Horse’s Mouth (Issue #154, Aug 2014)

Horse’s Mouth

Aug 4, 2014

Belated thanks to John Varvatos who opened up my Birthday Bash and to Alan Bull who’s artistry is much appreciated.

John McLean wants us to go to Hong Kong when we travel to Japan.

Hal is happy about the ‘Artful Dodger’ re-release. I did that album when nobody was particularly interested in my work with the exception of Bjorn Nessjo in Norway. These things have a way of sticking around for a second wind.

Jeffrey says I’m in perpetual motion. So far, so good.

Margaret Finch: It’s on the list, but the list is getting longer.

Dave wants to be my drummer. Sorry, but Steve’s my man.

Roxette wants us to go to California. Perhaps we will do that before Japan – early January?

Steve F: ‘Aynsley Dunbar is my favourite drummer. Can you recall anything from when he did AAAB with you?’ Aynsley was great. First there – last to leave. He’d like to warm up for a while before we started. Sometimes I’d watch him – utilizing both bass drums, he’d play round the kit until you actually saw a perfect circle.

Steve Molnar enjoyed Toronto and Buffalo.

Keith Nickless has requests for what to do and what not to do in the fall.

Bradley Brown is hoping for gigs in the Philly area. Same here.

John Frawley: ‘How did you hook up with Roy Young?’ Back in the ’60’s this blonde headed kid used to hammer an upright piano on ‘Oh Boy’ (a British TV show). Sometimes he’d do one song – sometimes two. He was the only English kid who could do Little Richard and he had this strange way with him – like he was somewhere else. The music seemed to carry Roy out of the building. Roy told me he was asked to join the Beatles (he had a residency at the Star Club in Hamburg and booked them and played with them twice). So – I was a fan. Through Dennis Elliott who was a friend of his we finally met up and got together with him in Canada. By this time he was more into Ray Charles and jazzier stuff, but we hit it off. We were both at loose ends, so it was fun. I asked him how he managed to ‘do’ Little Richard and he said the band played a 12 bar in ‘F’ instead of ‘C’ one night and he stretched – and there Little Richard was! Roy did Richard better than McCartney or Lennon.

Posey: ‘Any plans to play New Orleans – it’s sucked since the 80’s.’ We’d be there if it cold be organized, but you need more than one gig in any area to make it work. Touring is very expensive.

Cole: ‘What’s the story behind Barry Manilow and ‘Ships’ ?’ It was Steve Popovich who played it to Clive Davis who thought is would be good for Manilow.

Rockin Rob likes the Horse’s Mouth.

John Dalton on being humiliated on the opening slot. Every band goes through this. Mott’s very first gigs were up North with Free (who were Gods!) and opening for King Crimson (who were monsters). We didn’t ‘die’ ever, but our reception would pale beside these great bands. We wanted to jack it in more than once, but strange things would happen. Roadies from these bands would come up to us and tell us we had something. Somehow, we stuck it out and began to learn to understand audiences. Audiences like to be led – they don’t particularly like scared bands! We adjusted.

Trevor Lee: Wow – in 1957. That’s too far back. I don’t remember ‘Rhythm Boys’. I can tell this is genuine. Tell me more!!! Regards to Bill, Keith Git and yourself.

Dave Neufeld bought MTH in 1973 (age 11) on the basis of a front cover (no rock radio in town). Just read ‘Diary’ and wants us to play in Vancouver.

Nigel: I believe we’re doing U.S. shows in November – right after the UK tour. Frank Riley is putting it together as I write. I’m working on a new album which will probably get recorded next year and I believe Proper (my UK/European label) are releasing a 21 cd box set in 2015. No rest for the aged!

Chris: We need you in Canada!

Mark F: ‘Have you played or would you ever consider a private function?’ I’ve done a few.

Jeffrey: I know, I know – best summer I can remember!

Dean Kurtz: Ronno didn’t want to play guitar anymore – he wanted to be a chef! I had Robbie Alter on guitar. Tommy Mandel (Brian Adams, Dire Straits) played keyboards. Tommy suffered a brain aneurysm and was rushed to the Cleveland Clinic. Mick stepped in on keyboards.

Jon Bailey: J45 Jumbo. Yup, enjoy.

Roland wants us to go to Germany.

Jeff More: ‘Saw you in Pleasantville – WOW- you were as great as when I last saw you 35 years ago, and your band was awesome. My 27 and 23 year old sons were blown away. Thank you and please come back.’ Blush!

Clyde: ‘When I’m President’ is such a strong effort – how long did it take you to put that masterpiece together?’ Probably about a year to get the songs together – the recording was around 12 days (including the mixing). All in all – pretty painless.

Richie Cornacchi: ‘Great time in Pleasantville! Andy York did a great job. Don’t know if you noticed, but the moon was a brilliant orange as you did ‘Crazy Horse’. It crested at the start of the encores.’ That sounds cool.

McClenaghan: ‘What supergroup dream line up would tempt you post MTH. Dunno. I know I’d like Levon Helm; Leon Russell on keys. Guys who’d make me better!

Ian Mack: ‘Your best and worse music decisions?’ Well, obviously I’ve made a few duff ones! The best one – don’t really know, but I’ve made a few good ones too!!

Dan Hartman: ‘Fender sells the Mustang Floor effects board. It has 100 presets – no. 51 is Mick the Hoople.

Pasquale Truglia: See you in London, Pasquale.

Jason Clark likes ‘Dirty Laundry’ – I do too. ‘Overnight Angels’ wasn’t released because I fired my manager. Another one of my great decisions! Haven’t seen Slick in quite while, but he’s around.

Geoff Bryant: ‘Do ‘Henry and he H-Bomb’.’ When Jeff Tweedy sends me the lyrics!

Richard Millington is on the promise if I play ‘Just the Way You Look Tonight’ in Aberdeen. Far be it from me……..

Oor Wullie: I didn’t actually sing on it Willie; I just played a couple of piano parts. Sounded good to me.

Mary Mathieu: ‘Thank you for a life time of music – you’re a genius.’ I keep telling the wife this, but she doesn’t get it!!

Rockin’ Rob: ‘Have you ever written a song you thought was total rubbish, but it turned out to be a hit?’ (Yes) OK, Ian – time to fess up – which song?’ Well, I wasn’t completely made about ‘Honaloochie Boogie’. Fortunately for me, Buff and Pete thought otherwise.

Tom Semioli had a great time at the Winery. Hobnobbing!

Paul De la Mare: Don’t think so. I only remember doing it the once.

Justin Purington: First EVER Horse’s Mouth question – alert the media! ‘When are you going to play your Les Paul Junior on stage again?’ Dunno.

Wolfgang: Vivaldi?

Ron: (i) We’re playing Chicago in November (Park West I think). (ii) I invented ‘M.C.’ Bosch.

Arthur Lynch: I was at the Accies ground during WWII. Still follow their fortunes – but from afar.

Rolf Brunner: ‘Love all your records – any concerts in Switzerland?’ Not at the moment, sorry.

Bionictomato: ‘Warn out two ‘Presidents’. Seen you in Philly but now I live in Florida. Any chance of a show down here?’ Trudi says the closest show will probably be Atlanta, Georgia.

Peter Jordan: ‘Do you like Scotch Eggs?’ They’re ok. ‘Is there any UK food you can’t get in the U.S.?’ You can’t get good bacon in the U.S. Nothing beats best back.

Joe Beninati: Sorry for your loss, Joe; condolences to all. Glad the song helped.

John Bird: That would have to go through our UK agent, Mick Brown.

Ian Mack: ‘You’re obviously a well informed man on world issues – what’s your primary news source?’ I think you have to read (or watch) everything across the board. Get ALL viewpoints. Information is so slanted it’s the only way to get a rough estimate. The proble is most people just stick with who agrees with them – that’s polarizing, naïve, and stupid. THINK FOR YOURSELVES.

Jeffrey: ‘Sweet Savage Grace’ is the correct lyric (the very line Morrissey asked me about).

Dan Baker thinks I’m right up there!!

K (Japan): ‘Bought tickets or all three shows. Andy chance of ‘Whizz Kid’; ‘Death of a Nation’; ‘Wash Us Away’; ‘Man Overboard’; ‘Brittania’ ? This is my first show since YUI ORTA tour. Hope you’re excited to come to Japan!’ Well I could do without the journey, but otherwise I’m hyped. Spread the word.

Gary: ‘How do you go about choosing material for the shows?’ Well, it’s a thankless task because you’ve written over 300 and you only get to do 15-20 per gig. If I ask people to tell me what they want they all pick different songs. If they all picked the same ones my life would be easier. You’re always pissing somebody off. So, I just do what comes to mind or maybe Boschy might say something he’d like to have a go at guitar wise. James is my usual barometer.

Maureen Russell has a book club in San Francisco and their current read is ‘Diary’. Tell them to come to a gig, Maureen. It’s louder, but it’s more fun. We should be in San Francisco in early January.

Think I’m done. Missed a few but I couldn’t think of the answers. Have a great summer – see you in the fall.

IH

The Horse’s Mouth


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