For the past 30 years, the Average White Band has been performing their unique brand of soul to sold-out audiences across the globe. On Friday, Sept. 20, AWB will perform at the L.A. County Fair at Fairplex in Pomona as part of the End of Summer Concert Series on the Los Angeles Newspaper Group Grandstand Stage. The Fair runs Sept. 13-29.
Formed in 1972 by six friends, this Scottish group has produced numerous hits. The group made its debut in 1973 as the opening act for Eric Clapton’s Rainbow Theatre comeback gig. Following this, the group released its debut album, Show Your Hand, but the album saw little success.
In 1974 the group adopted the abbreviation AWB and in January 1975 the group released its second album titled AWB, which included the breakout single “Pick Up the Pieces,” which reached the top of the Pop and R&B charts. Such as “Person to Person,” “Cut the Cake,” “Schoolboy Crush,” and “Queen of my Soul,” followed. In 1980 the band’s dance-single “Let’s Go ‘Round Again” was the longest chart run of the year in the United Kingdom.
In 1982 the group disbanded, like many other R&B groups who found themselves competing with disco and punk-rock music. With 10 albums, three Grammy nominations and a large following, the band left a strong legacy. But AWB’s music making days were far from over.
In 1989 the band regrouped and has been touring since. Their newest CD, Face to Face, is the band’s first live recording in more than 20 years. The album captures the raw energy of AWB’s soulful funk.
In 1999 the band received further notoriety. They were profiled on VH-1’s “Where Are They Now?” and appeared on the radio show “Tom Joyner Morning Show” with Jesse Jackson. They received the keys to the city of New Orleans after a performance at the “Essence Music Festival” at the Superdome.
Today AWB’s music is still heard worldwide, including on the movie soundtracks of Swingers, the People vs. Larry Flynt, Private Parts, Bowfinger and Blue Steak. Most recently, their music was chosen by Mitsubishi for a commercial introducing its 2000 Eclipse model. AWB’s music has also been used by many young hip-hop and rap artists, such as Janet Jackson, Bobby Brown, T.L.C., Lena Conquest and Puff Daddy.
General admission to see AWB in concert at the 2002 Fair is free with regular Fair admission. Reserved seating tickets may be purchased for $12.50 each,<