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A sunny but exceedingly brisk day at Hunter Towers. I've just chiseled the ice off my face and now to the Horse's Mouth …
David Britz wants a new studio CD. We're aiming for May. It's done; the artwork's done; it's mastered and the labels involved are now working feverishly on it!
Dennis: Am I hitting the road prior to 'Shrunken Heads'? Doing a bit on the west coast of the U.S. The acoustic English gigs may come just before it's release.
Snorre R Mandal: 'Hope you're playing Norway' We are!
Tony Smith: 'Are you touring the UK, and if so, when?' I'm doing three acoustic shows in May and a full band tour in October.
Brian: 'Glad to see you back in LA. How long will you play with the Zombies? My set is approximately one hour. I'ts a co-headline. 'Will you do your own tour?' Don't know yet, but we're working on it.
G. Meyer: It was cool. It was cool!
Martin is looking for 'Short Back 'n' Sides' Try Amazon.
Vern Michaels: 'Is it hard to imagine that someone views you as you view Dylan?' I'm getting there!
Mark Day: As far as I'm concerned, any gigs advertising Mott the Hoople are bogus and fraudulent. It's up to you if you go or not. You have been warned.
Al Moore: 'Touring England?' Yup.
Jordan: Don't immediately recollect any Guardian review.
Willie: We're in progress.
Dick: Hi Dick.
Stepnen Molnar: Come to Buffalo! Hopefully we will - the back's better!
Nash: 'UK tour?' As above.
Margaret Wyatt: UK tour - as above.
Dave Donner is flying to San Francisco from Vegas. 'Have you ever played the Fillmore?' Yes, MTH played it twice that I remember. Bill Graham was very nice; I got on well with him. Had a thing about punctuality, but apart from that he was very warm.
Eric W. Johnson: 'Detroit?' I should jolly well hope so!
Andy: 'Do 'Original Mixed Up Kid'' at the Winterland.' We'll see.
Jim Boll sees Milwaukee, WI on the tour map? News to me.
Gerald York: 'Will you sell autographed copies of Shrunken Heads?' Probably, eventually. Haven't got that far yet. Congratulations on the wedding!
Midge: 'This year is Marc Bolan's 30th year away.' Always liked his singles. 30 years! Bloody hell.
Edward has this pearl of wisdom … 'If the Three Stooges had been the Three Wise Men what could they have given the Christ child that could have perhaps altered history and rescued Christianity from the stupidly narrow minded religion it has become?' I've always thought a sense of humor a distinct advantage.
Kirk: Re: 'Korean Richmond guitars - ever heard of them?' Sorry.
Jim McConnell: 'How is Frankie Miller these days?' Well, he is doing the best he can. Great singer; great songwriter. Mott never played with Frankie.
Ed Marentette: I don't know if MTH pioneered two keyboards on stage - we never thought about it - we just did it. I know Phally's organ weighed a ton and we had to schlep it five nights a week until we could afford a roadie.
Carl Todaro: 'Why didn't 'Dirty Laundry' get promoted?' Small labels - I think the foreign labels folded. Enjoyed doing that record, though. They'd actually wanted Mexican folk songs sung by me, but it kind of got altered by Darrel, Honest John and myself. We couldn't help it. Was I downstairs chatting to fans at the Bowery Ballroom? Nope - but I do now and again.
Jeff: 'Good luck with the new CD, tour etc.' Thank you, Jeff.
Jerry: 'Play Blackpool.' How is Blackpool these days? My Mum, Dad and Brother lived in Bispham, many years ago.
Colum Thornton: 'Dublin!' It's up to the Dublin promoters.
Mark Hughes: I'm not anti-fan talking, it's just a question of if there's enough time on a particular day and how tired I am. You never know until you get there. The songs you request are two of 300 or so. I can't listen to who wants what or I'd be up there all night!
Campin Patti: 'Philly.' I'm sure we'll wind up there this year.
Dean: 'Do 'Irene Wilde' at the Fillmore (you never know). 'What do you think of Becks coming to the States and playing soccer?' Well, Becks is a great player on the rear end of a marvelous career. He (and his missus) will not be oblivious to other opportunities available to him in LA. Having said that, he's a genuine chap, he's good with young wannabe footballers - and he'll be good for the moribund 'major soccer league'. They reckon Zidane might play for NY - they need somebody - it's painful stuff to watch. Will it change the U.S.'s attitude toward soccer? Well, Pele didn't did he - neither did George Best.
Tom: 'Have you heard the band 'Diamond Dogs'? They're a dead ringer for the 'Hoople' era Mott.' Well, that saves us the trouble then!
Neil Bates: 'Bilston?' October.
Stale asks did I get the package? Yes, I did, Stale - and very nice too! See you in Trondheim.
Steve Jones: UK dates - as above.
Dolores Stanke (Jeff's Mum!) a sprightly 84! Belated Happy Birthday! Saw vids of Ringo and the Oslo Orchestra and the band in London. (Jeff, will you leave the poor lady alone.) 'You're every bit as talented as Elvis and your piano playing reminds me of Jerry Lee Lewis (sussed).' Says Jeff loved weather since he was three and saw the Wizard of Oz. Jeff says he nearly fell off the chair when she made the JLL comment.
Paul Stepto: 'Graham Hillman asks if any Mott gigs were filmed. I remember the BBC being at one of the Fairfield Hall gigs in the early 70's. They were going to show footage on the Old Grey Whistle Test - but somebody historically significant died that week so the BBC screened a program about him instead. Maybe some BBC archivist would know if this film exists.' Could be. Thanks, Paul.
Bob: 'Any other tour dates apart from the West Coast?' Not apart from what's up on the website. They're working on more.
Andy Allison: I'll forget this by October, Andy. Remind me in August on the HM.
Willie: Actually it might be 21st, but what's in a week.
Fiona: 'Congratulations on the new album!' You ain't heard it yet!
Ron Hawkins: I seem to remember Peter ringing me at one time. Probably around 75 - 76. I lived not too far from his place. We never did get together, however. Just saw his DVD - great player.
Tripp H. 'In ATYD when you say, 'hey you in the polyester' who are you talking to?' Artistic license, dear boy.
Anton Tibbe: 'Annual pilgrimage to B.B. Kings. BOC great - ambience worse than ever. Biggest problem - stuck in seats - waiters in the way. At 58, prefer Bowery Ballroom and Irving Plaza. Don't want to sit on my butt for a Rock 'n' Roll show!'
Tom Knight: Did I ever work with Andy Fairweather-Low? No, but I would - he's a class act. Tasteful - and a great singer.
John V.: Sorry about the gig, John, but I'm up for a knife and fork whenever. Perhaps we could do the gig next year.
Amy Nachbar: Yeah, Kaufman's a pilot, but I think he manages a girl singer. I saw him last in 2001 during the making of RANT. Don't time fly.
Daniel Halferty: Luther should call his band, 'Not the Hoople.'
David Drew: Thanks for the invite - you never know.
Andrew Field: 'Congrats on the good news re: record, management deal.' Actually, I'm quite up on this. Haven't been managed in so long, and I really like Danny and Jack. It's taken a while. Sometimes you have to step back and make changes. We've made a lot - in England as well as here. Let's hope it pans out.
John Pottage: 'I thought Andy played sax on 'Memphis'. Don't recall him playing on 'Golden Age'. Mistakes happen.
Andrew Gardner: We've discussed terms with the Germans as well, but still can't reach an agreement.
Alan K.: 'Did MTH ever do The Old Grey Whistle Test?' Not to my knowledge, although - as you read earlier in this H/M the BBC supposedly recorded the Fairfield Hall concert at one time. We weren't particular fans of television. The sound quality was pretty bad in those days and very often you couldn't use your own sound guys. This prevails until today and is stupid. Any TV footage of MTH never capture the spirit of what actually went on.
Mark Trude is ready for 'Shrunken Heads'. 'Play Washington DC.'
Rich Webster: 'Have you ever written a Christmas song?' Don't think so. Loves 'Dirty Laundry'. Same goes for 'I'm in Awe.' and 'Avalanche' from 'The Journey' (Sony UK release). Actually, I'd forgotten I'd done those two tracks. I found some old ADATS and took 'em down to Rick Tedesco's studio. It was like listening to someone else's songs! Also found a good version of 'Salvation'. I'm leaning toward putting it on the next studio effort. Song stays with me.
John O'Rourke: The UK May shows are acoustic. The full band shows will be in October. The European shows in May/June will be full band (including Lillehammer). Am I going to forego the Astoria type venue for dinner clubs? No, but it's fun to do something different. I like doing acoustic shows; we've done them in the U.S. - why not Blighty! Incidentally, some UK promoters didn't think the acoustic shows would sell.
Greg: 'East Coast?' Sometime this year; that's still being sorted out.
Ken Dixon: 'Australia.' It has been mentioned to me recently. We'll have to see what it entails.
Carol: It's her friend, Iain's 50th birthday. Sorry, Carol - don't do that stuff - but hey, Iain - Happy Birthday - IH xxx.
Willie: It's a plan, Willie - it's a plan.
Mike Robinson: Yes, they're both good friends, but I would have needed a lot more notice.
Willy Roevenich: No gigs in Germany as of yet. Best of luck with the band.
Janey: Noted. Trudi will be in touch. Not easy these days, is it?
Keith Nickless: I think you're confusing things. The Pigalle's acoustic. Keith says it looks like a 30's Berlin brothel. Hey - I'm the cabaret! Just the ticket! We'll be back with the full band in the autumn.
Rick G: 'Will you do Steve Jones' radio show while you're out here?' Did it last time.
Steve Williams: Thanks for the support, Steve. Hang in there.
Michael Murphy: Any chance of meet and greet in LA? Don't know until we get there, time is a factor.
Matt Nojonen's reading a book called 'Kill the Messenger' about Gary Webb, the journalist who broke the CIA/crack connection. Says I am mentioned in it several times! Thanks, Matt.
Martha Binek just heard 'Avalanche' and loves it.
Bob Clayton: No TV planned at the moment (Thank God).
Stanto: Scored 3! Excellent!
Paul Clark: 'What is the motivation behind 'acoustic set' i.e. Glasgow.' It's very simple. I like doing acoustic and I've never done it in England, so why not? The big band plays the UK in October. Hopefully, this way - the record stays around longer. Don't think I'm going to turn acoustic in my old age - I'm not. It's just fun to do something a bit different now and again. Hey and I'll get to hear myself, too!
Bobby C. enjoyed Maxwell's. Good little venue. Good sound (lousy parking!).
Randy Romig: Do I keep in touch with Kid Leo? No, but he's a good guy. 'Corporate radio is a joke - no regional flavor (good point). Do you think listener supported net radio without ads is a step in the right direction (it's got to be). I also think satellite radio is a good thing (same here). There's not a day that radio 70's doesn't play an IH song http://www.radioio.com/radioio70s.php Scroll down a little and on the left there's a button that says 'What I missed'. They played 'Shallow Crystals' yesterday. Go Tribe!' Thanks, Randy.
Alan: Manchester? Don't know, yet.
Fiona: Happy Birthday!
Big Licks: As far as ER's concerned, I think not. Try Rick at Guitarhangar.com and tell him I sent you.
Roland: Like I said, October for the big ones; May for the little ones. It's not a kick in the teeth - I'm coming twice this year!
Mick: There were a few 'Maltesers' - I've seen three.
Andy Ambler: Happy Birthday, Andy!
Peejay: 'That's not a tour - it's a holiday!' What a fuss about nothing.
Jimi Megaree: Unfortunately, the people who own these shows want me to sign off on them for peanuts. This I won't do.
Fiona: I think I'm going to Spain. Maybe they'll see me there. Not confirmed yet, watch for it on the website.
Chris B/CT: 'Do the 'new' Waterbury Palace. I was there for the Mott/Queen show.'
David Ledgerton: Manchester or Liverpool? Don't know yet.
Jeffrey: 'Nasty Valentine's Day'. Actually it was crap outside, but we had a great time, inside. And the 6-12 inches predicted turned into 2. TV hysteria as per usual - Anna Nicole and raging storms. Good for business, but crap to hear.
Howard Chapman: 'Who'll be in the band?' Well, as you know there are a pool of great musicians. James and I have to figure out who's available. I think Graham Maby won't be with us because Joe Jackson's working this year and Joe's Graham's first band. It always works out fine.
Tom McGarry: 'Which guys are you taking to Glasgow?' It'll be Andy York and Steve Holley or James Mastro and Steve. 'Why acoustic? 'Cos I'm goin' soppy.
Gary (gutted): Sorry, there're sold out, but I'm back with the full band in October. The record comes in May, so all is not lost.
Paul Wood hears Birmingham Town Hall may be used for concerts again. 'Fancy going back there?' I don't remember anything bad about it.
Stuart Collins: My management will get in touch.
Phil: Come to St. Louis!
Robert Mathisen: You're right about 'Old Records' and wrong about Central Park. What inspired me? I was a rather plain looking chap with no money!
Ray Chan: I've no idea where Lem Lubin might be these days.
Peejay: 'London's sold out; do another night or two. Don't think I can.
David Parry: 'Play 'Dead Man Walkin''. He's in trouble with his good lady if I don't. Mmmmmmcould be worth a few bob?
Kenny Mac: 'Got ticket for King Tuts. Is there an electric part of the tour this year?' Yes. 'What is the set up for the acoustic gig band wise?' Me and a couple of the chaps as aforementioned.
Shawn Stuart: 'Do Nottingham (with Tyla supporting).'
Martin Gerard: 'Please, please, please more UK dates.' Feel like Michael Winner. What's with this guy Michael Winner? He does a couple of lousy movies way back - brags about his money and his 'friends' and people swallow it? Beats me. We're doing more UK dates in October with the full band.
Anne and Ralf: Thank you.
Mitch Freidman: 'Philly?' It's not in my hands, but if it were, Philly would definitely be on the list.
Tom Boone: East Coast? O.K.
So, we're done for now. Hope we've cleared up some of the confusion. You'll be pleased to know I've already started on the next album. Normally, nothing around this time of year, but a couple of nice ones popped up recently, giving me hope that a future studio album will be closer than the customary five years. It's early days and I may well get writer's block tomorrow, but so far, so good. S_ _ T! I shouldn't have said that - Murphy's Law!!
I'll be a bit late next month as we're traveling west.