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In the county of Dorset, England, there is a small town called Bournemouth, not exactly a hive of musical activity. Yet it produced two men critical to the development of progressive rock: Robert Fripp and Greg Lake.

Born November 10, 1948, Greg turned pro musician after leaving school and abandoning a career as a draughtsman. Temporarily setting aside more artistically ambitious goals he toured for a while with a local band, The Shame, which released the single "Don't Go Away Little Girl." He eventually made the pilgrimage to London, where he joined the embryonic Gods, a band that also bred ex-Stones guitarist Mick Taylor and Uriah Heep's Ken Hensley.

Greg kept in contact with Robert Fripp, and in 1969, along with Ian McDonald, Mike Giles and lyricist Peter Sinfield, they formed the legendary King Crimson. This lineup recorded the album, In the Court of the Crimson King, a revolutionary work of great influence.

While Crimson provided the catalyst for Greg to switch from playing guitar to bass, he also gained in recognition as a singer. From the sensitive beauty of "Epitaph" to the demonic harshness of "21st Century Schizoid Man," his singing style set a new standard for the still infant rock scene.

Greg and Keith met in San Francisco backstage at a show featuring both the Nice and King Crimson. Says Keith: "I got to chat with Greg and we agreed that when we got back to England we'd discuss our ideas further. We did a lot of talking, and, in fact, we didn't play anything for quite a long time."

From the The Return of the Manticore liner notes. Contributed by Mo Hanrahan,


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Updated:    01/02/12