He wanted to find a new kind of music and deliberately stayed away from the mainstream, because he felt the current music scene didnt have much to offer that he was interested. Artistically speaking, this was to become one of the most important phases of Uli's life, a time of introspection, and a time where he wrote a lot of new music prolifically, but one where - on the other hand - he recorded and published very. It was a time of changes and new beginnings for him and he enjoyed experimenting with the creative freedom allowed of working without the restrictions of a band. Uli began writing several large-scale pieces with the intention of merging the world of classical, or romantic concertos and symphonies with the unique voice and flair of the sky guitar. The first of this was an epic musical journey for sky guitar and symphony orchestra, aptly named sky concerto, which he began writing in the second half of 1987. The piece was finished as a piano score over a year later, but unfortunately never got finalized in terms of orchestration, let alone recording. It was the technical challenges for the guitar which this concerto posed, which gave uli the idea to have the first seven-string sky guitar built, mighty wing. Soon afterwards, Uli also wrote Aquila suite, a series of 12 concert studies for solo piano.
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Although he had not played the States with the Scorpions, uli's reputation had preceded him to America and the audiences were lapping. The first Electric Sun show - at Fender's fresher in Long beach, california - was jam packed and was a tremendous success, followed by Ulis first appearance in Los Angeles, at the country Club in front of paid a sold-out house of around 1000 people, which included. Uli remembers this show as one of the musically best Electric Sun ever played. In San Francisco, the show was attended by all the members of Metallica, including a very young Kirk hammett, james Hetfield, but also joe satriani. Despite it being in many ways successful for Electric Sun, however, this American tour resulted in a heavy financial loss and an estrangement from Uli's management, which hadn't handled the overall finances very well. . This, coupled with a certain disenchantment with the constant traveling and that which Uli used to call "the rock and roll circus eventually led him to the decision to disband Electric Sun. He somehow also felt that, musically, he didnt fit in with the spirit of the times. The mid-Eighties were the time of what used to be called hair bands and corporate rock and heavy metal were in ascendance. Ulis more hendrix-meets-classical musical direction was seen as an acquired taste by some at a time when the general trend moved towards easy listening music. The last concert Electric Sun ever played was at the milwaukee beer Fest, on July 4th, 1985, seven years after the inception of the band. Horus Studios, hannover, germany, 1984 During the years that followed, Uli largely stayed out of the limelight and only played a handful of selected shows over a period of altogether thirteen years.
Particularly melodic guitar leads like those on I'm a river and the totally inspired I'll be there guitar lead took electric guitar playing to yet another plateau of artistry. A single was presentation released - the night The master Comes - including a promo video, which was filmed in January in London. It was around that time that Uli started using the sky guitar as his main guitar, which he designed and which featured a much extended fingerboard. The first sky guitar prototype was featured in that promo video. The guitar created a bit of a stir in the guitar building industry, because of its distinctive shape and its ability to play much higher top notes and was copied by several companies almost immediately. London, january 1985 - video shoot for The night The master Comes At the end of February 1985, Electric Sun embarked on a long tour of more than 50 shows to promote the Astral skies album. The tour began in Europe and was followed by a comprehensive tour of the United States. There, electric Sun had already eagerly been awaited by the fans, because a sizeable cult-following for Uli had flourished over the years.
This was followed by England, where they managed to virtually sell out Hammersmith Odeon and various other big halls. The tour was a resounding success and the audiences were ecstatic as can be witnessed on the historic Performances dvd from that tour. The live band Uli had chosen for this, consisted of altogether seven musicians onstage, including Ule w ritgen on bass and two drummers with renowned Ex-Jethro tull member Clive bunker in the lead and two back-up singers, as well as keyboards. Uli spent the first half of 1984 in various studios in and around London in order to record and produce what he considers his finest Electric write Sun album, beyond The Astral skies. This album was another landmark and it was released with much fanfare by emi at the beginning of the following year, 1985. Uli's vocals on this album successfully blended with the music and was backed by other vocalists as well. The guitar was not negelcted either.
On the fire wind album especially, more than on any of the others, Uli's lead vocals were being widely criticized as too eccentric and were definitely anything but main stream. Uli was aware of this and conceded the point. Even before the first Electric Sun album he had looked for a suitable vocalist, because his initial intention had been to find a singer. Yet because the music was so unusual and guitar based, it had proved too difficult to find the right kind of person with a suitable voice. Following the release of Fire wind, the band started to become more popular, particularly in England and France, but also in Sweden. However, Uli decided to take some time off from the limelight in order to work on new music and to further his quest to explore the metaphysics of music and philosophy. In 1983, after a two year hiatus, Electric Sun embarked on a tour of Sweden, with a new line.
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The three-piece format brought with it increased responsibilities on stage, but also gave him greater artistic freedom at the same time. From the first album writer onwards, earthquake - recorded in the iconic Olympic Studios in London in the winter of 1978 - uli created a unique and unmistakeable style for Electric Sun, which progressed and matured during the course of two further studio albums and various. The front and back covers of Earthquake report were graced by original artwork by monika dannemann. This first album, earthquake, initially received a somewhat mixed reaction after its release in spring 1979. Many people had expected Uli going solo would result in an album along the lines of Virgin Killer, times ten. This was far from Uli's intentions, however, and some hard rock fans were disappointed to hear an album, which was anything but Virgin Killer.
On the contrary, earthquake was unlike any other album on the market. Although there was unmistakeable hendrix - even d ylanesque influences - in many of the songs, there were also distinctly classical leanings; this was particularly apparent in the title track, earthquake - a ten minute instrumental epic - which presented a totally novel approach. After the initial, somewhat muted reception, however, earthquake came eventually to be regarded by many as an influential masterpiece and the new guitar techniques introduced on the album on songs like still so many lives Away, burning Wheels Turning and Earthquake itself were widely copied. Earthquake front cover oil painting by monika dannemann The second Electric Sun album, fire wind, was much easier to digest for the more hard-rock oriented listeners, because it had an altogether harder rock edge and sounded perhaps less eclectic. The most outstanding track was the 4-part epic Enola gay - hiroshima today? Beautiful artwork by monika graced the front sleeve and, like on all previous albums that he had previously been involved in, Uli's guitar playing had entered yet another new plateau and created a stir not only amongst guitarists. In stark contrast to his impeccable virtuoso guitar playing, Uli's vocals had often drawn criticism, because they were more in the story telling, talking voice style of Dylan and Hendrix as opposed to Klaus meine's flawless rock tenor voice.
Uli's farewell album from that period, was to mark the end of the early Scorpions era. It was a live album recorded in Japan in 1978 - tokyo tapes. It is generally recognised as one of the great live-albums in the history of rock music and has influenced scores of younger musicians. In the spring of 1976, Uli met the german artist Monika dannemann in London and soon the two became romantically involved. Monika greatly helped Uli towards a kind of spiritual awakening and became like a muse and force of inspiration for him. Notwithstanding his friendship with the other members, Uli felt increasingly stifled by the confinements of mainstream rock music during his final year with the Scorpions.
His main ambition and driving force was the desire to become a better artist and all-round musician with the freedom to explore the realm of music in his own rather unconventional way and on his own terms, an approach which was not exactly mainstream. It was obvious to Uli that the songs he wanted to write at that time would not fit into the framework of the Scorpions style and therefore, in the spring of 1977, Uli felt he had to leave the Scorpions in order to forge ahead. After having completed the recordings for taken by force, uli handed in his resignation, but although his heart wasn't in it any longer, he still stayed on for another year because of the loyalty he felt towards his friends in the band. Eventually - before their first tour of Japan - in April, 1978, Uli made it clear to the band that this was to be his final tour as their lead guitarist. General press conference in tokyo, shortly after the band's arrival in Japan, April 1978 After the summer, Uli founded the band Electric Sun - initially designed as a three-piece outfit - in the tradition of Cream and Jimi hendrix. From the beginning, Uli intended to enlarge the band at a later stage, but wanted to start from a very different, almost minimalist vantage point by stripping down everything to bare essentials.
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He quickly established himself as one of the london main songwriters in the band and soon gained an international reputation as one of the most important innovators of the electric guitar. Scorpions in 1973 The Scorpions were playing a lot of live-shows each year - beginning first in Germany - but from 1975 onwards, also increasingly abroad. The experience of constantly playing live and touring was to prove invaluable in order to develop their style and sound and to hone their live skills as a performing band as well as being able to learn how to interact with the various audiences abroad. The success of the band grew exponentially with each year and the band developed a strong following, particularly in countries like belgium, France and England, but also especially in Japan, where they also achieved their first ever gold album, virgin Killer, in 1976. Scorpions in 1974 - francis Buchholz, rudolf Schenker, Uli, klaus meine, doobie fechter Uli recorded five albums with the Scorpions - one for each year of his tenure. Each one of these was to achieve iconic status in the history of rock music. The band recorded altogether four studio albums and one live-album during that five-year period. These were - in chronological order - fly to the rainbow (1974 In Trance (1975 virgin Killer (1976) and taken by force (1977).
the two remaining members. Scorpions, rudolf Schenker and, klaus meine - joined forces with the four members. Dawn road in the summer of 1973. Soon afterwards, the new Scorpions played their first gig, which happened to be a two-song live appearance on one of the two main German television channels. This lead to a 5-year record contract with one of the major international record companies at the time, rca. During his five year tenure as a member of Germanys number one rock band, Uli built the foundation for his status of guitar legend.
His early influences were, the beatles, the Cream with, eric Clapton and. In the following years while still summary in high school, Uli played in a number of bands in Hanover including. Dawn road while also studying classical guitar as well as the piano. His influences at that time were. Julian Bream, but also, flamenco guitarists like, manitas de Plata and the great violinist. Uli with his classical guitar, summer 1971. In the year 1973, Ulis friend, michael Schenker, quit the already established band.
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Uli jon roth - biography (longer version the musical career of Uli spans an amazing five decades. As an artist, Uli is a multi faceted phenomenon whose unique set of artistic talents has gained him an international reputation as a musical visionary and innovator. Sunplaza hall, tokyo, feb 2015 (photo by Emili muraki). Uli jon Roth was born in Düsseldorf, germany, on Dec 18, 1954. He often cites his father, carl-Joseph Roth, as a role model, an all-round artist, who made his living as a well-respected journalist. Early on, his father instilled in him a love and knowledge of the visual arts, including painting and photography, as well as writing poetry, london storytelling and novels. Uli discovered his love for the electric guitar in 1968 and played his first concert later that same year at the age of 13 as lead guitarist for the band.