Tommy Bolin

December 20 • 2014 Bolin Festival – Remiss of me not to remember earlier to plug the fund raising campaign to help finance the 2014 Bolin fest in America.  This is being done through one of those crowdsourcing fund raiser sites, and you can get full details on this link….  Trace Keane has always worked hard, often with little recognition, keeping Tommy’s music alive through this annual gathering. “100% of the proceeds will be used exclusively for expenses that relate to our annual kick off to The Tommy Bolin Music Festival in Sioux City, Iowa. Hotel rooms and fees for participating musicians make up the largest part of our expenses. I will be posting donation totals as well as any and all expenses so you know exactly how your donation will be used. Thanks to all who can and choose to donate to this great gathering!”

Tommy Bolin Festival montage

July 10 • Whirlwind is NOT coming out in Europe, and will only be sold here as an import.  There is a 2CD digi, a gatefold vinyl and a special box set limited to 2,000 copies worldwide.  Rather than try to explain in detail, here is the sales sheet! DTBOnline is stocking the imports, but be warned, it’s not cheap. Release is due in late August 2013. [update – shipped from DTB, in stock]


June 2013 • The next in the new Bolin archive collections (from the people who brought you Whips & Roses) is due sometime in August / September, titled Whirlwind. More details to follow. DTBOnline will stock the European edition once we have had the full details from the suppliers.

Nov 23 • There’s a new biography of Tommy published in France this month. Written by Eric Smets. It has a few photos but is mostly text, and written in French. Eric sent us the cover to look at. Published by Camion Blanc books, bar code is 9782357792111 if you want to try finding it online.

Tommy Bolin French biography eric smets

Sept 12. 2012 • If you’re Stateside on holiday this year “Gypsy Soul: Remembering Sioux City’s Tommy Bolin” is now showing at the Sioux City Public Museum, 607 Fourth St. For more information visit

Sept. 10. 2012 • We’ve posted a detailed review of the new Definitive Teaser 3CD / 5CD set. Amazingly it turns out that this is NOT a remaster, but a lovingly remixed version to match the original. See what our reviewer thought.

Aug 1. 2012

There’s a new Tommy Bolin site just gone live. Put together with Johnnie Bolin’s blessing and approval, you can check it out at Lots of new pics and stuff to check out.
Thanks to web man David Streeten for the news.

Hot on the heels of the Great Gypsy Soul set comes the Teaser Definitive Edition, which includes (we think) all the alt versions and mixes of Teaser tracks issued to date PLUS a proper remastered edition of the album itself, all in a nice 3CD box set. This is due early September. It is on the DTB Online Store to pre-order. There is also a 5 disc set, but this contains the 3CD set PLUS the recent Great Gypsy Soul 2CD set. Confused? Me too! So if you already have that, the 3CD set will do you.
Thanks to Ian Douglas (news item updated Aug 30).

Also for Bolin fans, we will have news of a set of rare Deep Purple back-stage photos very soon which includes a great imperious shot of the man himself.

And did you know that the day Montreux Casino burnt down -December 4. (1971), is the same date that Tommy Bolin (1976) and Frank Zappa died (1993)…

Tommy Bolin guitarist Deep Purple

26 Responses to “Tommy Bolin”

  1. Tom Phelps Says:

    I didn’t know about Bolin Fest until 5 minutes ago. I believe Tommy is among the greatest guitarist I’ve ever heard. Right there with Beck, Page and Hendrix. I’m from Vinton Iowa and was wondering when and where it was going to be held in 2020? I want to take my wife and kids there next year. Would I be out of line asking you guys to email me some info on that? Thank you.

    • simon robinson Says:

      I am somewhat out of the loop on Bolin happenings these days, but I assume the event organisers have some sort of web presence? I usually only find out way too late to post anything!

    • Damian Phelan Says:

      Look up Mary Rager on Facebook
      Mary is the organizer of the Festival, she will make you feel welcome
      also give Johnnie Bolin a shout I did a tour of the Bolin House & Johnnie showed me some of Tommy’s stage clothes

  2. Jack Says:

    I feel good that his spirit is really here and stronger then ever. I will say hello for all who reads this

  3. mark robinson Says:

    A re-master of Private Eyes without the ‘dungeon reverb’ would be nice – the 15-minute ‘Post Toastee’ I first heard about in the early 80s and have been salivating ever since; I swear I can hear the edits…PS isn’t Jimi Hendrix the Voodoo Child? Yeah, Johnnie B’s last words to his brother but still…

  4. Damian Says:

    I see a good friend of Tommy Bolin – Roger Rothwell who played with Tommy in Sioux City died recently.
    You can hear Roger play on the “Live At The Jet Bar CD” released by the Tommy Bolin Archieves.

  5. cja74 Says:

    Just got this 5cd set. My father owned Teaser when I was a child and my mother owned Shades Of Deep Purple. They never knew TB was in DP. On the tribute CDs Myles Kennedy sounds like David Coverdale singing Dreamer!

  6. Lambchops Says:

    I also think Private Eyes is superior to Teaser and there are many out-takes, maybe another CD is coming from the archives. Speaking of… my fave release from the archives are the Naked I and Naked II. As for Whips and Roses – both were great – but the first one was better. The issue I have with the archive CDs is that I never know what the source is or if it’s another re-release of the same material. Tommy deserves a great box set with James Gang, Purple, etc.. The Bolin-Paice jam on the CTTB remaster was incredible.

  7. Ian Douglas Says:

    It’s just announced the 3 and 5 disc (!) versions to be released 4 Sept. Track lists look more interesting than originally anticipated so I expect these are not just bundled re-issues of the re-issues… albeit however confusing it gets! But Tommy is worth it. We’re all on the Journey!

    • simon robinson Says:

      I guess we’ll just have to wait and see Ian, but if you have Great Gypsy Soul, then don’t buy the 5Cd set as it duplicates this. Stick with the 3CD set.

  8. Timinox Says:

    I’ll certainly be getting this – I haven’t got the ‘Gypsy Soul’ CD, as I wanted the 2 disc version that’s hard to order from the UK. I’ve got mixed feelings about the Whips cds, but they do at least contain enough truly great work from TB to make them essential – the biggest problem is the drum tracks which sound to these ears as if someone has added them recently – compare NM Walden on ‘Marching Powder’ with most of the alternate tracks and the drums are far too modern sounding….
    As far as Private Eyes is concerned I’d love to hear a mix that doesn’t have the compression that (producer) Dennis Mackay applied at the time, but I think this is unlikely as even the outtake track ‘Gotta Dance’ has this effect…

  9. DME Says:

    Sure, the original’s the best. Those are the most accomplished mixes. Nice to be having the rest yet, as of now, nothing matched TB’s ultimate choice of the versions.

  10. Scott W. Says:

    I was the one who brought these Dec. 4th dates to your attention Simon, remember? That is because Dec. 4th is my birthday! (1962) I guess my Bday IS spooky!

  11. Chris Says:

    Actually great news!
    Do you have any information concerning the finding of the master-tapes? I always thought they were lost or hidden or whatever – and suddenly, out of nothing they have appeared? And do you think we can expect a decent remaster done in a decent studio?

  12. Tim Gee Says:

    Simon..what about the Silverhead reissues that i’ve heard about for years?

  13. Kenny Mathers Says:

    They haven’t half milked the Teaser out-takes and I’ll be a bit cheesed off to have to pay for versions I already have AGAIN, having bought bought the Whips and Roses CD’s and the admittedly excellent Teaser delux. Having said that, I echo the view that the Teaser CD itself is well worthy of a remaster and look forward to this. Now- how about some Private Eyes outtakes……

  14. Jeff/Over the hIll Says:

    Does anyone know if it is actually a fact that PRIVATE EYES is lost? I heard the tapes are lost. For me, that is a superior album to TEASER but has never been remastered or given any special treatment. It has a nice mood to it as a full album.

  15. Jon Kirkman Says:

    Well I will get the 3 disc version but in actual fact the original version is the best version of the album in my opinion. Sure I love the alternate takes and outtakes but the original is an excellent album without any frills or extras. As for Private Eyes? It would be nice to have the full unedited version of Post Toastee

    • simon robinson Says:

      Fine for the collectors, although I suspect most have got much of this already. Maybe a single disc Teaser remaster, with just 20 minutes of bonus tracks, would be worth considering for the mainstream market too.

  16. Ian Douglas Says:

    Thanks Simon – I’m really hoping after the Teaser vaults are exhausted (good as they are!!!) Private Eyes can attract similarly detailed and devoted attention. I shall write to the various sites also! Cheers from the Antipodes!

  17. Tim Summers Says:

    Another December 4th Purple related tragedy was the death of roadie Patsy Collins in somewhat mysterious circumstances in Indonesia in 1975, I believe.

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