Want to hear it straight from the Horse's Mouth? Ask your question here.
So this is the good life! 96 degrees - summer (well, nearly). Bush and Blair after Saddam (well, nearly) the writing of songs (well, nearly). I can't write in the summer. It's too nice. Any exciting news, H.M.? Nothing. What of Oslo? Nothing yet, but that's going to be fun eventually. I got a package from EMI with a best of I.H. in it - nothing else and I saw it in a supermarket. Lots of live tracks - no dates - no liner notes. Geniuses - aren't' they? I did listen to Sha-na-na and I love that track. The playing is great. Angel Air put another Mott thingy out but it's all stuff they put out before so I haven't listened to that as of yet. My mate, Pete, from Liverpool sent me a great tape of Screaming Lord Sutch taped from a TV show in England. Brilliant. Dicky Pride ( who reminded me of Bobby Darrin) and Billy Fury. Those days still get me going - not like these days. Shots of the Two Eyes Cafe on Old Compton Street. I met Wee Willie Harris there and saw Lance Fortune downstairs - with the shadows backing him. But - so to work.
Victor Sedillo comments on 'Cold Water High'. Vintage Mott - any chance of Andy MacKay and Ralpher playing on it? Well, it's done really.
Mats Kupfer says 'Rainhoff' (the lead singer is Jo Rainheart formerly of 'Foolhouse') has covered 'Too Much' (from the Artful Dodger) and is in heavy rotation in Switzerland. He says the album is excellent and charted. Thank you, Mats.
Bob Barnes says Repertoire Records have a release date for 'Rant' in England. Chrysalis/Echo say they cannot legally do this and I have seen a letter to this effect. The weird thing is that Chrysalis licensed 'Rant' to Repertoire for Germany. And I licensed 'Rant' to Papillon. 'Rant' still trickles in England by the way. Word of mouth. Thanks for the alert, Bob. Scary, isn't it?
Allesandro Fagioli says he found an Italian review about 'Rockers' and my name was on this list! 'Ian Hunter is the last time Rockers.' When will he see a Mott the Hoople concert live in London? Well, you can never say never (that's what Pete Watts says) but don't hold your breath!
Janet Mitchell says she's amazed how little I know about when my CD's are released and on sale. She says 'Rant' is being released September 1st and she's seen it advertised on various shopping sites. Janet, one of my major failings is once I've done something - it's over. How many songs have I written? Don't know. Must be two or three hundred. More if you count the ones that never see the light of day. Janet says nah to a MTH reunion. Just keep up the good work. I'm trying Janet, I'm trying.
Michael W. Smith is our merchandise advisor. He's one of a few who'd like us to sell stuff on this site. Well, we're still messing with the idea, but it's down to the wife really. I can't imagine opening a shop, but you never know. It is talked about. Thanks for the other stuff.
Tom from Canada says he thinks it's great to see so much of my and Mott things being reissued and he's got photos of me and Mick - so I'll forward this to Trudi. Which one is the best? 'Artful Dodger' or 'Rant'? Well - they're different albums done at different times about different things- aren't they?
Bill asks what do I think about Paul Weller? Well, I haven't listened to his music, but he opened a door for Trudi and me once at the BBC - so he seems like a nice young man.
Michael W. Smith (again). Bloody hell, Michael. Wish I had your enthusiasm! Am I sure the amounts of hits we get are valid? Well, all I know is we've got a statistics page with a counter and this is what it's telling us. We've averaged over half a million hits a month for the past six months. It seems astonishing to me too, but that's what it says. He says hackers can screw you with 'denial of service' attacks. This is where they plant so many hits it closes down your site. Apparently this happens in government and internet service providers but probably not a rock'n'roll sight. Well, we haven't closed down and I'll forward this to Trudi as well as she knows more about this than I do. Thanks.
Andy says why Glasgow and not Edinburgh. No reason at all, Andy. The agent lets the promoters know I'm available and it's up to them to book me. Perhaps no one made an offer.
Robert Graser wants me to play in Austria - not Australia. Oh, dear (shades of Jade) sorry, Robert! He says they've got T-shirts that read, 'There are no kangaroos in Austria' He's looking for 'Dirty Laundry'. eBay or Amazon perhaps?
Barry Wilkinson asks if I know Steve Harley? Well, we have met on a couple of occasions and he did ask me to write with him once a long time ago, but geography got in the way. Says Burnley was the best English gig (he saw three).
Dan Sharley saw the show at Irving Plaza in New York (great). Why don't I put a book of lyrics out on my web site. Actually Trudi says that's her next project, so it may just happen - if there's interest.
Anthony Caminiti says it took several months but he finally got 'Artful Dodger'. Do I like playing the harp? Well, if the song needs it I'll play it. A small but salient piece of trivia. I'm the only one I know who blows and does not suck a harp.
Jon-Taylor wants Crewe next year as he was in Spain last year. Well, if I tour - I don't have a problem with Crewe at all.
Martin Paver got 'YUI Orta' on eBay. Says it's one of the best. Got 'Rant' in Munich. 'Dead Man Walkin' would be a hit if it got played. Was it inspired by the movie? No. All the major shops in Munich carry mine and Mott CDs. Sehr gut!!
Roy Pearl (Vancouver) asks did I write 'Still Love Rock'n'Roll' as a conscious sequel to 'Memphis'? 'I find you articulate the transcendence of rock'n'roll better than anybody since Chuck Berry.' Well, Roy, you should hear me down in the basement some days! 'Still Love Rock'n'Roll' was written because I like writing songs with built in power and I remember the feeling. I didn't relate to 'Memphis' when I wrote it and I don't think it's as good a song as 'Memphis'. I just like to nod back to the people who gave my life meaning. 'Rant' is a great album and Roy loves 'Wash Us Away'.
Peter Jordan: Says he remembers me telling Paul Weller on the radio years ago that he should get out of England and grow as a writer. I can't remember. Is traveling important to creativity? Well, anything inspirational is important. A day trip to Worthing may not do it for you, but Venice might (and so I'm going). Peter thinks 'Rant' is brilliant. Thank you, Peter.
Keith says he's been a fan ever since he saw me with the Maltese Cross and MTH in 1971. That's what did it for him!
Rosemary is delighted with the site. Loves 'Rant'. Hooked on 'Morons' which she thinks her son and buddies 'might not get' but it's dead clever anyway (you said that right girl!). 'Knees of My Heart' also goes down well. Thanks, Rosemary.
Oyvind Tenold from Bergen, Norway says, according to the record, ICH 'Get Out Alive' I produced, arranged and played guitar and piano and sang backing vocals on 'Hypnotized' and I also arranged 'You're Not Dead Yet'. There you go. Oyvind also says he hopes the second night's version of 'Picasso' will be used on the Oslo CD and DVD plus 'Waterlow'. Rest assured - they're both on there. 'Come back to Bergen'. Actually I remember the club in Bergen and how nice everybody was to Mick and me. If the chance comes up (and it may well) I'll be there.
Larry Swieca sends a lovely message but I get that 'Michael Winner' feeling so I'm not saying what it says. Finishes off by offering to let me stay with him in Chicago next time around. What about the band and the crew?
Jason Hans says Micah and Brandy are getting married on September 14th. He is a fan as is Jason. Well, have a great day and if you want to know what a tour is like - it's like getting married seven days a week. All the best for the future Micah and Brandy - Ian and Trudi Hunter.
Dan Baker says he can't believe we're averaging nearly a million hits a month on the site. Well, Dan neither can we. Like I said earlier - the figure is less when nothing's going on, but it does shoot up radically when things are happening. Why don't we sell stuff? We're thinking about the practicality of it.
Rich (UK) says 'Rant' is the best ever. Rich, however, worries that I seem to want to forget the past - particularly my time with Mott the Hoople. Is that the case? Well, Mott the Hoople to me is similar to when you went to school to you. It's a long time ago. When Ralpher and I got together in May of this year neither of us really wanted to play Mott the Hoople songs. Ralpher much preferred playing 'Rant'. When it came to the MTH stuff at rehearsals Mick and I would sit outside and have a cup of tea while the band played them. Fortunately, I have a great band and they made the MTH songs come alive. Then and only then, did Mick and I get interested. Live was another matter, entirely. It's just hard to go back. Why will I only say, 'No' when a MTH reunion is suggested? I say no because I can't honestly see it coming off. But you know us show biz types - anything can happen. Of course there's a place in my heart for Mott. Without that start I'd still be in the factory.
Eddy Hess: A kindred spirit. It's never too late Eddy! (And consider the alternatives.) Best of luck. Do IWIWYM.
Kelly Boles asks when will 'All of the Good Ones Are Taken' be reissued. Don't know - I'll ask Trudi. Kelly says they go for between $40 and $75 on eBay. Ask SONY -tp
Joe Eglash: Sussed!!! He says maybe he's missing something, but what is 'Beau Geste' in 'Boy'. I don't know! I think it represented flash and excitement. That's the way it sounded. Words don't have to be words, do they? There's not enough words. It's boring. The drummer on 'You Nearly Did Me In' was Aynsley Dunbar. A great drummer who may have influenced Roger.
Tod Denison: The bands that had great talent but never got their due were Nazareth, Thin Lizzy and moi. Well, I always got on fine with the media, but I really wasn't ready to 'drop my knickers' so to speak. Phil Lynott (who babysat Jess once) was shy. I'm shy about some things. I don't know about Nazareth. It seems you've got to have a 'story' as well as the music. Maybe that's what it is. Of course we all have 'stories' it's just that some are more willing to air them than others. It should also be said that I've never been a particular fan of the 'big time'. I had a bit of it and I didn't like what it did to me and I didn't like what I saw.
Peter and Julie (Wales): So we anticipated! Yeah, I missed the plane (first one in thirty years) and I'd been up all night mixing in Oslo. I did, however, get another one three hours later and they upgraded me to first. Slept the whole way. Haven't spoken to Stan. Actually, I must ring him. Not October, probably next May.
Steve Seidel: 'Jerkin Crocus' derivation. Actually, this was about a tramp who lived in Hereford who's name wasn't 'Jerkin Crocus' - but by the time Pete Watts sieved him through his humatic processors he came out so. 'One Of The Boys' was us. That's what we were - perhaps more so than 'Dudes'.
John Rhino says he saw us at the Old Waldorf in San Francisco. in the 80's. He thinks Huey Lewis played harmonica on one of the last songs. Where can he buy a T-shirt? Anybody?
John Facer - What are you doing on a computer!!! John's one of my mates from Northampton. I was talking to Johnny Ayres and Barry yesterday! Barry's doing good. Heard about Manship. ALRIGHT!
Rob Lythall: That would be Papillon/Chrysalis/Echo in the U.K. or Fuel 2000 in the U.S.
John Norbury says he spends a lot of time surfing music sites and this site is the best in the business (kudos to Todd and Justin). Do I remember Buxton - mid '70's? Any anecdotes? Well, I remember standing by the stage in torrential rain telling Stan we were definitely NOT going on because of the electrical situation. The stage was covered, but the wind was blowing the rain onto the mikes. It's not nice when you get 240 volts through your lips. I've experienced it a couple of times. Just at that moment Charles Sharr Murray approached me and said 'That's what I like about you lot - I don't know any other band that would play in this!' Needless to say, we got togged up in all our finery and did the show. John says, 'Rant' is brilliant.
Ronnie still loves 'Rant'. Still loves it on a drive. Favourite guitars. 50's Les Paul Juniors. The new Alvarez acoustics are great and relatively cheap.
Nigel Pattison from Leeds: Nearly a Patterson, but not quite! Has local music shop got the Maltese Cross that I used? No.
Hope Campbell: I'm so glad it worked Hope. I knew it would. That's what I do. 'Silver Needles' was about Sid Vicious.
Nick Malcolm: I don't know Mr. Hunter (Toronto Globe & Mail) who apparently wrote that it was improper to have a rock concert to commemorate the Queen. I know for a fact the Queen was less than impressed herself, but then I've never been particularly impressed with the Queen.
Christine Hill says I'm fab.!!! I'm to say hello to Steve Hill (her Dad). You take care too!
Scott Dasson says he has to be around for a long time to make sure his daughter doesn't grow up listening to crap. He's 43 and still dragging round stacks of Marshalls and Thunderbird basses (thanks Overend) and now he's got to buy a DVD player (thanks, again). Hey Scott - get a site - you're good!
Pete Ashton: Appreciated.
Vaughan Hunter: There's a pile to be listened to. Some I listened to and some to go. If anything sticks out a mile I'll mention. Good luck chaps!
Joel Rollo: Agora Cleveland was awesome! As far as merchandising goes, Joel, it's going to have to be someone I've known for years, but I appreciate your interest.
Manfred Koehler: Apparently I told Manfred Repertoire Records would have to help if I was to tour Germany. He tells me a few things about Repertoire. 1) Their home page is always 'under construction. 2) There are no 'Rant' CD's in the shops. 3) Manfred does not think radio stations got promo copies. He bought 'Rant' in May and never saw it replaced in the box. 4) No feedback from Repertoire themselves. 5) Papillon (who licensed Rant to Repertoire) folded - it's now issued through Chrysalis. 6) The critics in Germany like 'Rant' but not everybody reads the papers. People only buy what they hear. Moving on, he says Patti Smith was great in Hamburg. He says Karsten Jahnke is a solid and well known promoter in Germany. Well, either get his number for us or tell him to ring Emma Banks (our agent with Helter Skelter in the UK - 0207-376-8501). Boy do I pick 'em!!!
Bo Anderson: Greetings from Denmark.
Richard Tremblay asks when the DVD will be available? As soon as we know, we will let you know through this site.
Alan McClelland asks why don't I write more? Well, you have to get an idea first. 2) How come I only look five years older than I did in 1970? Well, I work out - I sleep well, I eat well and like you say - I'm married to Trudi and she's lovely. I'd be a liar if I didn't admit I look a little different with the hair back and the shades off!
Todd LaBrie: Still chomping on the V.U. gig. Andy York says we played really well because we couldn't move! He says don't be a snob and look at his web site. Alright, I will, when I get a chance.
David Richards: Wants to use 'Bastard' for a pro bono TV commercial for the Minneapolis Marathon. I'm afraid the decision is not in our hands. 'Bastard' is published and administered through EMI Music so their permission is required.
Scott Dasson asks where can you get merchandise? Again, we are thinking about it.
Janne Olsson says 'Rant' is number 2 on his album list. Did I know Per Gessle of Roxette? He had the biggest band in Sweden and the band were called Gyllene Tider (Swedish for Golden Age). Yes, I think I met him. He made me a few bob. I think he had a big EP with his version of 'Golden Age' on it. Janne thinks Earl Slick's first name is Frank. My lips are sealed.
John Philips says 'Rant' is the best album in the last 15 years. Loves 'Death of a Nation.'
Brent: The Ringo concert is on Pay Per View on Direct TV all month. $12.95 if that's any help. Did we hang out with Procol Harem? No, not really. We did a couple of gigs with them way back when. I would like to do Ohio more thoroughly at some point. Says he's a bass player and knows all my stuff. AHA.
Paul and Jake Almond have two copies of 'Rant' and would like to thank Andy for the pic he gave them.
Simon in Norway loved Oslo. 'Rant' is amazing - he's 25.
Jane in Austin: Webb Wilder covered 'Big Time'. A Nashville chap. Actually, I like the groove of his version better than the way we did it. When I did 'Big Time' a few years ago I did it at this speed. It sits better.
Tom argues with people who say 'Overnight Angels' and 'Short Back 'n' Sides' were my worst albums. He doesn't agree. I'll go halfway - I like 'Short Back 'n' Sides' because it was fun and a departure. Did John Fiddler sing in British Lions? I believe he did, Tom.
Chez: Come to Boston. I don't have a problem with that at all.
April became a fan after the Ringo tour. Won tickets to see us at Irving Plaza, but couldn't get there. Next time, April.
Judy: How you doing? Superbowl this year?
Robert Clayton sends a lovely letter that makes me feel very Michael Winnerish. Wants to know more about 'Good Samaritan'. Well, it's all there basically. It's always weird to be asked about songs when you said what you wanted to say in them. Any conversation about them can never be as well thought out as what's already in there. Thank you, Robert.
Judy - Again. Do I know Ozzy. I've seen him off and on over the years ever since early Mott. I had dealings with Sharon's dad, Don Arden, and that's how I knew Sharon. She was always great to talk to at the office.
Carlene Higgins is 33 and has been a fan since she was twelve. Will I play Phoenix? You never know. The band's different now so the 'Mark' you refer to is no longer with me.
Craig Parkes says when I lived in New York did I live next door to an Australian Radio program Producer who once managed the EasyBeats - 1983. I didn't move to New York until 1985, so I wouldn't think so.
Alan (Oregon) and his brother have been fans since 1972. Says he got a bargain basement cassette of me and Mick in 1989. Says it's phenomenal. Computer says it's not available on CD. Must be YUI Orta. It's funny. Mercury send you statement with 'no change' on them. How can there be any change if it's not out there? Waste of paper.
Stephen Miller: Appreciated.
Hope Campbell: Know the feeling. Hang in!
Peter W. Resotka asks how can I top 'Rant'? Who knows - least of all me. But we did it and it cost a fraction of all the others.
Michael A. Peters wants the Mott the Hoople Anthology (the 3 CD Box set). That was released by Sony in England. Try Amazon or eBay or CD NOW. Sony U.S. is putting out a single CD of the 'best' of that triple set in the U.S. next February. When will I be back in Chicago? I loved the Park West, so I'll do my best.
Danny McGarrigle can't find 'Rant' in Sydney, Australia. As far as I know, it hasn't been released in Australia. Try getting it through the web. Amazon maybe.
Stefano Ronzoni: Just finished 'Diary' and asks if I'll write another one. The short answer is I don't know. They want me to. Requests to put 'Gun Control' back in the set.
Pat says Citadel is selling 'Artful Dodger'. Kris Gray swears he isn't. She purchased it from Amazon. Kris Gray's well out of order here. He's received solicitor's letters from Bjorn Nessjo and still denies it. Where's the money going???
Kevin Mcallister says the Astoria 'blew his face off the earth' and long live Ronno. Well said, Kevin.
Geoff Olson: No, that wasn't me in the T-shirt. Says I'm a bit like Mike Scott of the Waterboys. Geoff's a journalist in Vancouver and wants to do a piece on the site and on my work. A phoner's fine with me. No, I haven't read 'Frost on my Mustache' but I like the title. He then produces a piece he wrote in the Vancouver Courier which just about nails everything on the head and I'd like for this to be printed on the site below.
Homogenized music market keeps out the greats
The other day, I picked up an obscure pop-culture mag from Britain, mostly to get the CD. The opening track, 'Crush on You' by Teenage Fanclub, rocked so beatifically that I had to turn it up to What's-Up-With-the-Bachelor-in-109 levels for a second listen. TF's tune is destined to never, ever, get airplay. It's just too good.
TF has been around for more than a decade. Ironically, plenty of '80s music gets airplay nowadays, but it's mostly the same market-groomed crap stations played the first time out. (Men Without Hats and Mr. Big were crap in the Age of Big Hair, and they're crap still.)
Another music fixture who can't get a break on the airwaves is former Mott the Hoople lead singer Ian Hunter, an expatriate Brit now residing in Connecticut. Last year, he released Rant, an album that Amazon.com voted as one of the four most underrated albums of the year. Rant's excellence put the lie to John Lennon's observation that - 'if you're in a band at the age of 40 you're still 16 in the head.' (Mick and Keith may occasionally rouse themselves from their chateaux to resurrect that tired old franchise, The Rolling Stones, but Hunter, now in his 60s, is the real deal.)
But here's the rub. Hunter doesn't have the brand-name recognition artists like the Stones do, and as an aging rock n' roller, he can't be placed demographically. Rant came out on a small label, receiving little attention from radio programmers, and small-though positive-critical response.
Part of the problem is that an organization that owns over 1,200 radio stations in the U.S., Clear Channel, has a tapeworm/colon relationship with the American music industry. This parasitic dynamic, along with corporate concentration of the AOL-TimeWarner kind, means that no band or artist gets hyped until they've been signed on and groomed for a particular demographic, with the marketing tie-ins all signed off. So who gets through this homogenizing process? Britney Spears, or any number of cloned boy bands you can think of.
Rock n' roll isn't exactly dead: it just gets fluffed, flounced and made-over by the marketing machine in a process closer to embalming than promotion.
The upshot is that, other than on a few college stations out there in the North American ether, you're not likely to hear new talent on the radio unless it's of the 'market-friendly' variety. Except in the wee hours, when it's a tradition for many stations to allow DJs to play whatever they want. Only then will you hear some astounding stuff, recalling Hunter S. Thompson's observation that 'no one tells the truth before 2 a.m.'
It isn't merely that rebellious artists don't get a break-there will always be the rec-room posturing of a thousand pocket Eminems-it's that artists and groups that have been around forever cranking out great stuff still can't get mainstream airplay.
Ian Hunter says he and his incendiary guitarist, the late Mick Ronson, 'lost the plot' in the '80s-a time of cheesy synthesizer riffs and fretboard gymnastics in which they didn't fit. Likewise, Mike Scott of the Waterboys, one of rock music's great lyric poets, was without a record contract for a large part of the '90s.
Rock n' roll needs some new energy sources, other than marketing vampires who are now hoping to turn file-sharing programs on the Internet into a spigot for even more monumental profits. (Speaking of things in coffins, I hear the late, great rock critic Lester Bangs, who once wrote about rock music with the same spirit and energy it occasionally gets played, is now rolling in his grave at 500 rpm. That's one source of alternative energy.)
Maybe one day the young will take back rock music from the big-business Borg that has brand named it to death. Maybe the Internet will still pay off for the artists and the listeners. If David Bowie can release a passable album after 20 years wandering a wilderness of supermodels and movie cameos, anything is possible. email@example.com
The reason why I wanted that printed is that it tells you - right on the money - what's going on in American radio. I think it's been coming for 20 years and I think they're digging their own graves, but that doesn't help 'Rant'!!!
Phil Huband is a lawyer in Calgary, but still loves rock 'n' roll. Has 'Rant' likes 'Wash Us Away' and 'Dead Man' so he can't be all bad! Have I ever met Ray Davies? (Yes) What was my impression (a nice, shy gentleman when not on tour.) Prefers the American running order of 'Rant' (I prefer the English).
Suzy Mansfield: Bought her husband 'Rant' and he plays 'Knees of My Heart' when she comes home from work. Sounds good to me.
Joyce: Hello, Joyce. Well, I'm all fixed up in the guitar department for now, but I won't forget. Glad to see things are moving along nicely.
Kelly - got her GCSE exam results and passed all 9 of them. 'A' in music! EXCELLENT!! XXX
Rich Webster: 'Rant' is best followed by 'Schizo'. Hi Ade.
Steve Baratta did a review of 'London to Memphis' (MTH). Got in a plug for 'Rant'. He asks if every word was true. On balance - yes.
Debbie Lewis: Talk to Emma Banks at Helter Skelter in London. She's very nice and if it's not on - you tried!!
John N. trying to get his friends to buy 'Rant' in D.C. Thank you, John.
Anthony Caminiti: I have to tell you some are comparing Rant' to Springsteen's new album 'The Rising'. Anthony is one of those and all the comparisons are favourable.
Michael Boyle: Ellen Foley recorded 'Don't Let Go' - would I do it myself? Well, we did it with the orchestra in Oslo. If it's not on the DVD, it'll be on the CD.
Janet Mitchell says I said the best songs I write are about myself. Which part does 'Still the Same' from 'Artful Dodger' fit into? I can't remember the song. I remember the hook. I would imagine it was then and there. It was one of the last ones I wrote.
Andrew Jurman wishes there was a video available of Mott's Uris tour. It was a bit criminal. You have Columbia (Sony) to thank for that.
Dave Clemens says Professor Patterson - how did the thing with Ralpher go (he was in Detroit at the time)? The thing with Ralpher went spiffingly well, actually. Andy York says we've got to do it again. Me, - I'm with Andy.
Joachim Wunschick says the TV show that I did in Germany with Mick Ronson was 'Rockpalast' with Joan Armatrading, ZZ Top and the Blues Band. 19/20 April of 1980 at Grugahalle in Essen. Actually this was a really well done video which still crops up now and again. Did I ever play the Beat Club with 'At Last the 1958 Rock 'n' Roll Show'? yes, I was the bass player (no shades) and Mott also did the Beat Club once, I think.
Alan Tautges from Oregon is more than complimentary on 'Dead Man Walkin'' and 'Ripoff'. Says he hopes the homelanders weren't too tough on me with the lyrics. They all sang them with me! 'Man O' War' was the Stonesy feel - Mick or me. Can't remember, but I was the Stones fan.
Diane - Huge fan since the 80's. Lives in North Carolina but will go to any East Coast show. Her kids (12 and 5) sing along to the CD's. Well, you know, Diane, out kids get A for music on this site.
Tim Smith has a German Shepherd who wags her tail and lies with her head by the speakers when 'Rant' is playing. He says he could do without the periodic howling during solos, particularly of the harmonica nature. Why did we do Doug Sahm's 'At the Crossroads'? Guy Stevens (our manager of the day) suggested it, we liked it, so we did it.
Dave Lee Rosso writes, 'Please put sheet music to 'Dudes' on the site. I'll ask Trudi.
Roger Rabbit: You can't really suggest much to a man with brains who has problems. You have brain. So all the usual stuff doesn't work. However, I would venture of your wish to keep them for any length of time moderation is the rule. Isn't it boring all the time. A little time off now and again is more uneven and interesting. If you have an addictive personality then perhaps beer is the lesser of the myriad of evils placed at our disposal. Of course, if you want to set a good example - then you make a determined effort. What's that Latin bit at the end mean?
Ba'heid Tommy asks why I support the Hamilton Accies? Because I lived in Hamilton not far from the ground and went as a small child. The first team I ever saw.
John Von Reine says North Dakota has two cities. One's called Mott and the other Hoople. It's a funny old world isn't it?
Greg asks what was the most satisfying gig ever? The second night in Oslo this year. That's off the top of my head.
Stephane Paillet - incomplete message.
Dirk Stursberg is looking to do an I.H. special on the radio in Berlin. I'll pass this on to Trudi.
DR Combs is becoming almost ashamed to be American. I know what you man, but you have to think in terms of alternatives. America is a combination of freedom and commerce. Right now the pendulum has swung to the right - the corporate end. It has to swing back. Unfortunately, we now see heads of government chosen for their corporate friendliness rather than for the good of all. It stinks in a lot of countries and then you have the other side of the coin. All in all it doesn't look good. I would hope there's enough brainpower somewhere to realize that corporations cannot have it all their own way and that 2 billion starving people are not going to go quietly. It's all so bloody bought and sold. How much money does one man need? Corporate greed is a never-ending spiral growing bigger and bigger. You see all these billions bandied about and it's minimum wage on the street. Enron - what a bloody mess. It was felt before we were good and the other guys were bad. Now the lines blur and there's an uneasiness. I still believe democracy is the one that works - with all its frailties - we're still relatively free and that's the bottom line. Have you checked out the options? They all fail and they all wind up gravitating toward some kind of a market economy. Bush has got to weed these buggers out and I'm sure he doesn't want to do it. The moral ground we stand on has got to be strong and the super rich better start setting a better and more public example if they want the status quo to continue. That old Vietnam poster 'What if there was a war and nobody turned up?'
Louis says 'Once Bitten Twice Shy' has been covered under the guise of 'Once Living Twice Died' by an American Christian Rock Group ApolegetriX on their Spoofenatural CD. (I'd have thought the Christian thing to would have been to ask me first, but perhaps that's where the 'spoof' comes in). Did I play on Michael Munroe's 'Nights are so Long' CD? Yes, I did play on it. Perhaps the producer mixed it down. Don't really know. Michael's a pal of mine.
Anthony B. at Northampton with Ralpher. Memorable stuff! He's noticed, however, that Gus Goad (our bass player) seems somewhat disinterested in the proceedings. Well Gus, in fact, is very interested in the proceedings (you should have seen him dance at Cambridge when his Mum was there). It's just his way. Steve Holley swears by him. In fact, we all do. Mr. Showbusiness.
Phil H. 'Why didn't David Bowie turn up at the Mick Ronson Memorial Concert?' I don't know - ask him.
George Miller asks, 'Will we play New York again? Yes.
Loydster: Did we play southern California last time out? No.
Jim McConnel: It would be great to take the Oslo show on the road. Orchestra - the lot. Can we do it? I don't know at this time.
Graham Stroud says Paul Westerberg name checked Mott and plays a bit of 'One of the Boys' on his solo tour. How do I feel when I hear of these things so many years after MTH ended? Flattered.
David Taylor is 21 and started off listening to MTH and gradually got onto my solo stuff. Would I do 'The Outsider' live. I might try it at rehearsals and see how it sounds. Had a bit more top end in those days. Loves Ronson's solo. I loved all Mick's solos and I remember them. Wants 'The Outsider' and 'Dead Man Walkin' in the set next time in Newcastle.
William Fletcher is looking for the BBC Live in Concert (that's a good one).
Dave Martin: Appreciated.
Andrew Field: Where would I be without a little Andrew Field to brighten my day! 1) Don't play 'Foxy, Foxy' live because I always saw that song as a Ronnettes tribute. I always wanted Ronnie Spector to do it. 2) To put Verden in the band overloads the Mott aspect which was not mine or Mick's intentions. We just wanted to play together and we'd talked about it over the years. Ian Gibbons has been in my band for 7 or 8 years now and we're kind of set in the keyboard department. Phally's great. He got up in Cardiff. He's a great player. Never lost it. It's just the way things are. Phally's got a new CD out on Angel Air at the moment. Look for it.
Terence just discovered 'Rant' and loves it. Says I sweated on him in Indianapolis in '91. Sorry about that. Must have gotten carried away.
Daniel Jones finishes up this months Horse's Mouth by telling me I'm amazing. I needed that,Daniel, as I'm about to confront a keyboard. Do I remember Steamhammer? Vaguely, and I know the name Martin Pugh (with whom you are working) as well. Give him my regards.
In fact I give you all my regards. We'll talk.
P.S. As always, I didn't answer them all. To those I missed - it's nothing personal - just couldn't think of anything to say!