Best known as the original singer for the Michael Schenker Group, Gary Barden has also appeared on recordings by other groups over the years, and come the early 21st century, he finally got around to issuing solo albums. Born Gary John Barden on August 27, 1955, in Royal Tunbridge Wells, England, the singer first crossed paths with Schenker shortly after the German guitarist left UFO (supposedly via a demo that Schenker heard, of Barden's group, Fraser Nash), resulting in the formation of the Michael Schenker Group in 1979. What followed were several releases that many longtime Schenker fans consider to be MSG's all-time best, 1980's The Michael Schenker Group, 1981's MSG, and 1982's One Night at Budokan. Barden was briefly replaced in the group by ex-Rainbow singer Graham Bonnett for 1982's Assault Attack, but he would return in time for 1983's Built to Destroy, as well as another live recording, 1984's Rock Will Never Die. However, this would prove to be Barden's final work with Schenker for some time, as he would exit the band once more. Over the years, Barden would appear in several different projects, including Statetrooper, Praying Mantis, and Silver among others. The early 21st century proved to be a busy time for the singer, as he launched a solo career, which included such releases as 2004's Past & Present, 2006's The Agony and the Xtacy, 2007's Love and War, and 2011's all-covers set, Rock 'N Roll My Soul. But this period also marked Barden's reconnecion with Schenker, as he contributed to a pair of Michael Schenker Group releases, 2005's Heavy Hitters and 2006's Tales of Rock N' Roll (each of which included multiple singers). By 2008, Barden was once more the one-and-only singer of the Michael Schenker Group, resulting in the first full-length Barden/Schenker studio release in 24 years, 2008's In the Midst of Beauty. Subsequently, Barden has toured once more as part of the Michael Schenker Group, and collaborated with Schenker on an all-acoustic release, 2009's Gypsy Lady.
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