Tommy Bolin Caricature


Tommy Bolin Caricature, illustrated here in Los Angeles in June, 1975 age 23.

Bolin was an American guitarist and songwriter who played with Zephyr (from 1969 to 1971), The James Gang (from 1973 to 1974), and Deep Purple (from 1975 to 1976), in addition to maintaining a notable career as a solo artist and session musician.

Bolin moved to Boulder, Colorado, in his late teens and then played in a band called American Standard (with future songwriting collaborator Jeff Cook) before joining Ethereal Zephyr, a band named after a train that ran between Denver and Chicago. When record companies became interested, the name was shortened to Zephyr.

Stuck between the musical direction he wanted to pursue and a nearly-empty bank account, 1973 found Bolin replacing Domenic Troiano, who had replaced Joe Walsh, in the James Gang.
He recorded two James Gang records: Bang in 1973 and Miami in 1974. Bolin wrote or co-wrote all but one song on these two albums.

Later in 1975, Bolin signed with Nemperor records to record a solo album. Bolin was encouraged and coached by The Beach Boys to do his own vocals on this album as well. Session players on this record included David Foster, David Sanborn, Jan Hammer, Stanley Sheldon, Jeff Porcaro, Phil Collins and Glenn Hughes.

During the recording of this album, he was contacted by Deep Purple.

After Ritchie Blackmore left Deep Purple, the band had a meeting and discussed whether to disband or try to find a replacement, and chose the latter option.
Invited to audition, he jammed with the band for four hours and the job was his. The band then relocated to Munich, Germany, to begin work on Come Taste the Band. Bolin wrote or co-wrote seven of the record’s nine tracks, including the instrumental “Owed to G,” which was a tribute to George Gershwin.

After Deep Purple disbanded in March 1976, Bolin was free to form the Tommy Bolin Band and he hit the road while making plans for a second solo album.
Bolin’s tour for Private Eyes would be his final live appearances. He opened for Peter Frampton and Jeff Beck. In his final show, he opened for Beck on December 3, 1976 in Miami, and encored with a rendition of “Post Toastee”.

Hours later, Bolin died from an overdose of heroin and other substances, including alcohol, cocaine and barbiturates. He is buried in Calvary Cemetery in Sioux City, Iowa.
He was 25.

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All prints are produced using Giclee printing process which is used for archival art reproduction. This process uses fade-resistant archival pigment-based ink which lasts over 100 years. All prints are printed on 310GSM, Luxurious mould-made, 100% cotton rag Archival Certified watercolor paper.

Archival Conservation Mat is included with your purchase. Mat is a high quality, 4 ply (1/16″) surround mat. These frame mats are acid-free & Lignin-free made with 100% virgin alpha-cellulose surface, core and backing papers. So your caricature with mat will fit into a standard comparable frame either “20” x 24″ or “16” x 20″ depending on the print size, (frame not included). Price also includes a Backer Board.

32″ x 40″ stretch canvas print is produced by Giclee printing process and are hand stretched over heavy duty American made white pine. The canvas print is varnished twice after printing. The canvas prints are ready to hang (complete with hanging wire).

Additional information

Weight .25 lbs
Dimensions 16 × 20 × .25 in
Print Size

32" x 40" Stretched Canvas Print $495, 20" x 24" Stretched Canvas Print $330, 11" x 14" Watercolor Print $95, 16" x 20" Watercolor Print $185