ARTICLE ABOUT Mick Ronson (David Bowie) FROM New Musical Express, October 6, 1973

There is no doubt that Mr. Ronson was an excellent musician in every way, but his regular gig playing with an even bigger star made it difficult for him to really shine on his own. But there is no doubt in my mind that he was one of the good guys that deserved so much more from life than he got.
Read on!

The Ronson creative flame

By Charles Shaar Murray

SUNDAY NIGHT at the Chateau D’Herouville, and Mick Ronson is taking a break from recording his “Slaughter On Tenth Avenue” album to discuss various matters concerning the future of humanity and various similar subjects. As we fade into the conversation, he’s answering a question about whether this is the first of a series of solo albums.
“Yes, otherwise there’d be no point to it. I wouldn’t do it just to do one album. I never really thought about it that much, you know. It’s come quicker than I thought, which is probably why I’ve only written three numbers for this album.
“I wouldn’t write a stack of stuff for the album and record it simply because it’s my material. I don’t care who wrote the number. As long as I present it properly, that’s all I’m interested in.
But I will write more numbers, and on the next album have more of my own numbers, and on the album after that… I`ll be five things, singer, guitarist, producer, arranger and composer. There’s a lot of ground to cover, and I’ll be into doing it. That is if I can do it… I’ll just keep going.”
To this day, I still haven’t heard Ronno singing anything but back-up and harmony. “I’m very curious as to how your voice is going to sound,” I asked.
“So am I,” responded the ebullient Mr. Ronson.
“I’m not the best of vocalists – there’s a lot of good vocalists around. But I’m certainly better than a lot of ’em. And I’m going to get better as I get more experience as a front man.
“I’ve been practising a lot by myself. When me and Dave (Bowie) sing together we sound very much alike. I’ll sound like David on some parts, but at other times I’ll sound like different people.
“But I’ll be singing well, or else I wouldn’t be singing at all. I don’t want to be doing anything unless it’s perfect. I don’t want any rough edges. It’ll sound rough — but gutsy and tight, but not so tight that it’s as tight as Yes, where every note’s been worked out. Every single note, so that they become like computers on stage.
Obviously, the album will be finished and issued before Ronno takes the Spiders back on the road. Would he have rather played a few dates before recording?
“I really don’t mind which way round it is. I know what I’m doing on stage, and I know what I’d be doing in the studio. I know what you mean about getting used to the numbers, but that’s a pretty good thing anyway.

“When we get out on the road, the numbers are gonna sound different. They’re going to sound even fuller than they do already. They’ll be heavier – and more exciting than they are now. They always are when you play ’em on the stage, anyway.
“If people buy the album and like something, then when they come to see us on the road, they’ll say, ‘The album’s great, but wait until you see ’em on stage’. That’s why I like Jeff Beck on stage. He really seems to put a lot into it, whereas he doesn’t really seem to do it on record.
“It’s a nice surprise when you go and see somebody and find that they’re better live. `Hang On To Yourself` was very bouncy on the record, but when we did it live it was really grinding, very heavy. Really chunky.”
TALK DRIFTED to the Hammersmith live album, currently in the mixing stages. “It really is live,’ said Ronson. “There’s been no going back and re-doing it in the studio. A lot of groups take the tapes into the studio and then strip it and start correcting the mistakes. They might put a fresh guitar solo on or something.”
Now back to Ronson’s own plans:
“I ain’t gonna go on stage in the silk tights. Against David’s lightness I was always the heavy one. They’ll all be natural things — you could call it choreography onstage I suppose. Obviously I’m gonna work. There’ll be some theatrics involved – just a little touch.
“There’s going to be a touch of everything. I love being on the road. It’s good fun. I enjoy playing to people, I love playing on a stage. Not all the time, though, I couldn’t do it all the time.
“Some groups never give themselves the time to be creative, and they have to play all the time because they need the bread. When I was on the road with Dave, and we looked as if we were enjoying ourselves, we really were.
“If we’d carried on playing on the road for the next two years and we’d been playing that same stuff, it would’ve been so forced.
“But we’re going to enjoy playing, and changing the set around here and there. And the audiences are gonna enjoy it too. All the time, we’re gonna be fresh, and we’ll learn things. The more we play the more we’ll learn.”
Is Ronson expecting any wild scenes of teenage hysteria at his gigs?
“I don’t know. Anything. I`d like people to appreciate the music, and I’d like them to appreciate the show, and I’d like people to leave thinking that it was really good. I’d enjoy seeing young chicks swooning at me feet same as I’d like to see a college audience standing up and clapping for ten minutes.

“At the concerts I reckon there’s gonna be a very mixed audience. There’s going to be a lot of young chicks there, and there’s gonna be a lot of college-type boys. That’s going to be nice. I hope some mums and dads come. I don’t care who comes as long as they enjoy it, and I’ll make sure that they will.
MUCH OF what Mick Ronson says above could well open him up for charges of egotism when laid out in cold (or lukewarm, even) print. That impression is somewhat unfortunate, since Mick Ronson is a long way from being a compulsive trumpet-blower. Indeed, in many ways he’s almost too wary of limelight to be a rock star.
The thing is that he has considerable pride in his own abilities as a craftsman, and once he’s well into discussing his own work, he sees no reason to get too coy and modest about what he considers to be some sort of achievement.
The trouble is that his conversation tends to give rise to misinterpretation. He’s not a particularly verbal guy, and you never find him elbowing his way into a conversation or being the life of the party. Quite possibly, he felt slightly inhibited when he was part of the Bowie roadshow. Certainly, he was polite and cordial to anybody who approached him, but he didn’t exactly work overtime to attract attention to himself.
Basically, he’s a very hardworking musician. He’s really happy when he’s working on his music, and is unwilling to engage in any of the full-tilt ligging which characterises many off-duty superstars. Ronson is very professional, very unpretentious.
One thing that fools a lot of people is his accent. He`s from Hull, and he`s got a very strong accent, thick almost to the point of self-parody. Many people, especially people from London, have been so trained by Northern comedians, that anyone who really talks like that gets branded as a joke right from the start.
When the person concerned particularly is unused to speaking for publication, he may well find himself satire-fodder.
Another problem is that somebody who only recently emerged from under the wing of a well-known act is generally regarded with some suspicion. As has been already pointed out, Ronson’s contributions to Bowie’s work have been much underestimated, and the true extent of these contributions probably won’t become apparant until the album’s out and Ronno’s on the road.

Okay, so is Mick Ronson going to be a star? Personally, I don’t think that he’ll have any major problems.
His work with Bowie has already gained him a sizeable following, judging from our mail. It’s some time since we last received a request for nude shots of him, but the sentiment probably still exists. He’s a good-looking guy, he moves very well on stage, and he plays great.
In addition to that, he’s got considerable imagination as an arranger, and he’s capable of organising excellent music and getting the best out of musicians. The new album shows his abilities in that direction more than adequately.
What’s still in question is his abilities as a vocalist, lyricist and front man. On the Bowie shows, he showed a lot of stage presence and considerable ability to work to an audience. However, he was definitely working behind Bowie, and it still remains to be seen whether he can be a convincing frontman. Personally again, I think he can.
What it really comes down to is his voice. If he turns out to have a distinctive and exciting vocal style, then the world will be his oyster. If not, then he’ll have to concentrate on his playing and live show.
Still, I’m sure he’s going to work hard on his vocals. Finally, a lot depends on his composing. His melodies are interesting enough, but let us hope that he’s going to come up with some strong lyrics.
It’s certain that the venues of the tour will be carefully selected, the album well-packaged and the show pretty luxurious. Tony DeFries is not exactly renowned for skimping on anything, and so if Ronno blows it, it’s going to be definitely his own fault.
In Mike Garson, Aynesley Dunbar and Trevor Bolder, he has a fine back-up unit, so it simply comes back to himself. He’s got a ready-made following and the potential to attract a whole bunch of people who were never really into Bowie to begin with, so the lad should do well.

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ARTICLE ABOUT Suzi Quatro FROM New Musical Express, October 6, 1973

One thing is for sure, Mrs Quatro could handle herself in every situation. She was no shrinking violet when faced with whatever situation she found herself in. This article proves what I am saying.
Read on!

You don`t have to be a dyke…
…but it helps

Suzi Quatro talks of image and associated topics to Charles Shaar Murray

I FIRST ran into Suzi Quatro late last year. She was a nice, bouncy little American chick who played bass, wrote songs, was forming a band and had just put out a flop single. I dug her attitude to life and other semi-related topics, quite got off on her record, flawed though it was, and tied her in the interesting To See What She Does Next department.
Seven months later, and Little Ms Q was a Bona Fide Star. Had she changed? Had she become a horrible little bitch? Was she lead bareback rider in the Ego Circus? Well, she’s even made it as far as a Penthouse centrefold.
How, you ask, can a chick with boobs that small break into the last stronghold of male chauvinist piggery? Simple, Benson — she keeps her clothes on. A clothed Penthouse Pet? Well, stranger things have happened — theoretically anyway.
So back at Rak, Ms Q collapses into a chair and commences the interview. She’s great — you hardly have to ask her any questions. Just turn the cassette machine on and count her in. On your marks, Suzi — get set, rap!
“Well, this German interviewer got cute and asked me my most hated question, which is ‘Howcum if you write all your own stage songs and album tracks, you have Chinn and Chapman writing your singles?’
“If I hear that question one more time I’ll… anyway, so I said, ‘Excuse me, how much do you make in a week?’ I said, `Well, I make about three times that, so don’t fucking ask me why somebody else does my singles’. `That was the end of the interview. I don’t like that question. It’s such a stupid question. Were you gonna ask me?”
Fervent denials.
“I just prevented you from asking it, anyway. See how clever I am?”
Since, I pointed out, I’d been given an album the previous day that had pictures of Suzi on the sleeve, and her music inside, I’d come to the conclusion that she had an album out that week. Would she care to comment?
“Hah, an intellectual. I’m glad the papers have started hiring intellectuals. Actually you’re right. I do have an album out. Have you heard it?”
“Do you like it?”
Jesus. it’s one thing reviewing an album, but have you ever tried giving a live performance of the review to the artist concerned. Gasp in awe, gentle reader, at my audacity, honesty and strength of principle. Ready? You better be, because I sure can’t be bothered to do the whole thing all over again in the reviews pages.

“Yes, with reservations, and both those reservations are basically to do with the production. It’s too light, and too gimmicky. I would have preferred a much heavier sound, recorded in a much straighter way.”
“The other main objection is that the way your voice is recorded I can’t understand the lyrics.”
“They’re very good lyrics, actually. It’s a shame. I mumble, though. I always have done.”
So why no lyric sheet?
“Makes it look like a folk album, though. Doesn’t it? Peace and love and flowers and here’s the lyrics to my latest end-the-war song. I think rockanroll is exactly what it is when you put it down. Smash. I think Mike produced it not so much as an album, but a little more singley commercially. Which is probably a good idea for a first album, because all that people know about me is ‘Can The Can’ and ’48 Crash’.
“So for the first album, you have to stick basically to what the people know about you. We’ve already started on the next album, Len and me (lead guitarist Len Tuckey), and it’s going to be much more bottom-heavy and much more musical. We might lose some of our singles fans by the next album, I don’t know.
“I always go overboard on my bass solos,” she adds in answer to a query. “They always tell me to stop. See, I tell them that their solos can’t go over a certain number of bars, and then I say, ‘I’ll take a little more’.”
Self-indulgence, I mutter.
“Sure, but the bass is the best instrument, don’t you think? Where does a bass hit you? Right between the legs. You listen to a stereo, and when it comes on you just have to lay back.”
My own favourite cut on the album is Suzi’s version of “I Wanna Be Your Man”. You ‘eard – “I Wanna Be Your Man”. It’s a totally inspired piece of bad taste, and the best change of emphasis double-whammy that anyone’s pulled on an already-familiar song since Bowie turned the sexual tables on “Let’s Spend The Night Together”. But more on that later.
“My dad used to come to our shows, and he’d come back stage and he’d say, ‘Now listen! You gotta pronounce your words’, and I’d say, ‘S’alright, it’s ROCK AND ROLL’. And still today, you can’t understand what I’m singing. I`m gonna have to concentrate on my pronounciation. Who else used to mumble? Joe Cocker?” Yeah, but Cocker’s songs were already so well-known that he didn’t have to get into his diction. “That’s a nice point, actually. I think I’ll have to do that on the next album. I’ll put it on the front -`Suzi Quatro with lyrics you can understand’.

On the cover, Suzi’s all done up in her leathers surrounded by those really gross looking guys swigging beer and posing. Then there’s that `I Wanna Be Your Man’ — well, it makes you think, dunnit? Why this whole dyke trip? “You don’t haveta be a dyke to be tough,” pronounced Ms Q, adding in a deafening whisper, “but it helps!” “Everybody expects me to be some six-foot” -horrifying roar – “I’ve told a million people if I’ve told one that my toughness is in my mind. It’s an attitude that I have towards the business. Determination and all that crap, that’s where my toughness lies. “‘I Wanna Be Your Man’ is a double meaning, because a man is tough by the stereotype of the word, isn’t he? So I’m taking the piss out of it by singin` “I Wanna Be You Man’. It’s very sarcastic.
“Wait’ll next month when I come out with ‘Yesterday Once More’ by the Carpenters. I’ll wear a long dress and put bows in my hair. People will be hanging themselves by their whips that they’ve named after me. Well, it’d be nice if they did name whips after me. You know how Alice Cooper gave away those paper knickers? I was thinging about a garter belt.”
But Suzi dear, you don’t wear one. After all, what can you wear under those leathers?
“Absolutely nothing, but ya can’t put that in an envelope. Yeah, I’m very happy with the album. It`s a very good first one. The thing is that I could never make another one like that. It`d be death. That would mean that you`ve found your thing and done it, and then you`d have nothing more to say. Over and over and over again and you think, `for fuck`s sake shaddup`. “Glycerine Queen` on the album is great, it`s very funny. It`s about a little blond boy who came into our dressing room one night. We wear glycerine on stage because it picks up the light and looks oily and greasy. The boys put it on their arms.
“Anyway this kid came in wearing lots of makeup and looking just like David Bowie, and he said. ‘I thing you’re wonderful’, and Len, who’s a real pisstaker, grabbed this bottle of glycerine and said `D’you take this?’.
“The kid said, “Yeah, man, I take anything,’ and he poured the glycerine into his beer and drank it. I don’t know if he’s still alive, but if he is, a message to him: there’s a song about you on our new album.”
At this point, the conversation started getting sordid. Readers under 18 please turn back and start getting into the Roger Daltrey piece. Those of you who are beyond corruption (or alternatively, don’t understand some of the more outre words), plod on.

What, Ms Quatro, do you see as the future of the bondage-rock movement? Will there be a whole slew of whip-slinging degenerates coming on stage in chains, rubbers and intricate strap arrangements?
“I hope not, because then I won’t be different, will I? I don’t know, I hadn’t ever thought about it. There’s no-one else doing any of that at the moment, so I don’t know where they’re all getting it from.
“Maybe everybody’s goin’ through an unsexual period and so they’re spicing things up by beatin’ each other. God, things are really gettin’ better, aren’t they? I don’t beat the crap out of people. I wish I was bigger, though, then I fuckin’ would, a lot of times.”
“You!” she riposted, miming a crunching blow in the general direction of my exquisite nasal organ. “See, I have to use my mouth as my weapon all the time. My comments and my fuck yous have to be my weapons. If I was bigger, I’d handle it very differently, I’d just go ‘pow’. When I’ve gotten mad I’ve hit people before and it’s like a fly landing on their arm.”
Why not carry a knife?
“I used to. I pulled it on a couple of spades in downtown Detroit. I was shittin’ myself. I was walking down the street, and I had my handbang with me. I was by myself, and there was about five or six of ’em. I could hear them behind me, sayin `Hey man, I’m gonna kick yo’ white-trash ass’.
“I though, ‘Oh Jesus’ and I pulled the knife.
“Now, nobody wants to get cut up. They don’t know just what you’re gonna do, right? One guy said, ‘Cool, man, cool, okay sister, I’ll leave you alone’ and they went away. I stopped carrying it when I came over here.
“About the most exciting thing that happened here is when a flasher hits on you in the tube. My sister had come over to visit me, and there was this guy standing in the corner, playin’ with himself .
“So I turned to my sister and said, ‘don’t look now, but the guy over there is playin with himself,’ and she went, ‘Oooh, what’ll we do?’ Well, he’s over there really gettin’ into it, and the train stops. So right on cue we started clappin and whistlin’, `Yay, more, take ’em off!’.
“The poor guy turned beet red and ran straight off the train.”

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
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ARTICLE ABOUT Roger Daltrey (The Who) FROM New Musical Express, October 6, 1973

Here`s a great one done by Tony Stewart with Mr. Daltrey, being almost as outspoken as ever. But only just.
Read on to find out more!

The Who: triumph and a threat

It happened to The Beatles, but it won`t affect The Who. And Roger Daltrey now prepares to do three years hard labour.
Report: Tony Stewart

ROGER DALTREY lives in Sussex, away from it all in a house you could lose an elephant in. The grounds are so vast that he can point into the horizon — and you’re still not sure whether his land goes further than the natural boundary you can see. You get there by train, arriving at a tranquil country station, and then riding along narrow high-hedged lanes in a Range Rover.
On our particular visit it was hot. So hot that Daltrey wore only a brief pair of white jeans cut at the knees, displaying a fine, bronze physique, as we wandered around the gardens of his estate.
It is the country, and a most convivial place to rap. To do so we sat on the lawn, which is decorated with a miniature tinkers caravan. However, amid this idyllic setting, there is a note of realism. Daltrey has been mixing concrete, and that means preparing for the rigours of the road. It helps him get fit, he says.
Our conversation developed naturally through the subjects of his own solo work, the new Who concept album, Ken Russell’s film version of “Tommy”, and three years hard labour for the band, and Daltrey displayed all the enthusiasm of a man going back to the work he loves — performing.
He’d also displayed some misgivings about the Who’s business affairs.
“I’m giving you a scoop here,” he said, “but I’ve got to speak out for once.”
However, after the interview he decided he didn’t want to wash all the dirty linen on a public washing line.
What he did say was: “The Who’s suffered, and we’re starting to suffer internally, which really is bad”. And that’s enough to indicate all is not well.
“This is what worries me,” he continued. “It’s happened to the Stones and the Beatles, and it’s the same bloody problem”.
But to clarify his point, he added: “Oh, I’m not worried about the music. It hasn’t altered anything within the group as far as I feel towards playing is concerned. That’s one good thing about the Who, whereas it wasn’t with the Beatles. There’s no chance of anything changing there at all,” he emphasised, “we’re completely solid on that.”
It’s best to leave it at that, so concentrating on Daltrey, the Who and their music. On a happier note, this piece could quite easily be subtitled what the Who did on their holidays.
The word holiday is used quite loosely, even though Daltrey — as he sits chewing grass — displays a nifty shade of brown on his torso. Right enough, they’ve relaxed, but the band have not been totally idle these past two years.

“It’s not really been inactivity y’know, there’s been a lot going on,” he explains. “We just felt we had to have that time off to re-think. I think it’s paid off with the new music we’ve done. It definitely has come together as being new.
“Hopefully, once we get the new stuff on stage we’ll be able to forget what we used to do, or at least a lot of what we used to do, we’ll just keep the good bits and get rid of all the rubbish.
“You can only do this type of thing after having a couple of years off away from what you’re doing,” he explains. “By working every night we just kept our old bad habits.
“So we’ll wait and see. But I’m very optimistic and really pleased. Musically we’re stronger now than we’ve ever been. And as far as getting back on the road is concerned, we’ve never been more definite about anything.
“Like I say,” and a mischievous grin creases his face, “we’ve had a lot of other problems.” He allows himself a knowing chortle.
Daltrey went on to emphasise that the Who’s volume of productivity doesn’t match their volume of sound. And he feels their critical discrimination is quite strict.
“The Who don’t just go in and record ten songs for an album ’cause we need an album.
“Every album has been far more than that. And that’s why we’ve been waiting for the time when we would release something really worth releasing. It’s here now, and by Christ it’s worth releasing.
“We’re not like Slade, or even the Stones come to that, who can just go in and make a whole load of songs and release them. We don’t thrive on that sort of scene. That’s why we do find it difficult these days to get singles.
“We,” he continues, “work hard to make records and make them into more than just a piece of plastic and songs.”
The Who’s new single, “5.15” is released this week and shortly there’s the double album “Quadrophrenia”.
DALTREY’S personal success recently has been his solo album, the single from it — “Giving It All Away” — and then “I’m Free” from Reizner’s production of “Tommy”.
But Daltrey, who still possesses his harsh London accent and amiable working-class characteristics, still underrates his own ability — and this seems due to lack of self-confidence rather than feigned modesty.

Speaking of “I’m Free” he says: “I don’t think it’s the people who are acquainted with ‘Tommy’ who have bought the single. I get the feeling that it’s a lot of old ladies — who like it because it sounds like ‘Big Country’ in the middle. And that terrifies me.
“But if anything, its a success because of the lack of Who material.”
That logic, however, doesn’t tie in with the fact that bassman John Entwistle’s solo endeavours weren’t so well accepted.
Daltrey disagrees. “John made the mistake of having faith enough to dish up his album and say ‘there it is, release it’, which is what I wasn’t prepared to do. Instead of John’s album being properly launched like ours, it fell out the door.”
Going back to his own success, he continues: “It had to be big,” he stresses, reasoning: “There I was, the singer with the Who. I could have kept cosily within the four members and had a cosy little ride all the way along, but I was putting my balls on the line — so I wanted it to sell, mate. There would’ve been no point having it come out, and do as John’s things do, just sit there. Not that that’s any fault of his.
NOW DALTREY intends to record a follow-up set when he has the time.
He says: “I’ve written one song of my own and it’s given me a lot of confidence. I hope to find more of a direction on the next one.
“I’ll make it between the Who tours and the “Tommy’ film and everything else — because the Who are going to be working a helluva lot in the next 18 months.
“See, it’s difficult. I think it’d be a mistake to become too — err, what’s the word? — too ambitious at the moment. Because that would start to distrupt the Who.
“I’d hate to get into the situation Rod Stewart had with the Faces. It’s a bloody shame really.
“If the Who are working every day for the next three years, there won’t by any Daltrey albums – don’t worry about that. And that suits me fine. I don’t want to get too ambitious about it.”
NOW, WHAT about the Who’s “Quadrophrenia” album. What is it like musically, I inquire?
“Phenomenal. It really is. I mean Pete’s writing is,” he’s at a loss for superlatives.
“There’s no doubt who is the best rock ‘n’ roll writer after listening to this one. It really is amazing.
“If you want to know the real simple story,” he eventually says of Townshend’s concept, “he goes to the seaside and comes back again.”
Daltrey laughs and buries his nose in a mug of tea.

“Maybe that’s completely wrong, because I haven’t heard it put together. But it’s like `Tommy’, in that I didn’t know what that was about until it had been out about three months.” Chris Stainton played on the sessions, but otherwise it’s basically a group album. Then there’s the “5.15” single. “It’s one of the best Who singles since ‘Won’t Get Fooled Again’. And it’s probably the most commercial since ‘Pinball Wizard’ — a really tough rocker, with a lot of the old Who in it. It’s the same with the album, he says. “Who’s Next” got a bit flat and became linear. Although it’s got a helluva lot more on top of it than `Who’s Next’ — in the form of synthesisers and brass and that this new one is stronger than ever.
“But this one’s really got the old Who back. It’s got the clarity and good recording of `Who’s Next’… but it’s got the old `My Generation’ Who there.
“I’ll play you a bit later,” he said, confidentially, “I’ll give you a little preview.
“I can’t explain it… Pete’s writing has gone a whole way past lyrics, and is improving in arrangement.
“A lot of the things that went on in the past — like ‘Tommy’ and that — were cut as rough songs and arranged in the studio by the group, with ideas from the group.
“But now the songs have arrangements around them, and we couldn’t make them better. It’s a whole different way of working. When you hear it you’ll know what I mean.’
I heard two impressive tracks in Daltrey’s barn-studio, and I agree. As well as returning to the old rock ‘n’ roll underlay, the arrangements still hum of grandeur, not unsimilar to “Tommy”.
Rather conveniently, this brings us to the film of the rock-opera, which will be directed by Ken Russell. In January the band, with Daltrey, as a 16-year-old Tommy, start the soundtrack, and in April shooting begins.
“I think Ken Russell can make ‘Tommy’ bigger than it’s ever been,” Daltrey states dogmatically. “It means a lot to a lot of people, but it didn’t sell that many records, especially in Britain.
“If Russell can get it over to a lot more people, good luck to him, because I think it says a helluva lot more than ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’. Making a film makes ‘Tommy’ immortal, and that’s as far as I ever want to go. At least it’ll be finished then.”
As a final question, I couldn’t resist asking Daltrey if he fancied being a film star?
He laughed.” I’ll be in a film, and hopefully a successful film, but it doesn’t make you a film star.”
No, but it makes you a hard grafter. The hols are over folks, so need we say anymore?

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ARTICLE ABOUT Mick Ronson (David Bowie) FROM New Musical Express, September 29, 1973

Ronson may be long gone now as he died in 1993, only 46 years old, but he was a great guitarist and musician. Something you will learn more about when reading this article. The album he recorded at the time was his most successful as a solo artist, reaching No. 9 in the UK album charts.
Read on!

A chateau of his former self

Not likely! Charles Shaar Murray reports from the chateau studio where Bowie guitar man Mick Ronson is making his own album.

MICK RONSON’S got this straw hat which he wears all the time. I mean all the time. Somehow he even contrives to wear it in a studio underneath a pair of headphones.
Why he wears it I haven`t got the faintest idea, but he must have his reasons. After all, when you’re cutting your all-important debut solo album, you’re entitled to wear what the hell you want. A straw hat with a towelling bathrobe? With a black satin shirt? Why the hell not? Ronno’s back in the Chateau. As ever, he’s working his ass off, a fashionable follower of dedication. Mike Garson, Aynsley Dunbar and Trevor Bolder have completed their respective piano, drum and bass parts, leaving the voice, guitar, strings and brass still to go on. Neither David Bowie nor Ken Scott are in on this one, and Mick is keeping all the bases covered. Producer, arranger, guitarist, singer — this is truly a Mick Ronson Album. Therefore, the Chateau has a lower population than it did a while back during Bowie’s “Pin Ups” sessions. Let’s see, there`s engineer Dennis MacKay, Ronno’s old buddy Pete, former chief of the Bowie road crew and now preparing to fulfil a similar function when Mr. R goes on the road in his own right next year, plus Sue Fussey.
Sue has graduated from the ranks; starting out last year as band hairdresser, she’s now Ronno’s Personal Assistant, which means she looks after the day-to-day running of his affairs, taking care of everything from making sure he has a steady supply of Gitanes to booking him studio time.
Also on the premises is Dana Gillespie, making a flying visit between performances of “Jesus Christ Superstar”.
Work is continuing apace on the album. It’s entitled “Slaughter On Tenth Avenue”, and the main showpiece is a deluxe version of Georgie Gershwin’s old warhorse, re-worked as a guitar show-piece for Ronno’s private brand of Gibson pyrotechnics. It’s the album’s closing track, and the centrepiece of an assortment of material that ranges from a very gentle Italian love song to a blast-furnace rendition of Uncle Lou’s “White Light White Heat”.
In between is a rauchy but elegant version of Annette Peacock’s “I’m The One”, a slew of Ronson originals and a new David Bowie song.
“I must say,” announces Dennis MacKay, “that I’ve never worked with a more dedicated, more considerate, more inventive musician than,” he gestures towards Ronson, “this bastard here.”

As most of the tracks only consisted at that stage of piano, bass and drums (Garson, Bolder and Dunbar), they sounded very jazz oriented. “But that’s only because Mike’s up front so far,” explains Ronno. “When the guitar goes on it’ll sound like regular rock and roll.”
Especially noteworthy is that Garson’s playing is far less flowery and sentimental than it sometimes appeared on “Aladdin Sane”. Here, it’s stark and jarring. In general, the sound is definitely Spidery, which is inevitable, considering the personnel.
But it must be remembered that Ronson was the Spiders’ musical director, and thus the instrumental sound on the Bowie albums was to a large extent his sound all along.
When “Slaughter On Tenth Avenue” is issued, ask not what Ronno has picked up during his Bowie period. Ask rather what Mr. Bowie has absorbed from him.
A few guys from Larry Coryell’s band are on the premises, including a dude named Swift and the legendary Mike Mandel, who played piano with a band that included Mitch Mitchell, Jack Bruce and Coryell himself. As Mandel says, that band never got as good as it should have become.
Anyway, now that Mick Ronson is a leader in his own right, the Mainman organisation seems to be dividing itself up into different wings. It’s useless quizzing the Ronson division for Bowie information, because they genuinely don’t know. Their business is to look after Ronno, and look after him they do.
While Ronno is in France, working on his album, Bowie’s in England, doing… what? God knows. Writing songs, hanging out with the Stones, taking karate lessons? He’s more or less dropped out of sight, wrapping up the mixing sessions on the live album, and preparing ideas for his next all-original album, the one that he provisionally entitled “The Secret Life Of Ziggy Stardust” when I last saw him, but which is now probably gonna be the score for “1984”. Or maybe not. Who knows?
Ronson’s up in the studio adding on a piano overdub. There’s already Garson’s piano on the track, but since Garson laid down his part, Ronno’s thought of a couple of extra flourishes.
So he lays down the left-hand part on one track, then goes back and adds the right hand part on another. Not because his piano playing ain’t up to playing both parts simultaneously — owners of the “Ziggy” album will be quite aware of how well Mick Ronson knows his way around a piano – but simply to ensure total stereo separation when mixing time rolls around. A small and fairly trivial example, but it should demonstrate just how much care is going into “Slaughter On Tenth Avenue”.

MICK RONSON isn’t really used to being interviewed yet. He’ll clam up at the sight of a cassette machine and take several minutes to get into his talking stride, yet the previous night, when a rather extravagant thunderstorm had blown out the lights in the Chateau, he sat up rapping about anything and everything right up until the wee sma’ hours.
It’s quite understandable, because it wasn’t until the closing stages of the Bowie affair that anyone actually got around to interviewing him, and it’s still quite a novelty, because in those days, getting to Bowie was the journalist’s main priority, and if that great objective was achieved, then few were inclined to push their luck and try for a double.
Also, what Bowie was doing had implications that lent themselves well to discussion, whereas Ronno was simply working on the music. Doing it was important; talking about it was a poor second indeed.
So it’s great to have you on the show, Mick. How does it feel to be leader now?
“I’ve always been a leader, really. Making all the decisions? I’ve done that before. I used to do that before I was with David. David’s the only person I’ve worked with where there’s somebody telling me what to do. I’d never been in that position before.
“I’ve done a lot more recording since I’ve been with David, and we’ve both learned a lot. Obviously, it’s got to change, otherwise we would never progress. You find out different things, and you learn about different things. You learn how to deal with people and you learn how to present yourself in ways that you wouldn’t have done, say, three or four years ago.
“Everything comes with experience, you know. You have to have experience.
“I think the album’s going to be good. I wanted to get down to work. Get songs together. That was the approach; it was like ‘Get on with it, lad’.
“We started about a month ago. The first thing I picked on was ‘Slaughter On Tenth Avenue’, and ‘Pleasure Man.’ It’s not really called ‘Pleasure Man’. I don’t know why it’s called ‘Pleasure Man’ or what it’s really called. I haven’t written the lyrics yet. There’s three of mine, and five of other people’s things.
“There’s Annette Peacock’s `I’m The One’, that Italian song, `White Light’, and a song that David wrote.
“It’s a love album. That’s what it’s about, anyway. It’s about two people falling in love. At the moment, the story’s about a guy in the 1980’s. He’s a layabout — just sort of bums around the streets, nothing special. He sees this chick and falls in love with her, just wants to be with her, and she’s a dancer in a night club, and a prostitute as well.

“She falls in love with him as well in the end, and she wants to quit and go with him. But her pimp boyfriend finds out. She comes out of this club one night and he shoots her. And I’m left alone without her,” he finishes, breaking into mock sobs.
“Then it goes into ‘Slaughter On Tenth Avenue.'”
“Other numbers will be included, but even if they’re odd ones, it doesn’t really matter.
“I mean, remember the `Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars’ show. Every number wasn’t to do with Ziggy, but the general look of the show was “Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars.” ” ‘My Death’ wasn’t really a tie-in with Ziggy, but it helped make the show work. “My show will be related to `Ziggy’ because of the people in the outfit, and because of the lighting. The costumes will be different, the lighting will be different, the numbers’ll be different, but it works similar to the way we worked the last show. It’s all there. We’re even using the same P.A., same guitars, same people — but a different show.”
But Ronson’s launching as soloist will not affect any future recording projects with David Bowie.
“We’re both pretty happy with the situation.”
And “1984”? “I’ll be helping with the music, but up till then I’ll be working on my things. Obviously, there’ll be people coming to see us who never saw David, and there’ll also be people who saw David and perhaps didn’t like him, who are going to come to see us and maybe like us.
“The main thing is that the music’ll be different. Maybe some of the people who used to come and see us when I was with Dave maybe won’t like us at all. They might hate it. We’ll win and lose on both sides. That’s the way it goes.
“It doesn’t really matter. I’m just doing this because I really believe in it and because I think people will really enjoy it.”

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to:
The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
If you order several papers – contact me for a “special” offer.
We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.
If you have a large collection of the following magazines, don`t throw them out, but contact me as I would be very interested in these: Creem, Circus, Hit Parader and Metal Edge.

If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

ARTICLE ABOUT Deep Purple FROM New Musical Express, September 29, 1973

What a great article this was! The unveiling of Coverdale and the start of what we know now of a wonderful career. At the same time we get an explanation from Blackmore of what was happening in the band around Gillan`s departure. I seem to remember that there were a couple of differing stories being told about this.
Enjoy this one and read on!

Purple, introducing the… err… unknown Mr. Coverdale

Tony Stewart at the unveiling of the new Deep Purple

PURPLE RECORDS took the press down to Clearwell Castle on the Welsh-English border last week to meet their new singer boy. The name of this new Deep Purple front man? David Coverdale.
Well, he was 22 last Saturday, comes from Saltburn-by-the Sea, with a rich Northern brogue as resplendent as the piles of chemical waste around Middlesborough. Just lately he’s been working in a boutique, and occasionally singing with a semi-pro bunch of locals who called themselves the Fabulosa Brothers.
According to the “fact-a-phrase” handout which somehow slipped into our laps with the whiskeys and delicate eatsies on the coach going down, he made his first public appearance in 1967, and one time appeared with an outfit called the Skyliners at Redcar Jazz Club, as support to Joe Cocker.
He has two pets — a Siamese cat and a young lady called Jackie. His Dad’s an electrician, and he hasn’t ever played the big time before.
Such is life. Certainly, some journalists must now be blushing after confidently forecasting such names as Paul Rodgers (and possibly Frank Sinatra when the gossip’s short list became ridiculous) as contenders for Ian Gillan’s vacated stage space.
By gum, a professionally inexperienced youngster scoring over in — guitarist Ritchie Blackmore’s own words — “so called names in the business, who weren’t up to much”.
Coverdale has handled his swift escalation to fame rather well. Quite unabashed he posed dutifully for publicity shots down at the castle while a frightening posse of snap-shooters clicked Nikons and tripped over their flash bulbs.
In conversation too he controlled himself with dignity, although he probably gasped a secret sigh of relief over the fact that his appointment was now official. It didn’t show, however, although he was obviously thanking his lucky stars — literally.
“It’s got a lot to do with horoscope, I think,” he says with wide-eyed sincerity when confronted with a disbeliever. “My horoscopes were good for that week.
“I was so nervous because it is a big step. Everyday faithfully I bought the Sun and the Daily Mirror and read Virgo and Libra — which I alternate between — because I needed certain strength. I needed something behind me to push me”.
Alongside ex-Trapeze singer-bass player Glenn Hughes, whose ability incidentally almost deterred Coverdale from attending the audition, this is Purple’s new vocal front, which – states the group’s publicist — will operate in a similar way to the Blackmore-John Lord partnership.

In effect, the inference is that Hughes and Coverdale will strive to equal, or even outdo, one another — as the guitarist and organist are noted for attempting — with resulting better music. Coverdale has, you could say, picked up the glove confidently.
“I’ve been plucked out of a semi-pro environment and I’ve been put in the big-time, and I think I’ve got the strength to do it. And if I haven’t” — his tone impresses on one that it’s extremely unlikely — “the musicians in Deep Purple have the strength to push me to it. They’ve done it already, because I feel I’ve improved in the past week”.
Rehearsals have been going on at the castle for some days now, to get Hughes and Coverdale musically acquainted with the three remaining Purple old-timers, Blackmore, Lord and drummer Ian Paice.
Towards the end of the year they’ll start recording, and after a European run-in will be away over the Pond for a tour.
Quite naturally there’s excitement generating among the Purple men, now that the rejuvenation has taken place. And it’s probably the first time there’s been this atmosphere since June ’72 when the internal friction and weariness in the band was made public.
I don’t claim any inside knowledge of Purple’s career, but reading press clippings illustrates the story. Just before Christmas Blackmore spoke of his intention to leave.
“Yes”, he affirms as we sit overlooking the splendid lawns of their ancient rehearsal venue. “I did want to get out at one particular time, but when I’d heard that certain people wanted to leave, I thought I’d stick around and try and take it the way I wanted to.
“I wasn’t quite satisfied. The band was always a bit poppy,” he offers as an explanation.
“It was quite nice but it was too poppy. Now, it’s more into a blues-commercial pop thing. Our new singer has a more masculine voice, and with Glenn we hope to get a double type of feel. You could say a Beatles feel with a hard rock backing is the basic thing.
“There are now two other guys involved, so it makes it more or less a new band to me. It’s not Deep Purple anymore, although it’s still the same name. Really, it’s a completely different band.”
What the changes also mean, with Gillan and bass player Roger Glover out, is that now the past year of the band’s career can be discussed, and their current ideas made public and more certain. Certainly, up until June individual members expressed dissatisfaction with the group’s progress, without putting their finger on any one person. Although between the lines the implications were there right enough.
After his departure, Gillan said he felt the band had stagnated, and there had been little development from “In Rock” to “Who Do We Think We Are”. Blackmore dispenses with that suggestion almost effortlessly by saying — “that’s a typical cliche everyone uses when they can’t think of anything to say”.
And he defends their music quite vehemently.

“We’ve just progressed naturally. We haven’t tried to set any barriers because we’re not into that. I’ve just been living on and playing the music I want to. I wouldn’t stay with the band if I wasn’t satisfied with myself.
“Ian (Paice), Jon and myself know we’re good, but at the same time we don’t want people to pick up an LP and say ‘this is very progressive, we’re onto something new here’. Because whenever they do hear something progressive people say, `oh, I don’t like this because this is not typical of the band’. It’s something new and they don’t like it. Blackmore normally avoids being interviewed, on the principal that he’s a guitarist, not a speech-maker. But when he starts talking, he’s honest about the situation regarding Ian Gillan, and bears up well to what could be considered impertinent questions. However he often side-steps issues because of his loyalty to past members. “I could put Ian down”, he says hestitantly, “but I don’t think I want to get into that, because he’s never put any of the band down, and I don’t want to start putting him down. “Put it this way,” he says, returning to his own earlier intentions of quitting, “I wanted to leave basically because I didn’t think the vocal side of it was happening at all. I thought the instrumentation side was happening to a certain degree, but that couldn’t expand because the vocal, in my opinion, was too poppy. It was too cut and dried on top of what we’d done. “We used to lay tracks down, and Ian would come in the next day and say, ‘right, let’s hear the backing track’. We’d never got together on it for “Who Do We Think We Are”. “`Machine Head’ was done in Switzerland and that was okay. But the last album was done without me ever meeting Ian in the studio, accept for once when he said: ‘let’s hear the backing and I’ll put something over that’.”
Conversely, there are things to be said on Gillan’s side of things, or so it would seem looking in from the outside. Blackmore is certainly not being detrimental about Gillan’s ability — just stating the conflict of interests as it developed. And he does express gratitude for the following Gillan established for the band.
Jon Lord, however, has also stated at least once that he wanted a change of vocal sound.
Blackmore laughs about that and comments: “Jon is a very, very amiable person — to all of the band.

“I used to be the agressor”, reveals Blackmore. “I used to say, `I think that vocal is a load of shit’. And this is why Ian and I fell out. I don’t think I’ve ever spoken with Ian for the past year and a half. I’ve said hello at the airport a few times, and that’s about it.
“Jon likes to keep things together, and keep everybody happy. Whereas if I don’t like something I make it known, and make a big fuss about it.”
After a slight digression, Blackmore starts to explain the purpose of Purple.
“We make music for other people to listen to, and a lot of people liked Ian singing. It was just that after four LPs I personally — I can’t speak for the others, I don’t know how they feel about it — was tired of the vocal sound of it.
“So the others said they agreed, and we all got together and Ian said he wanted to resign. We thought that was fair enough because this was our chance to get a new vocalist. I’ve stayed around since then.”
Before David Coverdale was found, Purple did search extensively for Mr. Vocal Right. They approached Paul Rodgers, who considered the proposition, much to Purple’s surprise, and then turned it down.
“We heard a lot of other so-called names in the business,” he continues, “who weren’t up to much.
“I thought Ian was a very good vocalist,” he reminisces slightly, “and he had a great face and image. He got a lot of people interested in Deep Purple.
“But then his vocals began not to do anything to me.
“I think I was moved by about two tracks from every LP, and that was about it.”
“Now we expect a vocalist to take on the part of a lead instrument, and that’s why we’re quite knocked out with matey there.” And he nods his head in the direction of Coverdale.
“Who knows? After the LP I might be saying he’s a shitty vocalist as well. I’m not going to say he’s the best vocalist in the world, but when we heard him we thought, ‘Christ, he’s good’.”
Again he glances over at Coverdale. Maybe Blackmore’s counting the band’s lucky stars too.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!
Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to:
The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
If you order several papers – contact me for a “special” offer.
We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.
If you have a large collection of the following magazines, don`t throw them out, but contact me as I would be very interested in these: Creem, Circus, Hit Parader and Metal Edge.

If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!