The origins of War can be traced back to 1962 when guitarist, Howard Scott and drummer, Harold Brown, were still in high school, in Los Angeles. By 1965 the pair had added Leroy Jordan, bassist B.B. Dickerson and saxophonist, Charles Miller, and, in total, were known as The Creators.

In 1968, Thomas Sylvester Allen was included, as a percussionist, by which time the group was calling itself The Nightshift. The band was also joined by Englishman, Eric Burdon — who had already experienced a string of international hits, via The Animals — and a Danish player of the harmonica, Lee Oskar.


At a time when the word ‘peace’ was on many people’s lips, this multi-racial new line-up decided to call itself War. It was to remain the backing band to Eric Burdon until 1971, when it branched out on its own.

Belying its name, the band set out to promote harmony and unity. War blended rhythm and blues with latin, pop and jazz. Its music was a forerunner to hip hop and rap.


“Spill The Wine” sold in excess of a million copies, as a single, for Eric Burdon and War, in 1970, a combination that was also to release three albums. Nonetheless, War, as a solo entity, was to record many more albums than that during a period which spanned more than two decades. In addition the group had a series of singles, released between 1972 and 1976, that were to sell equally as well as “Spill The Wine” had.

For the names of more tracks by War, please, consult the suggested playlists.