| Singlolo "planese for today"
When did you start playing with Reluctant Stereotypes and how long did you play with King?
I started playing with reluctant stereotypes in 1979. They disbanded in 1981.
Tony Wall myself and Paul King formed "Raw Screens" straight after that.
We recruited Mick Roberts and Jim lansbury and that was really the start of king apart from the name.
I was sacked after about two and a half years.
Why did the experience with king finish?
This is a tricky question to answer. The rest of the band would have their perspective on it I have mine. This is the first time I have had the chance to tell my side of the story. Most interveiws I have done since have the restriction of the journalist not wanting to offend anyone. Inevitably that is o.k. but you end up with a watered down version of events. I will endevour to tell my side of things warts and all as truthfully as I can.
Thankyou Lucio for the oppurtunity to do this no matter how belatedly. It was never fully explained to me why i was sacked. I just received a call from Paul King one morning saying that due to artistic and personal differences my services were no longer required.
As far as Paul and Tony were concerned it had taken them nearly four years to come to this conclusion. as for Jim and Mick i feel they were just pawns as was tony being taken for a ride by Paul King and his boyfreind Perry Haines. so i would like to say thankyou to all of them for having the balls to tell me face to face.
I have had an awful amount of time to think about all this. I think at the end of the day what my sacking boiled down to was that i was prepared to tell paul and Perry if i thought their ideas were not good ones in my opinion. The rest of the band seemed content to be led round by the nose. I'm not even saying I thought all of their ideas were bad ones. I'm just saying that they all seemed to have their interests at heart.
Not the whole band the other thing is if the manager and the singer are lovers what chance did the rest of us have of having a fair system in place.
How did you get to know the other members?
I had obviously known Paul and Tony from the "Stereotypes". I got to know Jim through the band. Mick and i had really known each other since we were kids we both came from the same part of Coventry and had played in various garage and club bands.
Mick came from a large family and his parents didn't have a car at the time. My dad used to ferry us both around to gigs and rehearsals. This led to him questioning why i thouhgt Mick hadn't stuck up for me when the band were talking about firing me. To be fair to Mick i don't think he would have been asked his opinion. I,m sure they were all just told I was no longer going to be part of the band.
What's your favourite song you played?
I didn't really have a favourite song. As new songs evolved I got to like playing on most of the tracks I was involved with.
If you could go back what would you do and what wouldn't you do?
As far as would and wouldn't questions go. Hard to say. To a certain extent whats done is done. I'm sure I said and did things I would like to do differently. But isn't that life.
At the end of the day if I said something that was taken the wrong way I can't change that now. But i do know that my intentions as far as my fellow band members was concerned were always done or said with the best intentions for all of us. I know and always have that my conscience is clear and I can live with myself. I don't think that can be said of all of us. greed is a terrible thing.
Do you ever think to retry the musical carrier and to have a band of your own?
The answer to this is "No".
After being fired by king I went straight back to my trade as a carpenter. For a start I only had myself to think about and i could earn as much as i wanted to. A lot more than I ever did from the music biz. Money is'nt my driving force but it certainly makes life easier. I had also had a gut full of having to put up with the ego factor in the music biz especially from Paul who's ego was going through the roof when I was sacked.
I now have a studio at home and teach the drums there. I also have a lot of fun messing about musically with my daughters in the studio. They are both very musical and I know if I try to give them my guidance they won't stab me in the back for it.
Do you have any contacts with the other members of the band where you've played?
I now live in Australia and it is a long way from Europe. So it is fairly hard to keep in touch.
Why do you think Paul closed his carrier as a singer and started as a VJ on MTV?
This is a question that only he can answer. I can only summize. I'm sure no one can be in any doubt now that I find Paul King in any shape or form abhorrent. So my answer will be no suprise. I guess after a failed solo career he didn't have much choice if he wanted to stay in the public eye. I'm sure he would also have had his bum chum Perry,s finger in the pie somewhere along the line too.
Which was the most exciting concert for you while playing with KING's band and which is the most important?
It is now so long ago that I can't honestly remember. I do know that we were quite good live. And every show we I'm sure tried to give our best.
What are you doing in Australia now? Are you looking forward to coming back to England one day?
I now run my own costruction company, we deal with mostly high end renovations, and architecturally designed new builds. I did come back to the U.K. over christmas 07/08 and we also took the kids on a cruise round the Red Sea. We went to Jordan and Egypt saw the pyramids and all that tourist stuff. While back in the U.K. I did get in touch with Paul Sampson from the "Stereotypes" and had a cuppa and a chat at his house in earlsdon. I also tried to see Steve Edgeson but around that time he was just finding out he was really sick so i think poor steve was rather stressed when I turned up on his doorstep.
I really don't think my family could be talked into a permanent move back to the U.K. as we have such a great life here.
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