RICKY WARWICK – ‘When Life Was Hard And Fast’

RICKY WARWICK – ‘When Life Was Hard And Fast’ announces new album due for release February 19th 2021


RICKY WARWICK (BLACK STAR RIDERS, THIN LIZZY, THE ALMIGHTY) announced a new studio album, the first since 2015. The album is titled ‘When Life Was Hard And Fast’ and will be released on February 19th via Nuclear Blast.

The first single from the album ‘Fighting Heart’ has already been released today and is now available on all streaming services. Check out the music video for ‘Fighting Heart’ here:




“The true spirit of rock n’ roll is a relentless pursuit that consumes me on a daily basis. Chasing after it, making this record was a race well run”Ricky Warwick.

Ricky says: “Fighting Heart is proof of how music, literature, art and films inspire and motivate us every day. Can these change things the world? Who can say for sure? But I think loud guitars and rock n roll can save at least a small part of us. ”

To record this album, Ricky teamed up with Rober Crane (bass), Xavier Muriel (drums) and Keith Nelson (guitar), there are also a large number of special guests including Joe Elliott (DEF LEPPARD), Andy Taylor (ex-DURAN DURAN), Luke Morley (THUNDER), Dizzy Reed from the mighty GUNS ‘N ROSESand even his own daughter Pepper. After Keith worked with BUCKCHERRY, BLACKBERRY SMOKE and ALICE COOPER, among others, he has now also produced the new album. Keith describes the collaboration: “Ricky is a real rock-n-roller … he has incredible stories to tell and tells them in a unique way. It was an honour when I was asked to be a partner and contribute to this record. “



Born in Newtownards, County Down, Northern Ireland, singer/songwriter/guitarist Ricky Warwick was cut from the cloth of a mill workers’ jacket. Raised on a diet of Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash, Thin Lizzy, Stiff Little Fingers, Motown and everything in between. Saving his money from a newspaper round and a little help from his father, Ricky got his first electric guitar at age 13. “That cheap electric guitar changed my life….it saved me, it was more than just notes on a fretboard, it was the deepest breath of life I ever experienced.“ explains Warwick.

At age 14 Ricky and his family relocated to Strathaven, Scotland. It was here that Warwick fully immersed himself in the sonic seas of Rock n Roll. Writing and practising every free moment he wasn’t working on his father’s farm, Ricky got a call to join acclaimed U.K. Punk/Folk band New Model Army as rhythm guitarist on their 1987 ‘Ghost Of Cain‘ World Tour. Following New Model Army, Ricky went on to form The Almighty in Glasgow who enjoyed ten top forty singles and four top twenty albums in the U.K. during the late ’80s/early 90’s, touring worldwide with such iconic bands as The Ramones, Motorhead, Megadeth and Iron Maiden.


In 2002, after relocating back to Ireland, Ricky recorded his first solo album ‘Tattoos & Alibis‘ in Joe Elliott of Def Leppard’s studio in Dublin with Joe also handling production duties. It marked a shift in direction “I realized that I didn’t need to yell over a wall of sound to make my point…less is more, stripped back instrumentation could achieve the same goal just as effectively. I learned so much making that record, primarily about myself”. Warwick would go on to release two more solo albums between 2002 -2010 and tour globally opening for the likes of Def Leppard, Cheap Trick, Bryan Adams and Lynyrd Skynyrd.


In January 2010 Ricky received a call from his old friend Scott Gorham who was spearheading a reformation of Ireland’s favourite sons Thin Lizzy and wanted Ricky to front the new line up. ”I was shocked, terrified, excited and extremely humbled when I got that call. Phil Lynott was my hero and Thin Lizzy were the soundtrack of my life. I realized that I could never hope or even dare to try and stand in Phil’s shoes. All I could do was try and stand beside them and sing his songs with as much heart, soul and passion possible. In late 2012, with a necessity to write and perform new material, out of respect for the Thin Lizzy name, Black Star Riders were born. Warwick is the frontman and main songwriter for the band and 2013 saw the release of Black Star Riders acclaimed debut album

‘All Hell Breaks Loose‘.


Black Star Riders have now released four critically-acclaimed and commercially successful albums, the most recent being 2019’s ‘Another State Of Grace‘. They have achieved two U.K. top 15 albums and one U.K. top 10 album as well as a mainstream radio play which includes claiming two “singles of the week” on BBC Radio 2.


Following 2016’s lauded ‘When Patsy Cline Was Crazy… And Guy Mitchell Sang The Blues’, Warwick is getting ready to unleash his 5th solo album in 2021. Titled ‘When Life Was Hard And Fast‘, it was recorded in Los Angeles and produced by Keith Nelson (ex-Buckcherry), who also co-wrote the majority of the songs on the record with Warwick. “Keith Nelson and I share a passion for good, honest, rock ‘n’ soul. Making the album with Keith who shares a similar outlook and work ethic as me was a no brainer ….also the fact that he has a killer collection of vintage guitars contributed greatly”


“I wanted to create an album that had the simplistic melodies of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers charged with the electric hedonistic fury of Johnny Thunders And The Heartbreakers. Recording the album as live as possible with a full band was requisite to achieving the desired effect”. Xavier Muriel (Ex-Buckcherry) on drums and Robert Crane (Black Star Riders) on bass completed the core band and turned in stellar performances, giving the songs a real lease of life.


For those intrigued by the album cover, it depicts a crash scene from the famous Ards TT Motor Car Race in County Down Northern Ireland.  The race ran from 1928 until 1936 was watched by over 250,000 spectators annually.  The embankment in the photograph that the spectators are on is actually a field belonging to Ricky’s Great Grandfather’s Farm, which he grew up on for the first fourteen years of his life.


Ricky Warwick


The album appears in various formats, including a double CD digipack with the cover album ‘Stairwell Troubadour’ as a bonus CD. Pre-order the album in the format of your choice here: http://nblast.de/RickyWarwick-WLWHAF


Ricky Warwick
Photo credit: Robin Wielink










Ricky Warwick | Vocals & Guitar

Keith Nelson | Guitar, Backing Vocals, Percussion

Robert Crane | Bass

Xavier Muriel | Drums


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