Ricky Warwick is former front man with metal band The Almighty and also more recently successful solo artist in his own right with three quality solo albums behind him to date. Ricky gets the call to join a regrouped Thin Lizzy featuring original members Scott Gorham, Brian Downey, Darren Wharton along with Def Leppard’s Viv Campbell and Whitesnake’s Marco Mendoza…he thinks about it for ten seconds and says “Yes”! Thin Lizzy are a band that Ricky followed when he was young living in Northern Ireland, he was introduced to them by his older sisters and watched them on ‘Top of the Pops when he was 10 years old.

It is January 2011 and Ricky is part way though the first batch of UK ‘Sold Out’ dates with the newly reformed band,

Chinners Hello Ricky thank you for taking the time to speak to Rock Regeneration in your hectic schedule, the last time we met up was at Champions in Bournemouth when you were on your solo tour and now here you are on a ‘Sold Out’ tour with Thin Lizzy, how does it feel?

Ricky Just amazing, I have to pinch myself each night when I look each side of me and see these other musicians playing along side of me, it is just fantastic. I just look up at that neon logo when I’m on stage and think I’m dreaming.

Chinners When the call came for you to join the band did you have any doubts in your mind about taking on the role?

Ricky It felt right from the minute I made the decision, I can put my hand on my heart and never say it felt wrong. I always follow my gut and I say my gut is never wrong. If I felt any vibes that it was not the right thing to do I would have questioned it. I never felt uncomfortable, I cannot tell you why. People around me said “Do you know what you are take on, do you know what position your are putting your self in, it could not work out” I knew all this and I talked about this with my wife who is in the music business. I could not go to my grave knowing that I did not give this my best shot. They are one of my favourite bands It is something you dream of when you are a kid, these people have made this dream come true for me. How could I not do it? It will never sink in and will never become comfortable, because of the band, what the band means and because of Phil. It a nice challenge to get up and play these songs of Phil’s every night

Chinners To what extent were you a fan of Thin Lizzy?

Ricky Because of my age, I was a little bit young when they first came out. My sisters first got me into them and when I was 13. I really got into them in a big way. I never got to see Thin Lizzy Live , but I did see Phil Lynott wraith Gram Slam, so I did actually get to see the great man on stage. I never got to meet Phil though sadly, I would have love to have met him………

Chinners Did it take you long to learn all the songs?

Ricky It was like Karaoke with Phil, it was literally four months of me standing at home,listening to the Thin Lizzy albums every day. I want to deliver these Thin Lizzy song that way we all know and love them, with the phrasing in the right place with all the little ‘Phil-isiums’, little adlibs all the cool stuff that Phil did, that’s got to be in there. I don’t want to screw this in any way, if I was going to see this I would want to hear the songs the way I know and love them. So that’s what I set out to do, with me singing them. You can’t replace Phil. I am not trying to be a clone of him, we are not a tribute band that would be almost insulting him, just paying respect to his legacy of music.

From Picasa

Chinners With such a huge back catalogue of songs how did you al decide what you were going to play? Do Scott just say that here is a list go and learn these songs?

Ricky No No No……………. Scott , Darren and Brian welcomed us in to the band as equals and asked us what ideas had we got. We were all asked to submit about 25-30 and we all e-mailed each other as we all live all over the place. You have got to have your ‘Boys are back In Town’, ‘Jailbreak’ and ‘whisky in the Jar’, we took al the one that matched up and put in a few songs that had not been played in a while like ‘Wild One’ and ‘Angel of Death’ to mix it up a bit, it was all very demographic.

Chinners I read that Caroline Phil Lynott’s widow and his daughter Kathleen came to see you after the show, how did that go? What did they say to you?

Ricky That was a really nerve racking time, I just wanted them to like what we were doing so much, it would just mean so much to me that we did their Husband and Father proud. The both came back after the show and said they loved it, they absolutely loved it. They were so sweet to me, they made me feel validated which is great. You could not get any praise better than that apart from Phil himself. It was just beautiful really great to have them come along. that was more than the icing on the cake for me.

Chinners What does this tour mean for Ricky Warwick the artist?

Ricky With regards to my own stuff, when ‘Lizzy’ are not touring, I will be carrying on with my own stuff. This all helps to raise my profile and it’s great, I love doing that and certainly don’t want to give that up and there is no reason why cannot combine the two things.

Chinners Will there be a follow up to ‘Belfast Confetti’s album?

Ricky There will be but at the moment I am not quite sure when with all this going on. I have it written, I have it pretty much altogether, it is going to be with a band and is going to be a full on rock ‘n’ roll record. we are talking about putting a band together and going out on the road towards the end of the year.

Chinners As far as this tour goes is just a ‘one off’ or is there anything else planned? Are you going to record anything together with this line up ?

Ricky No we already have dates booked in America and there is talk of dates in South America and the far east with Festival throughout the summer. This is very much an on going concern, which should keep me very busy and I am loving that. This is pretty much my priority and if is my priority for the next 2 years or 10 years I am completely happy with that. That would be something that we have talked about and it would be certainly something further down the road one the band is more established and we can possibly look at writing some new material together, why not all the people in the band are great songwriters.

Chinners Look, Ricky I really appreciate the time you have given to us this afternoon, thank you so much, It was great chatting with you once again and I wish you all well with the tour.

Ricky Thank You for your support, it has been a pleasure.

Soundcheck Videos


Words and pictures by;
Dave Chinery(Chinners)


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