Doug Aldrich recalls attorney telling Lion members that they signed their “lives away” with record deal
Guitarist Doug Aldrich (The Dead Daisies, Whitesnake, Dio, Hurricane, Lion) was recently interviewed by long-time Sleaze Roxx contributor Ruben Mosqueda for KNAC.
Aldrich was asked why Lion never made a big splash in North America to which he replied:
“We were probably a couple years too late I think. A lot of labels passed on us — there was one label that enticed us, we signed with them and in the end it was the kiss of death. The deal was horrible and there was no way that we were going to make any money. The worst part is that there was no way to get the band on the road. In those days you’d release the album and you’d go on the road to support it vs. these days where the record helps promote the tour. We did have a label in Japan that took the album and worked it. Like you said, we did well there and some places in Europe. In a last ditch effort we got an attorney, he looked over the contract and said, “I can’t work with you.” We said, “Why?” He said, “You guys basically signed your lives away on this.” We didn’t know, we were just kids — that’s the way it goes.”
Wikipedia summarizes Lion’s history as follows (with slight edits): “The band, originally titled “Lyon,” were formed in Los Angeles in 1983 after ex-Tytan vocalist Kal Swan (born Norman Swan) and former Lone Star guitarist Tony Smith relocated from Great Britain and teamed up with bassist Alex Campbell and drummer Mark Edwards, who had been in Steeler alongside Yngwie Malmsteen, and Third Stage Alert. After beginning work on a demo, Swan and Edwards recruited guitarist Doug Aldrich and bassist Jerry Best (both of whom had previously recorded with the band Mansfield) to complete the Lion line-up.
In 1984, the group made its debut with “Love Is A Lie”, a song on the Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter soundtrack. In 1985, Lion returned with Power Love, a six-song EP released only in Japan. It was re-issued on CD in 1992 along with Mark Edwards‘ 1985 Code of Honor solo EP.
After recording the title for the Transformers animated film, they signed to Scotti Brothers and released their first full-length album, 1987’s Dangerous Attraction. Their next record, Trouble In Angel City, was released on the Grand Slamm label in 1989. It contained re-recordings of the Power Love EP songs, a cover of the Slade song “Lock Up Your Daughters”, and several new tracks.
In September of that year, Edwards suffered a broken neck after falling off a cliff while competing in a motorcycle race. Lion disbanded a month later.”
Lion’s “Power of Love” video: