Raymond Arthur "Ray" Gillen (May 12, 1959 – December 1, 1993) was a not forgotten singer-songwriter, known for his work with Badlands and Black Sabbath. Gillen was born on in New York but was raised in Cliffside Park, New Jersey.
He played in New Jersey clubs with several bands, including, among others, Quest (1978–'80),
F-66 (1980–'81), Savage, and Vendetta and Harlette.
In 1985, he joined Bobby Rondinelli's band.
In 1986, Black Sabbath, touring for the Seventh Star album, after only a few shows, chenged singer (Glenn Hughes) and Gillen was offered the job to replace Hughes.
After finishing the Seventh Star tour, Black Sabbath "The Eternal Idol" with Gillen.
However Gillen and Black Sabbath drummer Eric Singer quit before the album was released. Gillen was replaced by Tony Martin, and the vocal track of The Eternal Idol was rerecorded with Martin before the album was finally released in 1987.
The album was re-released on November 1, 2010 in Europe in a 2-disc expanded set including a bonus disc with Gillen's voice.
During the time of the Seventh Star tour, Gillen was asked to join Mel Galley's Phenomena for the recording of the album Dream Runner, which features vocals from Glenn Hughes, John Wetton and Max Bacon, recording 4 tracks. Next Gillen joined John Sykes with the intention to form a new band Blue Murder.
Gillen sang demos but Sykes decided to handle vocals himself.
Gillen then contacted Jake E. Lee (former Ozzy Osbourne guitarist) to form a band.
In 1988 Gillen started to form Badlands with Jake E. Lee and Eric Singer.
Gillen recorded three albums (Badlands, Voodoo Highway, and Dusk) with Badlands and toured from 1989 until 1992. Next Gillen stayed in L.A. and was involved with two projects.
He joined drummer Randy Castillo and Iggy Pop band members Whitey Kirst and Craig Pike under the name Cockfight. He also joined the band Terriff, led by guitarist Joe Holmes.
Gillen rehearsed with the group for several months before moving back to his native New York. Gillen went to New York City to form the band Sun Red Sun but he sadly died from an AIDS related disease in a New York Hospital on Dec 1st, 1983.
(Public pics taken from FB)