Best known for his work with Mott the Hoople, pianist/guitarist/vocalist Ian Hunter embarked on a solo career in 1974 after collapsing from physical exhaustion that year. He joined forces with late-period Mott guitarist Mick Ronson, (also with David Bowie), who appeared on this album. The album contained the worldwide hit single "Once Bitten Twice Shy", which was covered by Great White in the eighties. The Hunter/Ronson Show toured the UK and the USA, and the band comprised Ronson on guitars, Hunter on vocals/piano, Dennis Elliott (If) on drums, Jeff Appelby on bass and Peter Arnesen (also If) on keyboards. This line-up soon parted ways and Hunter went on to record "All American Alien Boy" with the likes of drummer Aynsley Dunbar, sax player Dave Sanborn and members of Queen. Hunter went on to record a number of other albums under his own name as well as under Ian Hunter's Dirty Laundry, also collaborating once again with Ronson on the "YUI Orta" album in 1989.(Ronson succumbed to liver cancer, dying on April 29th, 1993). A new double Ian Hunter album has recently been released.

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Biography by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
With Mott the Hoople, guitarist/vocalist Ian Hunter established himself as one of the toughest and most inventive hard rock songwriters of the early '70s, setting the stage for punk rock with his edgy, intelligent songs. As a solo artist, Hunter never attained the commercial heights of Mott the Hoople, but he cultivated a dedicated cult following.

Hunter was born in Owestry, Shropshire, but was raised in cities throughout England since his father worked in the British Intelligence agency called MI5 and had to move frequently. Eventually, the family returned to Shrewsbury, where the teenaged Hunter joined a band called Silence in the early '60s. Silence released an album, but it received no attention. In the years following Silence, Hunter played in a handful of local bands and worked a variety of jobs.

In 1968, Hunter began playing bass with Freddie "Fingers" Lee and the duo played around Germany. Shortly afterward, Hunter became the vocalist for Mott the Hoople. During the next six years, Hunter sang and played piano and guitar with the band, becoming its lead songwriter within a few albums. Although few of their records sold, Mott the Hoople was one of the most popular live bands in England. In 1972, David Bowie produced their breakthrough album, All the Young Dudes, which brought the band into the British Top Ten and the American Top 40. For the next two years, the group had a consistent stream of hits in both the U.K. and the U.S.

Toward the end of 1973, the band began to fall apart, as founding member and lead guitarist Mick Ralphs left the band. Hunter carried through another album, but he left the group in late 1974, taking along former Bowie guitarist Mick Ronson, who had just joined Mott. Just prior to leaving the group, Hunter published Diary of a Rock Star, an account of his years leading Mott the Hoople, in June of 1974.

Hunter moved to New York, where he and Ronson began working on his solo debut. Released in 1975, Ian Hunter spawned "Once Bitten, Twice Shy," a Top 20 U.K. hit. Following its release, Hunter and Ronson embarked on a tour. After its completion, the pair parted ways, although they would reunite later in the '80s. All-American Alien Boy, Hunter's second solo album, was recorded with a variety of all-star and session musicians, including members of Queen. Released in the summer of 1976, All-American Alien Boy was a commercial failure. It was followed in 1977 by Overnight Angels, an album that saw Hunter moving closer to straightforward rock & roll; disappointed with the completed album, Hunter decided to leave the album unreleased in America.

Following the mainstream approach of Overnight Angels, Hunter became involved with England's burgeoning punk rock movement, producing Generation X's second album, 1979's Beyond the Valley of the Dolls. For Hunter's next solo album, he reunited with Mick Ronson, who produced and arranged 1979's You're Never Alone With a Schizophrenic. The album was a hit, especially in America where it peaked at number 35. Hunter and Ronson set out on another tour, which resulted in the 1980 double live album, Ian Hunter Live / Welcome to the Club. In 1981, Hunter released Short Back N' Sides, which was produced by the Clash's Mick Jones.

Two years later, he released All of the Good Ones Are Taken. After the release of All of the Good Ones Are Taken, Ian Hunter became a recluse, spending the next six years in silence; occasionally, he contributed a song to a movie soundtrack. In 1989, Hunter resumed recording, releasing YUI Orta with Mick Ronson. After its release, Hunter remained quiet during the '90s, appearing only on Ronson's posthumous 1994 album Heaven and Hull and at tribute concerts for Ronson in 1994 and Freddie Mercury in 1992. Hunter returned to recording with Artful Dodger, which was released in Britain and Europe in the spring of 1997. After a Columbia/Legacy compilation titled Once Bitten Twice Shy offered a wealth of Ian Hunter solo titles in the year 2000, much attention was paid to 2001's fine Rant. In 2002, Hunter performed a pair of semi-acoustic concerts in Oslo, Norway which were recorded for later release on CD and home video; the resulting project, called Strings Attached, included some new songs, including "Twisted Steel", inspired by the events of September 11, 2001. 



Mick Ronson
New York Dolls
David Johansen
The Clash
Elliott Murphy
The Who
Iggy Pop
Generation X

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Ian Hunter - 1975 - Ian Hunter - 4/5

Ian Hunter - 1976 - All American Alien Boy - 3.5/5

Ian Hunter - 1977 - Overnight Angels - 1.5/5

Ian Hunter - 1979 - You're Never Alone with a Schizophrenic - 4.5/5

Ian Hunter - 1981 - Short Back and Sides - 4.5/5

Ian Hunter - 1983 - All of the Good Ones are Taken - 3/5

Ian Hunter - 1985 - Dirty Laundry - 4/5

Ian Hunter - 1990 - Y U I Orta - 4/5

Ian Hunter - 1995 - BBC Live in Concert - 3/5

Ian Hunter - 1997 - Artful Dodger - 2.5/5

Ian Hunter - 1998 - Welcome to the Club - 4/5

Ian Hunter - 2001 - Rant - 3.5/5

Ian Hunter - 2004 - Strings Attached - 4/5

Ian Hunter - 2005 - The Truth, The Whole Truth, and Nuthin' But the Truth - 3/5



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