June 1978: Thin Lizzy Releases "Live and Dangerous"

UNITED KINGDOM - JUNE 22: WEMBLEY EMPIRE POOL Photo of Scott GORHAM and Brian ROBERTSON and Phil LYNOTT and THIN LIZZY, L-R: Brian Robertson, Phil Lynott, Scott Gorham performing live onstage (Photo by Fin Costello/Redferns)
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(Fin Costello/Redferns)

In 1978, Phil Lynott and Thin Lizzy were ready to hit the recording studio. The group's most recent album, Bad Reputation, had been considered a return to form, and the guys were keen to build on the momentum. Thin Lizzy's producer, Tony Visconti, however, was too strapped for time to commit to a full-length studio effort, so the two sides came to a compromise: Thin Lizzy's first live album, Live and Dangerous.

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The band and Visconti poured over live recordings, settling on tracks captured at London's Hammersmith Odeon in 1976, and Toronto, Canada, in 1977, for a majority of the tunes. At least one song, "Southbound," was from a Philadelphia show in 1977.

The album's iconic cover was captured by NME photographer Chalkie Davies, who traveled with the band on on a US tour in 1978 to get it. Originally slated for the back cover in lieu of a full band image, Thin Lizzy manager Chris O'Donnell switched the photos at the last minute, preferring the bombastic shot of Lyott for the front.

Live and Dangerous was a hit, peaking at #2 in the UK. Only the Grease soundtrack was able to keep it from #1. In America, the record only got as far as #84 on the album chart.

Thin Lizzy's volatile relationship with guitarist Brian Robertson came to an end shortly after the release of Live and Dangerous, ushering the return of two-time axe man, Gary Moore.

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