MUSIC: I listen to Coldplay a lot. I was playing them in the car today here in Hawaii – I’m out here with my wife and my twin daughters. I’ve got a house out here and it’s great. There’s something about the tempo of life that’s timeless and magical: it’s like Ireland with better weather. Coldplay are fantastic driving music. They’re melodic and really creative, they’ve a very strong emotional connection, especially with the vocals, very cleverly done. They’ve obviously done their listening – The Beatles and Pink Floyd by the sound of it – but they’re enough of their own property to sound individual. Everyone has influences, and it’s appropriate to use them. People look to their mentors whether they realise it or not. Marvin Gaye I love – he started off as a session player drummer in fact. If you were a square white guy – which I wasn’t as it happens – you understood Marvin Gaye a lot easier than the Wilson Picketts and Rufus Thomases. If you heard In The Midnight Hour you were either going to instantly get it or it was going to freak you out, but Marvin Gaye transcended a lot of barriers, his whole demeanour, the way he wrote, the elegance, the way he phrases. He covered so many bases. Incredibly handsome and loved this fairly cracked life but a man of style and taste. It was terribly sad when his father shot him. There was a side to him that was very dark. I met him in the 70s after a Radio City show. I want back to his hotel and was amazed to find him surrounded by security guards at this big old
dining-room table counting the money. I was a little taken aback. I don’t know what I rather foolishly expected to find, but in our world this sort of thing didn’t exist! He had this great big attaché case and was counting all the money. About an hour later he came out in his silk dressing-gown, like a prize fighter, and was thoroughly charming. Fleetwood Mac were having a lot of success at the time and he was totally clued into who we were. He was very smooth, just like you imagine he’d be, very polite.I like Jet too. They’re from Australia and sound like the early Rolling Stones. And I don’t go far without listening to the Stones
themselves. Between the Buttons I like best. I just love their early songwriting period which documents the reality for me – which is that Mick and Keith don’t get the credit they deserve. They’re so cavalier about being Rolling Stones and they’ve never tried to
position themselves as “we’re craftsmen songwriters”. But they wrote so many fantastic songs – Under My Thumb, Backstreet Girl, Satisfaction. I toured with the Stones in the early 60s; me and Peter Bardens in The Cheynes, we were the backing band for the Ronettes who were on the same package – the Stones, the Ronettes, and then some of the old brigade, Marty Wilde and The Swinging Blue Jeans – and the Stones just totally blew me away.
FILM/DVD: I usually get called in by my wife (she’s 40) to look at new stuff, but otherwise I like the old favourites. I love The Shawshank Redemption. An incredible film, should have got an award. I love the way it resolves… Tim Robbins is a genius. I love Being There. I’m a huge Peter Sellers fan and he tried for so long to get this film made and no one would touch it. He got it down and then he kicked the bucket straight after [in 1980]. I just like the premise really – it had a twinge of what the Kenneth Williams character always used to say on Round The Horne – “The answer lies in the soil!” It’s that childlike answer to everything that produces his character [Seller’s Chance The Gardener is mistaken for Chauncey Gardner]. It’s so refreshing for me, that film. Everyone is so close to being a simpleton and a genius and everyone is hoodwinked into thinking that he was just a simple chap who was tied to his garden. Even the President ends up using his phrases in a speech – “It will
grow in the spring”. I like The Bourne Identity too, a pretty good flick, and I’m trying to rent Fahrenheit 9/11 but every time I go to the shop around the corner the box is always empty.
BOOKS: I’m not an overly-read guy, but I loved David Icke’s The Biggest Secret. Some of it does push the envelope, but I find that sort of stuff really interesting. Power structures that have been controlling the planet for longer than you or I realise. What are they? Mostly things called “banks”. I mean, who decides the interest rates? Who really decides? Why have they got a right to do that? They invent and print money that doesn’t belong to them. Over here in the US I never see anything in the press about it. Look at Freemasonry. The Capitol was designed by freemasons. A lot of the American presidents have been freemasons. How many? Sixty-three per cent. Nixon was, Bush could well be – nearly all the founding fathers were freemasons. The dollar bill is covered in Masonic insignia, the pyramid and the eye. I’m not saying there’s anything sinister about it, but it is debatable in terms of “why is that?”. I have awful feeling they control more than anyone ever questions. I’ve skimmed through Clinton’s My Life. Rhodes Scholar, educated man, I really admire him. The personal thing that happened to him in his life doesn’t bother me. The scallywag part of his reputation really doesn’t matter a damn. Eisenhower had a mistress. Used to sit next to him all day dressed in a WREN’s outfit. But she was his mistress! And all the press knew about it but could be trusted and wouldn’t write about that sort of thing. And I think that’s right. You just do your job. What happens in the bedroom is none of people’s business.
Article transcribed by trackaghost with thanks