Rock Around the World

Newspaper Articles – Issue 9

by Anne Nightingale

Now that Yoko Ono has usurped Henry Kissinger as number-one mediator, in settling The Beatles‘ marathon case against Alan Klein, rumours of a Beatles reunion are rife again. Paul McCartney said in London recently that a Beatles get-together could never be ruled out. He said that “like the long hot summers of one’s childhood, I remember the good times I had with The Beatles. It was immediately after we broke up that was the worst for me. I just didn’t know what I was going to do on my own.” Paul, incidentally, is releasing “Maybe I’m Amazed” (from theWings Across America album), which has never been a UK single previously.

For The Beatles ever to consider reforming would naturally depend on the climate between them, and the sheer geographical problems of assembling them in one place. George Harrison is back in England at his mansion at Henley-on-Thames. Paul is frequenting his house in North London, with forays to his farm in Scotland. John, despite gaining his green card, has remained in the United States — though he’s rumoured to be returning to England during the next few weeks. Ringo‘s whereabouts are unknown — at least to me!

What I found far more significant in terms of possible togetherness among The Beatles, has manifested itself in a song on George Harrison’s latest album 33 1/3. The song is called “See Yourself”. George told me that it was written about Paul, and in particular McCartney’s dilemma when he was asked by the press if he’d ever taken acid. When Paul replied truthfully that he had, everyone said: “Well, you should have lied about it.” To which Paul quite rightly asked: “Why ask me in the first place then?” George’s song takes a compassionate view of Paul’s predicament and says: “It’s easier to lie than tell the truth.” Clearly, any bitterness which might have remained between Paul and George has mellowed with the passing of time . . . However, even if complete harmony were to be restored among the Fab Four, the sheer logistics of a reunion might prove impossible. Paul is keen to tour again after the success of the Wings 1976 tour. George also told me he plans to put a band together and tour the world this year. “Well, once you’ve put a band together, you might as well do the lot,” he said. “But I’d pace it better than the ’74 American tour when I tried to do too many concerts in too short a space of time.”

So it appears as though at least two Beatles are going to be fully committed for most of this year. Perhaps when they’re 64. . .! !

Among those tipped for the top this year by Britain’s top DJs are Heart, Racing Cars, Eddie and The Hot Rods, Graham Parker and The Rumour, and one of my own choices, The Steve Gibbons Band. Their second album is due out in Britain this month and it coincides with a British tour with Be Bop de Luxe. Steve is a fellow contemporary from Birmingham of Jeff Lynne and Roy Wood. I believe the time is now right for Steve to join Jeff in the superstar bracket.

Procul Harum are also about to undertake a major British tour — the most extensive for several years. This also coincides with a new album Something Magic. This features a whole side devoted to concept work entitled “The Worm and The Tree”, which the group has been working on for the past two years. After touring Europe and Britain, Procul leave for the United States in mid-March.

Roger Daltrey has now started work on his latest solo album at The Who‘s studio, Ramport, in South London. It is produced, as previously reported, by David Courtney, Leo Sayer‘s former co-writer. David also coproduced, with Adam Faith, Daltrey’s first solo album. The songs featured will be from different writers, including Paul Korda, Phillip Goodhand-Tait, and David Courtney. Joining Daltrey on the sessions is Mick Ronson. Appartently, his projected plans for collaboration with David Cassidy did not get further than rehearsal stage.

See you next month, provided that li’l’ ole Great Britain isn’t still frozen over. . . .