Month: February 2014

ARTICLE ABOUT Led Zeppelin FROM NEW MUSICAL EXPRESS, APRIL 29, 1972

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper and you are free to use it as you like. If you use it on your own webpages – please credit me or put up a link to my blog. If you really like this sort of thing – follow my blog! Thank you!

I have not, until this edition of NME, had a chance to print something with one of the biggest bands of the `70s. So when this article turned up I really had no choice but to transcribe it for you. The competition was fierce, as there were several interesting reads in this edition, but my final choice just had to be on one of the founders of hard rock. Have a nice read!

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Gassin with ZEPPELIN
How Robert Plant stays fresh

By Roy Carr

The roar of the crowd still rings long and loud in the ears of Led Zeppelin. Record success continues to turn `em on but nothing stands against the motivation of this four-man crew to get out and make music.
Led`s larynx, Robert Plant, particularly exudes an enthusiasm for his vocation that one rarely encounters among the rock hierarchy.
Why, only the other afternoon I encountered the man himself and Zeppelin`s Master-at-Arms, Richard Coles, conducting a rip-off raid on Kinney Records` vast library of tapes and albums and the singer conceded that: “Music is serious…but let`s dig it.”
I took the opportunity to talk with him, and, like a wide-eyed kid having been given the freedom of Selfridge`s toy department, Planty carefully stashed his loot in a corner and placed an Arthur Alexander album on the office stereo.

“Arthur Alexander…now there`s a name to conjure with,” he smiled as the smooth voice of the almost-forgotten rhythm and blues singer filled the large room and obiliterated all near-by conversation.
Accepting a welcome drink, Plant removed the filter from a cigarette and confessed: “You know what? This record sounded much better then than it does now.”
He was of course referring to a time in the early sixties when the style and songs of Mr. Alexander and his contemporaries helped, in some small measure, to blue-print the format of those British groups who were to completely change the entire course of rock music.
In fact I have the strangest feeling that at one time or another a younger Robert Plant possibly offered his own interpretations of “Anna” or the like around the noisy Brummie club and ballroom circuits.

Plant may have gone on to much bigger things since those far-off days but I find it refreshingly to his credit that he still hangs on to that all-important sense of urgency that initially made him get up and sing. Today it safeguards him from complacency and stagnation.
“Whenever possible I really like to get out there with the kids,” he told me, at the same time taking the trouble not to give the impression of some kind of condescending anti-hero.
“Only in that way,” he continued, “can I get to know what the record buyers want. That`s how I make up my mind – from how the public makes up its mind.
“For me, in fact, the most successful concert is the one when everyone is up on their feet, smiling, yelling and getting into the music.
“Personally I don`t like things to be too straight-faced. The idea of people just sitting down and getting turned on without showing any signs of response – it`s just too melodramatic.”

Like the rest of Zeppelin, Plant laughs at persistant rumours that each and every album or concert is their farewell, although some of the stories he naturally finds irritating.
“The fact is, we don`t flog Zep to death. Just like John Lennon once said: `If you`re on the road too long it becomes painful`.”
Plant further echoes the sentiments of the band`s drummer, John Bonham, in pointing out that Zeppelin have set their own pace, one which allows them sufficient freedom and creativity.
With discretion the band face the public only when either (as a recording act or as an in-person attraction) they feel they have something new and exciting to offer.
He told me: “Speaking for myself I`ve always got the motivation to work, but like the rest of the band I don`t want to charge around the country every night. What`s the point?
“We only tour and bring out an album when we want to. But as most people realise, we`re always popping up all over the world to do concerts. Whenever possible we always return to those places.”

Plant is proud, and quite rightly so, of Led Zeppelin`s past achievements.
“We were the first band to take over and play the Empire Pool, Wembley, and present non-rock side features like circus acts – although the pigs didn`t quite manage to get it on,” he referred with a laugh to one of the interludes at the memorable Wembley bash.
Since they first became airborne Zeppelin have of course been the subject of a certain amount of controversy ranged from them being described as the definitive all-electric band, purveyors of cock rock, to the manifestation of Jimmy Page`s own personal ego trip.
I asked him about it but again, Plant didn`t show concern. He wrapped it up effectively:
“A lot of people draw their conclusions without seeing enough of the band. If we came over to them as being just a raw body, well, then it`s O.K.”

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Of the four Led albums – all of which immediately turned gold – it was their fourth which for the first time minutely revealed the full spectrum of their collective talents.
“Music is very much like a kaleidoscope,” said Plant. “And I feel that particular album was just a case of us stretching out. It was a very natural  development for us.
“I like people to lay down the truth.
“No bullshit.
“That`s what the feather in the circle was all about,” he pointed out, drawing my attention to one of the four symbols that went up to make the album`s title. A lot of the tracks on that album came from various moods where we just got together and started to contribute to various basic ideas.”

Undoubtedly a great deal of the success of the fourth album can be attributed to Robert Plant`s maturity as both singer and writer. Take into account, for instance, “Battle Of Evermore” and “Stairway To Heaven”.
He told me: “In the case of `Battle` I had been reading a book on the Scottish Wars immediately before. It was really more of a play-lette than a song, and after I wrote the lyrics I realised I needed another completely different voice, as well as my own, to give that song its full impact. So I asked Sandy Denny along to sing on that track.
“I found it very satisfying to sing with someone who has an entirely different style to my own.
“While I sang about the events of the song, Sandy answered back as if she was the pulse of the people on the battlements.
“Sandy was the town-crier – urging the people to throw down their weapons.
“`Stairway To Heaven` was the result of an evening when Jimmy and I just sat down in front of the fire. We came up with a song which was later developed by the rest of the band in the studio.”

Much of Zeppelin`s appeal has been by virtue of their consumate ability to produce material hanging on instant riffs…a characteristic they developed to great lengths on “Black Dog”, which to the annoyance of their plagiarists, includes instrumental passages which are almost impossible to copy.
“They`re really atuned to all those time skips,” Plant explained with devilish delight, “they” being the rest of the band. “These things aren`t intentional, just little whims which we`ll no doubt expand on the next album.
“When they`re doing these kind of time skip riffs in the studio, Jimmy, John and Bonzo suddenly come up with something like that passage on “Black Dog”; play it, fall about all over the place for about 10 minutes in fits of laughter; play it again; burst into laughter, then preserve it on tape.
“It`s as simple as that.”

Sessions for the new album are under-way and, without disclosing any secrets, Plant did say that it would include some things of interest.
Like all major acts Led Zeppelin have suffered from bootlegs and in return attempts have been made to cut a live album officially (the last being during a recent tour of Japan) but Plant told me the sound balance was just as bad as the bootleg. It was therefore rejected as unsuitable.
He added wryly:
“You know, we`ve recorded ourselves at the Farm on just an ordinary Revox, and achieved a far better sound.” There must be a moral in that statement.
And with that, he was up and off to grab another armful of albums.

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A rather strange ad in the paper from comedy duo “Cheech and Chong”. Possibly targeting a Chinese audience?

This number of the NME also contains articles/interviews with these people: Marc Bolan, Dr. John, Deep Purple, Chuck Berry, Stephen Stills, Linda Lewis, Rolling Stones, Todd Rundgren, Fanny, Incredible String Band, Slade, Jerry Lee Lewis.

The NME this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale! It does not contain the Stones single.

  1. Send me an e-mail, if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
  2. The offer should be around or upwards of 10 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
  3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT Yes (Rick Wakeman) FROM NEW MUSICAL EXPRESS, APRIL 22, 1972

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper and you are free to use it as you like. If you use it on your own webpages – please credit me or put up a link to my blog. If you really like this sort of thing – follow my blog! Thank you!

I still have a lot of hits on this blog from Yes fans, so in this edition it was an easy choice to choose a interview with Rick Wakeman. Enjoy!

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Rick Wakeman embarrassed by success

By Spike Taylor

Rick Wakeman is self-conscious about Yes` last American tour. The reason is that the recent coast-to-coaster was such a howling success that Wakeman is slightly embarrassed to talk about it.
“It was a riot”, he says, looking ashamed. “Fantastic. We got caught on the hop, you see. When we came back from the previous tour on December 30, the Yes album was motoring nicely around the 30 mark. We thought that `Fragile` would need promoting when we got over there.
“Well, `Fragile` came out and it went to No. 4 in three weeks. The day we arrived it was at 4, which, as I said, caught us right on the hop. The actual weekly progression was 151, 51, 4”.

Wild scenes followed. “The New York Academy of Music – for which we`d been booked for just one date – actually sold four days. We were a bit worried, actually, because although the act was a hell of a lot tighter, we hadn`t really got any new material. So we went on and, as you know, they play `Firebird Suite` as our theme.
“We`re all standing there in the darkness, having a quiet tune, and then `Firebird` played and the place erupted. I know it sounds as if I`m on a big ego trip, but I`m not. They just went barmy. This happened all over the States.
“We did one gig where there was a hotel next door. The hotel part was about fifteen stories up, and some of the people from the hotel hoisted ropes and ladders to try and get in the hall where we were playing”.

For Wakeman these tremendous scenes were difficult to handle – because, at the same time, his wife was expecting a baby and was having to cope with moving house. She was in fact, safely delivered of the child while Rick was somewhere in the midwest, and mother, child and new house are all doing well.
This was a worrying period for Wakeman, but another bummer for the lad was the rumour – started in New York and circulated in an ever-changing manner to the West Coast – that Wakeman was leaving Yes.

“That hurt a lot,” says he. “When you`re on tour, the minute you get into a hotel, everybody phones wives and girlfriends and says `Howya doing` and all that, and when I spoke to my wife she said `You`re leaving`. I said `What?` and when I put the phone down and went into the corridor all the group were coming out of their rooms having heard the same thing. They were very uptight.
“What happened, I think, was that at the Academy of Music gig the Mellotron packed up, and the amp as well. Somebody in the audience must have noticed, and the story that `Wakeman refused to play` soon became `Wakeman`s leaving` when it got to California. The band, of course, didn`t know what was happening and they freaked out”.

But California does have its compensations, and for Wakeman, a self-confessed car freak, Los Angeles – the only city in the world designed by the Automobile – proved a goldmine of wheeled joy.
“I saw this classic fifties Cadillac rotting in a car lot on the last tour,” he recalls with pleasure, “and I couldn`t believe that such a vehicle could be falling apart like that. It was 300 dollars.
“Anyway, A & M bought it for me as a Christmas present. It cost them 300 to buy it, but I`m afraid they got caught, because when it needed re-building they had to pay another 6,000 dollars. And when it came through Customs last week they enclosed a slip saying it cost 300 dollars, but it was in such good nick – completely rebuilt and with a brand new engine, that the Customs got on to Cadillac who told them it was worth about 6,000 dollars. But it`s incredible, it`s beautiful and it`s outside my house now. It does four miles to the gallon.”

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Reports also reached Britain during the Yes tour that Wakeman was planning a solo album. Was this true? “Although I`m obviously into the Yes thing, there are certain things inside you as a musician which aren`t suitable for the group in which you work.
“It hasn`t anything to do with musicianship or anything like that. It`s just something you have to get out. They`re all instrumental pieces – I can sing in tune but my voice is horrible and my lyrics are even worse – and I used the guys from Yes on the opening and closing pieces. Most of the middle is me on the various keyboards I use.” When will the Wakeman album be released? “I hope around July or thereabouts.”
“The album will be based round a book I read on a plane – you know you read a-book-a-plane on tour? – called `The Private Life Of Henry VIII.`
“I`ve always been duff at history but this really fascinated me. I couldn`t believe that all these women could have such different personalities – from Anne Boleyn to Catherine Parr who outlived Henry. So the album will be based around them and their characters and will be called `The Six Wives of Henry VIII`.”

Such a theme should prove a strong showcase for the flourishing, graceful style of Wakeman`s keyboard work – which has evolved markedly since he joined Yes last year after a long period with the Strawbs.
From Strawbs to Yes to magic tour to sell out album to solo album is a series of hefty giant strides for the genial blond pianist. And Strawbs keep coming into the conversation. Wakeman is happy with their latest success, and considers that “Grave New World” is probably the best thing they`ve done.

“I said so at the time. I was sure that if I left it would be the best for all parties – including them. And now they make this album which proves it. I don`t want to sound egotistical or anything, but in Strawbs I was never really musically challenged.
“Dave (Cousins) would bring me songs and I`d say `Yes` or `We could change that` and they`d accept it. In Yes it`s completely different. Everybody`s at least as good as me which is much more of a challenge.
“If we don`t like things we say so. And we`re all completely co-operative when writing. Like, I might listen to some words of Chris`s (Squires) and they might spark off eight bars that I was fooling around with a few months ago.
“Then Steve (Howe) might say `I`ve got a bit that`s better than the last four bars of yours but not as good as the first four`. And Bill might suggest a time change or something. That`s how we do things – we spark each other off”.

To say Wakeman is modest about his success would be a gross understatement. As i said earlier, he`s positively embarrassed by it. “I consider myself extremely lucky. I just can`t believe how lucky I`ve been. It wasn`t so long ago that I was bumming the price of a Wimpy off my publishers.
“Now I`m in Yes, I`m financially secure, I`m playing what I want to play, I`ve got a baby son… It just can`t go on. I`m so lucky”.

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I found this ad on the last page of the newspaper. Nice enough to frame!

This number of the NME also contains articles/interviews with these people: Curved Air, Juicy Lucy, Mick Abrahams, The Osmonds, Fairport Convention, Moody Blues, Claire Hamill, Edgar Broughton, Genesis, Allman Brothers, Stud, Wishbone Ash, Graham Bell.

The NME this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

  1. Send me an e-mail, if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
  2. The offer should be around or upwards of 10 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
  3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT Uriah Heep FROM NEW MUSICAL EXPRESS, APRIL 15, 1972

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper and you are free to use it as you like. If you use it on your own webpages – please credit me or put up a link to my blog. If you really like this sort of thing – follow my blog! Thank you!

A relatively short interview today, but telling a strange story I din`t know about the relation between T. Rex and Uriah Heep at that time.
Have a nice read!

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Music to lay chicks by –
Uriah Heep`s David Byron Talking

By Julie Webb

Informants at Kensington Market reported last week the almost unbelievable spectacle of Marc Bolan and wife catching sight of David Byron, lead singer with Uriah Heep, and then hurriedly scampering off in the opposite direction. To say that T. Rex and Uriah Heep are not the best of friends would be the understatement of the month.

Conflicting reports after a Chicago gig reached us here and it ended up as a rather hysterical bitch. That scene has now cooled a bit and I was able to ask Byron the Uriah Heep side of the distorted story.
“Briefly,” said Byron, “at about 4.00 in the afternoon we got a phone call from the promoter, or manager of T. Rex, asking if we`d close the show. Originally you see we were appearing as the middle group.
“We said `no`, and thought it funny they should ask at all. Then we got another phone call asking us to go on first, and again, we refused.
“Then, 10 minutes before we were due to go on stage we were asked to cut our 50 minute act to 35 minutes. We went on and did 40 minutes – got a standing ovation but were told we couldn`t do an encore.
“I think the crowd got pissed off about it simply because an audience can sense if there`s any aggro around.
“Now, looking back on the whole thing I think it`s just funny – the best publicity we`ve ever had.”

Heep may not be rated with the best progressive bands in Britain, but abroad – certainly in Germany – they are. Recently in a conglomeration of European magazines they were voted No. 1 underground band and No. 2 band for the future. And last year they sold more albums in Germany than any other band. But one would assume they would prefer more attention here.

“We`re not bitter,” Byron says, referring to rather mediocre response in Britain as opposed to abroad, “but it just makes us wonder why. `Look At Yourself` (Heep`s last album) didn`t leap into the album charts or anything here but it did have steady sales.
“We seem to be a group who sell albums when we`re on the road – people will come and see us and then go out and buy the album, rather than do it the other way around.”

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Heep have now toured America twice – losing money on a first tour and breaking even on the last visit. The next trip, scheduled for June, will see the start of the profit, and all indications are that they could make quite a lot of bread.
“Look At Yourself” re-entered the U.S. album charts during their visit earlier this year and they found a situation arising where people were asking for tickets for the Uriah Heep tour while they were in fact the supporting band on the Deep Purple or Cactus tour.

“Before we went on the last tour we realised we weren`t going to make money”, Byron says, “but it`s an investment just going there because it makes it better the next time you go – and I think now we are beginning to make a name for ourselves there, simply because we have toured.”

The last tour saw a change in personnel – Mark Clarke leaving after the first leg, and being replaced by Gary Thain.
Byron: “The change in line-up didn`t severely change the band in that we didn`t have weeks of sorting things out musically with Gary. He joined us in L.A. We rehearsed for two afternoons and that was it. It`s worked out incredibly well really, and I feel sure we now have the five right members in the band.
“Three are temperamental, two are easy going. I`m not positive what Mark is doing now but I gather he is supposed to be getting something together with Bob Fripp and Jon Hiseman.”

May should see the release of the next Heep album, entitled “Demons And Wizards.”
“The Wizard,” the group`s current single, is a taster from the set, which Byron describes as being “Six light years ahead of the last album.
“We`re about half-way through it now and when I say it`s about six light years ahead I mean that the songs are much better – it`s the first album with real continuity and it`s far more melodic than anything else we`ve done. It`s also the first album we`ve written in the studio and then recorded straight off.”

While Heep undeniably fall into the progressive band tag – unlike other groups who are tagged with that label they don`t just go on stage and rely on a lead guitarist or a sweaty drummer, grimace at the audience and look miserable.
They work hard at getting their audiences at it – and even bother to wear brightly coloured clothes so that in large halls people at the back can see them. And generally they make sure the audience are full of bon hommie. Byron sums it up rather crudely, but perhaps aptly.
“If the chicks and guys can go out after one of our gigs and feel they want to get laid, then we know we`ve succeeded.” Ob la di life goes on…

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Look at this amazing poster I found in this number! Would be nice if framed on a wall! 🙂

This number of the NME also contains articles/interviews with these people: Gene Pitney, Ginger Baker, Grateful Dead, Steve Took (T. Rex), Tony Visconti, The Who, Sandy Denny, Steamhammer, John Mayall, Vinegar Joe, Neil Reid, Jeff Beck.

The NME this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

  1. Send me an e-mail, if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
  2. The offer should be around or upwards of 10 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
  3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT Jeff Beck FROM NEW MUSICAL EXPRESS, APRIL 8, 1972

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper and you are free to use it as you like. If you use it on your own webpages – please credit me or put up a link to my blog. If you really like this sort of thing – follow my blog! Thank you!

Jeff Beck is recognized by the musical community and critics for being one of the greatest guitarists in history. But still, there is a chance that some of you feel the same way as me – why do I read so much about him and still listen to so little of his musical output?
One of the reasons may be that Beck has not established or maintained the sustained commercial success of many of his contemporaries and bandmates.
While transcribing this article I listened to a couple of records by Jeff Beck and was pleasantly surprised. You will need to be broad-minded when listening to his music, as much of it is instrumental and progressive, but if you dig Joe satriani or even Rush (Without the helium voice of Geddy Lee) you will find some really good stuff here. Do yourself a favour – this year when Beck will celebrate his 70th birthday(!) – listen to him play!

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Beck on trial
By Tony Stewart

After a two year absence Jeff Beck is back. Currently, with two albums and a short tour, he`s testing public reaction.

A car accident several years ago resulted in guitarist Jeff Beck leaving the music scene. While with the Yardbirds he had established himself as a master of his instrument, and after the demise of that group his stature in subsequent outfits.
At one point Beck seriously considered reforming the `Birds although the idea did not materialise. But now, with a new band formed last April, Beck is back.
In this interview at his manager Ernest Chapman`s office, Beck, dressed in rough denims and drinking Guinness, talked of his seclusion, his dissatisfaction with his new group`s album, his doubts, and his hopes for their second album, due out next month. Still skinny but now 27, he was at times not exactly oozing with confidence.

Stewart: What were your reasons for leaving the music scene two years ago?

Beck: It was a forcible thing. I had an argument with the rest of the blokes in the previous group, which meant that my playing had to stop for a while anyway. Then after that I had an accident – a car crash in Surrey. I was laid up for three months.

At that time I believe you had plans to link-up with ex-members of Vanilla Fudge?

Yeah, that was the first idea. If it had worked, it would have been all right, and I would have carried on. Then I thought about it, and I didn`t want to go to live in America, which is what it would have entailed.

What did you do during the lay-off period, because after your recovery you still were in a state of retirement?

Well, I live in the country where it`s extremely quiet – in fact it`s so quiet it`s deafening – but I didn`t do anything musically except practised now and again. Just sort of idled the time away. And I built a couple of cars.

Did you feel dissatisfied with the music scene?

I don`t know really. It`s just that loud noises, and loud groups, didn`t really fit in with what I was doing – relaxing. I didn`t really go out and rave anywhere. I just played it quiet.
Then the time came when I had to look for a band, and I knew I had to look in the sort of places where there would be lots of noise and bustle, and I really didn`t relish the idea. But it had to be done, so I looked all over England. Plus I had some contacts in the States.

You say it HAD to be done. How do you mean?

Well I mean it`s the thing I can do; I can`t make a living at anything else. I could but I wouldn`t bother. You shouldn`t have to do anything you don`t want to. You should be able to make money at what you like doing and what you can do best. And this is what I can do best.

Were you feeling restless as well?

No, I didn`t bother. I wasn`t worried about anything passing me by, if that`s what you mean.

Was it a question of earning a living?

Money things are obviously a big part of it. It`s not the only part. I wouldn`t just go out and plonk, just because I was getting paid, I`d have to like it as well. And vice versa. I wouldn`t play just because I liked it.

With the reputation you`d built up as a big guitar man…

That was all out of proportion. I wasn`t really that great. It`s just that nobody was featuring a guitar as much as the Yardbirds, that`s all. They were all singing groups like the Hollies and Kinks, that sort of stuff. They all had hit songs, but nobody in the group seemed to exploit the guitar.

Even so, you did have a reputation, and when you disappeared there was more interest created. So you could have come back as a solo artist, with a back-up group, but you came back as part of a group. Why did you decide to do that?

That`s what I wanted, but the first instance in my solo career I was being projected as a solo artist by Mickie Most, which was the kiss of death for me because he tried to twist me into something that I wasn`t, i.e. like a pop singer.
Then he gave me all the usual producer chat, “you`ve got to do this, you`ve got to do that, to sell records.” And all the time I was absolutely doing the wrong thing in taking any notice of him. Because there was a market, which he didn`t know about, in America, which catered for people like me, who was almost primarily experimenting with sounds, and guitar playing.
Mickie Most had a very convincing manner. He twisted my arm, and I recorded three junk records. “Silver Lining” – that was the singing one – still has a certain magic about it, but as a song…
We were sticking all the good stuff on the B sides. Rod Stewart would get to sing on a B side and he was getting really pissed off. Quite understandably, but I wanted him to sing on the A, so that we could play something descriptive of what we were doing at the time. Eventually I convinced Mickie he was barking up the wrong tree, with me anyway. He decided he wanted to record the stuff that we liked, and he couldn`t do it. At least he didn`t have much notion of what it was all about.

Do you feel happier as part of a band?

Yeah. I don`t have enough to say as a solo artist. In other words I couldn`t sit on a stool with an electric guitar or any other guitar and entertain anyone for more than about half an hour.
But it`s not what I`d like to do anyway. I`d just like to sit back and play how I feel. That`s what I`ve been channelling my whole job for.

How did you get this band together?

The first part was the hardest – finding a drummer. Then the next part took a long time, but suddenly it all fell together. All of a sudden I had a bass player, a piano player and a singer in a space of about two months.

Did you have any firm ideas of the type of music you wanted to play?

Yeah, I just can`t switch off my style and switch on another style, I have to think of what I`ve got already. In other words, I couldn`t jump out and find a jazz drummer, or a string section, and start a totally new thing.
I don`t pretend I`m doing anything really different, but the recorded product is different. Perhaps the stage thing isn`t better.

Has your stage-style changed?

Yeah, it`s more explicit, there`s more colour in it, less violence.

When you came back did you think you were still as competent as a guitarist, or better?

Well, I had mixed feelings.
When you read things like “Beck Group back” it puts you in the hot seat. It worries you. In a way it would be better if they didn`t say anything at all – if you were just allowed to play in some small dive and make a name like that.

Do you think there`s too much superstar charisma linked with your name?

With my name? Oh, I don`t know about that. I think there`s too much of it all around the business.

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When you were rehearsing the band what sort of music did you envisage?

It was a custom-built group, a bit from here and bit from there. Max (Middleton) is no more a rock and roll pianist than I am violinist. But, he blends in some way or other, because he`s just a top-class musician. And it`s rather like having an Errol Garner with a rock and roll guitar player. Plus a funk drummer.
It`s got the basis of some good things. We just have to sort ourselves out.
I didn`t really say to myself, `I`m going to form a group which has got this that and the other in it`. I was open to any suggestions. Because I don`t think any musician can be content if he`s playing ABC – what somebody else wants.
That`s always been the way in my group. Anyone can play what he wants. But there is a certain discipline needed, otherwise it`d just be jamming all night and rambling all over the place.
When you build a song, you should build it so that anyone can play what he wants without actually messing it up.

I think your “Rough And Ready” album has more of a contemporary feel than the rock and blues you played with Stewart, Wood and co.

That change must have been absolutely accidental. “Beckola” was real thundering rock and roll, which is all it is. It`s just crude and boisterous. But as you say, there is a difference. It`s accidental. It`s just getting new players in, that`s all.

But your group also help with the writing, don`t they? (not credited on album).

Oh yeah. Nobody`s any the less the writer than the next man. At the moment, though, we`re all looking for a direction. We just hope we all get it when we`re in the same group.

Again on the album, the music is subdued and controlled, though on stage you produce a driving rock sound.

Maybe it`s just nerves at the moment. Everyone`s a bit on edge. Possibly when we relax a bit, it will sound more like the album.
I always feel that people deserve more than just to sit there and patiently listen. Maybe as a crowd that`s all they want, but I`d rather inject some energy. It may not look as if I`m injecting energy into the songs though.
The songs as songs are garbage, there`s no two ways about it. They just don`t mean anything. The words don`t mean much. They`re just stock words. But they are necessary evils, as it were.
I feel if I formed an instrumental group I`d play all I`d got to say in the first couple of tracks, unless someone wrote me a lot of tunes. But rather than that I`d rather stay in the background and wail.

Were you happy with the first album?

Oh no. I feel it should never have happened.
None of us knew each other. I mean Max didn`t know me from a bar of soap. But when we played he just picked up a really elaborate chord sequence, just off the top of his head and remembered every chord. And I thought that someone who is as clever as that, and who can put the same energy and feeling into it each time he plays is worth his weight in gold.

Was it a good thing for you to produce it?

Well, I just thought I could do as good a job as Mickie Most on this sort of album. You`ve just got to have a good producer, because sometimes you get so close to your work that you can`t see the wood from the trees.

How`s the second album which you`ve just recorded in Memphis?

That`s miles, miles better in my opinion. I wouldn`t care if it just sold half the number – I`d still be happy with the direction. The playing is really tight.

What differences do you find between the two?

Well, having a producer like Steve Cropper helped greatly. Because he`s a guitarist – and he and I both seemed to think the same while we were together in the studio; he got off on the same licks that I got on.
He has a great feel for rhythm too, and he can tell when there`s a flaw in the rhythm track, and that saves a lot of time. Whereas I`d miss it, thinking of the guitar lick, he`d say “wait a minute the bass and the drums are a slight bit out there” or whatever. And we`d sit there learning from him.
At the same time he wasn`t telling us what to play. We`d go 15 takes and he`d just pick out one, an overall track being better than one which was erratic. All in all, the new album doesn`t sound like the same band.

Is the material stronger?

Yeah, much stronger, partly because we didn`t write it. We wrote four out of nine tunes.
There`s one written by Don Nix called “Going Down”, which was recorded by Freddie King. Anyway Don Nix just came into the studio while we were recording. And he said “it`s a good tune, that”. I said “yeah it`s great”, and he said “I wrote it”. So I asked if he approved of our version and he said he did.
It really pounds along. It`s old-fashioned, but it has more go than anything I`ve ever done.
There`s an instrumental with three melodies, on which I play bottle neck. The second melody comes in half way through, and the third comes right at the end. It is quite a nice piece – very melodic, but it`s based round a simple blues sequence.

Is the band finding a direction with this album?

Oh yeah. I say yeah – but the next album might be miles different again. Still, that won`t bother me in the least. This is a really important point now, to think of the next album.

Is this when you`ll decide which way to go ultimately?

Yeah, but how I`ll decide I don`t know. We have to judge by record sales. Because when you`re in a business you`re not just messing about all day. You have to ring up and check where your sales are best, and which countries are strong.
After all, we`re playing to people. We`re not playing for our amusement really. You have to find a direction from the people. I`d never play if I thought I was upsetting anybody.

You could say the first two albums are put out to test public reaction?

Yes, that`s about it. If this one doesn`t sell anything at all it won`t stop me from playing, but it will give me an insight into what is needed. After all, you have to cater for the people who are buying records and coming to concerts.

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Quite an interesting ad for the one and only album from this British band produced by Ian Gillan of Deep Purple.

This number of the NME also contains articles/interviews with these people: Grateful Dead, Steeleye Span, Deep Purple, Quintessence, Cheech and Chong, Alexis Korner, David Clayton-Thomas, Procol Harum, Groundhogs, The Who, Jim Capaldi, Paul McCartney, The Hollies, John Peel, Bill Wellings, Judee Sill, The Temptations.

The NME this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

  1. Send me an e-mail, if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
  2. The offer should be around or upwards of 10 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
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ARTICLE ABOUT Mick Jagger FROM NEW MUSICAL EXPRESS, MARCH 18, 1972

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper and you are free to use it as you like. If you use it on your own webpages – please credit me or put up a link to my blog. If you really like this sort of thing – follow my blog! Thank you!

Here is a really interesting interview with Mick Jagger, done in a break while mixing what would become the “Exile On Main Street” LP. In this interview he is talking politics, and he really slams down hard on the Tories, but also on British apathy and censorship. It is a good read, and what I would call a “period piece” that gives younger people a glimpse of these (thankfully?) forgotten times.

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Jagger slams Britain

From Roy Carr in the U.S.

“It`s disgusting,” Mick Jagger exploded in anger when I talked to him in Hollywood about the latest developments in the Tory Government`s Night Assemblies Bill*(Blog Editor`s Note) and its new and ominous threat to Civil Rights.

(*The original formulation of the Night Assemblies Bill made it a criminal offence to hold a gathering of 1000 people or more in the open air for any period of 3 hours between midnight and 6 a.m. without applying to a local authority 4 months beforehand and without giving certain financial guarantees).

Often misconstrued and publicly pilloried for his outspoken anti-Establishment views, Jagger doesn`t however, advocate the guerilla tactics of the street fighting man.
“What`s needed is another kind of direct action,” he scowled. “The British public should openly flout the Tory Government. And voting is no good, because it never works. When it does work you usually have to wait for years for it to come into effect.
“The best thing would be for a load of our top bands to turn up somewhere – assemble a large crowd – and do a gigantic free gig. If they did then you be sure I`d be there.”
Surrounded by a bank of silent brightly lit vending machines, plus Rolling Stones Records Executive Marshall Chess and the lithe and lovely Chris O`Dell, Jagger relaxed and spoke freely during a break in the final mix-down sessions for the Stones` impending double-album.

TED HEATH

We were in the rest room of an air-cooled studio along Hollywood`s Sunset Strip and, obviously well pleased with his initial statement, Jagger made himself comfortable and continued while the hard, fast-rockin` sounds of a number he described as “Turd On The Run” acted as a continuous back-drop to our lengthy conversation.
“My slogan is: `Good Government Is No Government`. England doesn`t need a Government because it can govern itself…
“I honestly believe that, because it does govern itself,” he added, directing this personal philosophy at Marshall Chess, who was listening somewhat bemusedly.
“I honestly believe Britain would be better off with no Government than the present Tory one,” Jagger continued. “The trouble is that both Heath and Wilson are just as bad as each other…they`re two of a kind.
“This present Government has got to go. Heath isn`t going to last for very long, and before you know it, he`ll be out. And as for the police – they should all retire. I mean they`re all disgusting…England is just falling to pieces.”

Suddenly Jagger clapped his hands together and in a loud voice he bellowed, “There`s absolutely no solidarity.” It was an action which momentarily attracted the attention of Keith Richard, who popped out from the control room.
Jagger`s opinion was: “The trouble is that English people take everything lying down. Nobody is going to feel sorry for England if the people continue to take everything in this position.
“For instance, you can serve cold potatoes to English people for ever – and they won`t send them back.
“From what I can see, it seems as though the only people who care nowadays are the kids. And everything`s being done to keep them down.”

Adding more fuel to the fire, Jagger suggested that: “People shouldn`t take any notice of the Tory Government, period. Or whatever Bills they pass. I think that all those kids who are over 18 years old, and even those who aren`t old enough to vote, should openly register their disapproval by assembling a large crowd.
“Despite what the Government says the people should still go ahead and have a few rock festivals and then see what happens. As far as I can see this thing is being done very underhanded…it`s all very nasty.”

Jagger concedes that sufficient space, catering and sanitary facilities should be of prime importance at festivals. But he added: “Most of the British festivals have been all right. Even the Isle of Wight was quite peaceful.
“Quite frankly I don`t know what the Government is worried about. But maybe they`re not worried. They just wanna have a go at the kids.
“Let`s face it, the Tories aren`t in a good position. And if they get away with this Bill, then they`re really going to try and enforce other measures to restrict people`s freedom.
“If they banned football matches then they`d see some trouble. Just let them start that – and see what happens.”

Jagger says he regards the Night Assemblies Bill as just an initial move by the British Government to suppress and limit the freedom of this country`s youth…in the very same way, he says, that other European nations have clamped down.
“For instance,” he began, “you can`t do anything in France. They keep the kids totally tied down and in the gutter. Italy is just the same, and it looks as though these same kind of restrictions are going to be enforced in England.

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McCartney

“Since they came into power, Heath`s Government has succeeded in making a mess of just about everything. They started off with Rhodesia…sold arms to South Africa…and got involved in a terrible mess in Ireland.
“None of these things should have happened, but they did, and Heath has only made things worse. And if that`s not enough we had the miner`s strike.”

Jagger then voiced the opinion that among the worst offenders against freedom was the BBC in that not only did it have a monopoly, but control the freedom of speech on radio. He offered the mass media`s refusal to air Paul McCartney`s new single as a prime example.
“It`s important we should have our own radio. All the excuses given by the BBC are nothing but pure bullshit. The Tory Government will never give free radio to anybody, because they are afraid that people will say things they don`t approve of.
“All these other reasons are side-issues. The truth is that they are afraid of anyone saying the things that were said on Radio Caroline. You know the kinda things…Up with this, down with that and fuck the Government.”

He concluded: “England has always had a malaise of not caring. People take everything lying down. They are content to let the country be run by a load of misguided right-wingers.”
When I asked Jagger why he felt that Great Britain was no longer Great he gave a wry smile.
“It`s due,” he said, “to me leaving.”

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The charts that week in musical history.

This number of the NME also contains articles/interviews with these people: Mama Cass, Another Jagger interview, Don McLean, Humble Pie, Family, Paul Samwell-Smith, Emerson, Lake and Palmer, Jim Capaldi (Traffic), Randy Newman, Michael Jackson, Ian Hunter, The Hollies, Ian Gillan.

The NME this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

  1. Send me an e-mail, if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
  2. The offer should be around or upwards of 10 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
  3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.