Gutted to hear about the passing of our friend and musician Keith Allison. He not only left a massive mark in pop culture as a member of “Paul Revere & the Raiders”, but he also left a permanent mark in our hearts forever. So many great times. Kieth was the life of the party.
So sad to hear about the passing of my good friend Keith Allison. Former member of Paul Revere and The Raiders he also toured with Dolenz, Jones, Boyce and Hart in the 70’s.
When he moved to Los Angeles in the mid-1960s, his career began to take off. He briefly walked through the cricket lineup and worked with Roy Orbison and Ray Peterson among others, but ironically, due to his appearance, his major breakthrough appeared. One night, when he was hanging out in Whisky a Go Go, the similarities between him and McCartney caught his attention when the rock show crew was filming Where the Action Is.
He was captured by the camera and then asked to return to the “location of action” as a fixture in the audience scene. He then became friends with Mark Lindsay of Paul Revere & the Raiders and Michael Nesmith of Allison of Monkees. Alison can be heard playing the harmonica on Monkees’ 1966 debut album of the same name, and later on the guitar on the headquarters album. In addition, he also recorded with Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart on their A&M record company.
In 1967, Alison signed with Columbia Records and edited an album “Keith Alison in Action”, which was produced by Gary Usher. This is a well-produced pop/rock work, including Lindsay’s “Good Thing”, Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart’s Where the Action Is theme song “Action, Action, Action”, and Donovan’s “Catch the Wind” “Performance” and “Color”, Ray Charles’s “Leave My Woman”, and Neil Diamond’s “Go Do It.”
Alas, the single “Louise” on the album was composed by Rising Sons’ Jesse Lee Kincaid (Side B with “Freeborn Man”, co-authored by Allison and Mark Lindsay) failed to make the chart. But he has been busy playing the subsequent three Monkees albums, The Birds, the Bees & the Monkees and Head (1968) And Instant Replay (1969). In 1969, he actually joined Paul Revere & the Raiders, playing organ, guitar, piano and bass, and provided some lead singers for Hard’n’ Heavy (With Marshmallow).
For the next three years, he has been working in the band, as a songwriter and Lindsay co-produced the album Collage, trying to bring the band into the 1970s (unfortunately, this failed commercially).
He stayed with them, played guitar and bass, played on the Indian Reservation album, and took time to play Al Kooper’s Easy Do It, and collaborated with Tommy Roe, Ronnie Hawkins, Johnny Rivers and the vocal duo Spring. In the next few years, Alison spent all his time performing, but in the 1980s, he returned to the music industry and continued to perform in the 21st century—he was a long-term member of the Waddy Watchel band and still Playing bass in Last Man Stand, a 2007 album by rock legend Jerry Lee Lewis.
In 2014, “Real Combat” was re-released on Real Gone Music, which included several non-LP single-sided as rewards.