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The group started in 1968 and by 1970 they had played to over 600,000 people at the Isle Of Wight Festival. The lead singer Paul Rodgers with his distinctive voice gave the group a cult following around the UK and in open air concerts. Paul was born in 1949 and went on to work with Bad Company later in the decade and in the 2000s was the front man for Queen.

The group was named Free by Alexi Corner (ex- Radio One DJ) and in 1970 from their album Fire And Water came the No. 2 UK hit All Right Now, which has been played MILLIONS of times on radio stations throughout the world. The song is believed to have been written by Paul when he was a student.

The song was about two guys picking up a girl and both taking her back for sex. I am sure I did not hear that in the lyrics when I listened as a spotty teenager.

Band member Simon Kirke went with Paul to join Bad Company in 1973 when Free broke up. Guitarist Paul Kossoff died of a heart attack in 1976 on a plane bound to New York. Andy Fraser was the second bass guitarist who is alive and well.

In 1971 the group scored their next top twenty hit with My Brother Jake.

My brother Jake, hat, shades, head in a daze
My brother Jake, have you thought about changin’ your ways?
He goes out, he don’t have no doubt
He don’t have to know what the world’s about
My brother Jake, head, down, it’s a scrapin’ the ground
Jake, stay away, you know you can’t always be down
He goes out, he don’t have no doubt
He don’t have to know what the world’s about

In 1972 the group was having serious infighting issues and would have to soon disband. But the charts were still humming to their tunes. The first in 1972 with a No. 13 hit called A Little Bit Of Love, but the second was one of their absolute best called Wishing Well. The song seems to be about saying goodbye to someone either a departing love or a person who is near death.

In 1973 and again in 1978 All Right Now was released and charted both times! You just can’t keep a great record down.

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