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Smoke

wafting gossip


All the finest gossip, from Mr Smoke's depthless reservoir of naughty news.

Did anyone read about Michael Hurll's speech at the Music Week Awards last month? As executive producer of Top Of The Pops, Mr Hurll is an important figure in the pop business, which gives his words weight. On one level, it's possible to agree with his comments that "talent scouts and A&R people should stop looking for new bands who reflect the current sounds", as anything that stimulates originality must be good for the music business. BUT — his speech also called for a "return to mainstream personality shows... [and] stars who are not afraid to be classed as adult rock or middle-of-the-road." He went on to suggest that, in order to get out of the present rut, we "look back 15 or 20 years to see what was happening then on TV, radio and records." Now we all know the Music Biz is reactionary, but this is almost a Victorian Values stance — must we fling this pop at our filth, kids?...

Prince plays drums on 'Hon E Man' on Sheila E's new album...

horror fiction writer and rock fan Stephen King owns an AM radio station in the States...

did you know that England cricketer Bob Willis has changed his name by deedpoll to Bob Dylan Willis? Perhaps that's why they got him to write the foreword to 'All Across The Telegraph: A Bob Dylan Handbook', another tome celebrating the erudition of El Zimmola, which is published in May. The book, edited by Michael Gray and John Bauldie, features such intellectual delights as "The World's Worst Cover Versions Of Bob Dylan Songs", a list which includes 'Blowin In The Wind' by Trini Lopez, 'I Shall Be Released' by Telly Savalas, and — no I can't tell you, it's too ridiculous...

popstars on the move, popsters: Nick Mason (racing car driver and some time Pink Floyd drummer) is seeking a "really colourful four or five bedroom property in Hampstead (up to £750,000)", Pete Burns is looking to spend £300,000, and Hugh Cornwell has just sold his Bayswater flat...

big jobbies in not such good news shock: in March's Studio Sound, Alan Parsons said "48-track Dolby analogue can involve as many as 624 adjustments if a client's tape is to be used for the first time... Abbey Road Studios allow two hours for line-up on day one of a 48-track analogue session." Which means that will cost you around £200 before you even start...

Whistle Test watchers might have noticed the fabby Dawn Chorus (Andy Kershaw's sister) following Deep Purple around Paris. Mucho problems behind the scenes, quoth Ms Chorus. It seems that Ian Gillan had taken exception to a question put to him during Purple's last appearance on Whistle Test, when Andy K suggested the group had only reformed for financial reasons. This was Ian's "most humiliating experience in 20 years as a rockstar", Dawn was told by Deep Purple's manager when he was explaining why Gillan refused to be filmed...

we deduce that famous smoothie and jazz guitar player George Benson has a memory problem: only the opening number in his set is fixed. His band not only has to learn the 24-song show, it has to be able to recognise each number from George's opening chords, as those are the only cue they get...

picture this: Love & Money (most recently seen backing the Godlike genius of Tom Verlaine on The Tube) pounding away on stage, coming to the end of their own set. Song finishes, drummer gets up, goes off-stage. Other band members look round in amazement. Long pause while discussions go on, then bassist runs off. He returns a few minutes later with a very irate drummer, who sits grumpily down to play the last song. Arguments continue through the song, and shouts of 'No-one ever tells me anything' are overheard...

Queen call their first really big hit single 'Bo Rap'...

rumours abound that blues revivalists and current hippest combo in the galaxy, Led Zeppelin, have been caught out at last. It appears that Willie Dixon has just settled out of court with Zeppelin over the authorship of 'Whole Lotta Love', which Dixon says is based rather closely on a 1962 song of his called 'You Need Love'...

extremely brilliant noisy persons Sonic Youth had the nerve to plunder Pink Floyd's "The Wall" for the explosion noise on their "Bad Moon" CD...

small ad spotted recently: "Musicians Wanted: Drummer who can drum for street/country band. Own suit and transport essential"...

all right, that other Dylan cover version was 'Mr Tambourine Man' by William Shatner — Captain Kirk!...

in an exclusive interview, Making Music design consultant Caroline Grimshaw quizzed Peter Gabriel over his latest recordings: "It's really easy to get funny noises," said Gabriel. Caroline revealed that someone had pointed Gabriel out to her. "I'd only recognise him in black & white from the album covers," she said. "He was really nice," she continued. "He had a green suit on"...



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Making Music - Copyright: Track Record Publishing Ltd, Nexus Media Ltd.

 

Making Music - Apr 1987

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