As founder of mid-1960s Baroque pop act The Left Banke, Michael Brown penned the big hits Walk Away Renee and Pretty Ballerina before forming Stories with bass player and singer Ian Lloyd in 1972. The pair envisioned creating melodic rock music inspired by The Beatles and The Beach Boys and recruited guitarist Steve Love and drummer Bryan Madey, but their self-titled debut album only made it into the lower reaches of the charts and Brown soon quit the group. Based in New York, Lloyd brought in Ken Bichel on keyboards and Kenny Aaronson on bass to record follow-up album About Us, but it was when they started experimenting with funk, soul and Motown influences that they found real success. Their version of Brother Louie by British soul band Hot Chocolate was a strutting funk-rock groove, that went on to score a number one in the US Singles Charts and was later re-recorded as the theme tune to television comedy Louie in 2010. Although they had found national fame and follow-up single Mammy Blue made the top 50, Lloyd wasn't comfortable with the band's new sound and didn't feature on Travelling Underground. They split in 1974, with Lloyd going on to a solo career, working as a backing vocalist with Foreigner, Yes and Billy Joel and also writing songs for Elkie Brooks.

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