Ever since Clapton, Bruce and Baker joined forces as Cream, Rock has celebrated many supergroups. It’s March and we already have a release from a new supergroup, Flying Colors, helmed by prog rockers Steve Morse, Mike Potrnoy and Neil Morse.
The return of the rock supergroup may have started in 2009 with the formation of Chickenfoot featuring Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony both of Van Halen fame, guitarist extraordinaire Joe Satriani and drummer Chad Smith, longtime and current member of Red Hot Chili Peppers. This hard-rock group released its second album last year.
Them Crooked Vultures
2009 also saw two other supergroups; Them Crooked Vultures with John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin), Dave Grohl of the FooFighters, Josh Homme (Queens of the Stone Age) and the reformation of Mr. Big by founding bassist Billy Sheehan (known for work with Steve Vai, David Lee Roth) and guitar shredmeister Paul Gilbert.
Black Country Communion
In 2010, we saw the formation of hard-rock supergroup Black Country Communion. They have cut two discs and toured, releasing a live CD this year and now recording their third studio effort. Comprised of Deep Purple bassist and vocalist Glenn Hughes, master blues-rocker Joe Bonamassa, drummer Jason Bonham (Foreigner and son of Led Zep’s John), and Derek Sherinian (DreamTheater, Billy Idol, Alice Cooper), this group is the idea of producer Kevin Shirley (Black Crowes, Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin).
After a quiet 2011 on the supergroup front, excluding Van Halen’s re-emergence late in the year, we now have our first supergroup formation and CD release of 2012: Flying Colors. Their promo site describes the band thusly: born out of “a simple idea: virtuoso musicians and a pop singer joining to make new-fashioned music the old-fashioned way.”
Bill Evans, prog rock exec producer, came up with the idea of pairing famed and acclaimed Dixie Dregs founder guitarist Steve Morse with Spock’s Beard and Transatlantic keyboardist Neil Morse (no relation to Steve), drummer Mike Portnoy formerly of DreamTheater and Dregs bassist Dave LaRue. Not coincidentally, Mr. Evans represents Steve Morse, Neil Morse and Dave LaRue.
Evans engaged producer Peter Collins for the project (Rush, Bon Jovi, Jewel and Elton John) and the four musicians joined with the production team to seek a singer and complete the band. After striking out several times, they turned to relative newcomer singer/songwriter Casey McPherson, and Flying Colors was born.