Our top 10 Lillian Axe songs list digs deep into the music of an American ensemble renowned for its fine amalgam of hard rock and infectious glam metal tunes. The band was formed in 1983 by an original lineup consisting of guitarist Steve Blaze, vocalist Rick Bohrer, bassist Michael Darby, and drummer Rusty Cavalier. Lillian Axe became a reputable band in its homeland New Orleans, Louisiana, rising from mere gig players to outstanding recording artists.
Artist’s Career Beginnings and Breakthrough
The band’s initial years were marked by playing tons of gigs without releasing any music on the studio. During this time, the band played on shows under the moniker Oz. However, the guitarist gave the band a new moniker and the current name Lillian Axe. The band continued performing music in gigs, opening for reputable ensembles such as Queensryche, Alice Cooper, Ratt, and Poison.
Eventually, Lillian Axe caught the attention of MCA Records in 1987. This saw the band awarded a recording contract by the label. Without hesitation, the band hit the studio in anticipation of its debut LP. In 1988, Lillian Axe released its eponymous debut LP. Lillian Axe featured several hits, including “Nobody Knows,” “Dream of a Lifetime,” and “Misery Loves Company.” While some of the band’s songs from the LP received some airplay, Lillian Axe failed to receive mainstream acclaim.
Lillian Axe returned to the studio the following year, projecting to release its sophomore LP, Love + War. Love + War was a more impressive LP compared to Lillian Axe, thanks to its anthemic tracks. The LP catapulted Lillian Axe to more popularity. “My Number,” “Ghost of Winter,” and “Show a Little Love” are some of the best Lillian Axe songs from the LP, Love + War.
Lillian Axe’s Album Releases over the Years
With both Lillian Axe and Love + War unable to match the projected sales, MCA Records dropped the band from its artist’s roster. The pressure to drop Lillian Axe emanated from the fact that MCA Records had quite a history of commercial and mainstream successful releases with artists such as Lynyrd Skynyrd, Elton John, Neil Diamond, B.B. King, Tom Petty, and Muddy Waters.
After some tough days of trying to find a new record label, Lillian Axe landed a recording deal with I.R.S. Records. Under the label, Lillian Axe issued its third LP, Poetic Justice, in 1992. Poetic Justice catapulted Lillian Axe to mainstream success, peaking at number twenty-eight on the Billboard Top Heatseekers chart. The album also featured some of the best Lillian Axe songs, including “True Believer,” “See You Someday,” and a cover of Badfinger’s hit “No Matter What.”
Still under I.R.S. Records, Lillian Axe, released its fourth LP, Psychoschizophrenia. Psychoschizophrenia was issued in 1993. The LP blended hard rock, glam metal, and heavy metal elements. Psychoschizophrenia was unable to top the success of Lillian Axe’s third LP, Poetic Justice. However, it featured the hit “The Day I Met You,” one of the most memorable releases among the best Lillian Axe songs.
Following its tumbling success and fame, Lillian Axe disbanded in 1995. However, the band rekindled its musical pursuits four years later. The band’s reunion in 1999 was marked by the release of the LP Fields of Yesterday. Fields of Yesterday was released under Z Records. “When It Rains” is one of the most popular songs by Lillian Axe from the LP.
After yet another unsuccessful LP, Lillian Axe took a break from any music release for almost eight years. In 2007, the band returned with the LP Waters Rising. Waters Rising was issued under Locomotive Records. The LP featured several reputable ballads, including “Antarctica,” “Until the End of the World,” and “Fear of Time.”
Lillian Axe later released three more LPs, including Sad Day on Planet Earth in 2009, Deep Red Shadows in 2010, and XI The Days Before Tomorrow in 2012. However, none of the LPs were able to catapult Lillian Axe back to stardom. Lillian Axe’s live LP One Night in the Temple, issued in 2014, and the single “The Weeping Moon,” issued in 2017, is among the band’s most recent releases.
Lillian Axe’s Other Musical Pursuits
The band has not been involved in other musical pursuits apart from touring with different acts such as Poison, Ratt, and Queensryche. However, some of its members pursued new musical goals, especially when Lillian Axe disbanded for the first time. Vocalist Ron Taylor attempted a career with his new act, The Bridge.
Original member Steve Blaze joined his brother Craig in Near Life Experience. One of the most prosperous ex-member of Lillian Axe is drummer Tommy Stewart who founds success with the ensembles Fuel, Everclear, and Godsmack.
Lillian Axe’s Accolades and Legacy
While Lillian Axe failed to reach mainstream and commercial success, it still managed to leave a mark in the rock scene. The band was the first hard rock ensemble to be inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame in 2010. Seven years later, Lillian Axe was awarded the Jackson Indie Music Week Icon Award. The band’s current member (guitarist) and primary songwriter, Steve Blaze, was inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame. This followed his magnificent work with Lillian Axe, both as a songwriter and guitarist. Here we present the best Lillian Axe songs of all time.
#10 – Caged In
Ushering us to the top 10 Lillian Axe songs list is the energetic hit “Caged In.” The song is featured on the band’s most recent LP, XI The Days Before Tomorrow. Guitarist and songwriter Steve Blaze revealed that “Caged In” is one of his finest songs ever penned for the band.
“Caged In” is one of the first releases by the band, with Brian Jones taking on the lead vocals. Brian Jones adds to the band some new vocal capabilities thanks to his implausible vocal range. Like most of the songs from the LP, XI The Days Before Tomorrow, “Caged In” alludes to Steve’s ardent credence in the power of music.
#9 – Dream of a Lifetime
“Dream of a Lifetime” is our ninth track on the ten best Lillian Axe songs list. The song is featured on Lillian Axe’s eponymous debut LP. “Dream of a Lifetime” was released a month after the band signed a recording contract with MCA Records. The song is among Lillian Axe’s releases that got some airplay on MTV and radio.
“Dream of a Lifetime” is a catchy song thanks to its tuneful sound. Its instrumental bring out the amazing guitar work by Steve Blaze. The song features one of the band’s best vocal arrangements of all time. Ron Taylor takes on the lead vocals on this ballad. Even though the band’s music has evolved over the decades, Lillian Axe still impressed its audiences with this show stopper over the years.
#8 – True Believer
After being dropped by MCA Records due to lack of commercial success, Lillian Axe signed a recording deal with I.R.S. Records. The result of the new recording deal with I.R.S. Records was the band’s third LP release, Poetic Justice. Poetic Justice harbors some of the best Lillian Axe songs, including our eighth track, “True Believer.”
“True Believer” had its lyrics penned by the band’s primary songwriter and guitarist Steve Blaze. The song finds the singer showcasing how much optimistic he is about the love he has for a significant other. Once more, singer Ron Taylor brings the best of his authoritative yet awe-inspiring vocals.
#7 – Show a Little Love
In 1989, Lillian Axe released the single “Show a Little Love.” The song is among the musical gems featured on the band’s sophomore LP, Love + War. This four-minute track was as well penned by guitarist Steve Blaze.
“Show a Little Love” finds the singer asking a lady to make him feel her love. Unfortunately, the lady hasn’t done that owing to her broken dreams that she has barely moved on from. However, the singer still shows the lady some love hoping she gives up on her past. The British progressive rock The Pineapple Thief released a song with a similar title (but different lyrics) in 2010 on the LP, Someone Here Is Missing.
#6 – See You Someday
Number six on our top 10 Lillian Axe songs list is the splendid track “See You Someday.” The song is among the musical gems from Lillian Axe’s LP Poetic Justice. This five-minute song was penned by Lillian Axe’s guitarist Steve Blaze.
“See You Someday” is one of the best of Lillian Axe’s earnest love songs. The song alludes to the feeling that one experiences after a breakup or passing away of a significant other. Steve Blaze cited that “See You Someday” has been an instrumental ballad in helping many overcome death and breakups in life.
#5- My Number
Lillian Axe established itself as a reputable glam metal act in the ‘80s, especially with the release of the LP Love + War. The album is home to our number five track on the ten best Lillian Axe songs of all time, “My Number.” Unlike most of the songs by Lillian Axe, “My Number” was penned by Gerry Laffy and Phil Lewis.
Phil Lewis is a guitarist and vocalist at the hard rock act L.A. Guns. Initially, the song was released by the glam metal act Girl on its 1980 LP Sheer Greed. Girl is one of the most reputable new wave of British heavy metal ensembles. Lillian Axe offers its touch of glam metal vibes on this cover song.
#4- Nobody Knows
“Nobody Knows” is one of the best Lillian Axe songs from the band’s eponymous debut LP. The song is a timeless melodic ballad that brings the band’s blend of hard rock and glam metal. “Nobody Knows” is yet another hit that showcases the magical songwriting skills of guitarist Steve Blaze.
In this track, the singer promises his presence to his lover when everything turns upside down and no one seems to be noticing. “Nobody Knows” is among the few musical gems featured on the live LP One Night in the Temple, issued in 2014.
#3- No Matter What
The third track on our ten best Lillian Axe songs is the charming hit “No Matter What.” “No Matter What” was initially released in 1970 by the Welsh rock act Badfinger. Singer Pete Ham is credited with having penned the lyrics to this ballad. Badfinger released the song on the LP, No Dice.
The original version of the song was a success peaking at number eight on the Billboard Hot 100. Lillian Axe later covered the song in 1992, releasing it on Poetic Justice. While Lillian Axe’s failed to chart, it helped Poetic Justice become the band’s most successful LP. “No Matter What” was later covered by reputable artists, including Def Leppard and The Knack.
#2- Ghost of Winter
“Ghost of Winter” is our second track on the ten best Lillian Axe songs list. The song is featured on Lillian Axe’s LP Love + War, issued in 1989. At slightly over six minutes, “Ghost of Winter” is the longest release by Lillian Axe on the LP. Once more, guitarist Steve Blaze offers us some of his best songwriting skills on this ballad. In this song, the singer calls on the ghost of winter to hear his secret cries.
#1- The Day I Met You
Number one on our top 10 Lillian Axe songs is the stunning hit “The Day I Met You.” The song is a timeless love ballad from the band’s LP Psychoschizophrenia, issued in 1993. Lillian Axe later featured “The Day I Met You” on the live album, One Night at the Temple, issued in 2014.
Guitarist Steve Blaze cited “The Day I Met You” to be a standard bridal ballad. Blaze went on to say that the song was inspired by the Beatles. Despite Psychoschizophrenia not matching the success of Poetic Justice, the LP remains reputable for featuring our number one hit. The song’s greatness is enshrined in Ron Taylor’s transcendent vocals and the magnificent musical arrangement of the ballad. Fantasia released a song with almost a similar theme and title in 2017, “When I Met You.”
Photo: Jax 0677, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons
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