|Also known as||Ace Flash and the Dynamos|
Mike + The Mechanics
Alan "Bam" King
Terry "Tex" Comer
Ace were a British rock music band, who enjoyed moderate success in the 1970s. They are notable for their part in the early career of Paul Carrack, who later became famous as a solo artist, and as a member of several other groups. Ace are best known for their 1974 transatlantic Top 20 hit single, "How Long"
The band was formed in December 1972 in Sheffield as 'Ace Flash and the Dynamos', but this name was quickly abbreviated to just Ace.[1 ] The members were assembled from various other professional bands, and were all competent musicians. Carrack and Comer had previously played with Warm Dust, and King with Mighty Baby, whose antecedents were the 1960s band The Action.[1 ] Ace were popular on the pub rock circuit. Their music was pop with a funk influence.
Before the recording of their debut album, Five-A-Side, ex-Bees Make Honey drummer Fran Byrne replaced Witherington.[1 ] The single "How Long" (a song about one of the members leaving for another group) was taken from this record, and was a significant chart success, achieving a Top 20 place in the UK Singles Chart,[3 ] and reaching number three in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart. Its bass introduction was similar to that of "Travelling Song" by Pentangle. Carrack's electric piano was also prominent on the recording. In addition, "How Long" is believed to have been an instrumental influence on Steely Dan as well as shaping the vocal styling of Boz Scaggs.
The band eventually moved to the United States, and replaced Phil Harris with Jon Woodhead in June 1976.[1 ] They disbanded in July 1977, when most of the remaining members joined Frankie Miller's band.
Carrack has since played in Eric Clapton's band; Roger Waters' Bleeding Hearts Band; Roxy Music for the Manifesto album and tour; Squeeze in the early 1980s; and Mike + The Mechanics. His solo re-recording of "How Long" became a UK Top 40 hit again in 1996.[4 ]