journey

With Sammy Hagar

With Jefferson Starship

With Whitesnake

With Ronnie Montrose

With UFO

With Leslie West

With Jake E. Lee



Preceded by
Prairie Prince
Journey drummer
Succeeded by
Steve Smith
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 11/24/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.