James Stewart Bain


As if this year hasn’t been rough enough already with the passing of so many rock musicians, we now have to report that Jimmy Bain died over the weekend.  He was working up to the end according to his current Last In Line bandmates, rehearsing for a big rock cruise with Def Leppard headlining. To many of us of course he was, alongside Cozy Powell, the bedrock of the classic Rainbow line-up (seen above with Jimmy in the middle), working with them through arguably their greatest heavy rock period, including the Rising album.  I can recall us scurrying through back-pages of the music papers to try and find out about his early band Harlot when he first got chosen by Ritchie (who had apparently seen the band on one of his trips to London) so we could report it in Stargazer. And the first hearing of Stargazer and Light In The Black remain with us to this day.
It always struck us as odd that his stay with Rainbow was relatively short, but when Ronnie Dio also departed, the pair reunited for several Dio albums during the Eighties which Jimmy also helped write.
We never met Jimmy – beyond pestering him for a few autographs of course, which he was always happy to provide – but he will always be fixed in our minds from that awesome 1976 tour and the subsequent On-Stage recordings.



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15 Responses to “James Stewart Bain”

  1. Kosh Says:

    Indeed; RIP Jimmy. It probably seems strange to the older generation, but I was at university around the early 2000s and Jimmy et al, in particular the seismic Rising, formed the soundtrack to my own and indeed my housemates studies – in truth they had no choice! My drumming and bass playing closest friend idolised the playing of Bain and Cozy both, obviously, now sadly lost. Nice to read Ritchie making a pleasant comment too, and here’s hoping he does all his ‘passed’ colleagues proud in June! Thanks for the music, and the memories Jimmy.

  2. Frankie bacon Says:

    I have had the honor of spending almost everyday with Jimmy for about the last 4 to 5 years and yes he was my best friend; the stories he told, to the gigs that we played, he remained a gentleman. Always quick to shake a hand, give a hug, he was truly a legend. His music will live on and on. Thanks Jimmy for being my friend. May your bass playing soul continue to shine even unto the Angels. RIP Jimmy Bain

  3. IAN DOUGLAS Says:

    I meant to add the two Wild Horses cds are worth checking out – not all that notable but a pleasant enough listen. Not in the class of Dio or other bands he was in but quite listenable.

  4. Bernard Maasdijk Says:

    This is very sad news. Obviously many of our heroes of seventies rock music haven’t always lived the most healthy of lives but still this came as a bit of a shock. After his stint with Rainbow and the Wild Horses adventure I lost track of Jimmy and was therefore pleasantly surprised to discover that he played bass on 3 of the heavier tracks on 1982’s “The Dreaming”, still my favourite Kate Bush album. In The Netherlands we actually get to listen to Jimmy Bain quite often as public radio keeps on playing Phil Lynott’s “Old Town”, co-written with Bain.

    • simon robinson Says:

      I hadn’t known of the Kate Bush connection, quite like to know how that connection came about.

      • Bernard Maasdijk Says:

        Can’t help you there Simon, but something else occured to me: Jimmy Bain played bass on Gary Moore’s Dirty Fingers album, recorded in ’81 (though only released, in Japan, in ’83).
        This means that Moore at one time or other enlisted each of Rainbow’s first 3 bass players: Gruber, Bain and Daisley. (Yes I know, I’m not counting Clarke).

      • Roy Davies Says:

        Simon, Kate Bush met Jimmy Bain while visiting with Phil Lynott at The Townhouse recording studio in London and later asked him to contribute to the album.

  5. IAN DOUGLAS Says:

    Very sad news – I was just reading about Last In Line too… and playing a lot of Dio lately including some good tributes… yes we’ll all long for 1976 again – perhaps 40 years later there is still some magic left for 2016?!

  6. Bob Moon Says:

    I’m sad. Was really eagerly awaiting finally seeing him live again with LAST IN LINE. One of the sad things also is the fact that the parts of the bass on this killer album called RISING were so underproduced. Rest in Peace, Jimmy.

  7. Lisbet palsdorf Says:

    So sad to har about Jimmy. I met Jimmy first in 1977 and through the years, a great lad. A lot of trouble through the years, but many great concerts.

  8. jmst1 Says:

    Deeply saddened to hear about Jimmy’s passing. Will never forget his contribution to the greatest Rainbow line-up. RIP.

  9. Leftin Says:

    Very sad indeed, and just after the passing of Dale “Buffin” Griffin too. Jimmy Bain sounded so good on the Onstage album that it was always frustrating to hear virtually no bass on Rising, until the deluxe/remix reissue (have been playing it a lot since). 68 seems young, doesn’t it? Thanks for the tribute, and RiP Jimmy Bain.

  10. Mike Galway Says:

    Sad news indeed. Rising and the ’76 tour remains the peak of any post Purple activities. I blast out On Stage and the German gigs when ever I need cheering up. R.I.P. Jimmy.

  11. Roy Davies Says:

    Although Jimmy was primarily famous as one fifth of the best live band of the 1970s (discuss…) dig into his career a little and he was so much more than just an ex Rainbow journeyman. He was a multi-instrumentalist (a keys-man of no little talent) and toured with Phil Lynott as such. He wrote a lot of stuff with the Lizzy main man too; check out Phil’s solo albums for some styles far removed than what you’d perhaps expect. Wild Horses with Brian Robertson was perhaps doomed from the start (more from the duo’s social lifestyles than creatively!) and his work with the likes of Roy Harper and Kate Bush showed he was able to turn his hand to other musical things. ‘Holy Diver’ stands as arguably his greatest creative work, forging a real rock classic with Ronnie, and continuing that partnership on and off for the rest of Dio’s life. RIP Jimmy.

  12. Arthur Says:

    Very sad, RIP Jimmy

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