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Ian Wallace


1971-1972 King Crimson - drums, percussion, vocals  

Personal information

Born on: 29.09.1946
Died on: 22.02.2007

Ian Russell Wallace (29 September 1946 - 22 February 2007) was a rock and jazz drummer, most visibly as a member of progressive rock band, King Crimson, a member of David Lindley's El Rayo-X and as Don Henley's drummer.
Wallace formed his first band, The Jaguars, at school, before going on to join The Warriors with Jon Anderson in his pre-Yes days. (Wallace later played with Yes once in November 1968 during Bill Bruford's hiatus from the band).

From The Warriors, Wallace went on to join Big Sound. In the 1960s, Big Sound worked in Denmark, Norway and Sweden as a backing band to Danish rock musician Nalle. The Big Sound and The Warriors had been mates, and had gigged together in the Storyville Club, Frankfurt, Cologne and Copenhagen. The Big Sound's drummer and bass player left, after which Ian and The Warriors bass player, Dave Foster, joined the band. When the Big Sound split at the end of 1967 during a tour of Norway, some members, including Wallace, moved to London to back other artists such as Sandie Shaw, David Garrick, Marv Johnson and Lou Christie.

Wallace later joined Vivian Stanshall's Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, and then The World with Neil Innes before King Crimson. He appeared on the album, Islands in 1971, and on the live album, Earthbound in 1972, as well as a number of later archival releases. In May 1972, at the end of a U.S. tour, he and fellow Crimson members Mel Collins and Boz Burrell left the band and went to work for Alexis Korner's Snape.

Wallace subsequently worked with Steve Marriott's All-Stars and was invited to join Bob Dylan's band in 1978 and accompanied Dylan during his tour of Japan. Wallace's heavy drum style was the driving force behind the pop-heavy album Street-Legal. He toured again with Dylan in the early 1990s.

Other notable work includes Ry Cooder in 1979 and Don Henley in the 1980s and 1990s. Wallace's studio and live credits also include El Rayo-X with David Lindley, Bonnie Raitt, Joe Walsh, Bob Dylan, Johnny Hallyday, Keith Emerson, Roy Orbison, Jackson Browne, the Traveling Wilburys, Eric Clapton, Jon Anderson, Alvin Lee, Crosby, Stills and Nash, the Quireboys, Brian Eno, Larry Coryell, Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, Steve Marriott, Al Kooper, Tim Buckley, Lonnie Mack, Procol Harum (1993 tour), and Warren Zevon.

Following a move to Nashville, Tennessee in 1998, Wallace worked as a producer and player. Among his later studio recordings there were sessions with Kim Richey, Tim Krekel, Rick Vito, Dean Dillon, Rosie Flores, Jessi Alexander, producer Gary Nicholson, Steve Ripley, Jan Pulsford, Tim Hinkley, Charlie Taylor, Rodney Crowell and the legendary songwriter Dan Penn. He also performed live with T. Graham Brown, the Nashville Chamber Orchestra, Rick Vito, Jessi Alexander, and Billy Burnette, the latter in a quartet that included bassist Dave Roe (Johnny Cash) and Kenny Vaughan (Lucinda Williams).

In 2003, he joined the 21st Century Schizoid Band, and released his only solo album, Happiness With Minimal Side Effects.

In 2005 he formed the Crimson Jazz Trio with Tim Landers on bass and Jody Nardone on piano, which released King Crimson Songbook Volume One in November 2005 and King Crimson Songbook Volume Two in early 2009.

On 10 August 2006, Wallace was diagnosed with esophageal cancer. He chronicled his illness in his online blog in the hope his story would encourage others with similar symptoms to pursue treatment. He died, aged 60, with his wife, Marjorie Pomeroy, at his side.