This band had more chart success after Frampton left the band and he had more success without this band, so it turned out well for them after all. One of the greatest English rock drummers also get a mention in this article.
Have a good read!
Adding a little blues to the Pie
By Ray Telford
Humble Pie are now a band of some stature in Britain. Of course it took the super-aware American audiences to pick up on them first and start giving them the kind of respect any band needs for a healthy growth but that has seemed to be the way with most of the best of our home-grown rock bands – The Grease Band and Procol Harum being two of the more obvious examples.
Humble Pie returned from their umpteenth American tour a month before Christmas. That had been their first bunch of dates with new guitarist Dave Clempson since he took over from the talented and still under-rated Pete Frampton. In his last few months with Humble Pie, Frampton became aware of an ever increasing alienation between himself and the music he was obliged to play.
Clempson tells a similar story. Over two years he`d become some kind of guitar sensation with Colosseum but he too felt he was being drawn into musical directions which were not his cup of tea. There`s little doubt that Clempson`s departure from Colosseum did a lot to break up the band generally. Also they were a group largely out of place, sad as it may be, among contemporary British and American rock bands and I have little hesitation in guessing that this alone did much to speed up the Colosseum split.
Dave, however, has no such high flown theories. He simply speaks for himself when he says: “Before joining Colosseum I was just a happy little guitarist playing what I liked best but with Colosseum there was always something to live up to. The whole band were always consciously trying to knock people out and in the end that was what was beginning to screw me up.”
Nevertheless, it would have taken a shrewd observer indeed to predict a year ago that an instrumentalist like Clempson would one day find a home in a hard grooving band like Humble Pie. Dave hadn`t heard much of them until joining, apart from a few radio spots and a small tour of Germany they did with Colosseum two years ago. What he did hear, though, Dave liked.
Although he never had the chance to play a lot of blues in the past couple of years, Dave reckons he`ll now be able to make up for lost time.
“I`ve always thought of myself as a blues player and all the people in the band want me to play the blues and this is one reason why I`m much happier. With this band there`s no obsession about being better than anyone else which was what was happening in Colosseum. The guys in Humble Pie maybe aren`t the best at what they`re doing but we feel it and enjoy it and it just feels really natural.
“You know, Greg (bassist Greg Ridley) is much the same as I am. He`s very paranoid about his playing. He wants me to teach him more about the technical things in music because right now he feels he needs it. He`s got amazing feel, a real natural feel, but he wants to know more about what he`s actually playing. Bass players like Jack Bruce are perfect because he has this feel born in him and he`s got a ridiculous technique.”
Taking into account his previous dissatisfaction, or even disillusionment with Colosseum, I put it to Dave that forming his own band would have been an ideal solution. He says it was a thought which he had toyed with and had even gone so far as suggesting the idea to one of his old friends from his days in Birmingham, drummer Cozy Powell, who now sits in the drum chair of the Jeff Beck Group.
“Someday I`m going to be in a band with Cozy,” Dave said determinedly. “When my first band (a useful blues band called Bakerloo) broke up I was going to get a band started with Dave Pegg and Cozy in Birmingham but then Dave joined Fairport Convention and I went to Colosseum and Cozy was also involved in a few things so it never came off. But I did think quite a lot about getting my own thing started a few times while I was with Colosseum.”
Naturally Dave`s link up with Pie presented problems but again he points out that they were things which only needed a little time to put right. He says joining was easy because they were playing the music he felt and knew best. Instrumentally, his biggest hangup was getting the hang of knowing how much to play and how much to leave out.
Dave admits to being somewhat apprehensive, though, about his replacing Pete Frampton, if not from a musical viewpoint, certainly on a personality basis. Especially in the States Frampton was much loved. Dave was worried about group images and wondered, needlessly as it turned out, if an ex-member of Colosseum was acceptable to Humble Pie audiences. The two guitar styles varied greatly but each fitted. However, the past American tour proved that audiences or appreciation had not dwindled over the departure of Frampton.
“When Pete left the band they wanted somebody who had a different style and not somebody who was going to be purely a replacement for Pete. Rick Derringer really wanted the job desperately but he played too much like Pete. They needed somebody too who could fit in along with Steve`s (Marriott) singing and rhythm guitar playing.”
Humble Pie are in the studios for the greater part of January recording their fourth album. It`ll be the first time Dave will have recorded with the band. He`s proved himself on gigs the forthcoming album will be his final test.
I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. 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!
This number of Sounds also contains articles/interviews with these people: Sandy Denny, Mimi Farina, Josè Feliciano, T. Rex, Crowbar, Muggsy Spanier, Canned Heat, Eric Clapton, Teddy Osei, Georgie Fame, Rolling Stones.
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