Peter Frampton with Humble Pie, “Shine On”, 1971, in which our 20-year-old hero helps the band find its hardest-rocking groove on their 4th album together, at exactly the time he decides he wants to head in a more eclectic, acoustic direction himself, and soon departs for a solo career.
As a matter of fact, both Frampton and Humble Pie would quickly ascend to previously unimaginable heights once they went their separate ways that fall. 1971 offered some sneak peeks at what those peaks would look like, however, including their July performance in front of 100,000 fans in London’s Hyde Park, opening for Grand Funk.
Recorded in January 1971 and released in March, Rock On opened with Frampton’s composition “Shine On”, a mid-tempo funky groover featuring the Soul Sisters (P.P. Arnold, Claudia Lennear, and Doris Troy) on the chorus. This is the one song from Frampton’s years with Humble Pie that has been part of his concert repertoire ever since, as well it should be.
As an A-side in 1971 for Humble Pie, “Shine On” failed to chart, but the song featured prominently as part of Frampton Comes Alive, and was the B-side to the 1976 Top 10 single “Show Me The Way.”
(these 2 photos via 45cat)
So yeah, you’ve surely heard THAT version (my own play count is somewhere north of 10,000), but maybe not THIS one. This 971 studio version by our 20-year-old hero really is an all-time gem. The arrangement is a bit dated, but it’s also a clarion call, the sound of Peter Frampton finding his bedrock and stepping confidently into the light: somewhere between pop and rock, both rocking yet grooving. From here, our boy Peter would continue to Shine On.