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Glenn Phillips

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Instrumental rock guitarist Glenn Phillips grew up in New England and moved with his family to Atlanta, GA, when he was 12 in 1962. At 16, he began playing guitar, and at 17 he co-founded the Hampton Grease Band, also featuring singer Bruce Hampton and guitarist Harold Kelling, which built up a following around Atlanta, culminating in a contract with Columbia Records and the release of the double-LP Music to Eat in 1971. The Hampton Grease Band broke up in 1973, and Phillips launched his solo career with the self-made album Lost at Sea in 1975. The album attracted the attention of British disc jockey John Peel, who played it frequently on his BBC show, leading to its release on fledgling Virgin Records in the U.K. Virgin also issued Phillips' second solo album, Swim in the Wind, in 1977. But the failure of the label's American division led Phillips to return to making records independently, usually releasing them on his own Snow Star label. Living in Atlanta, he managed to support himself by renting out half of his house and doing occasional tours while working on his recordings. Dark Lights appeared in 1980, followed by Razor Pocket (1982) and St. Valentine's Day (1984). Shanachie released Live in 1985, and SST put out Elevator in 1987. Scratched by the Rabbit came out on ESD in 1990, and ESD issued the double-CD compilation Echoes 1975-85 in 1992. Phillips next released Walking Through Walls on Brendan O'Brien's Shotput label in 1996, then remained silent until the March 2003 release of Angel Sparks on Gaff. Gaff also simultaneously released Guitar Party, a collaboration with Henry Kaiser that was recorded in 1990.

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Years Active:

'70s, '80s, '90s, '00s